Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


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Submission + - The End of .Mac and Google Apps?

mattnyc99 writes: In his weekly tech column for Popular Mechanics, Glenn Derene predicts that everyone will have a home server to network their house within 10 years—rendering Apple's .Mac accounts and Google's productivity software useless. As prices for products like HP's MediaSmart Server drop and as processing power becomes more pervasive, Derene says, "you'll ultimately need a centralized server—that high-powered traffic cop—to coordinate the non-stop exchange of information between your new multitude of devices." Do Slashdotters buy this trend-spotting? And would they buy one of these?

Submission + - Illegal Hex Code in Indelible Tattoo Ink

SPQR_Julian writes: "So... how do you DMCA a tattoo off of a person?" Body Modification E-magazine(BME) is fairly well the premier authority and source of information for modified people. So when the owner Shannon Larratt put out the call to see if anyone had (or would get) the HD-DVD code tattooed on their skin, it was only a matter of time before someone did. Now the question is, what will the MPAA do in response?

Submission + - Studios Want Security at Cinemas to Stop Piracy

Chubbs writes: CBC is reporting that the Hollywood studies are having security guards in Canadian cinemas search moviegoers for camcorders, cell phones, and other devices that could be used to pirate movies:

With the official start of the summer movie season set for next week with the opening of Spider-Man 3, security in cinemas is being stepped up. Security guards at a preview screening for Spider-Man 3 inspected bags, confiscated portable phones, and scanned movie goers with metal detectors. With a budget of $250 million, Spider-Man 3 is a heavy investment for Sony Pictures and it is trying to stop the film from being recorded and leaked to the internet.

Submission + - Chicago student arrested for writing violent essay

Amalex5 writes: "After Columbine, school administrators suspended numerous students around the country for turning in violent writing, but a school district in Chicago has responded to the Virginia Tech massacre by going a step further: arresting a student who responded to the creative writing assignment "Write whatever comes to your mind. Do not judge or censor what you are writing" by writing a story about violence, video-games and necrophilia. The student was charged with disorderly conduct, which carries a fine of up to $1500 and up 30 days in jail, and is usually used for people who pull fire alarms maliciously or make prank 911 calls. The local police chief said that the charge also applies "when someone's writings disturb an individual.""

Student Arrested for Writing Essay 890

mcgrew writes "The Chicago Tribune reports that an eighteen year old straight-A High School student was arrested for writing an essay that 'disturbed' his teacher. Even though no threats were made to a specific person, 18 year-old Allen Lee's English teacher convened a panel to discuss the work. As a result of that discussion, the police were called in. 'The youth's father said his son was not suspended or expelled but was forced to attend classes elsewhere for now. Today, Cary-Grove students rallied behind the arrested teen by organizing a petition drive to let him back in their school. They posted on walls quotes from the English teacher in which she had encouraged students to express their emotions through writing.'"

Submission + - Concrete balls to be used to plug Java volcano

The Real Joe Faith writes: "No, the other Java.

The BBC reports [1] that Indonesian scientists are attempting to plug a mud-spewing volcano using chains of concrete balls. Hot mud and gas have been spewing out of the ground since May 2006; experts warn the torrent could continue for months, if not years, to come. Engineers will drop 1,000 1.5m-long metal chains into the mouth of the mud leak. Each chain has four concrete balls suspended from it; two with a 20cm diameter and two with a 40cm diameter.

The disaster is thought to have been triggered by the drilling work of gas prospectors PT Lapindo Brantas.


Journal Journal: Gates panned at CES 6

As per usual, I've submitted yet another article I expect to be rejected..., here it is for the unwashed:


Submission + - Man Uses Wings and Engines to Fly Like a Bird

Adam9 writes: "Yves Rossy has built a contraption allowing him to fly through the air [Coral Cache] similar to a bird. From the article: 'Back in 2003 Rossy, now a commercial airliner captain, began his Flying Man project, when he strapped a pair of stubby wings to his back and leapt out of a plane, swooping eight miles in freefall for the loss of just 1000ft in altitude. Strapping on the contraption, which is made of various metals, fibreglass, Kevlar and carbon fibre, Rossy climbs into the small aircraft which is to launch him into his flight. At an altitude of some 7750ft, he leaps out, just like a skydiver. But unlike a skydiver, he does not plummet to the Alps below. There is just enough lift generated by the 10ft aerofoil strapped to his back to negate the effects of gravity. At first, after the wings are unfolded electrically, he becomes a glider then, when the four kerosene-powered engines are turned on, he becomes a jetplane.'"

Submission + - Physicists Promise Wireless Power

StrongGlad writes: The tangle of cables and plugs needed to recharge today's electronic gadgets could soon be a thing of the past. Researchers at MIT have outlined a relatively simple system that could deliver power wirelessly to devices such as laptop computers or MP3 players. In a nutshell, their solution entails installing special "non-radiative" antennae with identical resonant frequencies on both the power transmitter and the receiving device. Any energy not diverted into a gadget or appliance is simply reabsorbed. The system currently under development is designed to operate at distances of 3 to 5 meters, but the researchers claim that it could be adapted to factory-scale applications, or miniaturized for use in the "microscopic world."

Submission + - Why did China finally unblock Wikipedia?

fuzheado writes: "
November 9, 2006 saw the complete unblocking of Wikipedia in China, resulting in a four-fold increase in new user registrations. Though it is still subject to URL- and page-level keyword blocking, the vast majority of the site is freely accessible.

Why was it finally unblocked? In the end, I believe consensus among the Chinese authorities determined the benefits of Wikipedia far outweigh the risks, and signals an understanding of the benefits of a read-write Wikipedia.

The complete argument goes like this: With Wikipedia blocked, China suffers because its ranks of knowledge workers cannot access the top reference site in the world, and the world suffers from not having China's expertise and input in Wikipedia. This is Wikipedia as the ultimate implementation of "read-write" culture, and provides both an economic and cultural incentive for China to open participation to Chinese netizens.

And in the end, if you think about it, doesn't it make complete sense that the People's Republic of China would embrace the people's encyclopedia of Wikipedia?

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