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Businesses

Submission + - What would you do with your own server rooms? 2

Nalyd writes: "A friend of mine recently purchased an industrial/commercial building that at one time served as a circuit board manufacturer for Intel. It is currently vacant and has 2 server rooms (racks and cabling only (fiber too!), they auctioned off everything else) He's looking for a potential partner to take on the task of filling those server rooms and, perhaps, setting up a business of some kind to sell services to other potential tenants and the world at large. (He is considering leasing to multiple smaller tenants)

My question is, if you were tasked with this effort and given $10,000 to start, what would you do?

Some of the potential desired services for local tenants would be, internet access, storage, independent LANs, physical security system controls (gates, sensors, cameras, etc) and voice services."

Submission + - Canadian Judge Strikes Down Prostitution Law (thestar.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: A Superior Court judge has struck down Canada's laws against prostitution, on grounds that it violates the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The ruling is not to take effect for 30 days, to give time to assess the potential consequences of such a decision. Is this a bad thing, or a sudden outbreak of common sense? Justice Minister Rob Nicholson has already announced that the federal government plans to appeal the decision.
Apple

Submission + - Time for a new Apple Logo on Slashdot

An anonymous reader writes: Microsoft used to be the example of tech company evil and so the icon on slashdot for Microsoft is a Borg version of Bill Gates. Now that Apple is acting far more evil than Microsoft ever was isn't it about time to update the Apple logo here on slashdot to reflect that? Here's a call for submissions of that logo would be. How about.

http://i993.photobucket.com/albums/af54/goofballgoof/apple-logo.png
Hardware

MINI-ITX and the Future of PC Case Design? 164

An anonymous reader writes "One of the interesting things to come out of the recent Computex electronics show in Taiwan was striking new PC cases — in particular systems built around tiny Mini-ITX boards. What may have once been regarded as the weird little brother of the more common Micro-ATX, the popularity of PCs built with these boards seems to be gradually building. This year at Computex saw the first Mini-ITX boards to support USB 3.0 and SATA 6Gbps, and a variety of new shapes and styles in both Micro-ATX and Mini-ITX case design. This photo gallery shows some of the more striking examples of these new PC cases from Computex, including one that appears to be modelled on an Xbox 360, and one with a VESA mount for strapping to the back of a monitor. Interestingly, while these designs have usually been associated with home theatre system PCs, or for saving space on office desktops, there is also now a trend towards pushing 'gamer' features like windows and multiple fans into these small form factor cases."
Social Networks

Submission + - Diaspora – Open Source Social Network (gizmag.com)

The Installer writes: In what is quickly shaping up as the David versus Goliath fight to watch, four students from NYU’s Courant Institute are looking to take on social networking behemoth Facebook with Disapora – a distributed, open source social network. They aim to address the privacy concerns that has put Facebook under fire by giving users complete control of their details and content and who they share it with. Through the use of a personal web server called a Diaspora “seed”, users will be able to securely share information, pictures, video and more.

To cut out the middleman, Diaspora will be a distributed network where separate computers connect to each other directly, instead of relying on a central hub to relay information. Since each computer — or “seed” — is owned and hosted by the user, they have total control over what information is shared and with whom. GPG encryption will also ensure that no matter what kind of content is being shared, it can be done so privately and securely. This is sure to appeal to Facebook users concerned about what Facebook does with the personal information stored on its servers.

And making the move to Disapora won’t mean saying goodbye to all your Facebook friends because it will aggregate content from all your existing social networking services including Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. The Diaspora team says their software will actually make those services better as it will allow users greater control over their data. For example, a user’s seed can be used to automatically generate a tweet from a caption and link when uploading an image to Flickr.

Privacy

Submission + - Diaspora: Distributed Social Networking (bbc.co.uk)

An anonymous reader writes: Four guys in New York City have raised funds to develop a distributed social networking platform, named Diaspora. The idea is you host your own data so you are not subject to the whims of corporations like Facebook. Here's hoping they build something that is actually useful.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: How to Counter a Domain Squatter? 3

pspahn writes: Recently, our small business has decided to finally put the "our website sucks" reality to bed. We are working hard on getting a modern, polished, and effective web site up and running. Today, however, it came to my attention that one of our local competitors (who has a history of stealing our innovations) has registered a domain name identical to ours except for "the" at the beginning. When arriving at their squatted domain, it implies to the user that we have gone out of business and then redirects them to their website (which is equally as crappy as ours).

After some brief research, it appears that there are two "legal" paths to follow. Hiring a lawyer or going through Uniform Domain Name Resolution Policy. Both are somewhat cost prohibitive at this point, and it seems silly to have to fork over thousands of dollars to resolve something that has likely cost us plenty of business as it is. What alternative options do we have for resolving this? Can we send them a generic cease-and-desist? DMCA? Anonymous? Chinese flesh searchers? I'm hoping that we can employ some type of Barbara Streisand spin on this, as we have a long history of being an honest business that doesn't use these kind of deceptive practices to lure customers.

Submission + - Technology solutions for entering doctor's notes? 3

SnapShot writes: My wife is a psychiatrist with her own office. I've set up a simple database for her to manage her patients and keep track of notes, but it hasn't been used yet since the process of getting her handwritten notes into the database is too cumbersome. She writes her notes into a custom form with various sections — treatment plan, mental status exam, medication management, etc. I've tried OCR of her handwritten notes but, since she writes in cursive with additional notes in the margin, uses various symbols such as arrows and circles around sections and the notes are filled with various medical shorthand, drug names, and other domain specific words, the OCR is nearly useless.

Currently, she scans the notes into her computer at the end of the day into b&w bitmap files (keeping the paper original as a backup) but this isn't a great solution since the files are large and unsearchable.

So the Ask Slashdot question, have you found any useful ways to get handwritten data into a database. Hopefully it's simple, works with her current forms, doesn't "auto-mangle" her words and doesn't require her to change her writing style. There are three options that I've started researching:
  1. LiveScribe. It requires a special paper but it appears that I can print her forms onto the paper as needed if I buy a color laser printer. It has the advantages that she'll still have a paper copy, but I'm not sure how well the custom forms will work and how forgiving the system is of mistakes.
  2. Wacom has a tablet with a built-in LCD screen. It's targeted towards graphic designers, but if there are handwriting recognition applications available and if it's responsive enough this could be a great solution.
  3. Get a light laptop and have her type directly as she's talking with the patients. She's worried that this will interfere with the conversation with the patient, but it has the advantage of getting the data directly into the database.
  4. OCR? Nothing I've tried seems to work, but I haven't tried everything...

Thanks in advance.

Submission + - Cannabidiol researchers discover the switch to tur (examiner.com)

SimonGirty writes: We discovered that cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychotropic compound from the plant Cannabis sativa, can inhibit the processes that allow breast cancer cells to grow and spread (metastasis). The study is funded by the National Institutes of Health. Early test results on animals are very positive. The doctors hope to begin testing cannabidiol on humans within 2-3 years.

Submission + - Authorize PayPal payments with you voice (poxpay.com)

Dinesh Gupta writes: PoxPay has launched a new service leveraging the newly released PayPal Adaptive APIs.
Transactions are authorized using voice biometric algorithms by calling your enrolled phone and prompt you to say a series of digits. If the voice pattern on file matches the spoken digits, the transaction is authorized. The recipient can be a phone number or a PayPal email. What's cool is that there is no need for a password or pin.

Submission + - IOC nails 8-year-old for copyright violation (p2pnet.net)

An anonymous reader writes: The Olympics committee is imposing ridiculous restrictions on who can do what in reporting, and commenting on, the games currently being staged in Vancouver, Canada. Now the ever-vigilant IOC has jumped on eight-year-old Jabber J. She clipped 10 seconds of a ski run featuring biathlon competitor Megan Tandy, one of her favourites and had the temerity to post it on YouTube so other people could share her pleasure. The IOC ordered the video taken down. “As a Canadian I believe we need to be vigilant to the censorship of the IOC and other governing bodies”, says her dad, Rob, in a p2pnet Reader’s Write, going on, "Our children should learn to recognize these infringements and we as parents sometimes need to show them that this is wrong. ‘O Canada we stand on guard for thee‘. There is a reason why we as Canadians take this oath as we award our athletes for their excellence and their service to themselves and their country. Today one of my daughters’ YouTube videos was censored by the IOC. I invite you to check out this over-the-top censorship at the Virtual Whistler blog." You'll also find it here.

Submission + - Thin Client Solution for School

plobby writes: We are putting together the budget for next year and would like to start working on replacing some of the computer labs, add a lab, and then replace teacher computers. We are working on 10 year old celerons right now with 256mb of ram running XP. I was interested in thin clients but it has to be a windows solution. My question is what is what kind of server hardware would be needed to run a lab of 30 computers? What about 60? Also do you see a benefit to going to a thin client solution rather than a desktop? I was seeing us able to save a lot in hardware cost, not sure on software yet.

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