Relayman writes: Charlie Dowd, a 68-year-old travelling from California to Chicago on Amtrak, disappeared. His body was found in Nebraska eight days later after he had opened an unlocked door and fallen off the train moving at over 70 mph. This is not new, as the Santa Fe New Mexican found 40 cases of people falling to their deaths since 1972.
If you have an elderly relative or one who has a tendency to exit a moving vehicle, do not send them on Amtrak alone!
Relayman writes: MG Sieglar was looking at three pie charts developed by Ed Bott and noticed something interesting: Using last quarter's numbers, Apple's iPhone sales alone (over half of $46.33 billion) are larger than all of Microsoft's sales ($20.89 billion). In addition, Apple's non-iPhone sales (iPads, Macs, etc.) are also larger than all of Microsoft's sales. Perhaps it's time for some changes at Microsoft.
Relayman writes: The authors of MacDefender have released MacGuard, which doesn't need an administrator password to be installed. Instead, it copies the method Firefox uses, which is to copy the application directly into the Applications folder.
Relayman writes: Henry Blodget is reporting that the recent EC2 crash caused permanent data loss. Apparently, the backups that were being made were not sufficient to recover the lost data. Although a small percentage of the total data was lost, any data loss can be bad to a Website operator.
Relayman writes: "Is there any need to change servers for Daylight Savings Time? For a couple of years now, I have left my servers at UTC-5:00, which is Eastern Standard Time (U.S.) in the winter and Central Daylight Time in the summer. This solves a lot of problems, especially in the fall where a correct change from DST can result in two sets of log entries from 1 a.m. to 2 a.m. Since the UTC offset is usually included with the time, it's clear what time zone the server is in and there is no confusion with browsers or e-mail clients. [Editorial staff: This is an "Ask Slashdot" submission. I'm not sure if I will get to specify that later. Please double check my offsets to make sure they are correct. Thanks.]"
Relayman writes: Joe Mailer wanted to download an iTunes movie recently and his Apple TV told him it would take two hours. When he switched his DNS resolver settings, the download time dropped to less than 20 seconds. Apparently, iTunes content is served by Akamai which uses geolocation based on the IP address of the DNS request to determine which server should provide his content. When you use Google or Open DNS to resolve the Apple domain name, all the requests to Akamai appear to be coming from the same location and they're all directed to the same server pool, overloading that pool and causing the slow downloads. The solution: Be wary of using Google or Open DNS when downloading iTunes files or similar large files. Use your own ISPs DNS servers instead or run your own resolving DNS server (This is/., is it not?).
Relayman writes: "Leading up to Super Bowl XLIII, media outlets are referring to the broadcast of the "first 3-D commercial in bowl history" (Time Magazine) or discussing "What's Behind the First 3D Super Bowl Ads" (PC Magazine). But these statements are simply not true.
The first 3-D Super Bowl commercial was aired during Super Bowl XXIII (20 years ago) and was sponsored by Coca-Cola. In addition, the halftime show, "Be Bop Bamboozled in 3-D," was also broadcast in 3-D.
Although anyone under 26 is allowed to overlook this error, the rest of us, especially Slashdotters, surely remember this. I still have the video tape and glasses.
And yes, it's documented in Wikipedia which makes it official.
Just because Jeffrey Katzenberg says his is the first Super Bowl commercial in 3-D doesn't make it so. Help me to set the record straight."
Relayman writes: "Thanks to spam, I have found something that you may have thought you would never see in the wild: A real, live Ponzi scheme. Well, now's your chance, although hopefully somebody will close it down before too many suckers bite. You can see the unsecure Web site. You can see the posting on various blogs touting the scheme. You can even sign up to receive a 5% commission when you victimize your friends and relatives.
In these trying times, isn't it nice to know a place where you can invest $1,000 today and receive up to $61,469.80 in May 2009?
How does this work, you ask? By buying stocks when the market is rising and selling short when the market is falling! They make it seem so easy.
So enjoy the rare Ponzi scheme while you can. But don't touch, and don't invest. As they say in the sweepstakes rules, "Many will play, but few will win."
Disclaimer: I am not a licensed broker or financial advisor and am not authorized to evaluate investment schemes for their effectiveness or legality. The comments in this message shall be considered satire."
Relayman writes: "Software developed by a police officer was instrumental in finding a missing autistic man alive in Minnesota. The software analyzes the terrain of the search area and the type of vegetation that covers the area, takes into consideration what searchers have already covered and develops probabilities and recommendations for further searches. In this case, it suggested searching an area again. This software, dubbed Search Tracker, was written by St. Louis County Sheriff's Rescue Squad Lt. Rick Slatten, according to the article.
Technical note: I believe that the original article was in the Duluth News Tribune, but they require that you sign in to read it."
Relayman writes: "I'm suggesting a general item that covers the various glitches that occurred because computers and people switched to standard time on Sunday, Oct. 28 instead of waiting until Nov. 4 (United States and Canada). For example, in Baltimore the "intelligent" parking meters incorrectly issued tickets based on parking in a space during a time that was not allowed. According to the Daily News, Blackberries also had the problem, although the article didn't say if it was all Blackberries or just some. In Toronto, the CityTV CityNews Web site was off for several hours on Sunday until the problem was fixed, according to the Globe and Mail.
There may be more cases of clocks incorrectly set."