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Submission + - Windows 10: Charms Bar Removed, No Start Screen for Desktops (neowin.net)

jones_supa writes: Late last week, Microsoft pushed out a new build (9926) of Windows 10 to those of you who are running the Technical Preview. The latest version comes with many new features, some easily accessible, others bubbling under, but two big changes are now certain: the Charms bar is dead, and Start Screen for large devices is no more. Replacing the Charms bar is the Action Center, which has many of the same shortcuts as the Charms bar, but also has a plethora of other information too. Notifications are now bundled into the Action Center and the shortcuts to individual settings are still easily accessible from this window. The Start Screen is no longer present for desktop users, the options for opening it are gone. Continuum is the future, and it has taken over what the Start Screen initiated with Windows 8.

Submission + - Microsoft reveals Windows 10 will be a free upgrade (mashable.com)

mpicpp writes: Microsoft just took another big step toward the release of Windows 10 and revealed it will be free for many current Windows users.

The company unveiled the Windows 10 consumer preview on Wednesday, showcasing some of the new features in the latest version of the operating system that powers the vast majority of the world's desktop PCs. The developer preview has been available since Microsoft first announced Windows 10 in the fall, but it was buggy, limited in scope and very light on new features.

Importantly, Windows 10 will be free for existing Windows users running versions of Windows back to Windows 7. That includes Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and Windows Phone. Microsoft specified it would only be free for the first year, indicating Windows would be software that users subscribe to, rather than buy outright.

Microsoft Corporate Vice President of the Operating Systems Group Joe Belfiore showed off some of the new features in Windows 10. While Microsoft had already announced it would bring back the much-missed Start Menu, Belfiore revealed it would also have a full-screen mode that includes more of the Windows 8 Start screen. He said Windows machines would go back and forth between to two menus in a way that wouldn't confuse people.

Belfiore also showed a new notification center for Windows, which puts a user's notifications in an Action Center menu that can appear along the right side, similar to how notifications work in Apple OS X.

Microsoft Executive Vice President of Operating Systems Terry Myerson revealed that 1.7 million people had downloaded the Windows 10 developer preview, giving Microsoft over 800,000 individual piece of feedback.

Myerson explained that Windows 10 has several main intents: the give users a mobility of experience from device to device, instill a sense of trust in users, and provide the most natural ways to interact with devices.

Submission + - The Paradoxes That Threaten To Tear Modern Cosmology Apart

KentuckyFC writes: Revolutions in science often come from the study of seemingly unresolvable paradoxes. So an interesting exercise is to list the paradoxes associated with current ideas in science. One cosmologist has done just that by exploring the paradoxes associated with well-established ideas and observations about the structure and origin of the universe. Perhaps the most dramatic of these paradoxes comes from the idea that the universe must be expanding. What’s curious about this expansion is that space, and the vacuum associated with it, must somehow be created in this process. And yet nobody knows how this can occur. What’s more, there is an energy associated with any given volume of the universe. If that volume increases, the inescapable conclusion is that the energy must increase as well. So much for conservation of energy. And even the amount of energy associated with the vacuum is a puzzle with different calculations contradicting each other by 120 orders of magnitude. Clearly, anybody who can resolve these problems has a bright future in science but may also end up tearing modern cosmology apart.
Wireless Networking

Submission + - Nokia Puts 41MPixel Camera In A (Symbian) Phone (techweekeurope.co.uk) 1

judgecorp writes: "We aren't sure what's the strangest thing about Nokia's new offering, the fact that it's got a 41 Megapixel camera or the fact that it runs Symbian. It has a very high resolution sensor and uses oversampling, apparently producing good results in low light. Users can either save a mazimum of 38Mpixels, or else zoom and crop for normal resolution images. Observers expected a maximum of one more Symbian phone before Nokia shifts over to Windows Phone. This suggests either a longer life for Symbian — or maybe Symbian was just an easier platform to make a show-stopping device that may turn out to be more of a concept phone."
EU

Submission + - EU suspends copyright treaty ratification (khaleejtimes.com) 1

cmarkn writes: The European Commission, facing opposition in city streets, on the Internet and in the halls of parliament, has suspended efforts to ratify a new international anti-counterfeiting agreement, and instead will refer it to Europe’s highest court to see whether it violates any fundamental EU rights.

The decision appeared to reflect recognition by European Union officials of the political obstacles. Protests against the agreement were staged earlier this month in several European capitals — including Berlin, Helsinki, Paris and Vienna — by critics who say the agreement would stifle free speech and access to information.

The hacking group known as Anonymous claimed responsibility last week for a new series of hacks against the US Federal Trade Commission and consumer rights websites. The sites were replaced with a violent German-language video satirizing ACTA.

ACTA has been under negotiation for years. Its drafters say it is needed to harmonize international standards to protect the rights of those who produce music, movies, pharmaceuticals, fashion goods, and a range of other products that often fall victim to piracy and intellectual property theft.

The U.S. has signed the agreement. Others include Australia, Canada, Japan, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, and South Korea. Mexico and Switzerland participated in the negotiations but have not yet signed.

The EU and 22 EU Member States signed ACTA on 26 January 2012 in Tokyo. Although the European Council — the European Union heads of government — unanimously approved ACTA in December, for the EU to be a party to the treaty, all 27 member countries would have to formally ratify it.

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