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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 11 declined, 2 accepted (13 total, 15.38% accepted)

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Submission + - Sony Back-Catalog Joins EMusic

phorest writes: According to the New York Times, Sony and EMusic has entered into an agreement to make available and sell their entire back-catalog from before 2007.

In another example of struggling major music labels and Internet services finding common ground, Sony Music Entertainment has agreed to make its back catalog of songs available on eMusic, one of the largest music retailers on the Web.
The company plans to announce on Monday that it will add all Sony Music tracks that are more than two years old, including material from artists like Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel.

The article also mention that EMusic's prices are going to rise on this news as well. Great news except for that price-rise. As a long-time subscriber I both applaud and disagree with the deal. To me it appears that the music bigs (Sony, Time-Warner etc.) are looking to raise the prices not only for them but for independent record labels as well.

Submission + - Verisign's servers are down?

phorest writes: Fellow Slashdotters:

Every website that uses Verisign for certificates are giving warnings as being expired or not yet valid. I used 4 different sites including my own and they all give a warning. I hope your experience has been better this morning.
The Media

Submission + - Hans Reiser featured tonight on TV

phorest writes: Looks like CBS is gonna have an entire show on Hans & Nina Reiser portrayed as a mystery tonight on 48 Hours.
(Check your local listings)

"When was the last time computer science got wrapped up in sadomasochism, murder, blood stains and the KGB?" asks technology writer and 48 Hours Mystery consultant Josh Davis. For Hans Reiser, these are only part of his strange and sordid story.

Submission + - Mr Sulu wedding planner!

phorest writes: George Takei said he will wed his longtime partner and business manager, Brad Altman, now that the California Supreme Court has legalized same-sex marriage. More details here.
The Almighty Buck

Submission + - Google to purchase The New York Times?

phorest writes: Pretty good article about the plusses and minuses for all the parties involved. Granted, it is all speculative at this point but one paragraph got my interest. Sometimes speculation is fun!

Second, Google is embarking on an ambitious mobile platform. It is buying wireless spectrum and will soon introduce Google Mobile. In so doing, it is entering into an arena where the established players have hired (almost) every lobbyist and (almost) every law firm with expertise in telecommunications in Washington, DC and in virtually every state capital. Owning the New York Times would level that playing field in one fell swoop. Owning major media outlets is a strategy that has worked very well for General Electric, Disney, News Corp., Time Warner and others in their dealing with the federal government and with state governments. There's every reason to believe it would be helpful to Google.

Do all mega-corps have to have major-media outlets to maintain their standings with government, or can it be that these companies have so much money that they are just putting that cash to good use?

Submission + - Ask Eraser Under Fire

phorest writes: According to Computerworld.
A group of privacy advocacy organizations has filed a complaint with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) alleging that Ask.com's recently launched AskEraser service does not live up to its promise of deleting users' search histories.

In an 11-page brief filed with the FTC last week (download PDF), the group claimed that the search engine company is indulging in deceptive and unfair trade practices with AskEraser and should be forced to withdraw the service. The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), the Center for Digital Democracy, Consumer Action and the Fairfax County Privacy Council are among those that filed the complaint.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Imagined last day of Bill Gates' employment

phorest writes: There is a video posted here of what Bill Gates' last day on the job might look like. Apparently, it was shown at the recent CES show. You'll find a whole cast of characters, from presidential candidates, ex-presidents, CEO's (known for throwing chairs) and media figures. Wanna hear BillyG's Rap? He was in the recording studio. Overall, a light-hearted poke-fest.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - ACLU: Ohio voting switch may be illegal

phorest writes: Oh the irony! Lawmakers decide to go one way, then the new ones take over and the fun begins! With so many decidedly against electronics in our elections, who would've thought the ACLU is looking to potentially sue the state of Ohio for switching away from Diebold touch-screen voting terminals.

CLEVELAND — The American Civil Liberties Union urged the elections board in the state's most populous county on Thursday not to make a switch to a new voting system for the state's March presidential primary, warning that the move could violate state law.

It appears to me that we'll never again get in our beds after the sweet feeling of democratic voting as when we awake from our slumber, the elections will be tainted from any lame excuse available. Go ACLU!

Submission + - MS Enterprise Search Express almost out of beta 2

phorest writes: Get your search on!
Microsoft now has Enterprise Search Express available for download. Having seriously considered purchasing Google's search server in the past but not wanting to buy more hardware for the convenience, or use more electricity for the endeavor, I was surprised to see Microsoft is going to providing the same type of product (without the hardware of course-free as in beer!).

This ZDNet article covers the release, but curiously does not speculate as to Microsoft's end game other than upgrading to the pricier version.

"There are more than 6 million buinesses out there, but only one percent are doing enterprise search," according to Microsoft's data, said Jared Spataro, a Group Product Manager on Microsoft's enterprise-search team. "We want 2007 to 2008 to be rememered as the time when enterprise search went mainstream."

Is this the first in a long series of shots across Google's bow?
The Internet

Submission + - Forcing email providers to forward mail

phorest writes: Post office forwards. Is e-mail next?

[F]ederal regulators are looking at the issue more closely following a complaint from a former America Online customer who claims an abrupt termination of service devastated her business.
Gail Mortenson, a Washington-based freelance editor, in July filed a six-page petition with the Federal Communications Commission, which opened a 30-day public comment period that ends Oct. 26, followed by another 30-day period for replies.

Mortenson said in her complaint that she lost potential clients because they couldn't reach her, and she requested that Internet service providers, such as Time Warner Inc.'s AOL LLC, be required to forward e-mail traffic from a closed account to a new e-mail address designated by customers for at least six months.
The company closed Mortenson's account last December soon after the company learned it was actually opened by her son several years earlier when he was a young teenager. The account was still in his name although Mortenson was paying for it.

AOL spokeswoman Anne Bentley wrote in an e-mail to the Associated Press that AOL is still investigating the facts of Mortenson's petition, but said it has "strict policies to prevent minors from creating paid AOL member accounts."
She also said the company doesn't believe circumstances related to Mortenson's account "present any issue of public policy."

Mortenson said she wasn't given any warning and lost personal and professional e-mails, documents, contact information and other materials associated with her AOL screen name. She said the action hurt her business at the time and is considering a civil lawsuit against the Dulles, Va.-based company.

Submission + - L.A. Times Reorganizes.

phorest writes: The L.A. Times is reorganzing its web and print presence.
The Los Angeles Times Media Group said Wednesday it is reorganizing the newspaper's newsroom into an around-the-clock operation with an emphasis on breaking news on its Web site and offering expanded coverage in its print edition.

Under the new approach, the paper will focus on offering multimedia content on its Web site as stories unfold, as well as more personalized ways to get stories. One example is MyLatimes.com, which the Times launched Wednesday. The site uses RSS feeds — a technology for notifying users of new entries on their favorite news sites and blogs — to deliver content directly to computer users.
In its print editions, the newspaper will emphasize editorial analysis, investigative reporting, trend stories and features. Reporters also will be directed to report for both the Web and print editions.

"Our philosophy going forward is, 'Break it on the Web, expand on it in print,"' said Times editor Jim O'Shea.

Will this finally give an old-media outlet a way to make a buck?
Operating Systems

Submission + - Windows Home Server details.

phorest writes: Having read many of the comments from the previous /. article, It appears Microsoft will open up Windows Home Server for users to construct their own system after all, though I'd like to see the price of this OS release before making that jump.

Paul Thurrot at WinSuperSite writes: "At the 2007 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas this week (see my special report), Microsoft previewed its long-awaited Windows Home Server (WHS) product [Link to review], a Windows Server 2003 R2-based server for consumers that dispenses with the complexities of most Windows Server versions and provides the core storage, sharing, and remote access functionality that digital media and home networking enthusiasts require."

"Microsoft will make WHS available in two ways: Bundled with new WHS hardware and software-only, the latter so that enthusiasts can install the system on the hardware of their choice.
If you're building your own home server, Microsoft requires a 1 GHz processor or better, 512 MB of RAM or more, and as many disks as you think you need. The company will support multiple home servers on the same network, but it's still murky how that will work."

Submission + - Programmers to blame for hard-to-use software ?

phorest writes: While it is all too easy to simply blame developer's for all software usability issues, the author of the book's description in this article seems to point at the user's inability to understand the process of computing in general.

There is plenty wrong with some software but reading the help files should demystify most of this phenomena. Do you believe the author when he says, "One of his peeves is when a text-editing program like Microsoft Word asks users if they want to save their work before they close their document."

Then he goes on to say that programmers don't think like the user although in the next paragraph he says that it is bad to design software on the whims of the users! How can you square those two statements?

"To illustrate his point, he notes that computer programmers tend to prefer manual transmissions. But not even 15 percent of the cars sold in the United States last year had that feature."

I drive a car with a manual transmission, do you?

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