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Comment Re:Couple of things.. (Score 1) 280

A quote like:

"Data can either be useful or perfectly anonymous but never both."

needs a bit of background about the qualification of the person making that claim. Why? Simply because it sounds like a rather technical remark. If some computer science researcher made this claim, I would tend to take it more on the face value, otherwise I would take it with a grain of salt.

Paul Ohm has degrees in CS and EE. Quoting his rather impressive CV[pdf]:

Yale University, B.S., Computer Science, B.A., Electrical Engineering, 1994

Paul is also a hobbyist Perl hacker. IMHO, this paper is a great example of people in the law community understanding what is going on. We need more people in law who understand tech.

Comment Wtf BBC? Seriously? (Score 4, Interesting) 186

Some critics regard the space programme as a waste of resources in a country where millions still lack basic services.

Seriously BBC... wtf is up with that? India is a trillion dollar economy and this was 75 million usd project. Can I say chump change? For some context, India recently announced a really stupid 30 billion usd national id scheme. While reporting that, you did not care to mention India's millions that lack basic services. Why do you hate India and real scientific progress so much?

Comment Re:Presidential Ban Button (Score 1) 853

A big issue with anything like this is that it could be used against our infrastructure almost as easily as it could be used to protect our infrastructure. Think about what would happen if a foreign power or other malicous agent gained control of this "ban" button - they could then cripple banking and other critical infrastructure in a pseudo-DOS attack; instead of disabling by pounding on a site, they could just disconnect it.

Simple! Take the BAN button off line. (Duh)

Or maybe install a big red Fix It button right next to it. Hell, we could just ask the Russians to push that Reset button we gave them.


Slackware 13.0 Released 252

willy everlearn and several other readers let us know that Slackware 13.0 is out. "Wed Aug 26 10:00:38 CDT 2009: Slackware 13.0 x86_64 is released as stable! Thanks to everyone who helped make this release possible — see the RELEASE_NOTES for the credits. The ISOs are off to the replicator. This time it will be a 6 CD-ROM 32-bit set and a dual-sided 32-bit/64-bit x86/x86_64 DVD. We're taking pre-orders now at store.slackware.com. Please consider picking up a copy to help support the project. Once again, thanks to the entire Slackware community for all the help testing and fixing things and offering suggestions during this development cycle. As always, have fun and enjoy!"

Submission + - Programming Education icon _why disappears

SoupIsGood Food writes: whytheluckystiff, aka _why, author of "_why's Poignant Guide to Ruby," the popular introduction to programming and the Ruby language that famously used absurdist humor and comic strips to teach programming concepts, has disappeared. His entire online presence has been taken down, without warning or explanation.

Submission + - Ruby hacker and artist "_why" is no more. (ejohn.org) 1

anshul writes: ""why the lucky stiff" (often known simply as why, _why) has disappeared. All his known online accounts, websites and repositories have been deleted. It is not yet known whether _why deleted these himself or if his machine was hacked.

_why is a prolific writer, cartoonist, musician, artist and computer programmer who is most famous for his many significant contributions in Ruby like the Poignant guide, Hackety hack, shoes, Syck . He used to closely guard his anonymity and his sudden disappearance has caused a lot of disturbance in the Ruby community. This is a sad day for most Ruby coders."


Submission + - "why the lucky stiff" missing

BrokenSegue writes: Famous ruby hacker why the lucky stiff has deleted many of his popular websites including his artsy guide to ruby Why's (poignant) Guide to Ruby and many of his code repositories. _why was known for emphasizing the idea of code as art. It is unclear why he did this or whether he will back. One of his last posts to twitter was "programming is rather thankless. u see your works become replaced by superior ones in a year. unable to run at all in a few more." His contribution to the ruby community was great and it will be missed if he does not return.

Bing Search Tainted By Pro-Microsoft Results 582

bdcny7927 writes "Just as Bing is gaining popularity, some disturbingly pro-Microsoft and anti-Apple search results are rearing their ugly heads. Case in point: a search on Bing for the phrase, 'Why is Windows so expensive?' returned this as the top link: 'Why are Macs so expensive.' That's right. You're not hallucinating."

Submission + - Scientists save India's moon mission from failure (physorg.com)

baboonlogic writes: "AP reports that India's first unmanned mission to the moon, Chandrayaan 1 came close to total failure because of overheating but scientists made quick fixes to keep it going. ISRO officials said that the mission is safe and is likely to achieve 90% of it's objectives even though the length of the mission may be reduced.

On May 16, the satellite lost a critical instrument called the star sensor, the Indian Space Research Organization's chief Madhavan Nair told reporters. The sensor helps the satellite stay oriented so its cameras and other recording equipment are constantly aimed at the lunar surface.

However, ISRO scientists were able to salvage the $80 million satellite within a week and resume normal operations by activating the satellite's gyroscope, which also gives satisfactory orientation, Nair said."

Comment Very Interesting Privacy Policy (Score 5, Interesting) 649

Privacy Policy:

Privacy is a hot topic these days, and we want you to feel totally comfortable using our service, so our privacy policy is very simple: when you search with Cuil, we do not collect any personally identifiable information, period. We have no idea who sends queries: not by name, not by IP address, and not by cookies (more on this later). Your search history is your business, not ours.

Way to go!

Desktops (Apple)

Submission + - Linux still doesn't make it on the desktop (computerworlduk.com)

Anonymous Coward writes: "Back in the mid 1990s, my research focused on desktop operating systems. There was a plethora of options for IT organisations, with Mac OS, Windows in the guise of NT and 95 and OS/2 Warp all vying for the attention of IT managers. Even Unix workstation vendors had thoughts of moving beyond scientific and engineering applications to mainstream knowledge worker desktops. http://www.computerworlduk.com/management/it-business/services-sourcing/opinion/index.cfm?articleid=805"

Submission + - Scholastic invokes DMCA for reporting Potter leak

ISurfTooMuch writes: Looks like DMCA abuse has just been taken to a new extreme. TechCrunch is reporting that it has received a takedown notice for simply reporting that the latest Harry Potter book is available on Bittorrent. The post also says that USA Today is reporting that Scholastic is contacting any sites that have written stories on the leaked copy, demanding that the information be taken down. Note that these sites aren't hosting copies of the book; they're being sent notices simply for reporting that it is available. What's next, sites receiving takedown notices for discussing the fact that piracy is occurring on the Internet?

Submission + - Graduate with bad grades or repeat an year? 16

An anonymous reader writes: I'm a CS Student within one year of graduation.
Because of financial reasons I've been working on a full time basis for the past 2 years + worked on an open source project.
This has brought me from B+ & A in my first two years of college to somewhere in the mists of C and lower.
I now have enough money to sustain myself for two years of schooling.
I've got two choices:
  • a) repeat one year, repair all my bad grades and graduate with better grades but with a mark that I repeated one school year
  • b) graduate with lower grades but with no repeated year.
I'd like to know the opinion of recruiters out there: if you had two candidates which ranked similarly during the interviews but one is of type a) the other of type b), which would you favour?

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Stinginess with privileges is kindness in disguise. -- Guide to VAX/VMS Security, Sep. 1984