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Comment Re:Fifth amendment (Score 3, Informative) 216

They weren't talking to his doctor. They got records from a third party (the pacemaker manufacturer).

Now, the interesting bit that you can't discern from TFA is whether the pacemaker data was specifically downloaded for purposes of the investigation or if the information came out on routine interrogation. I'm guessing the former since you only check the pacer if you think there is a problem or perhaps twice a year. If the downloading of the data was compulsory, that opens some entertaining legal questions.

Latter.

Pacemakers are typically tested quarterly when in working order, monthly when in low battery state when the device supports transtelephonic or inductive testing. Yearly in-person checkups are also typically done. (Transtelephonic: Patient wears a device on each hand or wrist, device communicates with remote servers over a POTS system. Inductive: Patient places a device over pacemaker and initiates remote reading, device communicates over phone, cellular, network, or internet to remote servers.)

Some "remote monitoring" platforms support automatic daily to 3-week intervals and send results to the manufacturer accordingly. (Source, PDF)

Comment Re:Banks are responsible too (Score 1) 87

Target doesn't want to ditch the magstripe. They do incredible amounts of data mining based off of data on the magstripe.

See: How Target Figured Out A Teen Girl Was Pregnant Before Her Father Did.

Chip-and-Pin doesn't provide magstripe data to Target. Target can't build its demographic data. That's going to hurt sales.

Comment Re:Sure (Score 4, Informative) 500

It seems to me that this could be interpreted to allow the following scenario: A police informant runs out of gas in front of your house. You let him in to use your phone so he can get a ride. The police then mysteriously show up wanting in. You tell them no but from behind you the informant yells "come right in."

That's not what's going on in this case though.

The /. summary is wrong.

Using your case as an example, you kindly let the informant in. Later, police come to your door. The officer asks "may we search your place?" You say "no". Doesn't matter what the informant says. Your "no" still rules, as long as you are still there. That's still going to be the case.

US v. Matlock, 1974 allowed the search as long as someone who could consent did consent. "Government must show, inter alia, not only that it reasonably appeared to the officers that the person had authority to consent, but also that the person had actual authority to permit the search..."

Georgia v. Randolph, 2006, changed it so that if any occupant objected, then the search could not take place.

Today's ruling, Fernandez v. California clarified and limited the exception from Georgia v. Randolph. If the person who objected to the search isn't there, and the person there is able to and does consent to a search, the search is valid.

Comment GPS jamming near an airport (Score 2) 209

Interestingly enough, there was a guy who was recently busted for putting a GPS jammer on his truck. It was discovered when he drove near an airport and impacted the testing of GPS-enhanced plane landing equipment.

Source.

The person was fined $32,000 and was fired by the company he was working for.

Comment Re:The whole idea is dumb (Score 1) 1080

Have you considered how much mercury gets released into the air by burning coal for electricity generation?

Comparatively, a heck of a lot more mercury gets released from coal power plants in a year than has ever been included in every CFL bulb ever manufactured.

Besides, halogen incandescent bulbs meet the new requirements, you don't need to use CFL bulbs.

Comment Re:Law and Regulation? (Score 1) 433

Technically speaking, it should be based on observed speed of people traveling on the road. However, standards have been weakened over time such that yellow light timing can be based on the speed limit rather than real-world speeds.

Source

The 1994 ITE "Determining Vehicle Signal Change and Clearance Interval" states:
When the percentage of vehicles that entered on a red indication exceeds that which is locally acceptable, the yellow change interval may be lengthened (or shortened) until the percentage conforms to local standards, or enforcement can be used instead.

There's a better analysis of how signal timing standards have been changed in the link.

Comment Re:Changed my mind (Score 4, Informative) 433

Was it Washington, DC?

Source

The [Washington] Post obtained a D.C. database generated from accident reports filed by police. The data covered the entire city, including the 37 intersections where cameras were installed in 1999 and 2000.

The analysis shows that the number of crashes at locations with cameras more than doubled, from 365 collisions in 1998 to 755 [in 2004]. Injury and fatal crashes climbed 81 percent, from 144 such wrecks to 262. Broadside crashes, also known as right-angle or T-bone collisions, rose 30 percent, from 81 to 106 during that time frame.
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The results were similar or worse than figures at intersections that have traffic signals but no cameras. The number of overall crashes at those 1,520 locations increased 64 percent; injury and fatal crashes rose 54 percent; and broadside collisions rose 17 percent.

Overall, total crashes in the city rose 61 percent, from 11,333 in 1998 to 18,250 last year.

Comment Re:Um (Score 5, Informative) 61

Doesn't really matter.

Anand from Anandtech writes:

My personal desktop sees about 7GB of writes per day. That can be pretty typical for a power user and a bit high for a mainstream user but it's nothing insane. ...
If I never install another application and just go about my business, my drive has 203.4GB of space to spread out those 7GB of writes per day. That means in roughly 29 days my SSD, if it wear levels perfectly, I will have written to every single available flash block on my drive. Tack on another 7 days if the drive is smart enough to move my static data around to wear level even more properly. So we're at approximately 36 days before I exhaust one out of my ~10,000 write cycles. Multiply that out and it would take 360,000 days of using my machine for all of my NAND to wear out; once again, assuming perfect wear leveling. That's 986 years. Your NAND flash cells will actually lose their charge well before that time comes, in about 10 years.

Comment Re:Protip: (Score 1) 367

The yellow light is there to warn you the light is changing so you have time to stop. Cities will put the public in more danger just to bring in higher revenue.

Nope!

Believe it or not, a 1985 & 1989 change to ITE standards for traffic signal timing added: "Allow easy identification of violators by law enforcement agents." as an objective for traffic signal timing.

Comment Re:Traffic Light Safety (Score 1) 367

The real problem is that yellow signal timing standards have been weakened.

thenewspaper.com covers the weakening of the standard here

Essentially, yellow signal timing needs to take into account human reaction time, the actual speed that traffic goes through an intersection, and time needed to clear the intersection. In 1976, the standard did.

1985 and 1989 revisions to the ITE standard made changes:
1989 standard: "It may be possible to use the posted speed as the approach speed." - Posted speed limits, as opposed to the actual speed that traffic goes through an intersection could be considered for setting yellow signal timing.

There are other changes detailed that impact yellow time.

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