Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


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 Re:XFA Should be a top priority. (Score 1) 34

I don't disagree that XFA would be useful, but why should it be the overriding goal of the poppler project? The XFA specification is over 1500 pages and thus would eat a huge amount of people's own spare time to implement.

It's obviously important to you, though, so what are you going to do about it? Maybe find a willing implementer and organize a bounty/crowd source funding for them to work on it if you can't code it yourself?

In the meantime use XPDF which does support XFA.

Comment Re:Philips Hue does this too (Score 1) 196

Pretty sure these devices won't be running a full blown ntpd; it's most likely busybox-ntp on the Hue according to the open source licenses listed. Similarly unless you make a real mess of your home router setup, incoming WAN packets will never reach the IOT device's NTP daemon, so I don't see an enormous threat from it.

Historically Netgear was the worst NTP offender and is still spamming the University of Wisconsinâ"Madison with a hardcoded server address in old routers.

There are a lot of crap IOT devices out there, but being made in China is not the main issue. Frankly they're probably more trustworthy than devices coming from a country like the UK where new legislation will seek to force companies to add backdoors and will force them to keep it secret. (And the US is pretty close behind the UK in wishing to weaken security.)

Comment Philips Hue does this too (Score 2) 196

Any IOT device that has access from a smartphone does something like this. If you look at the traffic from a Philips Hue hub you'll see SSDP broadcasts, NTP synchronisation and phoning home with details of it's local IP address and checking for updated firmware.

This article seems to be yet more anti-Chinese nonsense. There was a very similar one recently by an American "journalist" that didn't understand that NTP is a distributed protocol either and implied these devices were somehow infiltrating US homes and forming a secret network. It possibly inspired this article, though unfortunately I can't find the original just now to link to.

The answer is to put IOT devices in a DMZ/restricted guest network which more and more routers are supporting out of the box.

Comment Apple play that trick too (Score 1) 387

Every time some program forces Safari to load on Mac OS X (which is often big OS updates displaying a "tour" of new features) it pops up this requester on quitting that tries to get me to agree to make Safari the default web browser.

Of course there's no "No thank you, and never ask me again" button and it's very easy to accidentally hit "OK" expecting it to be confirming you want to quit.

Comment Obsolete like iPod docks (Score 1) 445

I bought a VW Golf which had a factory fitted iPod dock in the arm rest. The salesperson couldn't understand why I wasn't impressed. It's been buggy and utterly useless - not being physically compatible with some models, not charging with others and the sound quality was appalling. Now Apple have changed the dock connector and there is definitely not enough room for any sort of adapter.

I fitted a 3rd party aux-in/SD card/USB adapter myself and I'm free to use whatever device I choose and it sounds massively better with same factory speakers/head unit. Why couldn't they have done that to begin with?

Comment Re: Tp-link Wr1043nd (Score 1) 334

These are excellent,widely available and very cheap devices. Mine was £33.

I have it running OpenWrt and as well as managing the network it gets reasonable speeds as a backup with a 6TB lvm volume. "Reasonable" disk write speed in this context is in comparison to other devices like slugs etc. I get just over 10MB/s sustained write via vsftp (proved to be quite a bit faster than samba, nfs and sftp).

Comment Poor LaTeX skills often mean poor at C++ (Score 1) 670

Given the number of Googlers involved with producing this article, I'm more surprised by them not using TeX quotation marks correctly than the result of the competition. (Not to mention using crappy tables with way too many ruled lines which do nothing to aid understanding of the organisation of the tables.)

Experience frequently shows that people that overlook such details writing an article will often by nature be weak C++ team programmers. More than with most other languages, good C++ coding demands someone who is intrinsically observant, obsessively perfectionist and aware of often obscure side effects and implications of everything they write. This is obviously important on the most basic level so that they don't make mistakes, but even more important that they understand how other people could misinterpret complex code and algorithms and potential consequences.

It is this last level of empathy that is the sign of great C++ programmers vs. the good or clever. "Clever" solitary programmers (such as some of those drawn to perl) are in fact the worst to have in C++ team programming scenarios where their desire to demonstrate their own ability often ends up with some over-templated prematurely optimised nightmare which is then left as a trap for someone seeking to modify it later on.

Comment Re:WHS + MEDIA CENTER + XBOX 360 = Done (Score 1) 536

WHS + MEDIA CENTER + XBOX 360 + added ambience of the fans screaming away while watching a movie = Fail

I was full intending to use my (admittedly older generation) XBOX 360 for video playback but the hassle of needing to have a media server transcode video into something the 360 is happy with (and the resulting loss of seeking) and the noise from the fans soon killed that idea.

For recording UK DVB TV I have a Topfield 5800 - superb bit of kit with two tuners and a USB port allowing you to copy off the raw DVB MPEG2 video files.

I now use a Popcorn Hour for playback, and while the UI isn't the prettiest ever, its played every video format I've ever tried flawlessly with no interlacing artefacts and no skipping.

Comment Censorship can be bought by the rich and guilty (Score 1) 2

It seems in the UK if you are wealthy enough, not only can you bankrupt people with the libel laws, but you can create legal obstacles, which cannot be identified, involving proceedings, which cannot be mentioned, on behalf of a client who must remain secret. The result is that the Guardian can only report that the case involves the London solicitors Carter-Ruck, who specialise in suing the media for clients, who include individuals or global corporations. Conveniently parliamentary orders are published online and the clue to the solicitors involved is enough to find the following series of questions from Paul Farrelly, MP for Newcastle-under-Lyme:

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the Court of Appeal judgment in May 2009 in the case of Michael Napier and Irwin Mitchell v Pressdram Limited in respect of press freedom to report proceedings in court.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of legislation to protect (a) whistleblowers and (b) press freedom following the injunctions obtained in the High Court by (i) Barclays and Freshfields solicitors on 19 March 2009 on the publication of internal Barclays reports documenting alleged tax avoidance schemes and (ii) Trafigura and Carter-Ruck solicitors on 11 September 2009 on the publication of the Minton report on the alleged dumping of toxic waste in the Ivory Coast, commissioned by Trafigura.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, if he will (a) collect and (b) publish statistics on the number of non-reportable injunctions issued by the High Court in each of the last five years.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what mechanisms HM Court Service uses to draw up rosters of duty judges for the purpose of considering time of the essence applications for the issuing of injunctions by the High Court.

The proceedings relate to this shocking case


Indie Game Dev On the Positive Side To DRM 440

spidweb writes "The online backlash against DRM has gotten a bit excessive, especially since the purpose of DRM is entirely admirable: to stop thieves and free riders and to help creators actually get paid for their work. This blog entry calls attention to XBox Live, a place where strong DRM is helping to encourage quality games at low prices which make money for their developers. Quoting: 'If I could snap my fingers and give myself the same absolute control over the games I make that XBox Live has over theirs (in return for lower prices), I would. The freedom of the current system is nice, but it comes at too high a cost. Honest people need to pay extra to subsidize thieves. The unfairness is just this side of intolerable, and it's only getting worse. DRM is fair if, for what the corporations take, we get something in return.'"

Slashdot Top Deals

The power to destroy a planet is insignificant when compared to the power of the Force. - Darth Vader