Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system

 



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

Slashdot Asks: Do We Need To Plan For a Future Without Jobs And Should We Resort To Universal Basic Income? (vox.com) 917

Andy Stern (former president of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which today represents close to 2 million workers in the United States and Canada) has spent his career organizing workers. He has a warning for all of us: our jobs are really, really doomed. Stern adds that one of the only way outs of this is a universal basic income. Stern has been arguing about the need for a universal basic income (UBI) for more than a year now. Stern pointed out that people with college degrees are not making anywhere near the kind of progress that their parents made, and that it's not their fault. He adds: The possibility that you can end up with job security and retirement attached to it is statistically diminishing over time. The American dream doesn't have to be dead, but it is dying. All the resources and assets are available to make it real. It's just that we have a huge distribution problem. Unions and the government used to play an important part at the top of the market, but this is less true today. The market completely distributes toward those at the top. Unions simply aren't as effective in terms of their impact on the economy, and government has been somewhat on the sidelines in recent years.Making a case for the need of universal basic income, he adds:A universal basic income is essentially giving every single working-age American a check every month, much like we do with social security for elderly people. It's an unconditional stipend, as it were. The reason it's necessary is we're now learning through lots of reputable research that technological change is accelerating, and that this process will continue to displace workers and terminate careers. A significant number of tasks now performed by humans will be performed by machines and artificial intelligence. He warned that we could very well see five million jobs eliminated by the end of the decade because of technology. He elaborates: It looks like the Hunger Games. It's more of what we're beginning to see now: an enclave of extremely successful people at the center and then everyone else on the margins. There will be fewer opportunities in a hollowed out and increasingly zero-sum economy. If capital trumps labor, the people who own will keep getting wealthier and the people who supply labor will become less necessary. And this is exactly what AI and robotics and software are now doing: substituting capital for labor.What's your thoughts on this? Do you think in the next two-three decades to come we will have significantly fewer jobs than we do now?

Comment Re:Hmm..... (Score 1) 175

In my case, the phone problem pretty much belongs to my wife. She has either lost or destroyed 5 phones so far. (Tracking software helped recover most, but they were usually in bad shape) Insurance covered 4 of them (they definitely did NOT make money off of her). Now I just get her not-so-high-end phones...cheaper than paying the insurance premiums and deductibles when she has a loss. She loses credit cards too. Yes, she isn't very aware of her surroundings sometimes. My 13 year old daughter lost her phone once (and I still think it's in the house somewhere). Luckily it was a cheap android (intentional on my part). I then got her another very cheap android telling her "This one is on me. The next one is on you". She doesn't use it much, though. Myself and my 16 year old son have yet to lose a phone. That's why he has his precious iPhone...because he's responsible. Eventually I'll upgrade my Nexus 5 (2013) but it's still serving me well right now.

Comment Re:Skylines got right what Simcity got wrong (Score 1) 256

The original definitely had mass transit. And it had one little train (which looked like a bus) that would spawn and traverse the map. I always wondered if, say, the "bus" couldn't get to a certain section (if you built two disconnected rail lines, there would still be only one bus), if it would still apply the rail to that other section (I think it did...the bus was merely an animation that had no function other than to look cute). And yes, the entire city could be on mass transit. Great way to reduce pollution.

Submission + - Cloud Providers Being Asked To Wall Off Data From US (itworld.com)

chicksdaddy writes: The U.S. government is giving large Internet firms more leeway to discuss secret government requests for data.(http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/28/business/government-to-allow-technology-companies-to-disclose-more-data-on-surveillance-requests.html?hp) But when it comes to trust, the battle may already be lost. IT World reports that U.S. hosting companies and cloud providers say they now face pressure from international customers to keep data off of U.S. infrastructure – a request many admit is almost impossible to honor.

The article quotes an executive at one, prominent U.S. hosting firm who says that the picture of NSA spying that has come as a result of leaks by Edward Snowden prompted a slew of requests from European customers to have data cordoned off from U.S. infrastructure. Customers in Germany are often the source of the requests, he said, but the phenomenon isn't limited to Germany, where revelations of NSA spying there, including a tap on the phone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, have stoked a kind of economic nationalism.

Chris Swan, the chief technology officer at Cohesive FT, a cloud networking company, said that his company began fielding calls from European clients, Germany companies, in particular, last year. "They were asking for help finding and using non U.S.-affiliated infrastructure," he said.

"It’s a bit of a gradient with Germany at the top of the hill and the Swiss standing right alongside them," said Swan.

The requests take a couple different forms, according to the hosting company executive. Customers have asked for their data to be kept 'locally,' segregating it on infrastructure located within the geographic border of Germany or other EU nations that are not perceived to be subject to access from U.S. intelligence agencies. Others are asking for changes that at least give them plausible deniability with local press and government officials. For example, they might ask for hosting firms to transfer the registration IP addresses used to host content from U.S.–based entities to a German or EU-based subsidiary, according to the report.

Submission + - The Pirate Bay block will be lifted in the Netherlands (www.nrc.nl) 1

swinferno writes: The Dutch ISP's Ziggo and XS4all are no longer required to block access to the websites of The Pirate Bay. This has been decided by the court in The Hague.
The blockade has proven to be ineffective. The Dutch anti-piracy organization BREIN will have to reimburse legal costs of EUR 326.000. The internet provider XS4ALL has already started lifting the ban. The website of The Pirate bay was ordered to be blocked by the two major ISPs in January 2012. Recent studies by Amsterdam University and CentERdata.showed that this did not reduce the number of downloads from illegal sources. Many people circumvented the blockade.

Submission + - Verizon's Not-So-Secret Plan to Kill Net Neutrality (cio.com)

AZA43 writes: Verizon and its legal team are this week in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit arguing for the ability to control and restrict the websites Verizon customers can access, under the guise of the telecom giant's right to free speech. Blogger Bill Snyder also cites recent moves by Comcast and ESPN that suggest Verizon may be getting closer to its goal of killing Net Neutrality.
The Media

Layoffs Hit Washington Post Mobile Team 108

imac.usr writes "The Huffington Post is reporting that The Washington Post has gone through yet another round of layoffs, but this time instead of cutting editorial positions, they're apparently cutting IT positions, specifically in the mobile applications department. According to Washington, DC media blog FishbowlDC, 54 people, including the General Manager of Mobile and Director of Mobile Products, were given the axe on Valentine's Day. A particularly damning quote from the FishbowlDC article: '"[CIO and VP Shaliesh] Prakash thinks these are 'inefficiencies' – that is the exact word he uses for human beings who are not useful according to him," said a source who spoke only on condition of anonymity. "Get rid of experienced people to save money, under the garb of streamlining is the new trend inside the Post."' Given that mobile products seem somewhat more likely to succeed than printed newspapers, this seems a strange decision at best."
Government

Submission + - The electric car mistake (washingtonpost.com)

walterbyrd writes: "President Obama repeatedly declared that, with enough federal aid, we can put a million electric vehicles on the road by 2015. His administration has invested about $5billion in grants, guaranteed loans — including $465 million for Tesla — and tax incentives to buyers. . . . Federal billions cannot overcome the fact that electric vehicles and plug-in electric hybrids meet few, if any, of real consumers’ needs. Compared with gas-powered cars, they deliver inferior performance at much higher cost. As an American Physical Society symposium on battery research concluded last June: “Despite their many potential advantages, all-electric vehicles will not replace the standard American family car in the foreseeable future.”"

Submission + - Killing Your Sexual Desires for Academic and Intellectual Pursuits? 6

An anonymous reader writes: In the past few months, I have been applying to a multitude of graduate schools. Recently, I was accepted into a Ph.D. in computer science program at a fairly prestigious and demanding institution. Like most Slashdot readers, I have always been an exceptional student throughout high school and my undergraduate studies. However, as a heterosexual male individual, there has always been a persistent desire to associate myself with females in an effort to find love, have sex, and to be in a relationship. I have learned the hard way that this is often a colossal distraction from one's schooling and I would like to train myself to become more apathetic to such desires in preparation for the difficult but intellectually awarding years of graduate school that lay ahead. So, fellow Slashdot users, I ask you a rather odd but serious question on none other than Valentine's Day: How do you kill your sexual desires to enable you to focus more on academic and intellectual goals?
Google

Tesla, Ford, Amazon Hint At Cloudy Future For Cars 231

Nerval's Lobster writes "The automobile, once the most analog of technologies, is rapidly becoming a smartphone on wheels: Amazon announced Feb. 13 that Ford SYNC Applink-equipped vehicles will include the Amazon Cloud Player, allowing drivers to access their music libraries via voice command or dashboard controls. Ford isn't the only automotive company seeking to integrate cloud computing into the driving experience. Tesla Motors' Model S electric sedan boasts a 17-inch capacitive touch-screen in place of the usual dashboard buttons and dials. And who could forget Google's self-driving car? This isn't a future everybody wants—there are more than a few wannabe Steve McQueens who won't feel complete unless they can stomp on a pedal connected to an internal-combustion engine, flick a physical dashboard knob to the radio station of their choice, and peel out their driveway in a cloud of burning rubber. But as the latest technology migrates into automobiles, it could well be the future we're going to receive."
Cloud

Submission + - Turbotax.com locks out Linux users (pastebin.com)

whtmarker writes: Despite supporting kindle fire and chromebook http://turbotax.intuit.com/personal-taxes/online/system-requirements_thickbox.jsp, linux users are finding themselves locked out of the turbotax website. Even two weeks ago, there when was an option to continue into the website, despite using linux thus not meeting the minimum requirements for the site. Dozens of linux users are frustrated http://pastebin.com/JhTAnnxA but this illustrates a general problem of cloud services. You can be locked out of your data and denied service on a whim.
Businesses

Reasons You're Not Getting Interviews; Plus Some Crazy Real Resume Mistakes 246

Yvonne Lee, Community Manager at Dice.com writes, "Not using standard job titles, not tying your work to real business results and not using the right keywords can mean never getting called for an interview, even if you have the right skills to do the job. I once heard advice to use the exact wording found in the ad when placing your keywords. I think you're even more unlikely to get a job if you do some of the things on this list."
Security

Submission + - Adobe Reader and Acrobat get another layer of security (arstechnica.com)

concealment writes: "Adobe announced new security features this week for its Reader and Acrobat XI products, including enhanced sandboxing, Force ASLR, PDF whitelisting, and Elliptic Curve Cryptography. In addition to a number of new features enhancing Reader's and Acrobat's PDF-creation capabilities, these security measures add another layer atop previous changes that have improved a once "widely exploited" app over the past two years.

Most importantly, Reader XI will have a "protected mode" that will extend the sandbox users gained in Reader X to limit read-only activities. This should protect against various types of data-theft when combined with the "write protection" already present in Adobe's software. Reader XI will also get a protected view-function, while Acrobat XI's protected-view function will be extended, so that both apps create a separate desktop to prevent screen-scraping attacks."

Submission + - Silly season on domains again?

undulato writes: I've owned a dictionary word .com domain since I randomly discovered it as being free on register.com in the late 90s. In the meantime I've had various pet projects up on this site and a few years ago when I was strapped for cash I put it up on Sedo and then promptly forgot about this. The other day I received an offer for the domain out of the blue. While it's not a huge amount it's a good starting bid and even though I don't want to sell the domain at the moment I'm not going to turn down a stupid offer.

So my question is — is it silly season on domain names again and just what is a reasonable price to ask for this kind of domain?

Slashdot Top Deals

In a consumer society there are inevitably two kinds of slaves: the prisoners of addiction and the prisoners of envy.

Working...