Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re:Roundup backpack=bad ? (Score 5, Interesting) 125

The problem is that neonicotinoids are about as close to an ideal insecticide as we could hope to have. They're effective on a broad spectrum of insects, they don't harm plants, and they're really quite safe around mammals. For example, dinotefuran has an oral and dermal LD50 in rats of > 2000mg/kg, is not known to be carcinogenic, and is not known to be a neurotoxin. It's also essentially non-toxic to birds, fish, and aquatic invertebrates (important because of chemical run-off.) I'm not saying I'd sprinkle it on my breakfast cereal, but I wouldn't get sick from it.

They just happen to be 50 times as lethal to bees as to any other insect. So even the lowest doses used to control economically damaging pests are still going to kill huge numbers of bees, because the tainted nectar and pollen that comes back with the bees feeds the colonies.

I really like the stuff for INDOOR control of greenhouse pests. Outdoors, I won't use it.

Comment Re:Cloud-connected means disposable (Score 1) 101

It's not their "fault" because they were under no contractual obligation to provide support. Why should they continue to make their expensive resources available for free, when they're not making them any money? Especially when they're running out of money and a sugar daddy like Fitbit shows up with a wad of cash.

This is textbook capitalism. Nobody sells you stuff in order to make you happy; they sell stuff in order to make money. Never, ever forget that.

Comment Re:Fitbit must die (Score 1) 101

Sorry, I'm calling 100% bullshit on this one.

The fitbit app has never asked for access to my contacts, and it would only request access if I asked it to "Add Friends" and explicitly tapped on the "Contacts" button. All the "friends" I've added have been done so without granting access to the whole contact list, I've simply typed in their email addresses. And it's never sought access to my "call history", or whatever other evil conspiracies you imagined it might have done when you typed etc., etc.

Now go be a good son. Give the fitbit back to your dad, apologize for being overly paranoid, show him how it works, and help him keep up his health.

Comment Re:so what? (Score 2) 101

The real issues I see are that fitness trackers [...] don't provide workout plans to meet the needs of the individual [...]

Everything else you said is spot on, but you missed on this one. If you're interested and motivated, the Fitbit app offers a few generic workout videos and plans, but they offer a "Fitstar Personal Trainer" app, which does provide personalized workout plans. Open the Fitbit app on your phone and tap the "Guidance" compass icon to get started. Once upon a time, many years ago, they would link you up with an actual human trainer, but I don't know what they offer now.

Comment Cloud-connected means disposable (Score 4, Insightful) 101

It's not Fitbit's fault; it's the entire business model of the Cloud. Sell some cool tech thing that's cloud-dependent, run low on cash because those servers aren't paying for themselves, get bought by a bigger company. Fitbit just knows how to play the game, for now.

Who's really to blame when you buy a cloud-dependent toy, with no service contract to guarantee cloud availability for the next 25 years? What other outcome were you possibly expecting to happen? The only rational question is, "how long will I get to play with my cool toy until the company pulls the servers down?" And you should factor that limited lifespan estimate into your purchase price.

Comment Re:Unless it costs more (Score 1) 130

The current processes work pretty well. My dentist can get me in the chair, pop in a tooth-colored filling, and get me out in less than 20 minutes, at which time I'm free to eat whatever I want, and it costs only a few hundred dollars. If I have to have a temporary tooth cap, wait ??? weeks for the regrowth to take place, make another appointment to get the cap taken off, pay the patent-inflated price for the magical tooth-growing sponge, and then pray I don't get tooth or bone cancer, I think I'd rather stick with the old fillings.

Comment Re:Uhm...and? (Score 1) 97

... more and more PC owners are learning they don't need to ditch their 3 year old computer and can instead opt to upgrade it. SSD, more RAM, and a new graphics card and their old machine is better than new. But they do buy those extras and upgrades... can we count those as device buys?

No, because how does Microsoft make any money off someone who upgrades their graphics card and storage, but who doesn't buy a new Windows license? Or did Microsoft start manufacturing graphics cards and SSD's when I wasn't looking?


Comment Re:FBI Jurisdiction (Score 5, Informative) 104

Perhaps I'm mistaken, but isn't the FBI restricted to US jurisdiction? I grew up with the understanding that they were basically a domestic police force on the national level.

I'm assuming I am mistaken, please feel free to give me further understanding on how the FBI can be in India.

From the article:

according to Indian and American investigators, who said that the raid in Thane was carried out entirely by the local police, without assistance from American officials.

The FBI can still typically do investigation in other countries: collect intel, interview people, etc. They can then provide information tot he local authorities to handle the actual police work.


Comment Re:Then LG prada (Score 3, Insightful) 35

They were going to release something that likely would have been consigned to the annals of history as a failed idea and eventually been forced to go the touch screen route like everyone else.

First off, this prototype is a giant touchscreen -- the click wheel in the video is entirely virtual, and not physical.

Secondly, there is no evidence that Apple ever had any intentions of releasing this device. I know it's hard to believe, but some companies out there do actual R&D work where they build and design a whole lot of experimental products that are not intended for release.

This was presumably the work of one such R&D team that put together a prototype based on the idea of making a virtual iPod, which was evaluated, found seriously wanting, and then scrapped, which is why it's taken this long for one to even be made public.


Comment Re:Two NICs yet? (Score 1) 92

Simply not the same as a PCIe asic. I dont care how much theoretical bandwidth there is on USB3, or that they did away with polled mode. It is not the same if nothing else but because it has to go through two different driver stacks for data to enter and leave the media. The idea here is security consciousness, not simple function. Smaller attack surface is better.

No, but Thunderbolt 3 is PCIe (either x2 or x4, depending on the configuration/power mode), with a full 40GB/s of bandwidth. So what you do is you get a Thunderbolt PCIe Expansion Box (something like this), and put standard PCIe NIC cards into it -- whichever ones you prefer.

(What would be awesome is if someone came out with a multi-ethernet Thunderbolt 3 breakout box. The best I've found is dual 10Gbit Ethernet to Thunderbolt, but something like 8 x 1Gbit to Thunderbolt 3, with a TB3 chaining port would be pretty awesome for a box like this. Intel -- are you listening?)


Slashdot Top Deals

Take everything in stride. Trample anyone who gets in your way.