Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Submission + - Dodd Challenges Google on China Censorship

Hugh Pickens writes: "Presidential candidate Chris Dodd spoke at Google Headquarters yesterday and challenged the company to stand up for best practices that increase transparency and support technologies that expand free expression, reject business with repressive states, and protect users in those countries and specifically to tell the Chinese government that will no longer censor information with Google's consent and should the Chinese government not find that acceptable, that Google should shut down Six weeks ago Dodd stood on the floor of the Senate and vowed to filibuster the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that would have granted retroactive immunity to telecommunications companies that helped the administration violate the civil liberties of Americans. Dodd told Google that "Should this or any Administration seek the personal or private records you hold on anyone in our country, you will not simply ask to be presented with a warrant — you will insist on one. And if the Administration cannot produce a warrant, you will show them the door. I am asking you to uphold your most fundamental commitment to the public — that you not produce those records outside of the law.""

Submission + - MIcrosoft Launches Ads On MSN Mobile

frdmfghtr writes: InformationWeek is reporting that the MSN Mobile website will start placing banner and text ads on mobile browsers. FTA: "The software giant claims that the introduction of mobile ads will enhance the experience for customers: "Microsoft is continuing to make significant investments in the MSN Mobile portal. By incorporating advertising on MSN Mobile, we are allowing advertisers to extend their existing campaigns from PCs to games and now to mobile phones, further delivering on our vision to extend advertising across multiple platforms and devices," said Joanne Bradford, MSN's corporate VP and chief media officer, in a statement." There you have it folks — evidence that the advertisers are the customers, not the end users.

Submission + - A short history of Microsoft's OOXML ISO campaign (

christian.einfeldt writes: "Russell Ossendryver is the open format advocate whose open letter to the GNOME Foundation touched off a widespread debate about whether and to what extent GNOME is supporting Microsoft's drive for ISO status for its OOXML office productivity data format. Now, Ossendryver has published the first in a concise three-part series aimed at examining Microsoft's strategy in opposing ODF's rapid growth as an open international data standard. It is not news that Microsoft has vigorously lobbied to have its OOXML standard supplant ODF, the current international office productivity data format standard, such as its recent efforts to halt the adoption of ODF by the Dutch Parliament. But Ossendryver's summary gives a bird's eye overview of that history, based on his extensive involvement in those debates as a long-time member of the OpenDocument Fellowship."
Linux Business

Submission + - Linux is about to take over the low end of PCs ( 3

An anonymous reader writes: Desktop Linux has a recent commentary on the inevitable growth of Linux on the cheaper end of the desktop market. According to the article, the availability of under-$500 usable hardware, combined with free a operating system, free desktop office products, and free or cheap "Software as a service" online applications, opens a new market in which Microsoft cannot compete. "Microsoft will fight this trend tooth and nail. It will cut prices to the point where it'll be bleeding ink on some of its product lines. And Windows XP is going to stick around much longer than Microsoft ever wanted it to. Still, it won't be enough. By attacking from the bottom, where Microsoft can no longer successfully compete, Linux will finally cut itself a large slice of the desktop market pie."

Submission + - Nokia claims Ogg format is "proprietary" 2

a nona maus writes: Several months ago the WHATWG workgroup of the W3C decided to include Ogg/Theora+Vorbis as the recommended baseline video codec standard for HTML5, against Apple's aggressive protest. Now, Nokia seems to be seeking a reversal of that decision: they have released a position paper calling Ogg "proprietary" and citing the importance of DRM support. Nokia has historically responded to questions about Ogg on their internet tablets with strange and inconsistent answers, along with hand waving about their legal department. This latest step is enough to really make you wonder what they are really up to.
Operating Systems

Submission + - It's the Linux Laptop that matters! ( 1

Anonymous Coward writes: "Linux advocates have long considered Linux a viable desktop operating system, however despite obvious improvements in installation, ease of use and support Linux has struggled to overcome the barriers of FUD and an entrenched desktop monopoly. That is, until now! A new wave of Ultra Mobile devices such as Asus's Eeepc, Intel's classmate and the XO are about to cause a stir. The desktop is no longer important, it's the Linux laptop that matters!."

Submission + - Mircosoft's online Santa talks about oral sex. ( 1

Jolly Old Saint Nick writes: Last year, Microsoft encouraged kids to connect directly to "Santa" by adding to their Windows Live Messenger contact lists. The Santa program, which Microsoft reactivated in early December, asked children what they wanted for Christmas and could respond on topic, thanks to artificial intelligence. The holiday cheer soured this week when a reader of a United Kingdom-based technology news site, The Register, reported that a chat between Santa and his underage nieces about eating pizza prompted Santa to bring up oral sex. One of the publication's writers replicated the chat Monday. After declining the writer's repeated invitations to eat pizza, a frustrated Santa burst out with, "You want me to eat what?!? It's fun to talk about oral sex, but I want to chat about something else." The exchange ended with the writer and Santa calling each other "dirty bastard."

Submission + - What If Yoda Ran IBM?

Esther Schindler writes: "The big vendors beat down the doors of large companies to get business, but a small-company gets the brush-off. One CIO wonders how to harness the powers of the Force, and get some big-company expertise to help the little guy.

Yeah, this is written from the boss's point of view (because, duh, it's a CIO who wrote it), but it certainly applies to anybody working in a smaller company who needs attention from a big vendor (for sales, tech support, whatever):

Herein lies the problem. Just because Sequoia is a $25 million dollar organization (in revenue), that does not exempt us from some of the same challenges that larger organizations endure. Although $25,000 may not seem like a large amount to IBM, imagine if they had many customers similar in size to Sequoia.

This guy's solution? "Let's imagine (with apologies to George Lucas) what Yoda might do if he were running a large consultancy....""

Slashdot Top Deals

Logic is the chastity belt of the mind!