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Dog Eats Man's Toe and Saves His Life 207

Have you ever been so drunk that you passed out and your dog ate your toe? I haven't either, but luckily for Michigander Jerry Douthett, he has. It turns out Jerry has type 2 diabetes and a wound on his toe had becoming dangerously infected. After a night of drinking Jerry passed out in his chair and the family dog Kiko decided to do a little doggy doctoring. From the article: "'The toe was gone,' said Douthett. 'He ate it. I mean, he must have eaten it, because we couldn't find it anywhere else in the house. I look down, there's blood all over, and my toe is gone.' [Douthett's wife] Rosee, 40, rushed her husband to the hospital where she's a gerontology nurse — Spectrum Health's Blodgett Campus. Kiko had gnawed to a point below the nail-line. When tests revealed an infection to the bone, doctors amputated what was left of the toe."

First Membrane Controlled By Light Developed 33

An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt: "A new membrane developed at the University of Rochester's Laboratory for Laser Energetics blocks gas from flowing through it when one color of light is shined on its surface, and permits gas to flow through when another color of light is used. It is the first time that scientists have developed a membrane that can be controlled in this way by light."

IBM Distributes USB Malware At Security Conference 73

bennyboy64 and other readers let us know that IBM sent out an email to all attendees to the Australian Computer Emergency Response Team (AusCERT) 2010 conference, warning them that some of the USB drives handed out to delegates contained malware. Fortunately it was old malware, which all anti-virus products have detected since 2008. Two years ago telecommunications company Telstra distributed malware-infected USB drives at the same conference.

Comment Don't use personal laptop. (Score 1) 395

I used a company laptop and had a lot of personal stuff on it. On my last day I had only a few hours to get my stuff off of the laptop before they wiped it. Also, if you work for the government or a government contractor, once you access a classified network or have classified stuff on your laptop, that laptop belongs to the government.

Comment Much ado about nothing (Score 1) 330

It takes a couple of clicks to disable the extension (especially since everyone knows about it now :)), so what's the big deal? OSS needs some way of generating revenue. There really is little privacy in the world today... what with cell phones, ezpass, online banking, etc...The only way to be truly private is to "opt-out" of technology -- get rid of your cell phones, computers, ezpass, ,pay your bills with "snail-mail", nix twitter, facebook, e-harmony, myspace, etc...

Comment It's Human Factors (Score 1) 309

Actually, the key to Apple's success not so much that they include non-techies in their design process (they probably do), but that they haven't laid off their human-factors scientists. Sometimes users don't even know what would make their lives easier, but psychologists trained in human factors do. I recently "bit the bullet" and bought a MacBook (which was about $600.00 more expensive than a comparable Dell or Acer laptop), and have fallen in love with the machine. I'm fascinated by the "little things" that Apple has done: like making the touchpad larger and making it a button -- I've always hated touchpads on laptops, but this one is so well thought out that I don't ever use a mouse with the MacBook. I had a dramatic example of Apple's practical ingenuity when my dog suddenly ran across the room, right through my son's and mine power cords -- My son's Acer laptop went crashing to the floor, while the Macbook's power cord neatly detached from the machine (it connects to the machine via a small magnetic connector). I don't think a lay-person thought up these things. Every day I discover something like this about the Mac, and I wonder why other companies don't follow Apple's lead (patents??). You see this with the iPhone, also, where other phones have tried but can't seem to get the "touch and feel" quite right. I think it also should be noted that Apple is first and foremost a "hardware" company, not a software company -- they don't market MAC OS X -- they market Macs. Perhaps a Linux distribution should hook up with a good hardware company, create a really nice innovative machine and "brand it". I think this would especially work since Linux comes with so many useful professional apps (like Open Office Suite, Gimp, Firefox, Banshee etc...) you would get a "ready to go" machine right out of the box. I have Ubuntu running on my MacBook (VMWare Fusion rocks!!) and it's a dream combination. I can't wait for those "I'm an Ubuntu" commercials :)

Comment Netbook future? (Score 1) 400

With laptops becoming lighter and more powerful, and cell phones getting more powerful, it seems that the netbook is filling a very small niche. I for one can't see any use for a netbook, now. Just having a portable web-browser with a few productivity apps is served very well by my iPhone. As for incredible all-around computing power with good portability -- I have a 13" Macbook running Mac OS-X and Ubuntu (I'll probably put XP or Vista on it, too). The comments about Linux are puzzling -- I haven't run into anyone who has had as much trouble with Linux as with Vista. I think that most of those who purchase netbooks may be computer novices who don't know what Linux is, and may have returned their netbooks without even trying it. I've seen a netbook with an 8Gb flashdrive, no CD drive and 2 usbports selling for over $300.00, and then I saw a really small laptop (Acer I think) with a 120Gb harddrive and CD drive and many usb drives for almost the same price. What gives? It makes be think that the whole netbook thing is a scam.

Comment Ubuntu is easy. (Score 1) 936

Strange. My 9 and 12 year-old sons have been using Ubuntu for 2 years with no complaints. Of course the younger generation is very computer literate and probably find much more things "intuitive" than most adults... I don't understand this author's statement that he couldn't find a way to upgrade to ubuntu 8.10 from 8.04 using Upgrade Manager. I remember the Upgrade Manager telling me that an upgrade was a available, and I upgraded to 8.10 with one click --Much, much easier than upgrading any version of Windows (anybody remember trying to upgrade from Windows ME to 'anything'). Most apps found on the web, (if not in a repository found by the Synaptic Package Manager or Add/Remove) will list the exact apt-get command you have to type, even though 90% of the time just typing apt-get install followed by the application name will do the trick. I also didn't understand his problem with OpenOffice. It seems strange that he's found so many things confusing. It seems that 5 minutes on the Ubuntu homepage or a few minutes with Google would have clarified everything for him. When I switched my "family computer" from Windows 2000 to Ubuntu, my kids hardly noticed, except to positively state that they liked Ubuntu more than Win 2000 (it seemed more like Windows XP to them). Ironically, when my ex-wife switch her "family computer" to Vista from XP, all hell broke loose, even to the extent that the kids insisted on coming over to my house to use the Ubuntu Machine to do their schoolwork (my 9-year-old son prefers OpenOffice , and my 12-year-old MS Office under WINE, rather than Office 2007, which they refuse to use). The package Management under Ubuntu is actually a wonderful thing. A co-worker of mine recently tried to uninstall Office 2003 and managed to "brick" his PC (and he's a computer professional). He spent a whole day just to get his PC usable again. When I referred him to a Microsoft support site that deals with this problem, he didn't bother to try "their solution" and just resigned himself to leave Office installed. Also, just recently on Slashdot, there was reference to Bill Gates's own frustration trying to install MovieMaker on Windows. I'm a longtime Windows user, and I have to save that the only time I've run into the type of frustration I've had installing, uninstalling or upgrading on Windows with Ubuntu, was when I've tried to install certain Windows programs on WINE (like "Command and Conquer 3"). The only other complaint I have with Ubuntu is that I can't easily sync my iPod Touch (not without downgrading the firmware and jailbreaking it). For the life of me, I can't understand why Apple hasn't made this easy (by perhaps providing an iTunes for Linux). Anyway, I've found that those of my friends who have switched to Ubuntu call me for help much less frequently that those of my friends who have gone to Vista. My experience is that younger users (like my kids and teenagers) seem to find much many more things "intuitive" than adults (after all, they're growing up with modern technology). Senior Citizen Newbies find Windows, MACs and Ubuntu equally challenging or easy (depending on the Senior).

Comment Need to expand survey?? (Score 3, Informative) 205

Perhaps this survey only concentrated on iPhone users and not iPod Touch users. Perhaps those who have iPhones are not as interested in apps as they are in communication. I've found that most iPod Touch users (of which I and my 12-year-old son are) usually fill up there iPods with multiple pages of apps. Though I have bought apps, I would say that most of the apps I have are free. I had jailbroken my iPod Touch previous to the creation of the app store. If the app store didn't offer free apps along with the paid ones, it's possible I would have kept my iPod jailbroken. I haven't tired of many apps, and I use some apps everyday (like Chess Genius, iSports, iReversi, Sudoku, Facebook, WorldWiki, Maps, Stocks, etc...). Other apps like Guitar Chords aren't really the kind of app you use everyday, but are nice to have when you need them. So I dispute the claims of this survey. I think "we" are very much into appstore apps. I wonder if these are the findings of a envious HP iPaq owner or a "Zune Person"...

Comment Absolutely Ridiculous. (Score 2, Interesting) 842

Just last night I was watching my 12-year-old son running media player, while browsing the web looking for cool wallpapers, while writing a story, while downloading a video, while playing othello, while having an IM window open...and I noticed a few apps minimized... Of course, this was on my Ubuntu machine, but I think my 8-year-old had 5 or 6 things running on his Acer laptop running Vista. If they had an OS than would only run 3 apps at a time, they would think it was broken (they thought Windows 2000 was broken for other reasons... no complaints about XP, though, and Vista's been okay since the first Service Patch, but they like Ubuntu the best -- they say it's a lot like XP(!?!)). I've never understood the strategy of marketing a crappy, crippled, "toy" OS, so that one can charge money for it with the rationale that their real OS is so much more expensive. It's especially puzzling when one considers that one can get a very powerful professional OS for free, with a bunch of great free applications. Does Microsoft have a human factors department? I guess they have gotten away with these strategies for so long, they've forgotten how to develop something that people really want.


Internet Black Holes 100

An anonymous reader writes "Hubble is a system that operates continuously to find persistent Internet black holes as they occur. Hubble has operated continuously since September 17, 2007. During that time, it identified 881,090 black holes and reachability problems. In the most recent quarter-hourly round, completed at 04:40 PDT, 04/09/2008, Hubble issued 46,846 traceroutes to 1,815 prefixes it identified as likely to be experiencing problems (of 78,772 total prefixes monitored by the system). Of these, it found 195 prefixes to be unreachable from all its vantage points and 139 to be reachable from some vantage points and not others." No relationship to that other Hubble which also tries to find black holes ;)

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