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Submission + - Who is today's King George III? Who are today's patriots? 1

Subm writes: Are Snowden, Manning, Ellsberg, and their peers modern day versions of Samuel Adams, Thomas Paine, John Hancock, and their peers? We hold the latter group as the definition of patriots to the U.S., but before independence they were traitors to the King. Support from other colonists took decades to build. Will future historians see the former group as patriots like the nation's founders? How much has the U.S. Government become the tyrannical King we faught for freedom from? Joshua Spodek examines these questions. Of course, separated by centuries there are many differences, but what of the similarities? What do you think? How much does the present resemble history and what can we learn from it?

Submission + - A simple visual model to understand passion and attraction

An anonymous reader writes: Ever wonder about how passion and attraction grow and decay over time? How they affect relationships? How passion for one thing affects another? Or have you looked at emotions to understand them as a geek? Entrepreneur and astrophysics-trained Joshua Spodek presents a simple mathematical model that describes passion and attraction by and for geeks, as well as consequences to relationships and how to use the model to improve your relationships. He mostly applies it to relationships, but it could apply to passions for other objects of passion and attraction, like hobbies and sports. (Spodek was covered by Slashdot before.)

Comment CSSEdit (Score 2, Interesting) 72

I use CSSEdit all the time. Its core is a Webkit browser that shows a live preview of CSS changes you make. It's great for AJAX-y, DHTML-y dynamically driven sites that don't always have HTML "pages" to debug.

It's a bit like the Web Developer toolbar for Firefox, but a standalone browser / app for OS X focused solely on CSS and, IMHO, a bit easier to use.

No connection to the company. Just a very satisfied user.


Submission + - Ban on photographing oil-polluted areas & Wild

boombaard writes: "The day before yesterday CNN's Anderson Cooper reported that, from now on, there is a new rule in effect to 'protect' reporters from themselves, which de facto bans/bars any photographer from coming within 65 feet of any deployed boom. (Official announcement here) The rule, announced by the US Coast Guard, forbids "photographers and reporters and anyone else from coming within 65 feet of any response vessel or booms out on the water or on beaches. In order to get closer, you have to get direct permission from the Coast Guard captain of the Port of New Orleans," while "violators could face a fine of $40,000 and Class D felony charges. What's even more extraordinary is that the Coast Guard tried to make the exclusion zone 300 feet, before scaling it back to 65 feet."
A HuffPo blogger adds: "If the Coast Guard has its way, all media, not just independent writers and photographers like myself and Jerry Moran, will be fined $40,000 and receive Class D felony convictions for providing the truth about oiled birds and dolphins, in addition to broken, filthy, unmanned boom material that is trapping oil in the marshlands and estuaries."
Meanwhile, the USCG defends its 'rule' by stating:

The Coast Guard Captain of the Port of New Orleans has delegated authority to the Coast Guard Incident Commander in Houma to allow access to the safety zones placed around all Deepwater Horizon booming operations in Southeast Louisiana. The Coast Guard Incident Commander will ensure the safety of the members and equipment of the response before access is granted. The safety zone has been put in place to prevent vandalism to boom and to protect the members and equipment of the response effort by limiting access to, and through, deployed protective boom.

First amendment trampling, anyone?"

Submission + - Friday, May 28, Science will be 2,595 years old (

Subm writes: Physicist Robert Park points out "On May 28, 585 B.C. the swath of a total solar eclipse passed over the Greek island of Miletus. The early Greek philosopher, Thales of Miletus, alone understood what was happening. The world's first recorded freethinker, Thales rejected all supernatural explanations, and used the occasion to state the first law of science: every observable effect has a physical cause. The 585 B.C. eclipse is now taken to mark the birth of science, and Thales is honored as the father. What troubles would be spared the world if the education of every child began with causality?"

Comment Obama is the New Bush (Score 5, Insightful) 601

Every time I read a story about how Obama is continuing a Bush administration policy, or extending and exceding it, I post it to

Having kept this up, on and off, for the last 6 months some patterns definitely appear. The Justice Department is seriously entrenched in covering its ass, cracking down hard on individual freedoms and privacy, and almost always falling on the side of big business.

I'm not disappointed because I believed all the pablum about "Change" and "Hope," but because Obama was a frickin' law professor. He should know better!


Submission + - Sharp Rise in Imprisonment of Internet Journalists (

bckspc writes: The Committee to Protect Journalists has published their annual census of journalists in prison. Of the 136 reporters in prison around the world on December 1, "At least 68 bloggers, Web-based reporters, and online editors are imprisoned, constituting half of all journalists now in jail." Print was next with 51 cases. Also, "Freelancers now make up nearly 45 percent of all journalists jailed worldwide, a dramatic recent increase that reflects the evolution of the global news business." China, Iran, Cuba, Eritrea, and Burma were the top 5 jailers of journalists.

Comment Re:Seeing Arrington's rants... (Score 5, Interesting) 175

I was just going to post something to the same effect. A good friend of mine was pushed out of his company by his partner, board, and angel investors when his invention was close to launch. Another friend turned evil on me when our own start-up company was approached about acquisition. Even though we were 50-50 partners, I still feel like I got shafted. And every slashdot reader knows that Windows is dominant not because of its technical merits, but because of legal -- and illegal -- bullying. Screw or be screwed seems to be the name of the game. Sometimes it seems the only way to win is not to play.


A Congressman Who Can Code Assembly 421

christo writes "In what appears to be a first, the US House of Representatives now has a Congressman with coding skills. Democratic Representative Bill Foster won a special election this past Saturday in the 14th Congressional District of Illinois. Foster is a physicist who worked at Fermilab for 22 years designing data analysis software for the lab's high energy particle collision detector. In an interview with CNET today, Foster's campaign manager confirmed that the Congressman can write assembly, Fortran and Visual Basic. Will having a tech-savvy congressman change the game at all? Can we expect more rational tech-policy? Already on his first day, Foster provided a tie-breaking vote to pass a major ethics reform bill."
The Internet

Submission + - Angry blogger blocks Digg traffic

amigoro writes: "Here is an article about an angry blogger blocking Digg users after diggers made nasty comments about one of his articles without RTFA. If you follow the Digg link to the story, you get a 403 "Go Away!"

While one swallow does not make a summer, but this is just one indication that people are slowly turning away from the Digg "phenomenon". There's a fair number of /. who don't RTFA but at least they get moderated down if they start commenting on an article they haven't bothered to read. Unfortunately, it is rule of the kidde mob at Digg. Either they will grow up, or Digg will go down like so many other mob phenomena."

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