Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Comment The textbook industry... (Score 3, Informative) 252

I've been looking into going back to school and have gotten a more in-depth look at the academic textbook market and I can conclude it is all a big racket. The price of textbooks is already outrageous as it is -- I don't doubt that they would love to DRM all of them and have students give them back afterwards. Even after looking into the used textbook market, I couldn't find a way to save very much and the price they'll give you for a used but still in very good condition book is almost insulting. You would think we would want to make education more accessible and affordable for everyone, but between textbooks, student loans and other like scams it is a sad state of affairs.

Comment Re:Missing Innovation (Score 1) 178

You are correct. My TiVo Series 4 is provided by my cable company and it searches across all sources of video whether it be broadcast, Netflix, Amazon, my cable company's own on-demand service, etc. I search for, say, a movie and it tells me it is available on Netflix but not Amazon, and lists prices (if applicable) and you choose the source you would prefer to watch from.

As far as the preferential searching goes, I have never seen that, but it's nice being presented with a list of sources where that specific movie is available from and the relative pricing (e.g. rent on Amazon or from cable-co on-demand, or 'free' on Netflix with subscription)

Submission + - Security Through Obscurity? Don't Count On It. (

wiredmikey writes: Anyone who argues that their website is too small or obscure for anyone to test for flaws isn’t paying attention to the fact that everyone’s website is being tested, all the time. If it’s accessible on the Internet, it’s a target.

There are thousands of script kiddies, launching hundreds of thousands of automated attacks all the time.

There are, in fact, an amazingly large number of script kiddies in the world, each running automated vulnerability tools against blocks of IP address blocks. These IP address blocks are chosen for coverage, not potential. Note that script kiddies are scanning arbitrary IP addresses, not specific website or ‘visible’ web applications — any website that is Internet accessible is a target.

Another argument for "Security through Obscurity" goes along the line that most website owners don’t believe their site has any value to a hacker. This, unfortunately, misses the mentality of a script kiddie – they are not out for specific information nor are they targeting a specific company. The script kiddie is just someone looking for the easy target, often just for the sake of finding and exploiting security flaws because he or she can.

Even if your site has no commercial value, it can be used for attacks on other sites, or defaced because it was on someone’s mindless scanning list.


Submission + - webOS Still Alive, But On Life Support (

jfruhlinger writes: "HP declared that it was going to dump its PC business, then changed its mind, leading fans of the webOS operating system it acquired from Palm hoping for a similar reversal. A close reading of HP VP Todd Bradley's comments on the subject hints that, while webOS tablets are not in the cards, the company seems interested in embedding the operating system in printers and similar devices."

Submission + - Is RIM's Centralized Network Model Broken? (

wiredmikey writes: Is RIM’s centralized network model broken? Andrew Jaquith thinks so, and provides an interesting analysis on why RIM should move to a decentralized model.

After two long outages this month, many believe that the end is drawing near for Research in Motion, maker of the BlackBerry.

But Is Research In Motion in trouble? Financially, RIM continues to be a healthy company, throwing off billions in profit each year. But if doesn't “think different” about its network strategy, its customers may think different about their choice of handset vendor, Jaquith argues.

Jaquith says that RIM should dismantle its proprietary centralized delivery network, something that has been a key strength for the company.

The BlackBerry was introduced in 1999 as a two-way pager on steroids. Back then, TCP/IP over GSM (and other networks) was just a pipe dream. RIM implemented a system by which all traffic is collected from the mobile networks of the sender, funneled through RIM servers and then routed back onto the recipient’s mobile networks and pushed to the handset.

By moving to a decentralized model for its BlackBerry network, (1) the Internet provides the routing and (2) centralized communications monitoring is much more difficult.

That is what Microsoft and Apple, in essence, do today because the devices connect directly to company servers [via commodity carrier networks] rather than through a single service provider.

Data plans that provide TCP/IP over wireless carrier networks are now ubiquitous, nullifying a key RIM advantage. Does BlackBerry need to rethink its network model to effectively compete moving forward?

Slashdot Top Deals

"The following is not for the weak of heart or Fundamentalists." -- Dave Barry