Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


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 iPhones also banned at IBM over Siri worries (Score 2) 627

It's stories like this that make me wonder why IBM isn't laying off people instead of HP. (Truth: HP wouldn't need to lay off so many people if they could tell people how to swap the crappy batter on the HP Touchpad. Then again, Meg Whitman is Carily Fiorina 2.0 now with Romney cues.)

But IBM has has also rejected allowing anyone from using an iPhone at office meetings over concerns that Siri may be spying on the company.

Also, remember a few years back how IBM was so eager for businesses to switch to Linux? Clearly they're not following their own advice considering they were hacked last week according to The Hacker News.

We can't move forward if everyone is taking steps backward.

Comment Excite@Home (Why Google Needs a Trust) (Score 2, Interesting) 366

One of the biggest concerns about Google is that it would be another Excite@Home.

The @Home corporation took down Excite right about the time of the Tech Bubble Burst. If anyone remembers having an Excite email address, when Excite had all these free services to store some of your information online, you probably remember Excite having to delete all of your stuff as the company meltdown thanks to their business partners at @Home.

To call Google a company that is too big to fail would definitely be an understatement, especially if like Excite, they had no plan of action in the event the company collapses.

Companies like Google need some kind of living trust, much like a person who in the event of their death, can hold on to the property (physical or intangible), the data can be transfered to a smaller company that can take care of the data Google's customers asked them to hold on to.

Another Idea would be to create a government agency similar to the FDIC that instead of insuring money, insures data, either provides a backup of the data that you have posted online that you and only you can access it if the company you use to hold that data bellies-up, and provides compensation if that data is lost.

The only problem with having the federal government create such an agency is the fact that they are the Federal Government. There is information about yourself that they have that you can't access unless you are either a member of law enforcement or part of the agency that collects all that data about you. Which is stupid, considering if you want to know everything about yourself, including things that you don't know about that may prevent you from getting a loan or a job, you can never learn more about yourself to do anything positive or constructive that could offset the things in the past, or that you are doing, that can prevent you from living a better life that could help you be a better person.

If there is something about you that you want to know, it should never be a secret from you. And if there is stuff that you want to save, you shouldn't have to lose it because the company you entrusted to hold on to it was too big to fail.

Comment When the Internet Has to Come and Get You (Score 1) 134

The excuse of "We are trying to rid the Internet of Child Pornography" is a lie. Whenever someone claims that they are censoring or filtering the Internet, it is generally for one of the following reasons.
  1. Stifle Dissent. - If the government had any interest in censoring or filtering the Internet to remove child pornography in the first place, they would have arrested several members of the Recording Industry Association of America for uploading the illegal content on torrent sites and the Usenet. Possession is 9/10th of the law. More than likely, the people at Warner Records and the like have about 11/10ths worth. Did they actually believe that anyone on public file sharing networks would actually be interested in downloading such content, espeically if the subject header was "12 year old girl naked"?
  2. Corporate/Industrial Interest - You may not know this but in America, the Internet has already been filtered. Try finding a website that exposes the oil industry, or at least one that doesn't sound like some guy who stays up late listening to George Norry.
  3. C.Y.A. - From past experiences that we've seen in recent current events, we have seen that most people who are speaking for internet censorship and speaking out against network neutrality are the ones with blood on their hands. Someone at AT&T probably told old Ted Stevens that if the Internet was filtered, the public would not be able to find out about his house in Alaska. Likewise, when financial firms take advice from giant telecommunications conglomerates about how they can help them avoid Sunshine Laws and corporate accountability, business folks (who now have recently discovered that thanks to their wealth they can just about get away with murder), they can use their power to influence the free flow of information and now they can do the same with elected leadership thanks to a recent SCOTUS decision.
  4. Distraction - Much like the previous point. Only--HEY LOOK OVER THERE! [runs away]
  5. Astroturfing - Two words: Fox News. The media machine that Rupert Murdoch created to support the views of the Republican Party have now taken a radical and distorted perversion turn for the worse. The center-right viewpoints of the GOP have been substituted with the hard-right "Party of No" and the ideas to include a far-right view point to enabled the Tea Party, lead by racists leaders like Tom Tancredo who in there myopic self-centered beliefs want to bring back the Voting Literacy tests that were outlawed in 1965 by the Voting Rights Act. Nevermind that most immigrants know more about the American civics (including the U.S. Constitution) than most natural-born citizens do.

Control is the name of the game.

And if the Internet has to come out and get the people whose interest are not to prevent child pornography from spreading on the Internet (which they usually aren't), they will come and get them.

Comment Not Enough Glittering Vampires to Appease People (Score 1) 479

To be quite honest, I haven't seen anything from any recent science fiction films to actually be technologically inspiring.

Surely there is a box full of ideas in some patent office that even though some corporation has them locked up, it can be used to foster the next generation of sci-fi technology novels or films.

Instead we are screwing around with effeminine vampires that glitter and shirtless teen idols who turn into werewolves that draw in gulliable 14 year old girls and mom's over 45.

Where's the science fiction in that? Lord of the Rings has more Sci-Fi inspiration.

I think it is time we try a different approach. Like a steampunk movie where a scientist discovers an alternative energy source that could take down the coal, oil, and natural gas industries. (Of course, that will never happen. Because the people at the coal, natural gas and oil (sorry, no link. corporate censorship) industries never do anything wrong.)

Comment iDon't Support Democracy (Score 1) 158

Funny thing about China right now, is that in order to run a business in China, you must have a Chinse partner working with you. To which, the Chinese have big plans for foreigners looking for cheap labor (NSFW website! though story is very important!)

The question now is, do we still want to manufacture in china, if the Chinese government wants to force foreign companies (i.e. Motorola, Nokia, Sony, etc.) to hand over their Intellectual Property to the Chinese government?

Personally, I don't see why we should outsource goods to China when we can manufacture them here in the United States or at very least Mexico.

The chinese could very well install these programs on goods exported from China or posted in the App Store and Android Market.

Now would be a good time to bring manufacturing back to America especially with the 10.2% unemployment rate and China's intentions.

Of course, Apple won't do that. Apple would rather continue to manufacture a device that has be under lock and key so badly, people have died because someone lost the phone or some other moral implications. (Imagine if HTC or Motorola had this problem, their would be one hell of a controversy!)

But as long as Apple continues to appease the Chinese with a steady revenue from a device that despite being so popular is really becoming a social control, the status quo will prevail...more so since they sell iPhones at places like Walmart.

Comment To Spoiled Rotten Children: It's only a game! (Score 3, Insightful) 82

Nothing at all like the Lori Drew Incident that confirms that MySpace is more Train Wreck than Social Network, a spoiled little brat has to ruin it for everybody else because he doesn't want to be disciplined. Another thing to consider is if his dad was some high ranking bureaucrat trying to "save the children from the evils of sex and violence".

The court hasn't though about the children and the adults who know it is just a game.

So your dad grounded you from video games. SUCK IT UP! Do your punishment and get it over with. Unless your dad caught you going to some illegal gambling website (which I doubt any 12 y.o. would be doing) or going to one of the nefarious websites that have numbers that are unnecessary and strange suffixes, there is no reason for bratty behavior.

So you are banned from World of Warcraft for a week. Is killing yourself in real life going to resolve anything?

Thailand may think they may have people's best interest at heart but it is foolish to make a federal case out of an incident where parents must be accounable for their children's actions, not the government. Unless the kid steals a PS3 from a shop, mom and dad need to increase their discipline.

Remember, If you love you're children BEAT THEM!

Comment Yotsuba's guide to cardboard robots (Score 1) 236

Manga seems to be a very crash-course way of expressing concepts lately, but it is certainly no substitute for reading regular books. As much as I would like to tear through a regular book as quickly as a manga book, it just doesn't see right.

While I applaud the authors efforts to bring such a complex concept down to storybook level, I don't think the Western World is ready for manga guide books just yet. On the other hand, I do like the fact that they cover not just Databases, but Physics, Calculus, Statistics, and Electricity in other book in their series. Perhaps younger readers will find these books of interest and become enamorated with learned about advanced concepts. (Think the 13-15 y.o. crowd.)

For good measure however, books on Aritmetic, Geometry, and Algebra should be a must read for all ages since there are people in College who don't know how to add without a caluclator. (To the authors, here's an idea for the plot of a future book: The protagonist must learn how to do math mentally without an electronic device!)

But why not have some fun in the process. Robots are a common theme in manga. Why not write a book on how to build them? Even the guys at Time Life who publish the This Old House series of books never touched a topic like that. On the other hand, who wanted to see Bob Vila with blue hair? :D

Comment Why would we build $300B in the first place? (Score 1) 330

Probably one of the best times for the Chinese hacks this year. With the economy in a free fall, why the hell would we want to build a $300 Billion Dollar Fighter Jet in the first place especially with people being so critical that the government is spending over $3 Trillion dollars in spending?

Comment Good for Oracle Investors, Bad for MySQL users (Score 1) 906

In what has to be one of the worst mergers since InBev took over Anheuser Busch, Oracle now has control of their competition.

MySQL is a lean alternative to Oracles bloatware. In 2003, after I found it so difficult to use Oracles SQL program I switched to MySQL. With Sun stock slowly ailing as Flash becomes more popular than Java for web applications, Sun has finally decided to let Oracle swallow their poisonous assets.

Meanwhile, MySQL is in trouble.

As with any large corporate take over, the process is that competitors try to buy out each other until one falls, the other aquires their assests, discontinues all the products similar to their own that customers prefered over theirs, sells off any assets that provided the community with philanthropic or social causes, and eventually shuts down their competitor for good. Fortunately, these companies are in the same neighborhood unlike the strife that the St. Louis area is going through with a Belgian comapny taking over a St. Louis company which may move to New York as soon as all the assests are sold off or converted into a holding company.

MySQL users should expect a bumpy road ahead and expect to migrate to a fork of MySQL (such as Drizzle) in the near future.

Comment Land of (neo)Con(servative) Fusion (Score 1) 779

Looking for witches to hunt is easy when you have FUSION CENTERS! Just about every state has one.

Here at the Fusion Center we try our best to exploit the most out-of-sort individuals. We'll make your average tin-foil-hat-wearing Ron Paul supporter look like Timothy McVeigh. It should be noted that McVeigh was a Gulf War Veteran. So i guess we can add everyone who went to Iraq and Afghanistan to our list of potential threats.

Goth kids are about as frightening to us as a modestly hot Italian American woman wearing a scarf! Those spooky kids who sit in the corner reading their bad poetry. What's up with them? I'll tell you what! TERRORISM! Wearing black like a S.W.A.T. team! Possibly to imitate the lobby scene from The Matrix.

Don't forget the computer nerds with some mental illness. The fact that they have an mental illness make him an automatic head case. ADHD? ADD? High Functioning Autism? Aspbergers? They all start with the letter "A". You know what else starts with the letter "A"? ANARCHISTS! Their voodoo computer hacking witchcraft could destroy us all!

Lets not forget Asians, Arabs, and Africans! Be sure to tell all your white friends!

But We're not here to steretype individuals with racist anecdotes. Because God loves everyone, especially if they are white, Christian, live in an upper class suburb, are on the football team or the chearleading squad, and have rich parents who can bail them out of jail at 3 AM. The less you know the better! Just be sure to procreate as many children as possible so that we can have more soliders to make into social outcasts someday! Because without God fearing neoconservative whitebread Americas, we won't have anyone to persecute for being different!

To say that the reminants of the previous adminstration have disappeared with the previous president is foolish. There is still more trash to take out. Fusion Centers are just one of things that we still need to get rid of.

BTW, to you Fusion Center nuts, if you are so afraid of people who are different from you, you are part of the problem.

"If you dislike people so much why don't you join the Klan like your parents. Otherwise, what are you rebelling against?" --Jello Biafra


Slashdot Mentioned In Virginia Terrorism Report 779

megamerican alerted us to a leaked document (PDF) from a Virginia Fusion Center titled "2009 Virginia Terrorism Threat Assessment." The document is marked as "Law Enforcement Sensitive," not to be shown to public. Citizens for Legitimate Government has a write-up. Slashdot gets a mention on page 45 — not as a terrorist organization itself, but as one of the places that members of Anonymous may hang out: "A 'loose coalition of Internet denizens,' Anonymous consists largely of users from multiple internet sites such as 4chan, 711chan, 420chan, Something Awful, Fark, Encyclopedia Dramatica, Slashdot, IRC channels, and YouTube. Other social networking sites are also utilized to mobilize physical protests. ... Anonymous is of interest not only because of the sentiments expressed by affiliates and their potential for physical protest, but because they have innovated the use of e-protests and mobilization. Given the lack of a unifying creed, this movement has the potential to inspire lone wolf behavior in the cyber realms." According to the report, cell phones and digital music players have been used to transfer plans related to criminal activity, and therefore presumably could be grounds for suspicion. Podcasting is also suspicious.

Comment Murdoch's Witchhunt (Score 1) 328

Rupert Murdoch (CEO of News Corp, and to that extend the New York Post, Fox News Channel, and MySpace) is sharpening his "Liberal Outrage" skills against The Internet, primarily web portals such as Google, news sites such as The Huffington Post, and message boards such as 4chan. It is no surprise to the Internet who has known Murdoch's plan has been in the works for about a few years now with each attempt being more disasterous to News Corp than the last.

Having run out of good scapegoats to promote his urine-flavored yellow journalism and far-right agenda, Murdoch is hoping that by causing disinformation about Google's services, he can create the image that the Internet is a malicious place that is destroying the newspaper industry.

Murdoch's plans, like all those previous, are not well thought out. With every attempt to use a single voice to create disdain, there are several voices that are much larger on the Internet that can crack the Fox News Corp Spin.

Prepare for another round of Rupert Murdoch's Witchhunt where the witchhunters set themselves on fire.

Comment They want info?We'll give'em info!They'll be sorry (Score 1) 328

Since it is possible to transmit electrical signals over the power grid, chances are unless you are running on your own power source or a battery, you've been spied on the entire time.

But now there is a new element to this spygame. Outsiders who are looking for information that they may think is useful but really isn't.

Imagine if one of those computers had nothing but Rick Astley videos and pornographic videos of two girls and one cup. The files would obviously be give all sorts of important names like "Invasion plans" "Government secrets: Eyes Only" and "CIA Top Priority". Of course, opening the file would redirect them to something annoying or disgusting. The kind of stuff that you REALLY do not want to look at because you just don't want to look at it.

Of course there reaction would be measured by the next time an international visit occurs and a cellphone playing the music from one of those videos were to go off.

Who needs GITMO when you can just drive people nuts with this video?

Slashdot Top Deals

Logic is the chastity belt of the mind!