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Microsoft

Vista's 'Next Gen' TCP/IP Stack 259

boyko.at.netqos writes "Microsoft's new Vista TCP/IP stack might be beneficial to businesses looking to increase use of their IT infrastructure... if they did it right. Ted Romer at Network Performance Daily writes: '[Vista] now allows us to throttle outbound traffic at a client or server. For example, you can throttle the bandwidth of a particular subnet to a particular server, giving some departments more access to the servers that they need. You can even restrict outgoing bandwidth for certain peer-to-peer applications like bit torrent. This shaping can also be handy when applied to servers, allowing less bandwidth for certain users/departments, and more for others. While consumers may debate whether Vista is a worthwhile upgrade, I believe it to be important for enterprise customers who will best be able to put Vista's capabilities to their fullest potential. Of course, I'm getting it for DirectX 10 games, but that's just me.'"

Creationism Museum To Open Next Summer 1570

Aloriel writes to point out a story in the Guardian (UK) about the opening next year of the first Creationism museum in Kentucky, just over the Ohio border. From the article: "The Creation Museum — motto: 'Prepare to Believe!' — will be the first institution in the world whose contents, with the exception of a few turtles swimming in an artificial pond, are entirely fake. It is dedicated to the proposition that the account of the creation of the world in the Book of Genesis is completely correct... The museum is costing $25 million and all but $3 million has already been raised from private donations." A lot of that money is going into the animatronic dinosaurs, which are pictured as coexisting with modern humans before the Fall. According to the article, up to 50 million Americans believe this. The museum has a Web presence in the Answersingenesis.org site.

Blu-ray Laser Gadget 204

i4u writes, "Wicked Lasers has done the unthinkable. They took the sparse blue laser diodes used in Blu-ray Disc drives and are making cool laser gadgets out of them, called Sonar. You can own one of these very limited edition lasers for $1,999.99. The price is that high because Wicked Lasers buys Blu-ray Disc players and removes the Blu-ray diode for the Sonar laser."

NTP Sues Palm, Alleging Patent Violation 121

mikesd81 writes "The Seattle Time reports that NTP is now going after Palm for patent infringement on technology used in their devices. The suit asks the court to bar Palm from continuing to infringe on NTP's patents and seeks monetary damages for the alleged past infringements. At issues are eleven patents, dating from 1995 to 2001, according to the lawsuit. Five of the patents were part of NTP's lawsuit against RIM. The Palm complaint also centers on products, services and systems that integrate e-mail systems with wireless communications, including the Treo, Palm VII, Palm i700 and Tungsten products." You may recall NTP from the just-finished Blackberry case. Good to know they're staying busy.

Wired's Very Short Stories 665

Wired's games blog Game|Life alerted me to a great feature on the main Wired site. Called Very Short Stories, the piece features the work of 33 well-known writers practicing their craft in six word chunks. Their work is combined with several talented graphic designers to generate some very creative works of art. Some of my favorites: "The baby's blood type? Human, mostly'. - Orson Scott Card
'Lie detector eyeglasses perfected: Civilization collapses.' - Richard Powers
'Kirby had never eaten toes before.' - Kevin Smith"
The games blog makes a point to highlight the works of game writers Mark Laidlaw and Steve Meretzky. Laidlaw's contribution: ">Help! Trapped in a text adventure!" Alrighty, folks ... let's hear yours.

NASA Announces Record Ozone Hole 190

Drewsk writes "NASA has announced that the ozone hole over the Antarctic has broken all records. From the story: 'From September 21 to 30, the average area of the ozone hole was the largest ever observed, at 10.6 million square miles,' said Paul Newman, atmospheric scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md. If the stratospheric weather conditions had been normal, the ozone hole would be expected to reach a size of about 8.9 to 9.3 million square miles, about the surface area of North America.""

A Lot of Money for Playing Games 239

knowhow writes "Tom Taylor took the risk of dropping out from high school just to play video games. The guy who is just 18 years old, was prompted to take this step; because of the reason that emerged from his love for gaming. After playing for six months on a full time basis the guy signed a contract for a staggering $250,000." From the Article:"Now Tom taylor is known as Tsquared on the gaming circuit. He's earning six figures and has product endorsements and a video game tutoring business. He's one of about 100 professional gamers associated with Major League Gaming, a video gaming league founded in 2002. When they're playing well, pros might bring home a few grand a month."

Common Interfaces for Gnome and KDE Released 186

An anonymous reader writes "Today OSDL and freedesktop.org announced the release of Portland 1.0, a set of common interfaces for GNOME and KDE. From the article: 'Specifically, these tools make installing and uninstalling menus, icons, and icon-resources easier for developers. They also can obtain the system's settings on how to handle different file types, and program access to email, the root account, preferred applications, and the screensaver. There's nothing new in this kind of functionality. What is new is that developers can use these regardless of which desktop environment -- KDE or GNOME -- they're targeting.'"

Mass Extinctions from Global Warming? 348

uncleO writes "The current issue of Scientific American has an interesting article, Impact from the Deep, about the possible causes for the five major global extinctions. It contends that only the most recent one was caused by a 'dinosaur killer' asteroid impact. Evidence suggests that the others were caused by 'great bubbles of toxic H2S gas erupting into the atmosphere' from the oceans due to anoxia." From the article: "The so-called thermal extinction at the end of the Paleocene began when atmospheric CO2 was just under 1,000 parts per million (ppm). At the end of the Triassic, CO2 was just above 1,000 ppm. Today with CO2 around 385 ppm...climbing at an annual rate of 2 ppm...to 3 ppm, levels could approach 900 ppm by the end of the next century."

First Swede Convicted For File-Sharing Now Cleared 278

Caine writes, "A 29-year old Swede, who was the first to be convicted under last year's new file-sharing laws, has been cleared on appeal. The court of appeal did not consider the screen dumps provided by the Antipiracy Bureau enough evidence to be able to convict the man. Since the crime does not carry a high enough punishment under Swedish law to allow for a search of the defendant's house, this means it will be virtually impossible to prove file-sharing crimes in the future."

Hollywood Says Piracy Has Ripple Effect 309

ColinPL writes to mention a Washington Post article about a new study backed by Hollywood on intellectual piracy. The study, which they're presenting to lawmakers today, claims that piracy has a ripple effect on the economy. According to the study, lost revenues may have as much as three times the impact previously imagined. From the article: "Lawmakers and federal agencies such as the Justice and State departments have helped Hollywood battle physical piracy -- specifically, counterfeit DVDs. But now the stakes are especially high for entertainment companies as they sell more of their products online in the form of digital songs, movies and other intellectual property. Internet piracy may be tougher for lawmakers to conceptualize, entertainment companies fear."

Why Microsoft's Zune Scares Apple to the Core 574

BoredStiff writes "Computerworld has an article examining Microsoft's plans to launch a competitor to the Apple iPod, the wireless media player called Zune. The article lists five reasons why Apple may fear the Zune, and why it won't be as easily smacked down as the dozens of mp3 players before it have been. The Zune isn't just a music player, the article argues. Think of it as a portable, wireless, hardware version of MySpace. With the Zune, Microsoft is trying to launch a consumer media 'perfect storm.'" From the article: "Microsoft will make the movement of media between Windows, Soapbox and the Zune natural and seamless. The Zune interface is just like a miniature version of the Windows Media Center user interface and is very similar to some elements of Vista. Apple fans are overconfident in the iPod because Apple once commanded 92% of music player market share, a number that has since fallen to around 70%. About 30 million people own iPods. But Microsoft owns more than 90% of the worldwide operating systems market (compared with Apple's roughly 5%), representing some 300 million people. The company expects to have 200 million Vista users within two years."

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