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Comment How to protect a service from commoditization (Score 1) 111

It's my opinion that if it weren't for these regional monopolies, internet service pricing would be much much lower.

If a good or service becomes a commodity, and the price of that commodity levels out at a sufficiently low cost, why wouldn't a municipality take out a bond and develop its own fiber service. How is it unlike a water and sewer department?

Comment Re:Why do this when... (Score 2) 139

Slashdot will correct me if I'm wrong but if memory serves me correctly, part of the reason we don't recycle spent fuel rods is because of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (Treaties?) we signed in the 1970s. Apparently recycling old rods yields weapons-grade materials, even if their final purpose is not for weapons.

Comment Coincidence? (Score 1) 404

I was sitting in our office when all of a sudden all the phones in the office rang at the same time. The number that came up was 800.555.1212, or 800-Directory Assistance. Since there are only a handful of us in the office today, it was ironic that only a few of us experienced it. According to our phone clocks, this happened about 2:55PM EDT. That's a little off from the article report time of attack but is it merely a coincidence? I'm curious if any other Slashdotters out there experienced this same phenomenon today.
Wireless Networking

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Are Toll Free Numbers Really Free? (

saintory writes: "According to the FCC, toll free numbers are paid for by a entity to enable any user access to it. As landlines are being replaced with mobile phones, usage minutes are being consumed to connect to any phone number regardless of the toll level. Are toll free numbers still free? This seems like an easy win for FCC and could potentially open doors for innovation within the wireless world. I'm curious what the rest of the tech community thinks."

Submission + - The six best JavaScript toolkits (

nk497 writes: JavaScript has been kicking around for 15 years now, notes web developer Simon Brock. "JavaScript first appeared in a beta release of Netscape Navigator in 1995, and was included in Internet Explorer 3," he notes. "What's most interesting is that it took ten years for it to be used for anything remotely interesting. It was probably Google Maps that finally showed what JavaScript code running inside a browser could do. Prior to that, most developers – ourselves included – shunned JavaScript." Now it's key to most sites. To celebrate the milestone and its success, Brock has come up with his list of the best JavaScript toolkits for web development: Prototype, Scriptaculous, jQuery and more. Are there any he's missed?

Submission + - First color E-ink reader unveiled (

Aviation Pete writes: At the CES, Chinese manufacturer Hanvon has demonstrated the first E-ink reader with a color display. The screen resolution is an impressive 1600 x 1200, but pages load rather slowly. The E 920 reader will be available not before May.

Submission + - Vodafone's Security Dirty Laundry Aired In Public (

Orome1 writes: Reports that Vodafone’s Australian operation is in the firing line of the country's Privacy Commissioner, following the apparent placing of billing and call records of millions of its customers on a Web site whose password is only changed on a monthly basis, have been met with alarm. The saga is a classic situation of what can happen when too many people have access to high level account credentials and corresponding sensitive information. At least one class action-style lawsuit is being prepared, and there will undoubtedly be others.

Comment Been there, done that. (Score 1) 486

One time I was riding with my brother down a familiar stretch of busy road. All of a sudden we saw a burst of smoke and someone tumbled out of the car in front of us. After dodging her we realized that there was no one driving the car anymore and it was approaching a busy intersection. We looked at each other, nodded, and I proceeded to pull alongside it. He jumped from his door into the car and attempted to regain control, while I sped ahead to get in front of the car with my own, just in case he couldn't. As he regained control of the car I let it run into the back of mine while flashing my lights. He pulled the car over after the intersection and we proceeded to look for the previous occupant. A state trooper then arrived on-scene. Apparently the driver thought her car was going to explode so she jumped from it. She had some cuts and a little road rash but was no worse for wear. The state trooper told my brother he was a hero, to which he nonchalantly responded "I was just doing what was right." Just another day.

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