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Submission + - Apple's free OS is no threat to Linux at all, Torvalds says (

An anonymous reader writes: Apple's move to offer its latest desktop operating system, OS X Mavericks, for free isn't going to affect the Linux operating system at all, its creator Linus Torvalds said.
Linux has been giving its OS away for 22 years, said Torvalds during a question-and-answer session at LinuxCon Europe in Edinburgh on Wednesday. But Apple's decision to offer its OS for free as of Tuesday is entirely different from Linux' philosophy, he said. In fact, one of the reasons Torvalds uses the term open source instead of free software because there is a difference between open and free, he said.

Submission + - White House Fires Employee Over Anonymous Twitter Feed (

barlevg writes: @NatSecWonk, a Twitter feed posting (often scathing) commentary on the administration's foreign policy and on reporting of national security issues, went dark last week, and its owner, unmasked as Jofi Joseph, a member of the National Security Council and an expert in nonproliferation, was reportedly fired. None of the tweets contained any information of a classified or sensitive nature, so any further action against Joseph seems unlikely.

Submission + - Exoplanet Count Blasts Through the 1,000 Barrier (

astroengine writes: The first 1,000 exoplanets to be confirmed have been added to the Europe-based Extrasolar Planets Encyclopaedia. For the last few weeks, astronomers (and the science media) have been waiting with bated breath as the confirmed exoplanet count tallied closer and closer to the 1,000 mark. Then, with the help of the Super Wide Angle Search for Planets (SuperWASP) collaboration, the number jumped from 999 to 1,010 overnight. All of the 11 worlds are classified as "hot-Jupiters" with orbital periods from less than 2 days to 8 days.

Submission + - NASA Kepler spots 2 new planets crossing same star

coondoggie writes: NASA's space gazing Kepler space telescope has discovered two Saturn-sized exoplanets that are crossing in front of, or transiting, the same star.
In a teleconference today, NASA said in addition to the two confirmed giant planets, Kepler spotted what appears to be a third, much smaller transit signature in the observations of the sun-like star designated Kepler-9, which is 2,000 light years away from Earth. The planets were named Kepler-9b and 9c.

Comment Re:Yeah really (Score 1) 399

Using a cell phone does sound like it would solve the problem (unless the publicly available databases that TelTech searches can find the billing address for the number) but not everyone communicates only by cell phone. Not everyone reads Slashdot, so there's a real possibility that someone might think that caller ID blocking was sufficient to protect themselves.

Comment Re:Dictionary - Encyclopedia - Textbook (Score 1) 469

A rating system like you describe is very interesting and might be a good addition. I assume that you mean every visitor should have the option to rate a page. Have you discussed these suggestions at Wikipedia? I haven't gotten involved much there yet, but I imagine others have noticed and discussed these problems already.

Yes, that's what I mean. Unfortunately, I have not gotten involved enough even to know where such a thing could be suggested... it seems like there is a very hard-core core group and I just haven't been willing to spend the time and energy to get into it at that level. I have to conclude that the people who do it like it the way that it is, or it would have been changed by now, but what do I know?

Perhaps part of the issue is that discussion systems and rating systems inevitably give the developer or designer a lot of power and are therefore seen as undemocratic. I don't know what the objections are, but as you imply, I can't be the first person to have thought of these things.

I don't think there is any distinction between building an on-line encyclopedia that anyone can edit it and managing it. Wikipedians have necessarily been doing both tasks simultaneously from the beginning, though as it gets bigger and more popular, the management becomes more difficult. It's still being built just as much as it is being managed. If it's more difficult to manage and build now than it was a soon after it started, I think that's partly because tools have not scaled to match the complexity of the project.
I agree. I was just referring to the "everything is a wikipage" philosophy.

Submission + - NIST endorses Microsoft's Open XML

Royseth writes: The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is backing Microsoft's effort to certify Office Open XML as an international standard. It has voted to conditionally approve Office Open XML (OOXML) pending some technical concerns in an upcoming standards approval vote. "NIST believes that ODF and OOXML can co-exist as international standards," NIST director William Jeffrey, said in a statement as quarel over OOXML rages on.

Submission + - Fox News Censors Iowa Straw Poll Results (

Chris Brunner writes: "If you don't already know, the Iowa Straw Poll, seen as a first test of organizational strength by news media and party insiders, took place yesterday. The results weren't too surprising, considering that McCain, Fred Thompson, and Giuliani all boycotted the event. What was surprising, however, is that Fox News blatantly cut certain candidates out of the results they reported. They didn't just stop listing candidates after a certain point. They listed positions one through three, skipped four and five, and then continued with positions six through eight."

Submission + - Google Acquires Doubleclick

Brian Ribbon writes: "The Register is reporting that Google has finally acquired Doubleclick, the "leading computer-tracking cookie provider" for $3.1bn. This follows failed attempts from companies such as Microsoft, who attempted to buy the company for $2bn

This latest purchase — involving one of the most offensive advertising companies on the World Wide Web — does little to enhance Google's "Do No Evil" motto."

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