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Submission + - World's first 100 percent biofuel-powered flight of civil aircraft (

cylonlover writes: Earlier this year, Air Canada joined a growing number of airlines conducting flights using biofuels. Like similar flights by Boeing and Lufthansa, the aircraft was powered by a mix of petroleum and biofuel. Now the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) has removed the fossil fuel component completely with the first flight of a civil jet powered by 100 percent unblended biofuel. In the milestone flight over Ottawa on October 29, the twin engines of a specially equipped Dassault Falcon 20 business jet were powered by a biofuel derived from oilseed crops. The Falcon 20, with NRC pilot Tim Leslie at the controls, was tailed by a T-33, which collected data on the emissions generated by the biofuel-powered aircraft. NRC researchers will use the information gathered during the flight to gain a better understanding of the environmental impact of biofuel.

Submission + - New 64-bit Operating System Released (

losethos writes: "LoseThos is a free, open-source 64-bit PC operating system written from a clean slate. It features graphics, links and trees in source code and at the command-line. The command-line feeds into a C compiler line by line so you don't have a crappy shell like linux — you have a real programming language at the command line. See videos for a truely unique interface. Instead of icons, you have unbounded scalable vector graphics which send a macro to the command line. Version 3.13 has been release. It has compiler optimizations and much faster disk access."
User Journal

Journal Journal: Google Quietly Adds HTTPS Support to GMail 4

This may be old news, but I just noticed myself and thought I'd report it. I've been using the "New Version" of GMail for a couple of weeks (I hardly notice the difference from the "Old Version"), and happened to notice today that the inbox URL still used "http://", even after all the complaints that they didn't maintain "https://" after login. I decided a quick test was in order, and added the all-important "s" to the protocol indicator. It worked fine. After clicking around some, openin

Role Playing (Games)

Submission + - Crime Wave Thwarted in Second Life

Ponca City, We Love You writes: "The Mercury News reports that a vulnerability in the way Second Life protects a user's money has been identified but risks for users are reportedly limited because the researchers say the flaw can be quickly patched. The flaw exploits a known problem with Apple's QuickTime movie playback software, which is used to play movies inside the virtual world. When a virtual character passes by an infected object planted by hackers, the Second Life software activates QuickTime so it can play the video or picture. Hackers can direct the Second Life software to a malicious Web site that then allows them to take over the user's avatar and force it to hand over its Linden cash. The hackers say they can take complete control of any player's avatar and make that avatar surrender any money and other property in its account. Second Life is recommending that users "disable streaming video playback in the Second Life viewer except when you are attending a known and trusted venue." The hack raises tough questions for operators of virtual worlds. Should they be as secure as banks and guarantee the safety of money and property that characters in the world possess?"

Submission + - Book Review: Mastering OpenLDAP by Matt Butcher

Phil Lembo writes: " Mastering OpenLDAP: Configuring, Securing and Integrating Directory Services by Matt Butcher is an extraordinarily well written book. The preface states it's focus succinctly:

The goal of this book is to prepare a system administrator or software developer for building a directory using OpenLDAP, and then employing this directory in the context of the network. To that end, this book will take a practical approach, emphasizing how to get things done. On occasion, we will delve into theoretical aspects of LDAP, but such discussions will only occur where understanding the theory helps us answer practical questions.
LDAP, the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol, is a set of Internet standards for communications and operations with and between directory servers. Directory servers play a key role in modern Information Technology infrastructures, being the repositories of choice for the identity management systems used to authenticate and authorize user access to enterprise applications. OpenLDAP is an open source implementation of a general purpose directory server that is both high performance and LDAP standards compliant.

There have not been many books devoted to things LDAP in general, or OpenLDAP in particular. Of course there haven't been many focused on DNS (the Domain Name System on which our ability to find anything at all on the Internet depends) either. Fortunately for all of us who manage Internet connected systems, that one book on DNS is one of those rare technical books that succeeds in being a textbook on an engineering theory, but also a practical manual on how to implement it using the open source BIND server.

Mastering OpenLDAP is just that kind of book. Along with some of the best illustrations of the theory and practice of LDAP directory management, it contains a wealth of detailed information on the servers, clients and utilities that make up the OpenLDAP suite of software. The examples provided of different configurations are not only detailed, they also methodically build upon each other in a way that really illuminates various concepts far better than I think has been done before.

For an idea of what is covered in 467 pages of text and illustrations, including a very useful index, all you have to do is look at the table of contents:
  1. Directory Servers and LDAP
  2. Installation and Configuration
  3. Using OpenLDAP
  4. Securing OpenLDAP
  5. Advanced Configuration
  6. LDAP Schema
  7. Multiple Directories
  8. LDAP and the Web
The appendices in this volume are also worthy of mention: "Building OpenLDAP from Source", "LDAP URLs", and "Useful LDAP Commands" — the last deftly handling one of my favorite pastimes, "Rebuilding a Database (BDB, HDB)".

Over the years, as Internet technologies have become both more complex and more diverse, technical books have had a hard time keeping up with the needs of their readers. Few books provide the detail really needed to help their readers "get the job done". Many that do are become obsolete within months of publication, if they were not already so when published.

The difference with this book is the author's successful organizing and synthesis of the massive amount of information that exists out there on OpenLDAP. Particularly in the documentation and mail list archives published by the OpenLDAP Project. The real genius of the author is in his ability to anticipate and tie together concepts, processes and procedures that usually wind up hopelessly lost in those other sources. Throughout, although the book covers alot of ground, it remains clearly focused on the task at hand as set forth in it's Preface.

The only criticism I can find to make is that the book lacks a bibliography, which would be a useful addition to the resources presented in various places in the text.

This book would be an excellent textbook for use by students learning Internet technologies. It would also make a terrific technical manual for system administrators or developers involved in deploying or maintaining systems and applications that use directory services. Finally, this is the one essential book that all directory administrators should have on their own personal bookshelf.

Mastering OpenLDAP is published by Packt Publishing. Original release date was August, 2007. ISBN is 978-1847191021.

For those interested, I maintain a blog on things LDAP called Eldapo, A Directory Manager's Blog, where I try to jot down things of interest to myself and (I hope) other directory administrators that I stumble across in my daily work as a system administrator focusing on directory services and identity management systems."

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