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Comment Re:Ain't no body got time for that (Score 1) 606

Having exchanged Japan and a 1 hour commute on a crowded train to my old MNC's office for a rural location and a 20 minute drive to my current MNC's office I can say that life in Japan is not mere existence at all. A person might miss having a plot of their own, but equally they might miss the huge range of facilities, both public and private within walking distance or at worst a short journey away that compensate for not having half an acre of your own to run around in. People have gripes wherever they live. Just because you don't want something doesn't make your blanket statement true for everyone.


Submission + - Does DRM Enable Online Music Innovation?

chia_monkey writes: Here's an interesting article on "Does DRM Enable Online Music Innovation?" from Tech Law Forum that looks "at the range of legitimate online music distributors to see just how much the presence or lack of DRM affected business models." It's a rather interesting read as the author breaks down seven online music stores (iTunes, Napster, Yahoo! Music, Zune, eMusic, Amie Street, and Magnatune...four of which use DRM and three that don't). The article mainly focuses on the ownership and "renting" of the music (which can be seen with the "buy the condo downtown" and "rent a mansion in the slums" analogies) and how it applies to innovation and perceived business models.

The numbers don't lie...price-per-download is the clean winner while DRM-based models also take the lead. Will the market shift toward subscription based models in the future or DRM go the way of the dodo bird (as Steve Jobs has already proclaimed his preference for)?
GNU is Not Unix

Submission + - Torvalds 'Pretty Pleased' with GPLv3

eldavojohn writes: "Linus Torvalds has announced that he's 'pretty pleased' with the latest release of the GPLv3. He seemed to be pleased that it "reads better, and some of the worst horrors have been removed entirely." His GPLv3 concerns arose from the Free Software Foundations fears of companies using software under this license along with DRM which caused earlier drafts of the GPLv3 to be structured so that some GPLv2 licensed software would not be compatible with the new version. Torvalds still did not confirm whether he would move the Linux kernel to GPLv3 however, he did say that "The 'we control not just the software, but also the hardware it runs on' parts still drive me up the wall because I think they are so fundamentally broken. But the new draft at least limits it to a much saner subset and makes it clearer too. Unlike the earlier drafts, it at least seems to not sully the good name of the GPL any more.""

Submission + - Amazon Bargain?

An anonymous reader writes: Check out any console/PC game on at the moment. Under "Product Promotions" you can learn how to get a 2 pence refund with every £100,000 spent. To get this oh so generous offer you still need to go through entering an authentication code too. I suppose this stops them getting swamped by people eager to spend around 5 years wages on games to get their tuppence. Madness.

Submission + - TJX: biggest data breach ever

jcatcw writes: Jaikumar Vijayan says that TJX is finally offering more details about the extent of the compromise, which at 45.6M cards,is the biggest ever. He's has been following the story for Computerworld since it started. The systems that were broken into processed payment card, check and returns for customers of T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods and A.J Wright stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, and customers of Winners and HomeSense stores in Canada and T.K. Maxx in the U.K. Customer names and addresses were not included in the stolen data. So far the company has so far spent about $5 million in connection with the breach, and several lawsuits that have been filed against it. It was sued recently by the Arkansas Carpenters Pension Fund, one of its shareholders, for failure to divulge more details about the breach.

Submission + - AT&T/Cingular Blocks FreeConferenceCall Number

Lambert writes: "I am an employee of a small start-up and we depend on the service to interface with customers on a weekly business. Obviously this service is one that could be considered "disruptive" for the big telco's like Cingular/ATT, Sprint, and Quest because conference call services traditionally are VERY expensive. Anyway, here's the email that I recieved today: "As we know many of you have seen, the news media and bloggers have been covering the fact that Cingular/AT&T, Sprint and Qwest have been blocking some of our FreeConferenceCall numbers. Our goal with this month's newsletter is to separate fact from fiction, and, more importantly, set the record straight with the answers that you so richly deserve. We have spoken extensively with customers, competitors and lawyers to fully assess the situation and the implications for FreeConferenceCall users. Last week, some of our Cingular and Sprint customers began calling into customer service with issues surrounding their connections to our service. After speaking with Cingular's customer service group, our customers were given numerous, and unfounded, reasons for the call blockage. Reasons cited included fraud, international forwarding, fee disputes and, to our astonishment, that we were blocking our own FreeConferenceCall numbers. We cannot corroborate or justify any of these reasons. FreeConferenceCall would never knowingly impede our customers from using our services. For now, we can tell you that a Cingular spokesperson has gone on record and stated that their terms of service gives them the right to block any number they wish and also said that AT&T's wireless service is "between one person and another person, not between one person and many." Cingular and Sprint have chosen to block service to our shared customers regardless of Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules and regulations. Neither carrier has ever directly complained, filed suit or even contacted FreeConferenceCall. The upshot is that carriers are basically telling you that a cell phone is not intended for use on conference calls of any type. As a total commitment to our customers, we have quickly ramped up to help them deal with this issue. If you are experiencing connectivity problems, please call us directly at 877-482-5838. We promise to give you unparalleled technical support and will treat every customer with immediate, personalized attention. We have also created a blog and information center to help customers get details and resources for continuing their communications. You can find articles, links and comments at""

Submission + - Telco glitch lets others listen in to phone calls

coondoggie writes: "Talk about an invasion of privacy. Australia's second largest telecom vendor Optus is currently struggling to correct a fault in its network that lets customers to eavesdrop on others' phone calls.Initial reports said the glitch was limited to Optus' pre-paid mobile service, but readers have described the problem occurring in Optus' landline network as well. Reports describing the glitch first appeared on the popular online broadband community, Whirlpool in its Optusnet community. 4"
The Internet

Submission + - Funniest, most tech inspired southpark episode eve

naser writes: ""The Snuke" [Link] , its the name of the latest southpark episode, and let me tell you this episode was A-AWESOME. Would you believe if I tell you that there were muslims, rouge russian commies, Hillary clinton, her..umm, well you'll know,the british folks, queen elizabeth, the whole storyline of 24 (the tv series) and Cartman as Jack Bauer? Heck yeah!"

Submission + - de Cock calls for mass circumcision

cthulhuology writes: Dr. de Cock, WHO HIV/AIDS Director comments on the WHO/UNAIDS announcement recommending circumcision to reduce the number of cases of HIV infection. According to the WHO, "trials carried out in Kenya and Uganda, support results from earlier South Africa Orange Farm Intervention Trial in 2005, which demonstrated at least a 60% reduction in HIV infection among circumcised men."

Submission + - The Red Expedition to the Red Planet

eldavojohn writes: "After a three day meeting in Russia, a space agreement was signed by the China National Space Administration head Sun Laiyan and Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) chief Anatoly Perminov and witnessed by the two countries' presidents. From the article, "After entering orbit around the Red Planet, the Chinese micro-satellite will detach from the Russian spacecraft, and probe the Martian space environment, according to the statement. The Russian spacecraft will touch down on the Martian moon Phobos and collect soil samples for return to Earth. There was no mention of a timetable in the Chinese space agency statement. But earlier Russian reports said the launch window for the 10-11 month voyage to Phobos, Mars' largest moon, will be in October 2009." Will the cooperation of these two countries outdo the United States' plan for a mission to Mars?"

Intel Next-Gen CPU Has Memory Controller and GPU 307

Many readers wrote in with news of Intel's revelations yesterday about its upcoming Penryn and Nehalem cores. Information has been trickling out about Penryn, but the big news concerns Nehalem — the "tock" to Penryn's "tick." Nehalem will be a scalable architecture with some products having on-board memory controller, "on-package" GPU, and up to 16 threads per chip. From Ars Technica's coverage: "...Intel's Pat Gelsinger also made a number of high-level disclosures about the successor to Penryn, the 45nm Nehalem core. Unlike Penryn, which is a shrink/derivative of Core 2 Duo (Merom), Nehalem is architected from the ground up for 45nm. This is a major new design, and Gelsinger revealed some truly tantalizing details about it. Nehalem has its roots in the four-issue Core 2 Duo architecture, but the direction that it will take Intel is apparent in Gelsinger's insistence that, 'we view Nehalem as the first true dynamically scalable microarchitecture.' What Gelsinger means by this is that Nehalem is not only designed to take Intel up to eight cores on a single die, but those cores are meant to be mixed and matched with varied amounts of cache and different features in order to produce processors that are tailored to specific market segments." More details, including Intel's slideware, appear at PC Perspectives and HotHardware.

Submission + - Thought RTFs were malware free? Think again!

stry_cat writes: Over at it says:

" doubt that you are aware of the huge number of exploits directed toward various Office applications, mainly Microsoft Word and PowerPoint. For quite some time a lot of administrators (us included) told people to convert documents to other (safer) formats, one of them being RTF (Rich Text Format). Although this format is proprietary, the specification is publicly available so a lot of word processors support this format."

However as the article continues, we find that one can still embed stuff. Embedding the right (or is it wrong) stuff can have the unsuspecting user downloading some seriously bad malware. Even worse it is likely your AV software will miss this malware!

The article concludes:

"This was another example of why complex file formats should be avoided. Even if you do scan all files on your e-mail gateway (or web filtering server), as you can see most AV programs would miss this as they would scan only the RTF document. One more time we see how important defense in depth is — in this case you would depend on user's awareness and ultimately on his desktop AV product. "
Operating Systems

Virtualizing Cuts Web App Performance 43% 223

czei writes "This just-released research report, Load Testing a Virtual Web Application, looks at the effects of virtualization on a typical ASP Web application, using VMWare on Linux to host a Windows OS and IIS web server. While virtualizing the server made it easier to manage, the number of users the virtualized Web app could handle dropped by 43%. The article also shows interesting graphs of how hyper-threading affected the performance of IIS." The report urges readers to take this research as a data point. No optimization was done on host or guest OS parameters.
Star Wars Prequels

Submission + - Star Wars stamps revealed, R2D2 mailboxes

Josh Fink writes: "In honor of the 30th anniversary of the Star Wars saga, the United Stated Postal Service has announced it will be releasing various packages of Star Wars related stamps and promotions. Among these promotions include deploying mailboxes that look like R2D2, and 41 cent stamps. You can also vote for your favorite Star Wars stamp over the USPS by visiting I don't know about all of you, but I am rather happy to see that Jar-jar Binks is NOT an option here."

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