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Comment Re:So what? (Score 4, Informative) 271

I've occasionally daydreamed a fun academic paper would be to collect sets of password hashes, rub them up against a rainbow table, and make graphs and correlations and wild assumptions about the correlation coeff of IQ and rate of easily cracked pwd vs site etc etc. Sounds like fun so its probably been done before.

Yes, it's been done on 70 million passwords. See

Comment Re:adoption associated with.less productive employ (Score 1) 116

The rules of academic publishing are that you have to cite relevant related work. This includes both fresh results and old classics. Where possible, we tried to cite the most recent studies. Some studies that are appear dated indicate a research opportunity to update the corresponding area. Also, it would be wrong to dismiss a paper because of its age. Some of the older studies we cite present theoretical frameworks of enduring value and importance, demonstrated by the thousands of citations they have received over the years. For instance, the 2003 study by Venkatesh and his colleagues on the user acceptance of information technology, which we cite, has received almost five thousand citations. It would be wrong to ignore it, just because of its age.

Comment Re:adoption associated with.less productive employ (Score 2) 116

You have a point here. And you haven't mentioned the huge cost associated with procurement processes for proprietary software, especially in the public sector. These can drag on for months. In contrast, acquiring an open-source product is often simply a matter of a one-click download. Even if the organization's legal has trouble understanding open source licenses, this is a hurdle you have to overcome just once.
Open Source

Submission + - How do Big US Firms Use Open Source Software? (

Diomidis Spinellis writes: "We hear a lot about the adoption of open source software, but when I was asked to provide hard evidence there was little I could find. In a recently article we tried to fill this gap by examining the type of software the US Fortune 1000 companies use in their web-facing operations. Our study shows that the adoption of OSS in large US companies is significant and is increasing over time through a low-churn transition, advancing from applications to platforms, and influenced by network effects. The adoption is likelier in larger organizations and is associated with IT and knowledge-intensive work, operating efficiencies, and less productive employees. Yet, the results were not what I was expecting."

Submission + - Content poisoning in p2p networks (

Diomidis Spinellis writes: "Two UCLA researchers published a paper in the prestigious IEEE Transactions on Computers that describes a technique for p2p content poisoning targeted exclusively on detected copyright violators. Using identity-based signatures and time-stamped tokens they report a 99.9 percent prevention rate in Gnutella, KaZaA, and Freenet and a 85-98 percent prevention rate on eMule, eDonkey, and Morpheus. Poison-resilient networks based on the BitTorrent protocol are not affected. Also the system can't protect small files, like a single song MP3. Although the authors don't say so explicitly, my understanding is that the scheme is only useful on commercial p2p distribution systems that adopt the proposed protocol."

Submission + - AMD's Abu Dhabi cash infusion (

Diomidis Spinellis writes: "The October 22nd issue of The Economist has an article on the recent $622m, 8.1% purchase of AMD by Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Development investment arm. The article explains that AMD requires the cash to address three handicaps it has in its fight against Intel: its smaller number of fabs, which increases its exposure to manufacturing problems, its lack of Intel's dominant position, and its need to pay for strategic acquisitions, like that of ATI. The article ends by warning that in a, widely expected, industry slowdown resource-rich countries will be able to buy big chunks of US's high-tech industry at bargain prices. Following the recent descriptions of attacks against cryptographic algorithms based on CPU backdoors, will these purchases end-up to be the high-tech equivalent of the Dubai Ports World controversy?"

Submission + - Patent peer review is now online (

Diomidis Spinellis writes: "Several Slashdot stories have reported that the US Patent and Trademark Office considered moving toward a peer review system for patent applications. A one-year pilot Peer-to-Patent program for selected patent applications is now online. The most active team currently reviews a patent on a method, apparatus and computer program product for providing status of a process. The IEEE Spectrum has an interview with the founder of Peer-to-Patent New York Law School's Professor Beth Simone Noveck."

Submission + - OLPC's trickle-down effect (

Diomidis Spinellis writes: "PCPRO runs a story regarding the $189 laptop that Asus revealed at the Computex 2007 trade show. The laptop, in common with the hardware of the one laptop per child initiative, uses solid state memory for storage and runs Linux. It weights 900g (2 lb) and measures 120 * 100 * 30mm (4.7 * 4 * 1.2"). I'm currently using an actual OLPC for localization work and experiments with educational applications, and I was dreaming being able to buy similar machines to use as cheap and cheerful terminals around the house. With Quanta having made a similar product announcement it seems that the Star Trek nirvana of a computer in every room can become an affordable reality."

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