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! ×

Why Geim Never Patented Graphene 325

gbrumfiel writes "As we discussed on Tuesday, Andre Geim won this year's Nobel prize in physics for graphene, but he never patented it. In an interview with Nature News, he explains why: 'We considered patenting; we prepared a patent and it was nearly filed. Then I had an interaction with a big, multinational electronics company. I approached a guy at a conference and said, "We've got this patent coming up, would you be interested in sponsoring it over the years?" It's quite expensive to keep a patent alive for 20 years. The guy told me, "We are looking at graphene, and it might have a future in the long term. If after ten years we find it's really as good as it promises, we will put a hundred patent lawyers on it to write a hundred patents a day, and you will spend the rest of your life, and the gross domestic product of your little island, suing us." That's a direct quote.'"

College Student Finds GPS On Car, FBI Retrieves It 851

mngdih writes with this excerpt from Wired: "A California student got a visit from the FBI this week after he found a secret GPS tracking device on his car, and a friend posted photos of it online. The post prompted wide speculation about whether the device was real, whether the young Arab-American was being targeted in a terrorism investigation and what the authorities would do. It took just 48 hours to find out: The device was real, the student was being secretly tracked and the FBI wanted their expensive device back ... His discovery comes in the wake of a recent ruling by the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals saying it's legal for law enforcement to secretly place a tracking device on a suspect's car without getting a warrant, even if the car is parked in a private driveway. ... 'We have all the information we needed,' they told him. 'You don't need to call your lawyer. Don't worry, you're boring.'"

Lighthearted Facebook Friends Could Make You Join NAMBLA Group 178

mykos writes "The Facebook groups feature is causing bit of a stir with its users. TechCrunch editor Michael Arrington was allegedly added to a group about NAMBLA, and in turn, he added Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. It's all in good (albeit tasteless) fun, except when a harmless joke goes awry and you find yourself being detained by customs when a friend decided to drag you into a mock terrorist group. Facebook representatives are aware of the matter, but are dismissive of it. A Facebook spokeswoman said, 'If you have a friend that is adding you to Groups you do not want to belong to, or they are behaving in a way that bothers you, you can tell them to stop doing it, block them or remove them as a friend — and they will no longer EVER have the ability to add you to any Group.' In somewhat related news, guillotines ensure you won't have dandruff on your shoulders anymore."

Submission + - Dell violates GPL (osnews.pl)

smoku writes: With the release of a new device of Dell's Mini series, the company debuted on the market of devices running the Android operating system. This is not surprising — the system created by Google is one of the most interesting proposals for mobile devices.

As far as Android itself is released under the terms of the Apache license, which gives wide discretion to use and modify software, it uses Linux kernel to handle the hardware on low level. The license under the Linux kernel is distributed is GNU General Public License — GPL. GPL also gives great freedom to use and modify software, but under actually one condition — along with the application binary you need to provide the source, allowing rebuilding the same binary file by oneself.

Dell is not giving a damn about this requirement. Dell Streak (formerly Dell Mini 5) premiere took place on June 4, 2010. Since then, Dell is absolutely deaf to the requests of users who have purchased Streak devices for access to sources of the Linux kernel they use.

There are scenarios here: If the client can be ignored, for example by not to replying to e-mail or message, one is ignored. If the client calls the customer support, and cannot be ignored, one receives a request to leave contact information on a premise the support calling back. Now they just do not call back.

Many companies violated GPL already and has benefited from the work of hundreds of volunteers, without giving anything in return. But perhaps none has done this before so blatantly as Dell, laughing at its own motto.


What Is New In PostgreSQL 9.0 213

Jamie noted a blog that says "PostgreSQL 9.0 beta 2 just got released this week. We may see another beta before 9.0 is finally released, but it looks like PostgreSQL 9.0 will be here probably sometime this month. Robert Treat has a great slide presentation showcasing all the new features."

MythTV 0.23 Released 214

An anonymous reader writes "After six months of our new accelerated development schedule, MythTV 0.23 is now available. MythTV 0.23 brings a new event system, brand new Python bindings, the beta MythNetvision Internet video plugin, new audio code and surround sound upmixer, several new themes (Arclight and Childish), a greatly improved H.264 decoder, and fixes for analog scanning, among many others. Work towards MythTV 0.24 is in full swing, and has be progressing very well for the last several months. If all goes according to plan, MythTV 0.24 will bring a new MythUI OSD, a nearly rewritten audio subsystem capable of handling 24- and 32-bit audio and up to 8 channels of output, Blu-ray disc and disc structure playback, and various other performance, usability, and flexibility improvements."

Security Firm Reveals Microsoft's "Silent" Patches 84

CWmike writes "Microsoft silently patched three vulnerabilities last month, two of them affecting enterprise mission-critical Exchange mail servers, without calling out the bugs in the accompanying advisories, a security expert said on Thursday. Two of the three unannounced vulnerabilities, and the most serious of the trio, were packaged with MS10-024, an update to Exchange and Windows SMTP Service that Microsoft issued April 13 and tagged as 'important,' its second-highest threat ranking. Ivan Arce, CTO of Core Security Technologies, said Microsoft patched the bugs, but failed to disclose that it had done so — which could pose a problem. 'They're more important than the [two vulnerabilities] that Microsoft did disclose,' said Arce. 'That means [system] administrators may end up making the wrong decisions about applying the update. They need that information to assess the risk.'"

New Linux Petabyte-Scale Distributed File System 132

An anonymous reader writes "A recent addition to Linux's impressive selection of file systems is Ceph, a distributed file system that incorporates replication and fault tolerance while maintaining POSIX compatibility. Explore the architecture of Ceph and learn how it provides fault tolerance and simplifies the management of massive amounts of data."

Comment Or.... (Score 1) 389

It's quite a stretch to make such an assumption, and I'm disappointed that it's /. front page worthy. As a professional programmer, my weekend computing time is usually spent catching up on articles. I try to avoid thinking about work as much as possible, unless I get an "aha" moment, or a major issue comes up (which thankfully is rare). I would imagine other possible explanations of this behavior to be: 1) People who are not professional programmers (e.g. sysadmins, tinkerers, etc...) prefer the languages that forgo things like compile steps, strict typing, etc... 2) People who are rapid prototyping ideas use scripting languages 3) People who are trying to get "home server open source projects" like photo apps, forums, etc... running or enhanced are asking the questions. Not to say the scripting languages are bad, they definitely have a place, but IMO the maintainability and quality of languages like Java are far more important when your risking more than personal time.

Slashdot Top Deals

"The Avis WIZARD decides if you get to drive a car. Your head won't touch the pillow of a Sheraton unless their computer says it's okay." -- Arthur Miller