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Comment Re: TracPhone: $7/month. (Score 1) 103

Oh rly? Which plan is that? The Pinocchio plan?

It's not really a plan. It's the $19.99 60-minute, 90 day refill card. With a smartphone, the minutes "triple" to 180, and you also get 180 texts and 180mb data. If you sign up for auto-refill, you get a small discount off that (and it becomes kind of a plan).

If your wireless needs fit that profile, it works out to around $7/month. I've saved a boatload of money going down that route, although I have needed to supplement it with a few data-only refills, which has only tacked on a couple of bucks per month for me on average. It does kind of rule out using any audio or video while not in WiFi range, and you can't yammer on the phone endlessly, but for me that's an acceptable trade-off.

Comment Re:Pilots don't work (Score 1) 322

Will a child growing up in a UBI household have a different attitude towards the need to get a job or attend school? Is there even any point in getting an education if you know that the state will provide everything - and that there probably won't be any jobs for you anyway?

Well we have research on welfare clients here in Norway indicates it might be "inheritable", but not massively so. So I think it would be more "as a child in an UBI society..." and as for the latter I assume basic will mean quite basic. Here in Norway you have a basic guarantee (sosialstønad) if you are a legal resident and have no savings or other means to support yourself, for singles it's 5950 NOK + housing which in USD is about $700/month, but since Norway is more expensive it's effectively $500/month. And housing can easily mean a 100 sqft room with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities.

Essentially if you take your basic needs like food, clothes, personal care, a monthly card for public transportation and misc. household articles the budget is nearly spent. You can afford a microwave, cellphone, a TV, a crap PC and that's it. You're not going to any pubs, cafes, restaurants, concerts, cinemas or theaters. You don't have a car. You're not going on any vacations. You exist comfortably, if all you want is a $15/month WoW subscription. Most people want a little more in life...

Comment Re:Automation in the military is the problem (Score 1) 322

"We need laws banning the use of machines"

That's where you can stop. Without machines, there is lower efficiency and we need every hand available to work the fields and the swords. We can go back to kingdoms where being rich was passed down through bloodlines with land ownership. People working 60 hours a week just to keep food on the table won't have time for all this liberal "feed the poor" bullshit.

Submission + - A caterpillar may lead to a "plastic pollution" solution. (bbc.com)

FatdogHaiku writes: Researchers at Cambridge University have discovered that the larvae of the moth, which eats wax in bee hives, can also degrade plastic.

They think microbes in the caterpillar — as well as the insect itself — might play a role in breaking down plastic. If the chemical process can be identified, it could lead to a solution to managing plastic waste in the environment.

Submission + - NSA's DoublePulsar Kernel Exploit A 'Bloodbath' (threatpost.com)

msm1267 writes: A little more than two weeks after the latest ShadowBrokers leak of NSA hacking tools, experts are certain that the DoublePulsar post-exploitation Windows kernel attack will have similar staying power to the Conficker bug, and that pen-testers will be finding servers exposed to the flaws patched in MS17-010 for years to come.

MS17-010 was released in March and it closes a number of holes in Windows SMB Server exploited by the NSA. Exploits such as EternalBlue, EternalChampion, EternalSynergy and EternalRomance that are part of the Fuzzbunch exploit platform all drop DoublePulsar onto compromised hosts. DoublePulsar is a sophisticated memory-based kernel payload that hooks onto x86 and 64-bit systems and allows an attacker to execute any raw shellcode payload they wish.

“This is a full ring0 payload that gives you full control over the system and you can do what you want to it,” said Sean Dillon, senior security analyst at RiskSense. Dillon was the first to reverse-engineer a DoublePulsar payload, and published his analysis last Friday.

“This is going to be on networks for years to come. The last major vulnerability of this class was MS08-067, and it’s still found in a lot of places,” Dillon said. “I find it everywhere. This is the most critical Windows patch since that vulnerability.”

Dan Tentler, founder and CEO of Phobos Group, said internet-net wide scans he’s running have found about 3.1 percent of vulnerable machines are already infected (between 62,000 and 65,000 so far), and that percentage is likely to go up as scans continue.

“This is easily describable as a bloodbath,” Tentler said.

Comment Re:Privacy (Score 1) 66

I'm guessing that sure, a lot of folks wouldn't care, but I would posit that the majority of the populace using social media even is NOT aware of the massive information collection going on, nor how it is used.

I doubt the difference is awareness so much as caring. Germany, in particular, is extremely sensitive to privacy reasons. What's more interesting is why the populace of some countries care so much more than others. German motivations seem obvious... but Russians would seem to have almost as much motivation and they're heavy users of social media.

Comment Re:Why is this surprising? (Score 1) 66

Gabbing, food-plate moneyshots, selfie-admiration and laughing at animals does not necessarily lead to productivity.

You're implying a causal relationship, which is contradicted by the existence of many other high-performing economies -- including the most productive countries -- that do have heavy social media usage.

Comment Re:This reminds me of the nuclear boy scout story. (Score 1) 172

Actually, I meant what I said.

Then you're just wrong, because decisions like this guy made have basically nothing to do with any sort of intelligence, and certainly not social intelligence (not by any definition of that phrase that I've ever seen). They do have something to do with motivation, but it's about the goal of the motivation, not the degree.

It's perfectly possible to have high intelligence across every category, including social intelligence, and still be foolish.

While this may be true, I think it is impossible to anticipate someone's actual social reasoning performance from any measure of social reasoning capacity to any useful degree.

Likely true, but irrelevant.

Submission + - Ontario launches Universal Basic Income Pilot (www.cbc.ca)

epiphani writes: The Ontario Government will pilot universal basic income in a $50M program supporting 4,000 households over a 3 year period. While Slashdot has vigorously debated universal basic income in the past, and even Elon Musk has predicted it's necessity, experts continue to debate and gather data on the approach in the face of increasing automation. Ontario's plan will study three communities over three years, with participants receiving up to $17,000 annually if single, and $24,000 for families.

Comment Re:FSF = not practical (Score 2) 152

When he started there was no such thing as an entire operating system of free software and no hardware you could run it on. This exists today - it didn't then. It's not as readily and easily available as it should be - but it exists. And, as he rightfully pointed out, if he had compromised the ideal of that existing - it would still not exist at all. It only exists because he never settled for less than that.

Well evil tounges would suggest that without Linus we'd still be waiting on GNU/Hurd. GCC forked off and became ECGS. "Linux libc" forked away from glibc and was only later "gnu-ified" again like ECGS. The rest the FSF made seems mostly to be small utilities, for sure having a GNU/free ls, awk, sed, grep etc. is important but hardly the showstopper. His one (admittedly huge) crowning achievement was writing the GPL, but most the projects seemed to refuse his leadership.

And even then the adoption by some of the core players seemed to be more by chance than ideological success, like Linus primarily wanted to see what other developers were doing to learn so he could run it on his box. User freedom was never a big deal for him nor most other Linux kernel core developers, which is why the GPLv3 was met with a "meh". X11 and Wayland doesn't use the GPL. Apache isn't using the GPL. Android isn't using the GPL except the kernel. It is popular? Yes. Is it the only commonly used open source license? Very far from it.

According to Black Duck GPLv3 + LGPLv3 + Affero GPL = ~10% of all projects and GPLv2 + LGPLv2 ~20% so most projects haven't really been following Stallman since 2007. And that's not counting the non-GPL licenses, my impression is that the Apache license has gained a lot of popularity particularly with corporations like Google (Android), Apple (Swift) and Microsoft (ASP.Net). The kernel is the one project that seems to get away with copyleft because you can run any userspace on top. And because it doesn't really crack down on shims and driver blobs.

Comment Re:This reminds me of the nuclear boy scout story. (Score 2) 172

The moral of the story is that even a stupid human being can be pretty smart. Particularly a sufficiently motivated stupid person.

That's an odd thing to say, since stupid is the antonym of smart. I think what you meant to say is:

The moral of the story is that even a foolish human being can be pretty smart. Particularly a sufficiently-motivated fool.

Foolishness is the opposite of wisdom, and the foolish/wise axis is roughly orthogonal to the stupid/smart axis.

Of course it also helps that intelligence comes in different flavors. Some people are good at spatial reasoning, others are good at verbal reasoning. But we often overlook social reasoning because it's not part of the traditional IQ tests. I think another reason that Social IQ testing hasn't caught on is that there is good reason to believe that social reasoning ability isn't fixed. Changes in attitude can strongly impair or enhance an individual's ability to process social information.

I don't think this has anything to do with social intelligence. It's perfectly possible to have high intelligence across every category, including social intelligence, and still be foolish. Wisdom/foolishness is in how you think about things more than in how your are able to think about things. Wise people consider the consequences of their actions carefully. I'm sure this guy was fully capable of thinking through what would happen if he got caught... he just didn't bother to do it.

Comment Not really (Score 1) 371

I work far more with SQL than programming languages really, but I do work a lot with doing operations on large data sets so I definitively try to avoid looping through a million rows. I use in-memory or temp tables to chain operations without storing state. And that's all neat and well, but without a ton of state in between those set operations to say what's ready, what's running, what's done etc. I'd go nuts. The functional bits are the stretches between the state almost like barriers in computer shaders and other synchronization methods. A pure functional application well I couldn't really imagine it unless it read one file as input and spit out a result, it just flows through the whole application. Every time I try to understand state in FP my head hurts.

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