bdcny7927 writes: Malware exists that lets Bad Guys hijack webcams and microphones. The U.S. government can't even do that yet, at least not legally, but it is working on it. Remember: It's not paranoia if they're actually after you.
lunatic1969 writes: I'm trying to get serious with my backups. Maybe I'm just used to the way of doing things in other operating systems. Maybe you can set me straight. I have several Windows 7 Home Premium edition machines and large USB network drive (Hooked to the router). I figured wow, I'll just use windows built-in backup utility. No. It won't grok saving to a network drive without using some VHD work around that I'm having mixed results with (The drive disconnects at some point for some unknown reason...). I suppose I could walk around with the USB drive to the various machines and back up every so often, but the point is I'm lazy. It has to be automatic or it won't happen. What utility or method would slashdotters use given a setup with several Windows 7 Home Premium machines and a network drive?
schwit1 writes: No good deed goes unpunished, as they say. A man who tried to warn others of a speed trap by flashing his vehicle's headlights at motorists was ticketed by police. But a Florida judge ruled this week that flashing headlights is free speech protected by the First Amendment, according to an article in the Orlando Sentinel.
Ryan Kintner was ticketed last year for warning motorists of a speed trap waiting for them down the road. The Lake Mary, Fla., resident was at home when he noticed a police officer with a radar gun near his house, and decided to help out unsuspecting motorists by parking farther up the street from the officer and flashing his lights at oncoming traffic to warn drivers. The police officer instead ticketed Kintner, citing a law that prohibits the flashing of aftermarket emergency lights.
However, Kintner fought the ticket, and brought a lawsuit against the Seminole County Sheriff's office to stop them from using this law to "silence" motorists. He argued that the officers are misapplying that law, which is intended to prevent motorists from installing aftermarket emergency lights and impersonating emergency vehicles.
A judge sort of agreed with him last year and granted a partial ruling in Kintner's favor stating that Florida law does not prohibit motorists from using their lights from communicating with other motorists, reported an earlier Orlando Sentinel article.
This latest decision that signaling with headlights is Constitutionally protected free speech should protect movie plots and road Samaritans going forward. It should also put an end to Florida police writing tickets based on the emergency-vehicle lights law. Police hiding in speed traps will either need to get stealthier or find another way to avoid being outed.
Hugh Pickens writes writes: "The Global Economic Intersection reports on a project to statistically measure political bias on Wikipedia. The team first identified 1,000 political phrases based on the number of times these phrases appeared in the text of the 2005 Congressional Record and applied statistical methods to identify the phrases that separated Democratic representatives from Republican representatives, under the model that each group speaks to its respective constituents with a distinct set of coded language. Then the team identified 111,000 Wikipedia articles that include “republican” or “democrat” as keywords and analyzed them to determine whether a given Wikipedia article used phrases favored more by Republican members or by Democratic members of Congress. The results may surprise you. "The average old political article in Wikipedia leans Democratic" but gradually, Wikipedia’s articles have lost the disproportionate use of Democratic phrases and moved to nearly equivalent use of words from both parties (PDF), akin to an NPOV [neutral point of view] on average. Interestingly some articles like civil rights tend to have a Democrat slant, while others like trade tend to have a Republican slant while at the same time many seemingly controversial topics such as foreign policy, war and peace, and abortion have no net slant. "Most articles arrive with a slant, and most articles change only mildly from their initial slant. The overall slant changes due to the entry of articles with opposite slants, leading toward neutrality for many topics, not necessarily within specific articles.""
Carpal Tunnel writes: Slashdot has begun posting advertisements as articles. What led them to this decision is unknown, but the community, and primary content creators, are really pissed off. Many suggestions have been made about how to fix this, but there is yet to be a reaction from Slashdot.