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 Or use in-house education (Score 1) 57

2 years ago in one of the banking centers in Denmark 12 new IT-candidate were educated in ... COBOL, CICS, mainframes, etc. The older generation were anxious about how the younglings adapt, but it appears it turned out well. They were excited about the robustness and scalability of the mainframes, not so much about COBOL, but could see it didn't make business sense to rewrite old software. New software is being developed in more modern programming languages.

source (Danish only):

Comment The problem with the metric (Score 3, Informative) 286

"i-programmer suggests this could just be an artifact of the way TIOBE calculates language popularity (by totaling search engine queries). "

The TIOBE index is not based on the number of queires (see

It is based on the number of results on the query " programming" in multiple search engines.

So the TIOBE index is "how much has been written online about "

Comment Re:This is an automatic process (Score 1) 159

The crux of the matter is the intent of presenting the photo. I don't think an algorithm will be able to tell anytime soon.

Facebook's other problem is their global reach. What is perfectly natural in one region can cause offense in another. So they go for the lowest common denominator so they won't get blocked in conservative countries. But that causes liberals as myself to see it as censorship. I think instead they should filter content based on the viewer so people who get offended can chose to not see it.

Comment Re:This is an automatic process (Score 1) 159

It isn't the first time that facebook censored photos of statues, eg. The Little Mermaid
Or the famous Vietnam war photo:

So they clearly need to improve the system, whether that is fine-tuning image recognition algorithm or educating ignorant reviewers.

Comment Re:Wayland bashing (Score 5, Insightful) 151

I've read the codebase. Mostly to discover the grey areas in the protocol when I was working on a X/Window server running on ms-windows. The code is not pretty but that is mostly due to being an old code base.

The X protocol has its problems and quirks too, particularly when dealing with long latency between server and client. It was designed when using high-level primitives (eg "draw line to (x,y) in color Z") made sense. When client just use such primitives the speed is impressive. But some 10 years ago clients started doing client rendering and just sending bitmaps to the display server. Mostly that meant higher bandwidth and fewer round-trips. Whether that is good or bad depends on the clients and the environment.

I have followed the progress of wayland a bit, and I have actually seen some of the presentations. It seems to me that wayland initially was infested by the type of developers that think that all they need is direct access to video memory, and for remote applications all you need is VNC-style full-desktop remote. Of course people who use remote X think that that is a myopic and arrogant view. It seems that wayland has gained some developers in the past few years who have more common sense and one of the new goals is to support remote X clients in a root-less fashion. When they have implemented that and also made sure that both clipboard and X-selection work then I'll give wayland a shot.

Comment We try to make it better (Score 2) 126

We (privavore) are creating a fork for Firefox. (privafox.) By default we change all cookies into session-only. But with twists:
  - persistent cookies are allowed for sites that you provide a password to. The assumption is that if you log into a site the you probably want your shopping cart retained, and that by logging in you realize that the site will keep track of you. But we don't allow 3rd-party cookies.
  - workarounds for the EU cookie consent (in progress). By disallowing cookies by default you will get the "we use cookies to improve your experience" prompt.
  - user-agent is fixed (in-progress). That makes it a lot more difficult to distinguish different users behind the same ip (NAT).
Both firefox' and chrome's private browsing mode leaves something to be desired. But that's ok.Their developers focus on creating the best browser. We just provide "after-market" customizations. Not for you, but for your less tech-savvy parents.

Comment Re:Better summary (Score 1) 133

THAT is the simplest way to access X securely, by running remote code??

It's a one-liner by using SSH to localhost.

The "correct way" is a bit more cumbersome: Use 'xauth' to generate an authorization key with the "untrusted" flag, then tell the untrusted program to use that authorization key with the XAUTHORITY environment variable.

Comment Better summary (Score 5, Informative) 133

"snaps" is a new package format for applications on Ubuntu. It is basically a package with dependencies, bundled together and meant for running in a container (docker or lxc I suppose?) which means that the OS is protected from it.

However, since the application has access to X11 window server it has access to the facilities in it including monitoring keystrokes and mouse gestures sent to other X11 applications. So essentially a "snaps" can be a trojan keylogger.

The article/blog does _not_ explore if X11's "untrusted client" feature would help.

Comment Right to be forgotten - subcases (Score 5, Interesting) 132

I checked a subset of the leaked list from BBC last year of articles they had to remove. From those samples I could see three categories:

1: victims. Eg sexual assault victims mentioned by name. It seems OK to me that they get their name removed so that in 20 years their granchildren don't get that search result.
2: a small category of criminals wanting to have their names removed. Which mostly seems OK to me as most countries have a limit to how long such information is publicly available. Eg. I think where I live burglaries are removed after 8 years
3: a wtf category. Two examples: One neo-nazi wanted his name removed from an article about a white power demonstration.. His names is pretty unique so I checked - he is still sputing such nonsense on facebook and twitter, so I don't see why he wanted it removed. The other example is a man in an article about how his one testicle suddenly grew and he immediately went to the doctor. It turned out it wasn't testicular cancer but a benign internal boil. I think it is a positive story about cancer awareness, but I can see why he may not want that to be the first result when someone searches his name.

So basically I agree with the right to be forgotten. When information is no longer in the public interest it should be possible to get the names removed.

Comment Re:There's no doubt that... (Score 1) 1839

I would like the threading system to not encourage people to reply to the top-most thread. Like I'm doing now.
The first comment could be inane or completely un-insightful yet people are forced to reply in that thread in order to get a chance to be seen.

Perhaps you could just disallow the first comment to be from an AC? That could solve multiple problems.

Comment Re:Echoes my experience (Score 1) 217

At the time when I saw the DUL blacklist problem was when ISDN and plain dail-up was still common for companies (ADSL wasn't widespread yet, and SDSL was generally too expensive). So blocking email because the sender IP was marked as dial-up was pretty stupid.

Comment Re:Echoes my experience (Score 1) 217

Good to know that they still have problems.
Back when I had the problem it was sporadic and I could never recreate the problem my self. I'm tempted to block emails from but unfortunately there is one person with an address there that I have to talk to occasionally.

Comment Echoes my experience (Score 5, Interesting) 217

I've been running my own mailserver since 2003, and I have seen my share of problems.
1: mailservers blocking mail based on spamhaus DUL. You can delist your IP. But still, blocking exclusively on that?
2: accepting emails and then discarding them silently. No trace of them. No bounce. Recipient did not have it in their spam folder or anything. This was several years ago, so perhaps it's better now. But discarding emails after promising to deliver them without any possibility for the recipient to control it: bad idea.
3: Various greylisting email servers. Not really a problem as my MTA will retry and the email is only delayed for a few minutes.
4: rejecting emails sent over IPv6 but happily accepting them over IPv4. It turned out to be a problem with their parsing of SPF records, and apparently fixed now. But I did find out that there is no reasonable way to contact the gmail team.
5: rejects emails due to FBLW15, whatever that means. It seems you can get whitelisted, but it appears that a lot of hosts are being hit by it for no reason.
6: office365 bouncing emails due to "protection" with no explanation given, and direction to contact the recipient by other means to get whitelisted. This was for a the official email address listen on a company website. I decided that my email wasn't important enough. Their loss.

Bottom line: If you run your own email server then expect to occasionally do some manual whitelisting etc. And expect some email servers to be uncooperative and/or RFC-clueless.

Slashdot Top Deals

Man is an animal that makes bargains: no other animal does this-- no dog exchanges bones with another. -- Adam Smith