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Google Reveals Wireless Vision — Open Networks 90

Anti-Globalism writes with this excerpt from CNet: "Google's vision of tomorrow's wireless network is in stark contrast to how wireless operators do business today, setting the two sides on a possible collision course. Earlier this week, the search giant filed a patent application with the US Patent Office describing its vision of an open wireless network where smartphones aren't tied to any single cell phone network. In Google's open wireless world, phones and other wireless devices would search for the strongest, fastest connection at the most competitive price. Essentially, wireless operators' networks would be reduced to 'dumb pipes.'" The full patent application is available as well. Google founder Larry Page recently asked the FCC to free up portions of the broadcast spectrum for this purpose.

Google To Fund Ideas That Will Change the World 165

Peace Corps Online writes "This week, as part of their tenth birthday celebration, Google announced the launch of project ten to the 100th, a project designed to inspire and fund the development of ideas that will help to change the world. They have called on members of the public to share their ideas for solutions that will help as many people as possible in the global community, offering a $10 million prize pool to back the development of those chosen as winners. 'We know there are countless brilliant ideas that need funding and support to come to fruition,' says Bethany Poole, Project Marketing Manager for Google. 'These ideas can be big or small, technology-driven or brilliantly simple — but they need to have impact.' The project's website asks entrants to classify their ideas into one of eight categories listed as Community, Opportunity, Energy, Environment, Health, Education, Shelter and Everything Else. Members of the public have until October 20th to submit their ideas by completing a simple form and answering a few short questions about their idea."

Submission + - Who wants to report piracy to be a millionaire? (

mytrip writes: "A software industry group that has become well known for its high-profile antipiracy campaigns and crackdowns is now offering up to $1 million to tipsters who divulge the juiciest copyright infringement incidents in their workplaces.

The Business Software Alliance announced on Monday that between July and October, it will be multiplying fivefold the maximum incentive currently offered through its almost 2-year-old "rewards" program. The effort is designed to encourage whistleblowers to report unlicensed software use by their businesses — which, BSA reminds us in its press release, can carry as much as $150,000 in fines and cost the United States more than $7 billion last year alone.

For me, the operative phrase in the reward offer is "up to," which begs the question, what sort of tip would qualify for that jackpot?

The short answer is, the reward is at BSA's "sole discretion," according to its terms and conditions. It's also supposed to be tied to the monetary value of the settlement or damages paid by a company in connection with the piracy claims."


Submission + - iPhone's Battery Non-Replaceable 1

sneakers563 writes: On Saturday, the New York Times (subscription required) ran an article pointing out that replacing the integrated battery on the iPhone requires the entire phone to be sent to Apple, much like the iPod. The article estimates that heavy iPhone users will need the battery replaced in as little as 1-2 years. When the author contacted Apple and asked how they were going to handle battery replacement, Apple's public relations department replied, "With up to 8 hours of talk time, 6 hours of internet use, 7 hours of video playback, 24 hours of audio playback and 10 days of standby time, iPhone's battery life is longer than any other smartphone." With increasing numbers of young, tech-savvy users discarding landlines and relying entirely on their cellphones, will the loss of the cellphone for 2-3 weeks for battery replacement be a serious issue?

Submission + - has a new Linux unfriendly layout ( 1

Douglas Roberts writes: " unveiled their latest in what has been a series of re-invented layouts for their news site yesterday. The video content is now flash-based, and no longer works with Linux clients (Kubuntu Feisty 7.04, Firefox latest, Flash 9). Perhaps they need some viewer feedback.

— Doug"


Submission + - How to break into the software development field? 1

An anonymous reader writes: A relative recently graduated with a bachelors in comp-sci. After several months of emailing resumes for software development positions at the rate of several per day, he has yet to find a job. Ideally he'd like to be a Java developer, but would accept any position in the software development field. His problem is that he has no experience as a software developer, and it seems everyone wants a senior programmer and no one wants to hire an entry level programmer. He did co-op while in university, but it was a tech support position and employers seem to disregard it, if they're gonna hire you as a software developer they only care about software development experience. They also don't care that he's been using Java (and several other langs) for at least 4 years, they specifically demand industry experience — academic experience doesn't count to them.

If you recently found an entry level job with no experience, how did you do it? If you are a hiring manager or recruiter, what advice would you give to someone in his position? I'm at a loss of what to tell him, as he seems to be doing everything right but still can't find a job. I often hear that there's a shortage of programmers, so what's going on? If it makes any difference, he lives in Ontario, and is willing to move anywhere in the province (even Toronto if he really has to *shudder*).

Submission + - Return of the Static Universe

Dr. Eggman writes: According to an article on ars technica and its accompanying General Relativity and Gravitation journal article The return of a static universe and the end of cosmology, in the far future of the universe, all evidence of the origin of the universe will be gone. Intelligences alive 100-billion-years from now will observe a universe that appears much the way our early 1900s view of the universe was: Static, had always been there, and consisted of little more than our own galaxy and a islands of matter.

Submission + - T-Mobile contract terms held unconscionable (

Stephen Lindholm writes: "Good news for T-Mobile customers. In a class action brought against T-Mobile, this past week, the plaintiffs have successfully argued that T-Mobile cannot prevent its customers from filing a class action against it. The plaintiffs are suing over non-prorated early termination fees and the selling of SIM-locked handsets.

T-Mobile, as many other cell phone companies do these days, had written into its contract with customers that any disputes between T-Mobile and the customers had to be resolved by arbitration. Requiring customers to go to arbitration means that customers cannot sue, and more importantly it means that customers cannot file class actions. The result, if the contractual terms requiring arbitration were valid, would be that the most abusive cell phone company practices could not be limited by customers bringing lawsuits.

However, in the suit Gatton et al. v. T-Mobile USA, Inc., the plaintiffs convinced the trial court that the contractual provision requiring arbitration was unconscionable and therefore not enforceable. On June 22, 2007, the California appeals court affirmed the trial court's ruling. The class action is going forward.

Presumably, this means that customers of other cell phone companies will be able to sue their own cell phone companies as well. The particular grievances against T-Mobile in this class action are the imposition of non-prorated early termination fees and the selling of SIM-locked handsets. Both of these are common to other cellular carriers, although it's not clear from the appellate opinion whether T-Mobile is doing something extra-shady with the SIM-locking. (The appellate opinion states, "T-Mobile requires equipment vendors to alter the handsets they sell to T-Mobile by locking them with SIM locks and setting the SIM unlock code based on a secret algorithm provided by T-Mobile.") So if this suit is unltimately successful in California, it may not take long before non-prorated early termination fees and SIM-locked handsets die a long-awaited death."


Submission + - AMA:Human RFID tags pose serious privacy risk (

mytrip writes: "RFID tags operate over short distances to provide a scanner with basic information about whatever item they're attached to. This is being used commercially to both identify pricing details at retail and to allow users to simply wave credit cards in front of appropriately-configured readers in order to pay for them. But RFID has also moved into the realm of providing personal information; the US is making RFID-enabled passports, and the FDA approved human RFID implants back in 2004. Given the medical and privacy issues associated with human RFID tagging, the American Medical Association called for an evaluation (.doc) of their implications; the resulting report is now available (.doc)."

Submission + - Vista Security Claims Debunked (

[Send Bug Reports Here] writes: "Apparently Microsoft still hasn't learned that counting vendor acknowledged vulnerabilities isn't a good way to establish the security of an OS. As an analysis of Microsoft's claims on Full Disclosure shows, we see that the methodology used was badly flawed. A bug in Firefox (not to mention emacs), counts as a flaw for Linux, while IE bugs get ignored on Vista's chart. Then we see that vulnerabilities aren't vulnerabilities when they're security-challenged features such as Vista's Teredo. Also, there's far too little consideration given to severity, given that it stoops to counting even extra access restrictions on a file in OSX to have something to show. In short, the original Microsoft analysis was good PR and poor research."

Comment Re:Privacy != anonymity (Score 1) 368

I think we're mostly agreed here, especially in that publication of works online should have equal weight compared to some mass public communication. I understand the similarities between posting something online and posting things in public places. However, I do not believe surfing the web or whatever form of researching information should be logged in the same manner. Additionally, e-mail, phone conversations and SMS messages are intended to be private communications. I think that in an emergency situation they can be intercepted ethically, but not just passively, automatically logged where they can be subject to theft and misuse. That methodology is an unnatural, artificial social construct just as much as complete anonymity is. But I don't think I need to tell you that; surely you've seen the numerous private and public thefts of PII on laptops and what have you.

Thanks for your reply, I really enjoyed reading it.


Submission + - Scientists get plastic from trees (

amigoro writes: "Scientists have found a method to replace crude oil as the root source for plastic, fuels and scores of other industrial and household chemicals with inexpensive, nonpolluting renewable plant matter. They directly converted sugars ubiquitous in nature to an alternative source for those products that make oil so valuable, with very little of the residual impurities that have made the quest so daunting."

Submission + - AT&T Announces Alliances with MPAA and RIAA

i)ave writes: More documents in the AT&T/NSA warrantless wiretapping campaign were unsealed today. Meanwhile, AT&T announced a new policy to spy on customers for signs of copyright violations. They credited their new television service as moving them into the same camp as the RIAA and MPAA. How long before they change names from AT&T to 00&7?

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