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Submission + - Netflix website is down (

thebear05 writes: The Netflix website has been down for at least the past hour with a varying array of messages.

Temporarily unavailable scheduled maintenance
Website is down we are working on it
and now
Http/1.1 Service Unavailable


Submission + - Microsoft offers web browser choice to IE users (

artemis writes: Millions of IE users in Europe will have the option of choosing an alternate web browser starting March 1. This opens up marketing opportunities for the competitors of Microsoft in the web browser arena — Mozilla's firefox,Google Chrome, Opera and Safari. It is going to be interesting to see who will gain the most out of this opportunity.

Submission + - 2 China Schools Reportedly Tied to Online Attacks (

squidwanker writes: Online attacks on Google and other American corporations have been traced to computers at two educational institutions in China, including one with close ties to the Chinese military, say people involved in the investigation.

Submission + - Which Linux for non-techie Windows users ? 8

obarthelemy writes: Having at last gotten Linux to run satisfactorily on my own PCs, I'd now like to start transitioning friends and family from XP to Linux instead of 7. The catch is, these guys don't understand nor care much about computers, so the transition has to be as seam- and pain-less as possible. Actually, they wont care for new things, even the upcoming upgrade to Seven would be a pain and a bother, which is a great opportunity for Linux. I'm not too concerned about software (most of them only need browser, IM, VLC, mail and a Powerpoint viewer for all those fascinating attachments). What I'm concerned about is OS look and feel and interface: system bar on the bottom with clock, trash, info on the right, menu on the left... menu items close to those of Windows...

Is it better to shoot for a very targeted distro ? Which ?
Are they themes/skins for mainstream distributions instead ?

I've been looking around the web, it's hard to gauge with distro is well-done and reasonably active, and which does not really work. Puppy Linux also looks good, different but so very easy I imagine I could 'sell' it.

I'm NOT asking whether it's good or bad for Linux to look and feel like Windows. Actually, I'm fairly convinced it is not a good thing, but I don't feel up to training handfuls of newbies and fielding tens of support calls.

Submission + - New Fords feature Microsoft Technology ,

thebear05 writes: Microsoft Sync
An integrated entertainment and communications system will be included in the Ford Focus and other Ford, Lincoln and Mercury models.
The system is touted to permanently change how people manage music and communicate behind the wheel.
It is based on an on-board computer system that has Bluetooth, usb cababilities and features voice recognition though no real specifics of the hardware are given. The reviewers article is very positive however being from MSN should be taken with a grain of salt.

Submission + - College Fires Teacher Who Says Bible Isn't Literal ( 1

Stanislav_J writes: A community college instructor in Iowa claims he was fired after he told his students that the biblical story of Adam and Eve should not be literally interpreted.

Steve Bitterman, 60, said officials at Southwestern Community College sided with a handful of students who threatened legal action over his remarks in a western civilization class Tuesday. He said he was fired Thursday.

"I'm just a little bit shocked myself that a college in good standing would back up students who insist that people who have been through college and have a master's degree, a couple actually, have to teach that there were such things as talking snakes or lose their job," Bitterman said.

One expects to read about this sort of thing at church-affiliated schools, but at a state-run community college? Are we really reaching a point in this country where everything said and taught in an academic setting must be weighed against the possibility of offending Christian fundamentalists? Are supposedly secular educational institutions more and more downplaying or even censoring truth and reality at the behest of a group of people who believe that ancient mythology negates and supercedes the disciplines of science, history, and reason?


Submission + - 'Opt Out' soon or Verizon will sell your CPNI 1

Rothfuss writes: "I actually opened and read one of the 'Updates to my Customer Agreement Terms and Conditions' that I received from Verizon today. I have no idea why. This one explains that they will be upgrading my service by assuming (unless I tell them otherwise) that I am willing to let them sell my Customer Proprietary Network Information or give it to anyone they choose. Apparently that will help me. However, the FCC won't let them do this without your permission — like, for example *not* calling them and opting out. If you are a Verizon customer and would like to opt out, you can do so by calling 1-800-333-9956. Ask to speak to Mr. Prosser."

Submission + - $100 Laptop now $188

thebear05 writes: Due to a number of factors such as currency fluctuations and the cost of materials the cost of the one laptop per child initiative's laptop will now cost $188. Wayan Vota (former ceo of geek corps states "Where does it end? It started out at $130, then it was $148, then it was $176, now it's $188 — what's next? $200?"
Operating Systems

Submission + - Linux based desktop featured in Octobers Playboy

thebear05 writes: The Zonbu( desktop computer is feature in this Octobers Playboy Magazine. In the potpourri section it is described as "just enough" to meet our computer needs (word processing,e-mail, web browsing, image tweaking) this tiny pc comes without a keyboard monitor and mouse and costs $100 plus $13-$20 a month for two years the monthly fee is for support and online storage. the review points out "It runs Linux(which works just like windows) and is loaded with most of what you will need for everyday computing"
The Courts

Submission + - RIAA Complaint Dismissed as "Boilerplate"

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: "The decision many lawyers had been expecting — that the RIAA's "boilerplate" complaint fails to state a claim for relief under the Copyright Act — has indeed come down, but from an unlikely source. While the legal community has been looking towards a Manhattan case, Elektra v. Barker, for guidance, a case in which amicus briefs had been submitted by various industry groups and the US Department of Justice (see case file, and from Warner v. Cassin, a similar motion in the same Court's Westchester division, the decision instead came from Senior District Court Judge Rudi M. Brewster of the US District Court for the Southern District of California, in a decision denying a default judgment (i.e. the defendant had not even appeared in the action). Judge Brewster not only denied the default judgment motion but dismissed the complaint for failure to state a claim. Echoing the words of Judge Karas at the oral argument in Barker , Judge Brewster held (pdf) that "Plaintiff here must present at least some facts to show the plausibility of their allegations of copyright infringement against the Defendant. However, other than the bare conclusory statement that on "information and belief" Defendant has downloaded, distributed and/or made available for distribution to the public copyrighted works, Plaintiffs have presented no facts that would indicate that this allegation is anything more than speculation. The complaint is simply a boilerplate listing of the elements of copyright infringement without any facts pertaining specifically to the instant Defendant. The Court therefore finds that the complaint fails to sufficiently state a claim upon which relief can be granted and entry of default judgment is not warranted.""

Submission + - CISOs measure teleworkers security risks (

coondoggie writes: "Despite some not-so-secure security practices by its mobile workers and some recent data breaches staring them in the face, many Federal Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) say problems lie in training not the growth of official telework programs. In a Telework Exchange survey of 35 CISO's 63% said their top security priority was securing mobile computers. Ninety-four percent of those CISO's said teleworkers in an official program are not a data security concern. In addition, they are aware of some not-so-secure activities by their telecommuters. What percent of CISOs believe the following practices are common in their agencies? -Carry files home on floppy disks/USB drives 37% -Bring files home on laptop hard drives 23% -Carry physical files home 9%"

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