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Submission + - WhatsApp encryption back door ( 1

siloko writes: From the article: "A security backdoor that can be used to allow Facebook and others to intercept and read encrypted messages has been found within its WhatsApp messaging service."

Comment Re: Playable audio/video formats? (Score 1) 33

support old formats like MP3 or MPEG

This isn't 1997. Technology has way surpassed needing to highly compress things to the extent that they have little fidelity.

The point of using open formats is to preserve things as best as possible, without chance of having a licence revoked or the licensing company folding. Transcoding from MP3 to the next generation's favourite format would greatly reduce quality and OGG has options for both lossy and lossless compression where needed. MP3 LAME VBR is quite decent but fewer devices support it than support OGG which greatly exceeds the quality with minimal filesize increase. I haven't got a single device that can't play OGG and have all my music in .FLAC (or .WAV). Even browsers support OGG (with the exception of the OS extensions known as IE and Safari).

Comment Re:If they would simply the crappy CC licenses.... (Score 4, Informative) 33

If they would simply the crappy CC licenses....then more people would be able to use their content.

The alternative is returning to the old method of finding a contact for the content which normally involves a whois lookup and several phone calls, then hoping the entity is big enough to have licence terms drafted.

Having licenses named things like BY-NC-ND means you simply cannot use the content without doing research.

Ten seconds at Creative Commons Licences should be adequate research

Even then, it can still be impossible to use content because of morass of words in the mess that Lessig made the decision to create instead of just making something simple.

Morass of words!? CreativeCommons' most complicated licence weighs in at 87 lines. Microsoft's most basic licence for Win 10 Retail weighs in at 191 lines and only covers one product

We had to stop distributing CC learning materials since our lawyers couldn't guarantee that we wouldn't get sued since BY-SA isn't clear on what in the hell it requires.

Firstly, no lawyer, ever, can guarantee you won't get sued - regardless of which licencing scheme you are using. Secondly, if your lawyers can't decipher a BY-SA, then you need better lawyers. Thirdly, if it was true that the CC licence was an unreasonable risk, you knew who the creator was (BY) and could have simply contacted them for clarification or an alternative licence - as your lawyers should have.

Overall, you appear to be attempting a FUD campaign (or are a giant pansy). I publish and redistribute plenty of CC works without much difficulty in the interpretation of, or fear of, the associated words or pictures.

Submission + - Consumer Reports Retesting MacBook Pro. Safari Bug was Draining Battery

TheFakeTimCook writes: Last month, the new MacBook Pro failed to receive a purchase recommendation from Consumer Reports due to battery life issues that it encountered during testing. Apple subsequently said it was working with Consumer Reports to understand the results, which it said do not match its "extensive lab tests or field data."

According to an Article from Consumer Reports, Apple has since concluded its work, and says it learned that Consumer Reports was using a "hidden Safari setting" which trigged an "obscure and intermittent bug" that led to inconsistent battery life results. With "normal user settings" enabled, Apple said Consumer Reports "consistently" achieved expected battery life.

Apple stated: "We learned that when testing battery life on Mac notebooks, Consumer Reports uses a hidden Safari setting for developing web sites which turns off the browser cache. This is not a setting used by customers and does not reflect real-world usage. Their use of this developer setting also triggered an obscure and intermittent bug reloading icons which created inconsistent results in their lab. After we asked Consumer Reports to run the same test using normal user settings, they told us their MacBook Pro systems consistently delivered the expected battery life. "

Apple said it has fixed the Safari bug in the latest macOS Sierra beta seeded to developers and public testers this week.

Consumer Reports has issued its own statement on the matter to explain why it turns off Safari caching and other details.

"We also turn off the local caching of web pages. In our tests, we want the computer to load each web page as if it were new content from the internet, rather than resurrecting the data from its local drive. This allows us to collect consistent results across the testing of many laptops, and it also puts batteries through a tougher workout. According to Apple, this last part of our testing is what triggered a bug in the company’s Safari browser. Indeed, when we turned the caching function back on as part of the research we did after publishing our initial findings, the three MacBooks we’d originally tested had consistently high battery life results."

Submission + - Setting up a work-from-home office? 8

darkpixel2k writes: I was recently hired to work from home as a software developer, and given a budget to set up my home office. My home is small, and I have young children, so I need to come up with a solution where I can work without distraction. Duct tape over their mouths between 8 and 5 isn't the best option. I live out in farm country, so I have plenty of space outside to stand up a small structure and convert it into an office.

My plan is to trench CAT6 from our ISP fiber DMARC over to the ~12x20 building, wire the structure up for network and power, and furnish it with a small rack, UPS, switch, router, a desk, whiteboard walls, a wireless access point, and an air conditioner for the summer heat. Maybe even make a nice walkway between the house and the structure because I live in a perpetual mud-pit of a farm.

While I have the 'big picture' idea in my head, I don't really have a grasp of the fine details that would make it a comfortable work environment. For example, I realized a few hours ago that the structure would have a plywood floor. That might not be the best for a nice rolley-chair. Should I put down carpet and one of those plastic mats for chairs? A friend suggested I wire up speakers so I don't have to listen to my terrible laptop speakers, and a large flat-screen TV so I can display dashboards and statistics.

Lastly, physical security is somewhat of an issue. While everything is insured, downtime of a few days or weeks due to meth heads would be a huge impact to the company and also on my paycheck. I was talking with the local company that builds small office-like structures, sheds, and barns and they said they can 'double up' the 2x4s to strengthen the walls and make a stronger door, but I need to supply my own lock. Should I use some off-the-shelf lock from a big-box hardware store? Should I install a digital lock? (It would be nice to not fish around for keys)

While the money for this project isn't unlimited, the company was unbelievably generous to bring me on board.

If someone gave you a big chunk of change to build a small one or two room office, what would you do?

Submission + - Prenda Copyright Lawyers Arrested and Charged ( 1

the simurgh writes: Prenda Law extracted millions of dollars from alleged BitTorrent pirates, through threats of embarrassment and leaving misery and poor defendants made poorer in its wake, and authorities asking how to stop their flagrant abuse of the system. FINALLY, The duo of Paul Hansmeier and John Steele finally have been charged with the crimes of conspiracy to commit fraud, money laundering, and perjury. Today, this and other evidence was presented in a criminal indictment filed in the Minnesota District Court.

Comment Fatal flaws identified (Score 1) 15

I have noticed the drop in quality of content and commentary and think it has more to do with the Slashdot community as editorial direction has changed very little over the past decade.

Besides the platform itself, the things that made Slashdot great were:
1. The general community
> This appears to have shrunk possible due to an ageing user base.
2. The feature articles
> Great journalism is more often being done by bloggers and freelancers. Slashdot seems to overlook this.
3. Evangelists and experts
> With the loss of most of the original team plus less contributions from leaders like NYCL, there is little information garnered from the commentary.

I also think that there is a larger divide between content creator and consumer as more and more people are becoming full time creators and not just hobbyists. As such, we have consumers that may read comments and occasionally submit a (low quality) comment, and creators, who are elsewhere blogging or freelancing.

Slashdot needs to make a move into original content and consider profit-sharing ad revenue with contributors.

Slashdot's current model is to drive readers to other sites (who just so happen to be more on point) but in the time it takes to read a paragraph, they attempt to divert your attention to the shitty two-dollar store that has far too many options of a small range and little information.

Comment Re:In Other News (Score 1) 178

Independent contractors should able to set independent rates.

They can. If it is a rate that Uber agrees with, Uber will award a contract. If not, they will use another contractor.

Where Uber is going wrong is forbidding drivers (contractors) supplying services to other service operators. THIS is what truly prevents a contractor from setting their own rate.

Submission + - Chinese Scientist Found Breakthrough Vaccine/Cures for All Viral Infections (

hackingbear writes: Chinese scientists may have found the key to creating effective vaccines for the world’s deadly viruses including bird flu, SARS, Ebola, and HIV. An experiment by a research team at Beijing University was hailed as “revolutionary” in the field in a paper published in the latest issue of Science magazine on Friday. The live virus used in the vaccine used by the researchers had its genetic code tweaked to disable the viral strains’ self-replication mechanism. But it was kept fully infectious to allow the host animal cells to generate immunity. Using live viruses in their fully infectious form was considered taboo, as viruses spread rapidly. Vaccines sold and used widely today generally contain either dead or weakened forms of viruses. The animals infected with virus were cured after receiving the injection, according to the paper. This breakthrough promises to simplify the process of producing vaccines, which may help scientists develop effective vaccines or even cures for various viruses – such bird flu, SARS, Ebola and HIV – within weeks of an outbreak.

Comment Re:What contract? (Score 1) 103

They can modify it all they want but it is no longer Ubuntu. It has a different kernel, different drivers, and handles virtualisation very differently.

If a user had scripts running on Ubuntu and then migrated over to the new service provider, those scripts would likely stop working. These companies are using the Ubuntu name because the experience will be similar, however, there will be confusion where the user expects the experience to be identical.

Better would be to call it "Based on Ubuntu" or "Ubuntu-esque" or "VPSbuntu".

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