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Submission + - Meltdown at Wikipedia (wordpress.com)

Andreas Kolbe writes: As Wikipedia is about to turn 15 years old, relations between the volunteer community and the Wikimedia Foundation board have reached a new nadir. First, Dr James Heilman, an immensely popular volunteer noted for his energetic efforts to make Wikipedia's medical articles more trustworthy, was expelled from the board, causing wide-spread protests. Then it transpired that Wikimedia is working on a secretive "Knowledge Engine" project funded by a restricted grant from the Knight Foundation, leading to calls for more transparency about the project. Lastly, a few days ago the board announced the appointment of Arnnon Geshuri, former Senior Director of HR and Staffing at Google, to the Wikimedia board, provoking a further loss of confidence. The volunteers are pointing to Geshuri's past involvement in anticompetitive hiring agreements at Google, which led to a class-action lawsuit resulting in a $415 million settlement. They want Geshuri gone.

Submission + - Media Viewer: yet another Wikipedia scandal in the making 3

metasonix writes: As reported on Wikipediocracy today, the Wikimedia Foundation's software developers created a new "Media Viewer" feature to show high-resolution Wikipedia images in a pop-up window. It worked, but had many problems. Result: "One month after implementation, volunteer administrator Pete Forsyth unceremoniously switched the new feature off, only to find his change reverted by none other than the Wikimedia Foundation’s Deputy Director and VP of Engineering and Product Development, Erik Möller, who threatened to remove Forsyth’s administrative privileges. Möller in turn has now been hauled in front of Wikipedia’s arbitration committee, accused of overstepping his authority." This is roughly similar to a group of volunteer police cadets attempting to remove their chief of police, for changing department policy. The story is bizarre, and it perfectly underscores the dysfunctional and twisted internal culture of Wikipedia.
United Kingdom

Submission + - Experts See Mobile Phones as 'Health Time Bomb' (itproportal.com)

hypnosec writes: Heath experts in the UK have warned that mobile phones are a ‘health time bomb' about to go off and have asked the government to issue warning to the public. Health experts have pointed to more than 200 medical studies that link diseases such as brain tumors to the use of mobile phones. In a report released by experts, they have blasted the government for refusing to heed their warning and tell the public about the health risks that they face due to continuous exposure to mobile phones. According to the report, young children were at the maximum risk as their skulls were not thick enough to fend off the radiation.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Comment Families (Threads)

As my colleagues are working to improve the comment system, I'm thinking about it. I had an idea today, and I'd love to hear what anybody reading my journal thinks about it:

Would it be useful to have a control that would either expand or collapse all of a comments ancestors, descendants, or siblings?

So, what do you think?


Submission + - Facebook Settles With FTC To Make New Privacy Chan (techcrunch.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Facebook has reached an agreement with the FTC to make all future changes to privacy settings opt-in, presumably including new features with their own privacy controls. The Wall Street Journal wrote that the social network was nearing a settlement on the issue and now its Marketplace editor Dennis K. Berman says that settlement is for new privacy controls to be opt in. The agreement could limit Facebook’s ability to drive adoption of new features, as they won’t be able to immediately go viral. Users rarely visit their privacy settings, so Facebook will need to devise a way to get them to do so.

Submission + - Scientists Produce a Single Molecule Car (greencarreports.com)

thecarchik writes: Its wheels are comprised of a few atoms each; its motor, a mere jolt of electricity. Scientists in the Netherlands have introduced the world's smallest car-- and it's only a single molecule long.

It's certainly no Porsche , but scientists at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands are still excited about their latest achievement: creating a "car" that's only a billionth of a meter long.

The nanometer-sized vehicle , comprised of a miniscule frame with four rotary units, each no wider than a few atoms.

Submission + - Mexican Cartel Beheads Bloggers (chron.com)

sanzibar writes: The Zeta's killed and beheaded an Internet blogger Wednesday in Nuevo Laredo, the fourth slaying in the city involving people associated with social media sites since early September.

"This happened to me for not understanding that I shouldn't report on the social networks," advised a note left before dawn with the man's body at a key intersection in the city's wealthier neighborhood.

The victim, identified on social networking sites only by his nickname — Rascatripas or Belly Scratcher — reportedly helped moderate a site called En Vivo that posted news of shootouts and other activities of the Zetas, the narcotics and extortion gang that all but controls the city....


Submission + - American Censorship Day is Real - 11/16 Internet S (americancensorship.org)

skaterperson writes: Internet and democracy groups are planning an internet-wide day of protest called American Censorship Day on Wednesday, November 16th for the day Congress holds a hearing on the first American internet censorship system. Grooveshark, BoingBoing, Free Software Foundation, The Electronic Frontier Foundation, Public Knowledge, Demand Progress, Open Congress/PPF, TechDirt, and Fight for the Future are striking back at a new bill that is moving very quickly through Congress and can pass THIS YEAR that aims to give the US government and corporations the ability to block sites over infringing links posted by their users.

The internet is about to get their butts kicked by Hollywood. Tthe important thing about PROTECT IP / SOPA is that law is real and that this bill has sweeping provisions in it and is likely to pass. The lawmakers who have been sponsoring (Leahy, Lamar Smith) this bill need to be shamed by the internet community for wasting taxpayer dollars on a bill that would break the very fabric of the internet, create an internet blacklist, kill jobs and great startup companies, huge blogs, and social networks.

The only thing that can stop it now is if the internet comes together and stands up for themselves --they're asking as many sites and people with sites to join as possible. Every site who has user-generated content, posts links or videos to anything copyrighted in it could face new legal threats over as little as *one link* to infringing material posted by a user.


Submission + - Sony: Like Apple, we're building a different kind (bgr.com)

zacharye writes: All eyes have been on Apple to reinvent the television set, but Sony CEO Howard Stringer recently confirmed that Sony, too, is working on re-imagining the TV. “There’s a tremendous amount of R&D going into a different kind of TV set,” Stringer said during a breakfast. “We can’t continue selling TV sets [as we currently do]. Every TV set we all make loses money.” Stringer said that he has “no doubt” that Steve Jobs had intentions of designing a brand-new kind of television but said that “it will take a long time to transition to a new form of television.”...

Submission + - Physical input devices for developers? 1

paysonwelch writes: "Dear Slashdot, All I want for Christmas is.. Just joking. I am a developer and entrepreneur and I am considering developing a very graphically rich and custom interface for my latest application which does charting and analysis of large data sets. The application would feature lots of gauges, knobs and levers. As I was thinking about this I said to myself, why not hook up physical knobs and levers to my computer to control my application instead of designing them in 2D bitmaps? This could potentially save screen space and provide tactile feedback, and a new way of interacting digitally with one's application and data. So my question is whether or not anyone out there has advice for building a custom solution, perhaps starting with a mixing board, or if there are any pre-fab kits / controllers for achieving this?"

Submission + - Why Apple Can't Keep iPhone 4S On Shelves (infoworld.com)

snydeq writes: "InfoWorld's Bill Snyder thinks he knows why products like Apple's iPhone 4S sell well despite lukewarm reception from the tech media: these days users know quality technology and are too smart to fall for bull from vendors or the press. 'There's no doubt that a software glitch is trashing iPhone 4S's battery life; after all, Apple has a patch on the way. And Siri, which Apple forthrightly calls a beta service, still has rough edges and odd quirks. But consumers apparently have a lot more faith in Apple than they do in the Chicken Little tech press that seemingly panics any time a user files a complaint on a vendor website — and despite my ink-stained DNA, I have to agree with them. Indeed, as the consumerization of IT takes hold, we must assume that users aren't stupid and in fact often exhibit better judgment than the companies trying to foist off inferior products. Or that IT gives them credit for.'"

Submission + - Foreigners Don't Take IT Jobs, They Create Them (informationweek.com) 1

gManZboy writes: "Might the Occupy Wall Street protests pressure U.S.-based companies to keep IT and other jobs in this country or face a backlash? One commonly espoused view is that if we keep more foreigners out of the U.S., employment will rise and the economy will rebound. "While I understand the deep frustrations and fear that accompany 9%-plus national unemployment, I'm not buying this line of reasoning," writes InformationWeek Editor-in-Chief Rob Preston. Evidence shows that highly educated tech pros who come to the U.S., or stay here after graduating, create jobs and economic growth because many start businesses, he writes."

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