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Hardware Hacking

Journal SPAM: Lone house stands after Ike

After Warren and Pam Adams lost their house to hurricane Rita in 2005, Warren, a retired electrical engineer, hired an engineering firm to make sure his new house would survive a category 5 hurricane. Now, after hurricane Ike, the Adams' home is the only house left standing for miles.

This has been confirmed by CNN. The pictures are not photoshopped.

Journal SPAM: Mythbusters silenced over RFID security flaws

In a recent appearance event, Mythbuster, Adam Savage explains why they won't tackle myths about RFID security:

Texas Instruments comes on along with chief legal counsel for American Express, Visa, Discover, and everybody else... They were way, way outgunned and they absolutely made it really clear to Discovery that they were not going to air this episode talking about how hackable this stuff was, and Discovery backed way down being a large corporation that depends upon the revenue of the advertisers. Now it's on Discovery's radar and they won't let us go near it.

From Consumerist and Wired.

Linux Business

Journal SPAM: Advice for running an ecommerce site

A user on Ubuntuforums is asking for advice on running an E-commerce site. Mregister asks:

i am new to ubuntu/linux and was just hired as a tech guy for a small company. they are putting their catalog online and are putting an ecommerce site together. they have hired a consulting firm to build the site and it is going to run on an ubuntu/lamp box which i am going to adminstrate. Yikes!! I have for the last couple of weeks built a test sever and installed ubuntu 8.04 with the lamp configuration and added openssh, ssl, and have played around and have become somewhat familiar with navagating around ubuntu and various config files and such. i have setup and then broken openssh, public/private keys, etc. anyway, when i build this thing for production what areas do i need to pay specific attention to? what advice can you guys give me? i have no help except you guys here and i am not even sure what questions to ask. any advice is much appreciated.

Seeing how Slashdot is a wealth of knowledge on this topic. Let's help mregister out.


Journal SPAM: Using a UPS for other things

Over the holiday weekend I went over to my parents' house to help my dad with his battery backup sump pump. He purchased a Basement Watchdog a few years ago to protect his basement, but we have become disappointed by the amount of service it needs. The battery needs to be opened and distilled water needs to be added to the sulfuric acid every 6 months. My dad doesn't feel comfortable doing this so I have to help him. The first battery completely failed after two years and cost $95 to replace. For that price I am considering buying a computer UPS system and plugging in a standard sump pump. Has anybody tried this? Please feel free to share any other UPS applications you have tried in the past.

Journal SPAM: Flickr the new Napster?

Lifehacker has an article on how to hide MP3 files within JPG images. This is not new technology. However, what is keeping this technology from becoming a mainstream method of illegal music distribution? If it's merely an issue of user familiarity, this may no longer be the case. How long will it be before music industry officials catch on?

Journal SPAM: Blu-ray Struggles Dispite Downfall of HD-DVD

Recent market research discovers that despite the end of the format war, Blu-ray market share is not growing as expected. The article notes, " NPD said 45 percent of U.S. high-definition television owners now claim to be familiar with Blu-ray, up from 35 percent in June 2007. While just 6 percent of all consumers surveyed said they plan to buy a Blu-ray device, 9 percent of high-definition TV owners plan to buy one in the next six months, NPD said."

The article doesn't compare Blue-ray market share growth to that of successful formats like DVD or VHS.
User Journal

Journal SPAM: Trouble viewing articles 3

Is anybody else having trouble viewing articles on Slashdot? The main page works fine, but if I try to click an article I get, "The connection to the server was reset while the page was loading."
The Almighty Buck

Journal SPAM: Ebay is broken

An article in the Consumerist points out that it's almost impossible to sell anything of value on Ebay anymore. What can Ebay do to fix these problems? Is this the end of online auctions?
The Almighty Buck

Journal SPAM: How to start a company?

A friend of mine recently graduated college and is currently doing freelance work. It's currently quite profitable and she is interested in starting her own company. I told her that an LLC is probably the way to go. Are there any Slashdotters who have gone through this experience willing to give some advice? I have heard that Delaware is the best place to start a business, but does this only apply to major corporations, or can the small business owner benefit too?

Journal SPAM: Netcraft confirms Slashdot outage

Netcraft confirms that Slashdot has been down all morning.

All of Netcraft's globally distributed performance monitors have recorded a solid period of downtime at a number of sites hosted in the VA Software netblock.


Journal SPAM: What Patrick Stewart does for fun

According to a CNN article Patrick Stewart has spent the past year playing Macbeth on Broadway. "Part of his sci-fi life has followed him to Broadway. In his dressing room sits a boxed up Capt. Jean-Luc Picard action figure and a bumper sticker that reads 'Picard/Riker 2008: Make It So.'"

Journal SPAM: Caught by ISP, now what?

In an article on Lifehacker, a reader writes in that she was caught downloading movies via BitTorrent by her ISP. Lifehacker readers offer their suggestions, but what do Slashdotters think?
The Courts

Journal SPAM: Trees vs. Solar Panels

A couple in California are being forced to cut down their redwood trees because they block too much light for their neighbor's solar panels to work properly. CNN writes, "But the couple next door insisted they should not have to chop down the trees to accommodate Mark Vargas' energy demands because they planted the redwoods before he installed the solar panels in 2001." Apparently the trees grew since the solar panels were installed, in violation of California's Solar Shade Control Act. (PDF)

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Optimism is the content of small men in high places. -- F. Scott Fitzgerald, "The Crack Up"