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Comment opt-out paradigm (Score 4, Interesting) 153

First, I'm amazed that Google would stumble out of the blocks like this. Isn't this the same company that keeps things in "beta" and "labs" for years and years? Had this "feature" been available for the general public to play with for a month or three before bringing out the "big guns"--opt-out implementation for all gmail users--these shortcomings would have been caught and remedied before they were inflicted on unsuspecting non-power-users.

Second, I can certainly appreciate the difficulty of creating the spark of life in a new social network platform. Ordinary players in the market have to hope that lightning strikes. As Google already has learned with Orkut, if lightning doesn't strike, maybe your product can find a niche somewhere in the long tail. Or it will never come to life at all. With Buzz, Google decided they didn't want to risk a sunny day, and chose instead to play with the high voltage line. Insta-social network by compelling everyone to connect with their personal email addresses. Deservedly, they're now getting burned--Gmail was many people's default "real" personal email site. Compelling a connection between people's real personal email address to a social network (on an opt-out basis) might shake people free of that preference...


13-Year-Old Trades iPod For a Walkman For a Week 354

BBC Magazine convinced 13-year-old Scott Campbell to trade in his iPod for a Walkman for a week and see what he thought. Scott thinks the iPod wins when it comes to sound quality, color, weight, and the shuffle feature. The Walkman, however, offers two headphone sockets, making it much easier to listen to music with a friend. My favorite part of the review is, "It took me three days to figure out that there was another side to the tape. That was not the only naive mistake that I made; I mistook the metal/normal switch on the Walkman for a genre-specific equalizer, but later I discovered that it was in fact used to switch between two different types of cassette."

Comment Re:"Snow Bound" (Score 1) 429

Unfortunately, here in the nanny state where they tell you what to do all the fucking time and how you should be taken care of by the government, they don't do fucking jack to the roads.

You're welcome to move, you know. If the weather isn't keeping gripers like you out, it obviously isn't doing its job.


Submission + - Stealth Advertising hits the Airwaves (

The0retical writes: " Ars Technica has an article about advertisements such as product placments are being inserted into local newscasts in order to generate more revenue for the station as users become much more savvy at timeshifting.

A new study from the University of Oregon has found that local news broadcasts are being infiltrated by advertising at around the same rate that DVR users skip ads.The fact that DVRs allow viewers to skip adverts is seen as one of their biggest benefits by users, but advertisers — and the TV networks that depend on them — are not so happy. Ad buyers don't want to pay full price for slots that viewers will never see, and TV networks are going as far as asking fans not to watch timeshifted programs but instead watch them live, lest the show in question get canceled."


Submission + - Google Responds to criticism - by deleting it

Matt423 writes: Information week reports about changes to Google Groups: Google Groups users, however, detest the changes, at least those who have gone to the effort of posting. While there's probably a silent majority that ranges from neutral to enthusiastic about the new interface and features, the users posting their opinions online have few nice things to say. A person posting as "Matty F" wrote, "This new version of Google Groups is almost completely unusable. Can we have the old one back please?" Such sentiment reflects a common theme among the disgruntled users. Another poster identifying himself as "Rich Jordan" wrote, "I'll have to add my dismay over this change. The new interface is ugly and slow compared to the previous one, and much, much less intuitive." "The new interface is really awful," a person with the user name Gabriele complained. Google apparently rushed into action today and apparently deleted or scattered hundred of posts that were critical including one thread that had almost 100 posts. cle.jhtml?articleID=197000377 ics/browse_thread/thread/12b929f18ed762a7
United States

Submission + - U.S. Release Docs Form Barred E-Voting Test Lab

InternetVoting writes: "Still trying to dig themselves out from recent allegations of secrecy, the US Election Assistance Commission has released documents relating to the recent decertification of the e-Voting test lab CIBER. In a letter to CIBER CEO, the EAC informed him that since they shared confidential documents with a third party, the EAC was not authorized to make them public."

Submission + - Court Documents Show Microsoft's Tiger Envy

phillymjs writes: "PC Pro is reporting on another juicy e-mail nugget from the Sent Items of Jim Allchin, (nyud link, PDF) courtesy of Iowa's Comes v. Microsoft trial. It's a lengthy e-mail conversation from late June, 2004 — in which several Microsofties ooh and ahh over features of the yet-unreleased Mac OS X 10.4. IMHO the award for best quote goes to Lenn Pryor, who said, 'It is like I just got a free pass to Longhorn land today.'"

Submission + - Movie piracy no big deal to most Americans

ScottSCY writes: is reporting that Solutions Research Group recently conducted a phone survey in which only 40% of Americans believe illegally downloading movies to be a 'very serious offense', compared to 59% who think parking in a fire lane is a worse offense. Contrast this with 78% who said shoplifting a DVD from a store is a serious offense.

Submission + - Does every posting have to be a question?

gregger writes: The growing trend for Slashdot posts appears to be that you must end your headline with a question mark. At least 63 posts in January 2007 have been posed as questions. Now, why is that? Are people afraid of making a statement?
Operating Systems

Submission + - Windows to Linux. Which distro to pick?

Redjoy writes: I just finished school and I would now like to make the switch to linux (at home).

I have the following PC:
1. Custom (233MHz, 128MB RAM?, 80GB HD, OS:win98)
2. Compaq presario (400MHz?,256MB RAM, 20GB HD, OS:XPPro)
3. Dell GX1 (500MHz, 768MB RAM, 160GB HD, OS:XPPro)
4. DELL INSPIRON 9300 (1.6GHz, 512MB RAM, 40GB HD, OS:XPPro)

I would like to use:
1. for storage (shared files)
2. belongs to my wife (use for web browsing, email, and simple "office" applications.
3. for storage (Tivo, backup files)
4. main system (does everything)

My question to the community is what distro should I install for each system, and why I should intall that distro?

I am open to all (non MS) operating systems.

Submission + - Deep Fritz beats Kramnik

Syats writes: As BBC points out Deep Fritz beats World Chess Champion Vladimir Kramnik; of a six game match, four were draws and two victories for the computer. Kramnik is talking of a rematch... in a couple of months, when Deep Fritz is even better.

Submission + - Intel to produce no hard drive cheap laptop

sien writes: In a similar vein to the One Laptop Per Child computer Intel have announced that they intend to produce a similar cheap laptop using flash storage. The story is on The Age and also at the Herald Tribune. The entry of Intel and the declaration that Microsoft intend to get Windows running on the One Laptop Per Child machine suggests that there may be a general market for a cheap, robust laptop without hard drive or optical storage.

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