Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×
User Journal

Journal Journal: New PhysX Chip not physically compatable with SLI !!!

According to Alienware's configuration website, the Ageia PhysX card is incompatible with GeForce 7900GTX cards in SLI mode, due to space limitations!

But, Ageia's website states that Alienware has 7900GTX in SLI with the PhysX card! What gives!?!

Do space limitations squeeze out the PhysX card on most Mobo's? Is it better to have one 7900 and one PhysX card or two 7900s in SLI? Anyone out there know?

Let the games begin!

User Journal

Journal Journal: Atrios gets it wrong, again

Missouri House Concurrent Resolution No. 13 is yet another example of a patently stupid, unconstitutional law whose purpose is to bring back prayer in public schools, and religious monuments in town squares.

However, the hyperbole that Eschaton ( has spun this story with is unhelpful to our Democratic cause.

As you can see by reading the actual resolution below, Atrios has misrepresented what the proposed law actually would do. It would not have the effect of only recognizing "a Christian god," over other gods, and it does not recognize that only Christianity receives "justified recognition."


House Concurrent Resolution No. 13



Whereas, our forefathers of this great nation of the United States recognized a Christian God and used the principles afforded to us by Him as the founding principles of our nation; and

Whereas, as citizens of this great nation, we the majority also wish to exercise our constitutional right to acknowledge our Creator and give thanks for the many gifts provided by Him; and

Whereas, as elected officials we should protect the majority's right to express their religious beliefs while showing respect for those who object; and

Whereas, we wish to continue the wisdom imparted in the Constitution of the United States of America by the founding fathers; and

Whereas, we as elected officials recognize that a Greater Power exists above and beyond the institutions of mankind:

Now, therefore, be it resolved by the members of the House of presentatives of the Ninety-third General Assembly, Second Regular Session, the Senate concurring therein, that we stand with the majority of our constituents and exercise the common sense that voluntary prayer in public schools and religious displays on public property are not a coalition of church and state, but rather the justified recognition of the positive role that Christianity has played in this great nation of ours, the United States of America.

quoted from:

User Journal

Journal Journal: Uncharted Territory for Democracy...and Israel

One of the fundemental axioms of political science is that Liberal Democratic States do not go to war against each other, since Democracies will resort to both intra-national and international democratic institutions first. So, if Canada and the U.S. have a dispute over lumber, Ottawa doesn't send a flotilla of ships to bombard Washington, D.C. They go to the World Trade Organization and argue over treaties. Congresses of both nations act. The respective State Departments of both Countries keep relations normal.

A necessary corollary is that force of arms is necessary against Non-Democratic States and Entities who do not participate or recognize legitimate international democratic institutions. There are few effective checks against the leaders of totalitarian regimes.

The "pre-state" of Palestine is almost a Democracy. Palestine has a smattering of democratic institutions. One indicia of a democracy is that the entity has two peaceful changes of political leadership in a "free and fair" election. While the election of Hamas to power was free and fair, it does not seem to be a "peaceful" transition. There were riots in the street by the opposition Fatah party supporters. Fatah members have been calling for the resignation of their leaders and threatening to kill Fatah politicians who would join a Hamas government. There also have been several gunfights between Hamas members and police, leaving four officers and a Hamas gunman wounded.

Another indicia of a democracy is that the people who vote hold democratic values. One of those values is respecting the territorial integrity of neihboring states and entities and resolving border disputes non-violently by resorting to diplomacy. Of course, the people of Palestine have elected Hamas into power, which is considered a terrorist organisation by most of the world, since it is committed to the utter annilation of its neighbor Israel.

Another value is peace. Hamas is an organazation that wants to wipe Israel off the map. Hamas does not recognize the State of Israel. Hamas has not been willing to renounce violence or suicide bombings or the killing of Israeli civilians. In short, nothing Israel can do will make Hamas happy, except leaving the land of Israel.

Palestinian voters elected a party with these views to office! Palestinians KNOW what Hamas stands for. They understand that Hamas wants to destroy the State of Israel. It is not just Palestinians looking to change a corrupt government. If you want to get rid of a thief living in your house, do you throw out the thief and invite in a mass murderer who kills innocent civilians, olympians, and children on purpose to make a political statement?

There is something fundementally wrong with the Palestinian outlook that kills any prospects of Democracy. When a Palestinian child is killed by the Israeli military, 999 times out of 1000 it can be explained away as an unfortunate mistake or legitimate collateral damage of a focused attack against a military target. When an Israeli child is killed, it is done on purpose, with the thought of creating maximum grief and suffering against the civilian population.

There is a reckless and criminal indifference to human life that is tolerated by Palestinians. This attitude needs to be changed if there is ever to be hope and democracy in the Middle East.

So, how should Israel respond? Intelligently.

Since Israel is dealing with an enemy CLEARLY COMMITTED TO ITS DESTRUCTION, Israel needs to destroy Hamas. The time for playing nice is over. By electing Hamas into government, the Palestinians have declared war against Israel. Israel should respond with complete and overwhelming force. Crush it. Kill all the leaders and party members. Wipe out the PA entirely and start from scratch. Then, Peacefully and Humanely relocate all Arabs and Palestinians out of Israel and move them into a clearly defined Palestinian territory. Heck, even pay them compensation. Why can Arab countries expell Jews but Israel can't expell Arabs? Redefine the borders of Israel and make the Palestinians live with what they got. No more swiss cheese borders. People have no right to live in a State which they do not support. End of Story.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Still Frustrated with Democrats on Alito

I am still frustrated with the Democrats response to the Alito nomination to the Supreme Court.

I am repeating myself again.

Why have they given up fighting the nomination? Does one sobbing wife completely castrate the Democratic Party? What gives?

Why has Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) said, "I do not see the likelihood of a filibuster, to be very candid with you," while on Meet the Press yesterday?

Why has the New York Times indicated that "Democratic strategists and officials of liberal groups opposed to confirmation" are privately stating that they don't believe that opposing Alito's nomination on the basis of abortion rights alone is going to work?

Well, it seems that the Democrats have taken my advice, and the advice of lots of other strategists that abortion is a loosing issue. In fact, there seems to be a seachange in how politicians are viewing abortion rights. It is too sticky of a political issue in swingstates.

So, the real question is, what are the Democrats saving their political capital for? Going for the jugular on the scandals, of course.

I think there is a huge stealth campaign being waged by the Democrats that is going to ambush the entire Republican establishment. Like the fact that only Republicans personally got money from Abramoff's own personal wallet. Like the fact that the Democrats unseated the House Majority Leader Tom Delay over his inditement. Not to mention the Libby inditement which seems to have fallen off the radar.

As I said before, I believe that the Democrats are hoping that the Republicans implode under the weight of their own stupidness and arrogence.

However, that does not mean that they should give up the fight so easily on the Alito nomination. Give the Republicans a headache until the scandals catch up with them...

User Journal

Journal Journal: Arbitration Agreements

On Marketplace this morning, consumer advocate Jamie Court made a very imprecise statement of law while discussing arbitration clauses in credit card agreements. He remarked that the 7th Amendment guarentees a right to a trial by jury. This is not exactly true. The Supreme Court decided in Colgrove v. Battin that the Seventh Amendment preserves the right of a trial by jury in federal civil cases as it "existed under the English common law when the amendment was adopted."

Furthermore, there is nothing in the US Constitiution preventing a State from denying a trial by jury for a civil matter. Moreover, Mr. Court failed to mention that it is completely permissible to knowingly waive your right to a trial by jury.

The problem with consumer arbitration agreements is that they are unconscionable. They are in small print. They are made by one party without the knowledge of the other party. They are made by one party who has disproportionate bargaining power and knowedge of the law. They are unfair. And they usurp the right of the consumer to go to court over a wrong done to them. This issue has nothing to do with the seventh amendment.

If you have a disagreement with a company and they want to make you arbitrate, contact an attorney immediately to determine your rights. Don't sign or agree to anything without legal counsel since State and Federal laws pertaining to the validity of arbitration agreements vary wildly.

User Journal

Journal Journal: My Love/Hate Relationship with my USB key

I love my USB key. It is a 1 Gig Corsair Flash Voyager. Here is a review:

I currently have the following portable applications installed: FoxIt Adobe Acrobat Reader, Damn Small Linux (Qemu Emulation for windows), freeCommander, Portable, Portable Firefox and Thunderbird, TrueCrypt, VLC media player, and GAIM portable.

These portable apps are so awesome, because they give me flexibility if I am using a friends computer, if I am at the library, or most importantly, I am at a job site where they don't understand the importance of Firefox.

Plus, I can store lots of important files on it!

So, why do I hate my USB key? Because I am forced to run virus scans every time in hooks up to my computer, to make sure that I don't have internet cooties.

And today, for the first time, I got a serious case of computer VD from a Times Square computer. I had to print out my CV...and my printer at home needed new I stopped into a printing place near Times Square...the next before I went to sync my firefox bookmarks...I scanned the drive and found Win32:Trax and VBS:Malware on my key! So, now I am scanning my computer, just in case...what a bummer.

Age old Moral of the story: Don't poke your stick into anything at Times Square.

User Journal

Journal Journal: My Supreme Court Analysis - Half Right 1

I am still frustrated with the Democrats response to the Alito nomination to the Supreme Court.

Originally, I stated that I did not find Alito's nomination to be objectionable, mostly because the news media portrayed him as mostly moderate and not really against abortion. However, my position has changed to opposing Alito to the Supreme Court, based on memos that show he was behind a grand Republican strategy to overturn Roe v. Wade in little tiny baby steps. This man must be opposed. But how?

My original feeling that the Democrats would waste the valuable political capital they had built up during the Plamegate fiasco was correct. The inditement has been mostly forgotten, mostly due to other big stories in the media. The threat of more repercussions from the inditements and the extraordinary rendition scandel still loom over the Whitehouse.

As I predicted, the public has lost focus on the Libby inditements and our sagging world popularity.

The solution is still to push off arguing about the merits of the abortion debate in challenging Scalito's nomination. I truly believe it is a loosing issue to argue about, if you are trying to capture swing voters. Especially since 70% of people believe that spousal notification before an abortion is not a bad idea.

Let these stupid Republicans implode under the weight of their own stupidness and arrogence.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Supreme Court Nomination 3

I am growing frustrated with the Democrats who are trying to challenge the Alito nomination to the Supreme Court.

As a Democrat, I do not find Alito's nomination to be that objectionable. Secondly, I do not believe that the Democrats should waste the valuable political capital they have built up during the Plamegate fiasco to fight this nomination.

Luckily for the Bush Administration, there are so many things going on. Who will remember the hurricane fiasco and the inditement fiasco and the sagging economy and Supreme Court fiascos and Bush's sagging popularity when Bush is busy scaring us with the Avian Flu and appointing new Supreme Court Nominees? Way too many things are going on, and the public is...and has...lost focus on the inditements of Libby and our losing the war in Iraq.

Solution: Don't fight this nomination. Don't get drawn into the abortion debate. Or the equal rights debate. It is bad politics now, and the Bushies are going to stomp all over you. I hear it on the radio now...and I can tell that the Democratic party machine is going to botch this opportunity away again.

Why are Democrats going to squander this opportunity? Because they don't understand how to pander to the country's electorate. Democrats have to change their tone on certain non-fundamental issues. Like gun control. You can be a liberal and believe in being able to own a machine gun. People won't vote for you if you are gonna take stuff away. Thats why Dems own the Social Security Issue. Democrats need to jettison the far left wing nutty wing of the party, the same way the Republicans need to jettison their right wing.

So, what does the party know that I don't? Do they have the votes to not nominate Scalito?

I just have a bad feeling about this...

User Journal

Journal Journal: Unreal Tournement 2004 - On Linux

I recently installed UT2004 on my Ubuntu Linux Box. Installation was a breeze. (Breezy Badger, hah!) I inserted the first install CD, typed sh /media/cdrom/ at the command line...and voila, the launcher started. When it asked me to change disks, I right clicked on the CD icon on the desk top, eject and dismounting the disk. Then I put in CD 2...ubuntu mounted the disk...automatically!...then i clicked continue...and so on until installation finished. Relatively painless. And the game runs great!
User Journal

Journal Journal: Advocating Open Source / Freeware to the Masses

I had an extremely frustrating experience this morning with a co-worker who needed help installing programs on her new laptop computer. It is a nice rig, AMD64, ATI mobility RADEON, good number of ports and accessories.

However, she was having trouble with her e-mail. AOL e-mail of course. She couldn't send attachments. And she was upset that Microsoft Word was only a trial version that was about to expire.

So, what did I do? I suggested installing Kerio firewall and Avast! virus scanner along with some spyware utilities to make sure that nothing funny was going on. I also recommended Firefox and Thunderbird, along with a few other software utilities. I downloaded the installers at home and put them on my USB key.

When I actually got infront of the laptop, she didn't want me to install "FoxFire" or any of the other common techie tools I wanted to install on her system. I installed the virus scanner and ad-aware. Adaware found 44 adware objects, which I showed her, and removed. That scared her enough to let me install the Kerio firewall. She wanted me to hold off installing anything else, including OpenOffice.

However, an other co-worker who knows computers installed Microsoft Office, bootlegged of course, to her computer. He also uninstalled the virus scanner. I am sure he is going to uninstall Kerio, because he dislikes it.

Her main objection was that she wasn't familiar with the programs. She liked her Symantec anti-virus and AOL spyware blocker (which didn't protect her computer at all, btw). She was just about the name brand. She did't want to research or investigate.

So, the question is, how to you educate someone who doesn't know the difference between an Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office? And someone who isn't willing to learn?

Do I insist on having complete control of the tweaking process?

Slashdot Top Deals

What ever you want is going to cost a little more than it is worth. -- The Second Law Of Thermodynamics