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Submission + - Engineer Thinks We Could Build a Real Starship Enterprise in 20 Years ( 3

Nancy_A writes: "An engineer has proposed — and outlined in meticulous detail – building a full-sized, ion-powered version of the starship Enterprise complete with 1G of gravity on board, and says it could be done with current technology, within 20 years. “We have the technological reach to build the first generation of the spaceship known as the USS Enterprise – so let’s do it,” writes the curator of the Build The Enterprise website, who goes by the name of BTE Dan."

Submission + - Return US copyright to 14 years (

An anonymous reader writes: There is a petition on the new Whitehouse petition web site about returning US copyright to a 14 year term. Click on the "Link to the orginal story" link to go to the sign and sign it.

Submission + - O2 filtering internet for UK mobile users (

Geeky writes: Not new news but I hit the block yesterday for the first time — and not for a site that should have been blocked. Attempting to access the site redirects you to Bango, thus exhibiting all the symptoms of a malware or virus infection that has hijacked DNS. I'd never heard of Bango — why would I give them my credit card details?

The filter is also useless — Google image search works just fine, so adult content isn't hard to find. Does that make O2 liable if parents rely on the filter? What about claims from companies who might lose trade through being incorrectly flagged as adult?

Time to move to another provider or do they all do it?


Submission + - Time may fly erratically, come September ( 1

ibsteve2u writes: "Field trials for the elimination of the time error correction (the intentional increase or decrease of the 60 Hz frequency many household clocks rely upon to keep time in order to compensate for load-driven variations) applied to the nation's electricity grid are tentatively scheduled to begin in September:

While it is intuitively obvious that any frequency offset that moves target frequency away from the reference point to which all other frequency sensitive devices (such as relays) have been indexed will have a potential impact on those devices' performance, the industry has by and large regarded Time Error Corrections as harmless and necessary as part of the service it provides to its customers. However, in light of this data, NERC's stakeholders are now questioning whether or not the intentional movement closer to (or in some cases, further away from) the trigger settings of frequency-based protection devices as is evidenced during Time Error Correction events is appropriate.

Accordingly, NERC is planning a Field Trial during which the practice of doing Time Error Corrections will be suspended. What will this affect? We don't think it will have much affect at all, but just to be safe, we are reaching out to various industries to get their thoughts on this. Those industries include appliance manufacturers, software companies, chemical manufacturers, companies that make automation equipment, computer manufacturers, and many others.



Submission + - Trashcan for the command line (

mchnz writes: "I've created collectfs — a FUSE filesystem that wraps an existing Linux directory hierarchy and collects all clobbered files into a trash directory. Collectfs provides versioned file history for development tools such as vi, make, gcc, sed, and awk by implementing trash collection at the filesystem level where it belongs."

Submission + - Millions of DNS Servers at Risk From New BIND Bugs (

Trailrunner7 writes: The Internet Systems Consortium is warning organizations about a pair of vulnerabilities in existing releases of the ubiquitous BIND DNS server one of which enables an attacker to stop the software from running on remote DNS servers.

The high-severity vulnerability in many versions of the BIND software has the effect of causing the BIND server to exit when it receives a specially formatted packet. The ISC said that although it isn't aware of any public exploits for the bug, it still recommends that organizations upgrade to one of the newer versions of BIND


Submission + - Telcos under siege in flooded Queensland (

lukehopewell1 writes: Vodafone has restored service to Queensland customers as it and other telcos work feverishly to protect network assets in the flooded areas. One telco is even covering its telephone exchange buildings in plastic wrap and expanding foam to keep the flood water out.

Telstra told ZDNet Australia that its NextG network was holding strong thanks to battery back-ups in affected areas and well-prepared exchange technicians.

"Some of our techs have been sandbagging and sleeping overnight at exchanges. St George telephone exchange was even wrapped in plastic to defend it from floodwaters," Telstra said.

Queensland Premier Anna Bligh addressed the nation this afternoon and told Brisbane to brace for flood waters higher than the 1974 peak of 6.6 metres by Thursday.

Floods have already taken nine lives in the state.


Submission + - Obama Admin Taking Aim At Leakers (

krou writes: As fallout from the Wikileaks "Cablegate" continues, the Obama administration is taking active steps to try prevent further leaks. A recent executive order signed by President Obama 'prescribes a uniform system for classifying, safeguarding, and declassifying national security information, including information relating to defense against transnational terrorism'. In addition, a highly detailed 11-page memo (PDF) has instructed agencies to assess “any perceived vulnerabilities, weaknesses, or gaps in automated systems in the post-WikiLeaks environment", and also to implement "insider threat" programs — similar to those used in the CIA — to ferret out possible whistle-blowers. Suggestions include using psychiatrists to monitor 'relative happiness' and their 'despondence and grumpiness' in order to assess their trustworthiness. Agencies have also been asked whether they 'capture evidence of pre-employment and/or post-employment activities or participation in on-line media data mining sites like WikiLeaks or Open Leaks?' or if 'all employees required to report their contacts with the media?' FAS have described the steps as being 'paranoia, not security' and 'absurd'.

Submission + - Curious about FreeBSD? Try VirtualBSD 4

ReeceTarbert writes: If you are curious about FreeBSD but don't have the time or the resources to install it and customize it, VirtualBSD might be right for you: it's a VMware appliance based on FreeBSD 8.1-RELEASE that comes with the Xfce 4.6 Desktop Environment and some of the most common applications so it can be used right out of the box. The best part? This is a genuine FreeBSD 8.1-RELEASE, which means you can either stick to the desktop or dig around in the knowledge that you are dealing with The Real Thing. If the screenshots whet your appetite why don't you got to the download page and grab the torrent file right away?

Submission + - USB stick for Techs 1

SmoothBreaker writes: Slashdot readers, I'm working on a project for both my own company and my current full time employer, where we will have a usb stick loaded with apps and utilities to be used on systems to set parameters, troubleshoot, etc. However, the desired level of control is to restrict the drive to write permissions and allow the programs to run, but require only certain users to delete data from them, to prevent accidental deletions of the files and yet be ubiquitous across user machines and any domain. I havent found anything that seems to quite address that level of control. Am I missing a good solution, or is this only a pipe dream?

Submission + - Microsoft will look to courts for botnet takedowns (

CWmike writes: Microsoft has seen a dramatic drop in the number of computers infected with Waledac, a piece of malicious software affiliated with a botnet that was once responsible for a massive amount of spam. In the second quarter of this year, it cleaned only 29,816 computers infected with the malware, down from 83,580 computers in the first quarter. The drop shows the success of the legal action Microsoft took earlier in the year, said Adrienne Hall, general manager for Microsoft's Trustworthy Computing group. Waledac was used to send spam and infect computers with fake antivirus software. It used a complicated peer-to-peer system to communicate with other infected machines. Microsoft's legal moves against Waledac were unprecedented. The company was granted a rare ex parte temporary restraining order (TRO) to shut down malicious domain names that Waledac's controllers used to communicate with infected machines. Going to court 'gives you a blanket way to put on notice that you are going to look into the perpetrators,' Hall said.

Submission + - Job Switching: What were your experiences?

An anonymous reader writes: Having graduated a couple of years ago, I accepted a job at a fairly prestigious company in an industry in which I have little interest or knowledge for the high pay, the experience and the promise of training. Two years later, I'm unmotivated and bored by a variety of factors (broken promises, lack of real work, flawed processes / procedures, time wastage and unneccessary bureaucracy to name a few).
I'm seriously considering looking for a job in my field of expertise, but I'm concerned that a) I may be jumping the gun and there are other roles within my (huge) company that might suit me, b) I've only been here for two years and haven't accrued sufficient experience and c) this might be what awaits me in other industries.
What have your experiences been in moving industries/jobs, and what recommendations can you make for those of us without much experience in the workforce?

Submission + - RIAA's Tenenbaum verdict cut from $675k to $67.5k ( 1

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: In SONY BMG Music Entertainment v. Tenenbaum, the Court has reduced the jury's award from $675,000, or $22,500 per infringed work, to $67,500, or $2,250 per infringed work, on due process grounds, holding that the jury's award was unconstitutionally excessive. In a 64-page decision (PDF), District Judge Nancy Gertner ruled that the Gore, Campbell, and Williams line of cases was applicable to determining the constitutionality of statutory damages awards, that statutory damages must bear a reasonable relationship to the actual damages, and that the usual statutory damages award in even more egregious commercial cases is from 2 to 6 times the actual damages. However, after concluding that the actual damages in this case were ~ $1 per infringed work, she entered a judgment for 2250 times that amount. Go figure.

Submission + - BBC to create Internet Protocol TV standard (

Robadob writes: The BBC has been given the go-ahead for a project which could kick-start demand for internet TV.

Project Canvas is a partnership between the BBC, ITV, BT, Five, Channel 4 and TalkTalk to develop a so-called Internet Protocol Television standard.

The BBC Trust — the corporation's governing body — made its decision after extensive consultation.

The trust's Diane Coyle said the partnership "will deliver significant public value for licence fee payers".

The trust will review the BBC's involvement against the conditions of its approval, 12 months after Canvas launches to consumers.

The service will see a range of set-top boxes available to access on-demand TV services such as iPlayer and ITVplayer.

Project director Richard Halton said he was "delighted" by the trust's decision.

"This brings the benefits of next-generation TV to all consumers, including those who choose not to subscribe to pay-TV," he said.

"We look forward to rising to that challenge."


The trust gave the BBC a provisional go-ahead to become involved in the project last December.

It was decided that Canvas would have a series of positive impacts, including furthering the growth of on-demand TV.

"People with a broadband connection will be able to access a wide range of on-demand content including BBC iPlayer, free of charge, through their TV sets," said Ms Coyle.

"We have however applied a number of conditions to the BBC's involvement in the venture in recognition of the potential impacts on the market if Canvas is successful."

The trust has imposed several conditions on the BBC, including:

        * Viewers must be able to watch BBC programmes without a subscription.
        * The BBC must report on whether accessibility features, such as audio description, have been incorporated in the system.
        * The Trust will review the signposting of content and parental controls at a later date.
        * Technical specifications must be published within 20 working days of the Trust's approval, to allow broadcasters and set-top box manufacturers to adapt to the Canvas standard.
        * The final core specifications must be published no later than eight months before set-top boxes are launched.
        * Other broadcasters and content providers must have access to the platform.
        * A Trust review, 12 months after its launch, will assess the effects Canvas has on the partner's incentives to syndicate their content to other platforms.
        * The BBC will need further approval if costs exceed those projected by more than 20% in any one year.

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