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! ×

Comment Measurability & short-term thinking (Score 1) 11

I think most companies these days are overly focused on the short term and on strictly measurable outcomes. Charging X customers $Y more will make use $XY more money, right now. Spending money on being nice to our customers is something where we can't really measure the return on that investment separate from anything else and, in any case, once we start working on this it will take a while for it to really pay off.

Comment Political parties (Score 1) 10

I think the main problem with our current political parties (worldwide) is that they are focused on methods rather than outcomes. Party A thinks this is always the best way to do things and Party B thinks that is always the best way to do things.

I think there's a possibility now (or soon) of a shift to a more outcome-based approach. "We want to get these results and we'll find the most effective most efficient way to get there."

Comment Privacy (Score 1) 1

My concern is not for my own privacy (I trust myself to recognize the implications and accept or reject the system accordingly) but the users of my site. If they aren't aware of all the ins and outs of Facebook's privacy options (which were pretty confusing already) they're going to freak out when they see "Bob posted this comment on turg's blog..." appear on their facebook wall. And their solution will probably be to stop using my site rather than to actually straighten out the facebook settings

The Internet

Submission + - Building A Data Center in 60 Days - Online

miller60 writes: "The facilities team at Australia's Pipe Networks is down to the wire in its bid to complete a data center in 60 days. And in an era when many major data center projects are shrouded in secrecy, they're putting the entire effort online, with daily updates and photos on the company blog, a live webcam inside the facility, a countdown timer and a punch-list of key tasks left to finish. Their goal is to complete the job by Friday morning."

Submission + - SOFIA Flies to California

Penguinshit writes: "NASA's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy left Texas for Southern California to continue engineering flight tests at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base. During its expected 20-year lifetime, SOFIA will be capable of "Great Observatory" class astronomical science, providing astronomers with access to the visible, infrared and sub-millimeter spectrum with optimized performance in the mid-infrared to sub-millimeter range. SOFIA's science and mission operations are managed jointly by the Universities Space Research Association and the Deutsches SOFIA Institut, and are based at NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field near San Jose, Calif."

Submission + - No "Puddle" Water on Surface of Mars After

Icarus1919 writes: Images of puddles of water on Mars have been revealed over the weekend to have been misinterpreted. It turns out that pooled water in the images taken is impossible for an entirely different reason: it's located on the side of a crater.

'"I want to retract the claim in the paper that the smooth area we discussed was 'standing liquid water'," Levin acknowledged on Tuesday. "I am sorry that we made such a large mistake."'

Submission + - Chase Bank Online forces cookies on customers

Alex in SD writes: I like to clear my browser's cache each time I quit the application — it's one of the reasons I love Firefox and now will check out Safari. Unfortunately — Chase Bank utilizes browser cookies as part of their authentication scheme. If you don't enable cookies — you have to go through a tedious re-authentication process each time you login which includes a one-time password sent via SMS, email or voice. It's an inconvenience — but seems like a pretty secure system. I just wonder how cookies actually make your computer safer.

Submission + - A Third Series of Stargate coming soon? (

Kirkex writes: Robert C. Cooper, executive producer of SCI FI Channel's Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis, confirmed to SCI FI Wire that he's developing a third series with the working title Stargate Universe, but remained mum on details. (The project has not yet been picked up by any network, including SCI FI Channel.)
Linux Business

Submission + - Venezuela launches Linux 'Bolivarian Computers' (

Voline writes: In the pursuit of technological independence Venezuela has begun shipping the first 'Bolivarian Computers'. Named after the hero of the South American independence struggle against Spain, they are made by VIT (Venezuela de Industria Tecnológica), which is a joint venture of the Chinese company Lang Chao and the Venezuelan government. The four desktop and single laptop models all run Gnu/Linux. VIT hopes to eventually begin distributing the inexpensive computers throughout Latin America.

Submission + - General Relativity Experimentally Confirmed!

Anonymous Reader writes: I have been watching this project for some years now, eagerly anticipating the results to incorporate them into my own theories on gravity being faster than light. I had feared the experiment was critially flawed because it was so delicate. However when I checked the site today it appears that Gravity Probe B is being hailed as a success!

Over four decades of planning, inventing, designing, developing, testing, training and rehearsing paid off handsomely for GP-B. The 17.3-month flight mission succeeded in collecting all the data needed to carry out this unprecedented, direct experimental test of Einstein's general theory of relativity — his theory of gravity.
This is big scientific news. I have yet to peruse the detailed results myself and absorb them into my personal view of the universe, but I am curious what readers here make of the results.

Submission + - How much is skype being snooped? (

hawkeesk8 writes: In Billing World's latest weekly e-Newsletter,, Dr. Jerry Lucas, founder of the World Lawful Intercept Conference, states in a column about CALEA, the United States controversial wire tapping law, "Outside of the NSA, most law enforcement offices have given up trying to decrypt Skype. But it is still possible to determine who called whom via Skype. Besides, even if someone is using Skype, it can't be guaranteed that someone else besides the person they are talking to isn't listening, because there are clever ways to spoof the system and get the keys." The author of the newsletter also writes, "And lastly, although Skype service is free, it is also considered a telecom service, and most Western countries require telecoms to release encryption keys upon request." With Lucas responding, "My bet is e-Bay, who owns Skype, does just that." The deadline for implementing CALEA has passed which would suggest that all big telecom carriers in the U.S. have the ability to tap your conversation. In light of that and the controversial NSA wire tapping scandal, how secure do you feel using the regular telephone vs. Skype?

Submission + - DreamHost blocks Google Bot on Shared Hosting - Ho

jsbi writes: DreamHost is supposedly touted as one of the Best web hosting providers by some of it's users[including a few people I know personally of]. But it now seems that it is requiring users to edit the .htaccess file to block GoogleBot from indexing their pages. Are you wondering what the GoogleBot is all about — well it is the Google web crawler that indexes web pages for them to appear on a Google search. It seems that the explanation given by DreamHost is that GoogleBot is a "high memory usage and load on the server" and blocking it seems only the way out. The company has already dispatched off email's to most of it's customers, asking them to make their content unsearchable for spiders and crawlers. I guess the entire move by DreamHost is rather so STUPID!! Instead of them to upgrade its systems to make them more powerful, stable and able to support the crawl process of Googlebot — they ask you shut it down completely. google-bot-on-shared.html

Slashdot Top Deals

Refreshed by a brief blackout, I got to my feet and went next door. -- Martin Amis, _Money_