Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Comment Practical uses (Score 1) 109

Your knee-jerk reaction would be "great, another useless feature that lets big brother know where I am".

But there _are_ real-world use cases for this, paranoia aside.

In my country, this type of feature is used for situations where emergency response teams need to be dispatched for cases of terrorism and insurgency. Being able to know the exact location of a place that's under attack can make a difference.

Submission + - The Ghosts in the MP3s ( 1

el_flynn writes: Continuing the debate about whether there's really any difference between lossless and lossy audio codecs, as well as the whole Pono debacle, Ryan Maguire, a Ph.D student at the University of Virginia, has found a way to "hear" what we're not hearing. From TFA, Ryan goes on to ask "what does the music which this codec delete sound like?", and builds a technique to recover these "lost" sounds... the ghosts in the MP3, so to speak.

Comment While this shouldn't surprise anyone... (Score 1) 893

... I for one would like to see whether any of the politicians from my country are implicated. We're going through our 13th General Elections, and it would be nice to see if the person I'm voting for is involved. With scant media coverage on these sort of things - the local media is heavily controlled by the ruling government - we over here tend to have to rely on other alternative sources for exposes.

Comment A couple of interesting points (Score 3, Informative) 398

Some details on the specifications, range etc of the Airpod can be found here, but some of the stats are in French.

Also, Tata originally signed the agreement in 2007. Five year old news?

Lastly, from the MDI website about the Airpod: This latest version of AirPod... [has] a base consisting of a composite sandwich of fiberglass and polyurethane... [and a] a cast aluminium frame. More details from that link.

Comment It's political. Period. (Score 4, Insightful) 76

This is nothing more than political maneouvering by the ruling government.

It's been done before, and will continue to be done. Especially because a General Election is coming up. If you read that link I posted, it was reported that the Malaysian prime minister said "Whatever we do, we must put people first,". If that were truly the case, why wasn't that position taken in the first place before the law was passed?

1. Pass draconian law
2. Wait for public outcry
3. Repeal draconian law
4. Look like a hero
5. Profit!

Comment Some can't see the forest for the trees. (Score 3, Insightful) 166

I think a lot of comments here are focused on the wrong thing.

TFA says "the ICO has yet to investigate a single website... because its investigative team isn't ready to start work - more than a year after the new laws came into force". So TFA is more about a culture of "shoot first ask questions later" that is prevalent in government agencies - NOT about the validity/ethics of having the rules in the first place. It's already in place, people - arguments about whether cookies are good or bad should have already taken place ages ago when vetting the rule.

So the real question is, why pass a law when there's no clear indication on the lawmaker's capability to enforce it?

Comment Re:Apple scores a win against Samsung (Score 1) 498

Everything you buy here is cheaper everywhere else

I seriously beg to differ. There are many times when I have to resort to buying stuff online from the US, due to various restrictive taxes and import duties imposed to resellers of those products in my country. Even after the exchange rate, shipping charges etc it is still cheaper. Because the local distributor/reseller has profit margins to keep.

Comment Shed some light (Score 4, Informative) 225

Here is the original article, excerpt: "Recognition of human hand can be performed at 1ms with a high-speed vision, and the position and the shape of the human hand are recognized. The wrist joint angle of the robot hand is controlled based on the position of the human hand."

Here is a link to a video showing what it can do.

And now, the obligatory comment: I, for one, welcome our robotic rock-paper-scissors-playing overlords.

Comment Comment of note (Score 5, Insightful) 250

From TFA: "This isn’t about who rakes in the advertising dollars – there’s precious few of those these days for anyone – it’s about the global conversation, and who gets to frame it."

I think that statement gets it spot on. In those few words, you can read a lot between the lines: elements of capitalism, paranoia and perspective.

It's kind of a wordplay on the oft-cited "history is written by the victor" phrase. Only this time round, TFA makes it like history is written by he who has the most money.

Comment The other side of the coin (Score 4, Interesting) 251

People need to remember that one of the reasons the "loudness wars" started in the first place was producer/label/artist A wanted his song/album to sound "louder" than producer/label/artist B. The question is, why?

A very simple answer: "louder" is almost always perceived as better. It's about standing out above the rest.

Take for example - given a set of 20 songs played in a club, all at roughly the same "loudness". Along comes one track which is "louder" than the rest. Chances are very high that more people in the club will take notice of this track. We're predispositioned to perceiving anomalies in our everyday lives, so something that is out of the ordinary (e.g. the louder track in this example) grabs our attention more than the other tracks. And at that point, the crowd would go "man, that track is really pumping".

The other issue is that the mastering engineer (who makes these kinds of calls about how "loud" or "hot" a track is before getting burnt to the master) is being paid to do something according to his client's needs. So if the producer wants the track louder, and is the one footing the bill, then there's not much the mastering engineer can do. So if the paymaster wants a loud track, that's what he will get. If mastering engineer A sticks to his guns, the producer's just going to go to another mastering house, which will mean revenue lost.

Another way to put it - if the customer wants to buy Windows NT and is dead set on this, no amount of enlightening by the consultant about the benefits of a Unix-based platform is going to change what the customer wants.

So yeah, these two factors combine and the result: the loudness wars.

Comment Impressive numbers? (Score 1) 69

"Five years after it was first introduced, Google's Safe Browsing program continues to provide a service to the 600 million Chrome, Firefox, and Safari users"

Is that 600 million users served over the five-year span? Or the total number of users on Chrome, Firefox and Safari that we have now? 600 million is just a little under 9% of the world's population.

Impressive numbers, in any case.

Slashdot Top Deals

We don't know who it was that discovered water, but we're pretty sure that it wasn't a fish. -- Marshall McLuhan