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Comment Another View (Score -1, Redundant) 488

I don't really read the NYTs, but I'll take a different view just to keep things lively. So, I know everything on the internet is supposed to be free. But...don't you think it's fair for the journalists to get paid for the work they've done? The sentiment so far has been "great, thanks NYT. I'll just go somewhere else where the news is free". That's fine, but I think eventually you will get what you pay for. So what if all the major papers switch to a paywall? Will we be left with only cheap reporting or rehashing of other's stories?

Submission + - Target pharmacy begins scanning driver's licences 2

Muad'Dave writes: This evening I picked up my regular prescriptions at my local Target pharmacy. As I was paying for them, the cashier asked to 'see my ID'. That was not typical, but I assumed she was going to verify the photo. Before I could stop her, she flipped it over without looking at the front and scanned the 2D barcode on the back. I asked her why she did that, and her answer was that the system 'required' it.

I went to the customer service desk and asked them why they thought they were entitled to scan my license. Their first answer was that it was a convenient way to validate my birthday, and that was all that was on the 2D barcode. When I mentioned that I know there's more data than that, she then said that it was a convenient way to verify that the ID was present. I mentioned that verifying the presence of an ID required more data than the DOB, and she agreed, contradicting her earlier statement that all they scanned was the DOB.

The is a Federal law addressing who can and cannot scan licenses, but it's so full of loopholes as to be useless.

Apparently I'm not the only one bothered by their attitude on privacy.

Have you been subjected to this invasion of your privacy by Target?

Comment The People Problem (Score 5, Insightful) 595

While the doctors writing out scrips for antibiotics does play a role, one of the major factors should be patient education. A lot of people think that antibiotics should be used for minor complaints, such as colds. In addition, one major cause of superbugs is the failure of patients to complete a course of antibiotics. They feel better, so they simply stop taking the medications.

Comment Hypothesis Validation (Score 1) 736

It certainly is an interesting hypothesis. However, their sample is now limited to terrorist:engineers. A test of this theory would be to check the engineers of other religious groups for similar traits. It might be the combination of these personality traits coupled with the radical teachings that inspire those individuals to act. However, the tendency might manifest itself in some other way in different religions that don't promote violent martyrdom.

Submission + - HDD manufacturers moving to 4096-byte sectors

Luminous Coward writes: As previously discussed on Slashdot, according to AnandTech and The Tech Report, hard disk drive manufacturers are now ready to bump the size of the disk sector from 512 to 4096 bytes, in order to minimize storage lost to ECC and sync. This may not be a smooth transition, because some OSes do not align partitions on 4K boundaries.
United States

Submission + - Xmas-Day terrorist used PETN to destroy airplane. (

reporter writes: A report just issued by the "Wall Street Journal" provides new information about the failed attempt by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, an African terrorist, to destroy an in-flight passenger jet. The most disturbing detail is that the explosive device was not a firecracker (which several news organizations erroneously reported). The explosive device is PETN. It is an extremely powerful explosive; according to an investigative report by, "[a] little more than 100g of PETN could destroy a car. The device allegedly used by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab involved a syringe and a soft plastic container filled, reportedly, with 80g of PETN. The remnants of the bomb are being analysed in an FBI laboratory."

The implication is profound. If Abdulmutallab had succeeded in detonating the explosive at high altitude and, hence, creating a hole in the fuselage of the aircraft, "the decompression would tear the aircraft apart", and all 300 passengers on that jet would have died.


Submission + - Hulu and Warner Music sign deal for music content

adeelarshad82 writes: A month after signing a deal with EMI for music video content, Hulu has reached an agreement with Warner Music Group to add its content to the video site as well. The deal will allow Hulu to post music videos, artist interviews, live concerts, and behind-the-scenes footage from artists on WMG labels like Atlantic Records, Rhino Records, and Warner Bros. Records.

Submission + - Voyager Makes an Interstellar Discovery (

azoblue writes: The solar system is passing through an interstellar cloud that physics says should not exist. In the Dec. 24th issue of Nature, a team of scientists reveal how NASA's Voyager spacecraft have solved the mystery.

Submission + - Next-Gen Glitter-Sized Photovoltaic Cells Unveiled (

MikeChino writes: Sandia National Laboratories recently announced a new breed of glitter-sized solar cells made from crystalline silicon that use 100 times less material to generate the same amount of electricity as standard solar cells made from 6-inch square solar wafers. Perfect for soaking up the sun’s rays on unusual shapes and surfaces, the tiny solar cells are expected to be less expensive, more efficient, and have promising new applications in textiles, clothing, and building facade installations.

Submission + - Microsoft issues "wipe-clean" tool for Word (

garg0yle writes: Microsoft isn't going to stop selling Word any time soon (so you can stop submitting articles to that effect). Back in October, they issued a "wipe-clean" patch for Word to their OEMs, which effectively removes the Custom XML capability from Word and Office.

Now, can we all please stop submitting articles about this?


Submission + - SPAM: Inmate gets 18 months for hacking prison computer

alphadogg writes: A former Massachusetts prison inmate has been given an 18-month prison sentence for hacking prison computers while he was incarcerated. Francis "Frank" Janosko, 44, was sentenced Tuesday in federal court in Boston for abusing a computer provided by the Plymouth County Correctional Facility. The computer had been set up to help inmates with their legal research. In 2006, Janosko managed to circumvent computer controls and use the machine to send e-mail and cull data on more than 1,100 Plymouth County prison employees. He gained access to sensitive information such as their dates of birth, Social Security Numbers, telephone numbers, home addresses and employment records.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Why Coder Pay Isn't Proportional to Productivity

theodp writes: John D. Cook takes a stab at explaining why programmers are not paid in proportion to their productivity. The basic problem, Cook explains, is that extreme programmer productivity may not be obvious. A salesman who sells 10x as much as his peers will be noticed, and compensated accordingly. And if a bricklayer were 10x more productive than his peers this would be obvious too (it doesn't happen). But the best programmers do not write 10x as many lines of code; nor do they work 10x longer hours. Programmers are most effective when they avoid writing code. An über-programmer, Cook explains, is likely to be someone stares quietly into space and then says "Hmm. I think I've seen something like this before."

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