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Comment Re:Nature (Score 1) 127

Or epidemiologists, or hell, even your friendly neighborhood doctor:

"Oh sure, I'd love to help you -- and others -- out with that nasty bout of flu you're suffering from this year, but because Herbert Spencer's saying is now an immutable Law of Nature, some reason...hopefully humanity will evolve its way out of this faster than the virus does."
[[Doctor pats patient on the back]]
"Good luck next life...if that exists!" [[Doctor laughs evilly]]

Submission + - Rails or Java? A Java developer's dilemma

An anonymous reader writes: Despite all of the advances Java has made in making it easier to develop JEE apps, small-scale deployment is still non-trivial. This makes competing platforms like Ruby on Rails or PHP more desirable for hobbyist development. The author laments his inability to use knowledge obtained at work to do side projects. Is it important for Java to facilitate easier deployment of smaller hobbyist web applications, or should it remain solely in the realm of enterprise development?

Submission + - Linspire delivers Open XML translator (

karmic_penguin writes: Linux distributor Linspire has delivered the first fruits of its controversial interoperability and patent deal with Microsoft in the form of Open XML Translator software for OpenOffice and Star Office. Microsoft's RT Audio Codec has been licensed to "enable voice-enabled interoperability between Linspire's Pidgin client and Microsoft's Office Communicator and Live Messenger instant messaging clients." Linspire has also licensed a number of Microsoft TrueType fonts and has agreed to support Windows Media 10 audio and video codecs. However, they will only be available to Linspire users if they purchase "a patent SKU", and this will not be available for Freespire. It remains to be seen if Microsoft will end up getting the better end of these interoperability agreements.
PC Games (Games)

Submission + - Free PC Games List (

sleepysentry writes: eSports Game Servers has a good list of 200 free PC games. Among the goodies on the list include FPS shooters, MMORPGs, puzzle games, RPGs, and flight simulators. You won't find the latest and greatest games on the list, but many of the games come close to rivaling their commercial counterparts. Some of the games work for Linux and Mac, too.
PlayStation (Games)

Submission + - "PS3 sucks, XBox360 is good, Wii is best" (

greatgreygreengreasy writes: Wolfgang Gruener at Tom's Hardware believes Sony and Microsoft are stagnating, while Nintendo is looking to the future. Noting that most PS3 titles are fighting/shooting, he makes an interesting point about violence in video games, "As a dad of two small children I can tell you that the last games I want my children to play are Killzone 2, Unreal 3, Call of Duty 4, or Metal Gear Solid 4, no matter how great the graphics are. I am still confused about the fact that this country has absolutely no issue with showing violence in its most extreme and sick forms while showing a pair of boobs will get a publisher a million dollar lawsuit."
Data Storage

Submission + - Lenses that bring everything into focus

Roland Piquepaille writes: "Scientists at the University of Michigan have developed a new lens device that will shrink huge light waves to pinpoints. The superlens looks like a plate and "is etched with a specific pattern. As the waves pass through the patterned lens, it is sculpted into different sizes and shapes. The lens does not refract, or bend the light waves — which is how conventional lenses work — but rather it reshapes the wave." This discovery could lead to CDs or DVDs holding 100 times more information than current ones. Read more for additional references and a picture of how this superlens focuses light."
United States

Submission + - Canadian professor denied US entry for taking LSD

iceOlate writes: Vann sez, "Vancouver psychotherapist Andrew Feldmar has been barred from entering the United States. The reason? During a random stop-and-search at a US/Canadian border crossing, a Google search of his name led to his article from the Spring 2001 'Janus Head: Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature, Continental Philosophy, Phenomenological Psychology, and the Arts.' In it Feldmar describes two acid trips he took under the supervision of his graduate advisor in psychology — in 1967. This turns out to have been enough to earn him a life-time ban under the grounds of 'admitted drug use.'

"Feldmar *was* told he could apply for a waiver, and that after a year, and at a cost of around $3,500, he had a '90% chance' of its being granted.
"Oh — and he'd have to go through the process each time he wanted to travel to the US."
The Internet

Submission + - P2P Policies: At Least One Ear Is Listening

cente writes: I am an older student in a mid-level long established University. Recently I became aquainted with the Dean of Students, a very polite, nice lady who seemed to be in the dark about most Peer to Peer applications. She was concerned about the direction p2p is going, how policy forces a 3-strike system on p2p "infringer's", even though 90% of p2p action is contained in "gray-area politics". The policy, which comes about from most of the administrators having no idea what to do with threatening letters from anti-p2p groups, tosses dozens of students out the door every year, buried in the debt they've accumulated with no chance of paying it off. I spoke with her about it at length, and have determined she has a genuine interest in protecting the rights of the students. The questions she has are:
1) How should universities respond to threats by p2p interest groups (BSA, etc) to protect the rights of the students?
2) Are there good sites to that advocate fair use?
3) Is there anything else the slashdot community can tell her about legality of Universities protecting their students of such charges?
The Courts

Submission + - SCO Attacks PJ of Groklaw

Litigious Bastards writes: "SCO has just filed court papers saying that they were unable to subpoena PJ of Groklaw. While they quietly disseminated rumors via shills like Dan Lyons of Forbes that they were attempting to subpoena PJ, and apparently sent their crack team of process servers out looking for random people named Pamela Jones, it would appear that they were unable to locate the bright yellow envelope labeled "Email PJ" on the Groklaw website to ask for directions to serve her in person."

Submission + - Malaysian DVD pirates want sniffer dogs dead

An anonymous reader writes: Malaysian movie pirates have put a bounty on the heads of two sniffer dogs who busted a fake DVD ring with a seizure of discs worth about $3 million, media and movie-industry officials said on Thursday.

Lucky and Flo, two female black Labradors deployed by Malaysian authorities in their crackdown on pirated movie DVDs and music CDs, carried out their first major successful operation in Johor state on Tuesday.

"As a result of the extent of loss to the pirate syndicate, we have information from the domestic trade ministry that the Johor syndicate is intent on killing Lucky and Flo," said Neil Gane, an official of the Motion Picture Association. ffer+dogs+dead/2100-1025_3-6169599.html?tag=st_lh
United States

Submission + - New copyright fees threaten streaming radio

DebateG writes: The United States Copyright Royalty Board has just released its new royalty fees for streaming radio. Rather than charging a fixed portion of the station revenue, the fees will consist of a fixed amount of money for each song streamed to each listener and will more than double over the next five years. Moreover, the fees will be retroactive. These onerous fees threaten to completely bankrupt small broadcasters; a station with 1000 listeners will have to pay around $150,000 per year in licensing fees, which is often more than the station's profit. This is in stark contrast to analog radio stations, which do not pay any fees at all. Is this the end for independently-owned streaming radio?

Submission + - Saudi Arabian oil production declines 8% in 2006

BadOctopus writes: "The guys over at The Oil Drum have the story that the world's biggest oil exporter, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, experienced an 8% drop in oil production since the beginning of 2006. This decline coincides with a large increase in the number of oil rigs in the country, which implies that either the Saudis are preparing for a large future increase in production, or it is getting ever harder to extract the oil. What seems more likely? What does this mean for the KSA's internal and external political relations?

If the world's largest producer joins the multitude of other nations that are post-peak, can a global peak in oil production be far off?"

Submission + - Hacker Defeats Hardware-based Rootkit Detection

Manequintet writes: "Joanna Rutkowska's latest bit of rootkit-related research shatters the myth that hardware-based (PCI cards or FireWire bus) RAM acquisition is the most reliable and secure way to do forensics. At this year's Black Hat Federal conference, she demonstrated three different attacks against AMD64 based systems, showing how the image of volatile memory (RAM) can be made different from the real contents of the physical memory as seen by the CPU. The overall problem, Rutkowska explained, is the design of the system that makes it impossible to reliably read memory from computers. "Maybe we should rethink the design of our computer systems so they they are somehow verifiable," she said."

Submission + - Flash 9 Plugin Vulnerability

Aristotle's Fearless writes: "The current Flash Player 9 plugin for IE and Firefox on Windows ( has a serious bug. Certain bitmap draws using the BitmapData class in ActionScript 3 cause immediate page faults and close both IE and Firefox on all flavors of Windows.

This writer has isolated a proof of concept code fragment in AS3 and submitted a bug report to Adobe. Details are being withheld pending a reply from Adobe because of concerns this may be exploitable by buffer overrun code injection.

See this page for the proof of concept SWF. Be warned: your windows browser will exit with a page fault upon clicking the link on this page."

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