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Comment Re:Testing Starts Day Before Go-Live (Score 1) 326

I would say that I wouldn't want to be one of the first signing up, but that doesn't even matter. They already have everyone's data from the IRS, Homeland Security, etc available to them. This is an identity theft cracker's wet dream. I am glad they are giving so much attention to QA: One day. What a joke.

Comment How about some respect for ancient knowlege (Score 1) 459

How about having some respect for the knowledge which may be gathered by your elderly counterparts? Not everything can be learned from college or between the pages of a technical manual. I think sometimes new grads tend to feel like they know it all because they typically are working from fresher learning of technical info. Your more senior counterparts are not dinosaurs. They have learned to navigate office politics and interface well with their business partners. Whether you are aware of it or not you can learn a great deal from senior staff. To think otherwise it to cripple your own path.

Comment So what (Score 1) 245

Seriously, I don't entirely disagree with this ruling. Why should the bank pay for losses from these phishing scams? It is not like there was a breach of their systems. The breach was entirely on the client side. Am I missing something here?
I expect my bank will do what it can to protect me from scams, but they can't protect me from every stupid way I might be duped.

Comment It is not about the truth it is about perception (Score 4, Interesting) 465

The TSA doesn't care if the backscatter scanner doesn't detect contraband. They don't even care if the terrorists know it. They don't want the general public at large knowing it because this kind of thing really messes up the security theater magic act. They also don't want to answer the accusations of exposing passengers to radiation for a less than perfect technology.

I saw a sign in the airport las weekend. "The backscatter scanner exposes you the same amount of radiation as you receive in two minutes in the airplane". Yeah but think of it this way; standing on a beach on a sunny day would you accept someone telling you that you were going to get a sun blast equal to two minutes in the sun in two seconds? Radiation doesn't always hurt bit it is always harmful to your DNA. There is a reason heath care providers put a limit on the number of X-rays you get in year.

Comment Re:It would be good to have optional GUI (Score 1) 780

I am guessing the reason for this is that Windows 8 is not really Windows and they don't want to re-create all the GUI stuff needed to make the GUI like real Windows? If so it is a double edged sword for Microsoft. If they think they have issues with version upgrades now, wait till they offer an OS with no GUI or a crippled GUI. Unfortunately improved stability may lose to knowledge deficit with a CLI.

I could be talking out of my arse, but a reasonably good intuitive GUI with a user base who is used to it is one thing that Microsoft has going for it in the server space. Imagine Active Directory and Exchange without GUI's to manage them.

Microsoft will find a way to do this without alienating their users unless they are complete idiots. Does anyone know if the GUI in 8 is poor, or what the reason is for the GUI-less deployment recommendation?

Submission + - Gravity Makes Earth Resemble Lumpy Play-D (

sciencehabit writes: By taking more than 70 million observations during its first 2 years in orbit, a limousine-length satellite has given scientists their most detailed map yet of Earth's gravitational field. The lumpiness of that geoid—the theoretical surface that a planet-wide ocean would take if there were no tides or currents—betrays the irregularity of the planet's mass distribution, including concentrations of mass such as mountain ranges and ice sheets. The work could lead to better understanding of the speeds and paths of ocean currents, as well as improved estimates of how they disperse pollutants. It could also provide new insights about geological processes occurring deep within Earth, such as the movement of one tectonic plate being shoved beneath another, and when combined with other data will help improve estimates of the thickness and mass of polar ice sheets.

Submission + - Convicted Terrorist Relied on Single Letter Cipher

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "The Register reports that the majority of the communications between convicted terrorist Rajib Karim and Bangladeshi Islamic activists were encrypted with a system which used Excel transposition tables which they invented themselves that used a single-letter substitution cipher invented by the ancient Greeks that had been used and described by Julius Caesar in 55BC. Despite urging by the Yemen-based al Qaida leader Anwar Al Anlaki, Karim rejected the use of a sophisticated code program called "Mujhaddin Secrets" which implements all the AES candidate cyphers, "because 'kaffirs', or non-believers, know about it so it must be less secure." "Tough communication interception laws [RIPA] were passed in the UK 10 years ago on the basis that they were needed to fight terrorism," says Duncan Campbell, who acted as an expert witness for the defense during the trial. "The level of cryptography they used was not even up to the standards of cryptology and cryptography in the Middle Ages, although they made it look pretty using Excel.""

Submission + - Robert Bunsen - An Open Source Pioneer? (

cygtoad writes: Today Celebrates Robert Bunsen's 200th Birthday. I found this interesting factoid on the man: Bunsen and Desaga did not apply for patent protection on their burner and it was quite soon that others began to produce their own versions. Some even went so far as to claim the invention as their own, including one person who was granted a patent on the device. Both Bunsen and Desaga were involved in writing letters to the proper authorities to refute these claims. Does anyone have an older example of such an open information pioneer? In my book he deserves some honor.

Submission + - Renewable Energy Might Not Be 2

lee1 writes: "Physicist Axel Kleidon of the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry
in Jena, Germany has shown that it is a mistake to consider the wind and
waves to be truly renewable energy sources. Build enough wind farms to
replace fossil fuels, he says, and we would reduce the energy available
in the atmosphere and actually accelerate climate change. We know from
thermodynamics that only a modest fraction of the solar energy reaching
Earth is available as 'free energy' we can use, taking the form of
winds, ocean currents, and lifting of evaporated water. The rest becomes
heat, which is not available to do work. By building wind and wave farms, we
will be converting part of the sun's useful energy into thermal energy.
The effects of this would probably show up first in the wind farms
themselves, where the gains expected will be less than predicted as the
energy of the Earth system is depleted. Kleidon’s calculations show
that the amount of energy which we can harness from the wind is reduced
by a factor of 100 if you take this into account. In addition, sucking that much energy out of the
atmosphere will alter precipitation, turbulence and the amount of solar
radiation reaching the Earth's surface. The effect
will be comparable to the results of doubling
atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide. Even current photovoltaic
designs will contribute to global warming, because they
convert only a small fraction of the light that hits them converting the rest to heat that warms the environment."

Submission + - It's World Backup Day (

1sockchuck writes: Today is World Backup Day, an occasion to backup your personal data and financial information and check your restores. For those needing motivation — a group that apparently includes 15 percent of data centers — the Slashdot archives bear witness to date disasters at providers small (Ma.gnolia) and large (Microsoft). The World Backup Day initiative grew out of a thread at Reddit, and invites online backup services to observe the occasion by offering discounts.

Comment Re:This is the biggest fad since Palm (Score 1) 146

All the things you mention still puts it in the realm of toy. Executives and doctors alike want to "find a use for it" as you state yourself. The rub comes when it is the wrong tool for the job. You understand the infancy of the tablet, doctors and executives don't and when you tell them it won't work well, they look at you like you must be woefully inadequate at your job.

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