Roblimo writes: This isn't about your place in society, but about user privileges on your computers and computer networks. The more privileges, the more risk of getting hacked and having Bad People do Bad Things to your company's computers, right? So Shtilman's company, Viewfinity, offers SaaS that helps you grant system privileges in a more granular manner than just allowing "root" and "user" accounts with nothing in between.
Roblimo writes: Assistant Professor Kurt DeMaagd, of Michigan State's Department of Telecommunication, Information Studies, and Media, runs a program that brings broadband Internet to villages in Tanzania that have never known connectivity better than what they get with non-smart cell phones. Lots of students are involved, and Kurt (who was one of Slashdot's co-founders many years ago) believes the students get as much out of the project as the people in Tanzania who are its primary beneficiaries. Setting up not only computer networks but also satellite communications and solar arrays in areas where you can't zip on down to the local computer or hardware store for parts you forgot teaches how to work under adverse conditions, and how to plan in advance instead of winging everything at the last minute. But we'll let Kurt DeMaagd, who is an engaging speaker, tell the story himself in this long (8:12) video.
Roblimo writes: The MakerBot Replicator is bigger, better, and easier to set up than earlier MakerBots. In this video from CES, Company CEO Bre Pettis shows Timothy Lord how wonderful a device it is, and tells us why every child (and most adults) should have a MakerBot.
Roblimo writes: Slashdot's Timothy Lord is at the International Consumer Electronics Expo (CES) in Las Vegas. There is no way any one person can take in the whole show. It's just too big for that. But on Timothy's first day, he spotted an overlay keyboard for the iPad that's been mentioned on Slashdot before, an invisible keyboard for your smartphone or tablet, and a crazy-interesting all-in-one computing device with a built-in projector and built-in virtual keyboard. Watch the video and join Timothy as he learns about these three devices. (Before you ask: Yes, we'll have more videos from CES over the next few days.)
Roblimo writes: Congratulations. You have survived 2011. It is now 2012, and some economists and analysts say the recession we’ve been enjoying for the past few years is now easing, and that there will be more job openings in 2012 than in any year since 2008, maybe even 2007. Huzzah! But does that mean you should start circulating resumes immediately? Not necessarily. If you have a job now, no matter how humble, you may be better off staying with it than moving on. But may does not mean will.
Roblimo writes: "My phone is as stupid as a phone can be, but you can drop it or get it wet and it will still work. My cellular cost per month is about $4, on average. I've had a cellular phone longer than most people, and I assure you that a smart phone would not improve my life one bit. You, too, might find that you are just as happy with a stupid phone as with a smart one. If nothing else, you'll save money by dumbing down your phone."
Roblimo writes: If you were hoping for a government shutdown, it looks like you are going to be disappointed. In a last-hour cliffhanger, Democrats and Republicans managed to agree with each other enough to keep the government funded for the rest of the current fiscal year. Since the budget bill that finally passed was a compromise, no one is happy with it. So it goes. That's how things work in a representative government.
Roblimo writes: Yes, we know tablets like the iPad are the wave of the future and that PCs and laptops are dead. But some of us see tablets as laptops with their keyboards missing and a few hundred bucks tacked onto the price.
Roblimo writes: Every year, an increasing percentage of my income comes from video shooting and editing. I also help friends, neighbors, and various business associates learn to shoot and edit their own videos. This article describes my five favorite entry-level Windows video editing programs, with a brief run-down of each one's strengths and weaknesses. While I wrote this for people doing business-type videos, this information is also valuable if you want to edit your family's holiday videos. (Free registration required to view.)
Roblimo writes: Wow. They sent press releases out about this, and we're happy for them. But isn't Git easy to install and use — for free, even if your project is proprietary and secret, not Open Source and public? Whatever. Some people seem to feel better about proprietary software than about FOSS, so I suppose this business story is news. Sort of. At least the featured company, Atlassian, has free versions of its repository for FOSS and small-scale proprietary developers. Which is sort of nice.
Roblimo writes: Bing and Mapquest both use output from OpenStreetMap.org (OSM). Mapquest supports the project with money for equipment and access to the code they've written to integrate OSM's work with their display. Bing? They just take from the project and do nothing for it in return. This may be okay in a legal sense, but it is a seriously nekulturny way to behave. Even so, having Microsoft's Bing as a reference might help the project's founder make money. They've put a lot of work into this project, and it's doing a lot of people a lot of good, so they certainly deserve some sort of payback, either direct or indirect. They have a few ideas about how they might legitimately earn a few bucks from their project while remaining free software purists. Do you have any ideas, yourself, about how they might turn a few bucks from OSM?
Roblimo writes: I had a dream. In it, I was CEO of a large telecommunications company that was also a major broadband Internet provider and all five members of the FCC were stabbing me with pitchforks and yelling in my ear that my company would be treated as a common carrier, not as a special entity they couldn't regulate. That's when I woke up...
Roblimo writes: You couldn't make this up. You wouldn't *want* to make this up: phone spam after you post on Craigslist. The article includes a genuine phone spam robocall I got after I advertised on Craigslist in Florida for a video production service salesperson. I had to get several of these calls before I believed they were real enough for me to actually record one, but they're real, all right. Is Satan behind this idea or is it just an extraordinarily greedy company? If we all yell, 'MOMMY, MAKE IT STOP!' loud enough, will they go away?
Roblimo writes: 'In response to concerns about cell phone radiation and brain cancer, cell phone manufacturers will publish information about the radiation they produce, even though there is no clear link between radiation and brain cancer, and the radiation figure is only one component,' writes Sharon Fisher in PCWorld.