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Submission + - GitHub hacked due to Rails vulnerability (

An anonymous reader writes: A Russian hacker demonstrated that GitHub was vulnerable to a so-called mass assignment attack. Over the weekend Egor Homakov gained admin access to the Ruby on Rails repository (including write access to the code repo) and posted a bug report 1,001 years in the future. In response GitHub quietly suspended his account and made a terse post to their blog. No word yet on whether other repositories have been compromised.

Comment Re:Or you never visualized them in the first place (Score 1) 845

First of all, I replied to a comment wondering about other people's calculation strategies, so I provided mine. Secondly, "I like doing problems like this in my head as I feel that it helps practise my short term memory". Thirdly, :), I haven't attended american school so I am not used to multiple choice.

Comment Re:Hard to believe (Score 2) 845

It's not that complicated mental arithmetic is ever necessary in every-day life, but practising solving problems like this in your head strengthens your ability to disassemble a problem into solvable parts and remembering the solutions to the simple problems long enough to reassemble them to a complete solution. This is useful, at least for me as a programmer. I imagine that having a good short term memory is good for anyone. You don't go to the gym because it will ever be useful to pull a really heavy lever 20 times, but those muscles may be useful for something else.

Comment Re:Or you never visualized them in the first place (Score 2) 845

I do 47 * 3 like I would on paper: 7 * 3 + 4 * 3 * 10 (i.e. ((4 * 10) + 7) * 3)

But on the more complicated problem I used the following strategy:
28 / 4 = 7
8 / 4 = 2
so 288 / 40 = 7.2

7.2 * 29
is 7.2 * 30 - 7.2
is 72 * 3 - 7.2
is 216 - 8 + 0.8
is 208.8

I like doing problems like this in my head as I feel that it helps practise my short term memory.

Comment Re:Inability to forget is hardly smart (Score 4, Insightful) 259

Exactly. My first thought was savant. There seems to me to be a balance between how many details one remembers and how well one can create abstractions. People who are very good at abstract thinking are so because they throw away irrelevant details and remember the bigger picture. Their pattern matching has gone up a level if you will.

Submission + - Ubuntu switches default Firefox search to Yahoo (

An anonymous reader writes: Starting in Lucid, the default search engine for Firefox will be switched from Google to Yahoo. The switch has been made after Canonical "negotiated a revenue sharing deal with Yahoo!". Google will still be available as a choice. Since Yahoo search is now powered by Microsoft's Bing, does this mean Microsoft will be paying people for using Ubuntu?

Submission + - iPhone App or Mobile Website? 2

Bad Mamba Jamba writes: I've noticed a trend on the Apple app store where well known websites are putting out their own iPhone application. Sites like Amazon, IMDB, Engadget, Fandango, etc. Yet the iPhone comes with a quite capable Safari browser; Javascript and all. Most of the iPhone apps I've seen could be done in HTML and Javascript as best I can tell. So why do people do an iPhone app? Especially when doing a web app would hit more devices than just the iPhone as the iPhone isn't the only mobile device with HTML and Javascript support.

I get the shopping experience is better on Amazon's app and because they may have put some smarts on the iPhone to offload servers and provide a snappier user experience. Or maybe you want to work disconnected. So there are technical arguments in some cases.

But in the case of the IMDB and Engadget apps, they just seem to be repackaging database content into a mobile UI. It seems like a lot of trouble to write an app that will only reach iPhones, when I could write an HTML Javascript version and hit way more mobile devices.

I suppose you could argue that being in iTunes gives you some kind of advertising angle, and maybe you can charge for the app (which the big dogs don't do) but a small specialized company might.

I'm currently considering ways to bring a mobile presence to my website and don't have a lot of experience in this space. I'd like to see what the Slashdot community has to say; iPhone app or mobile version of a website and why?

Comment Re:Any systems depend on a pulse (Score 1) 465

First responders cannot formally declare anything, that's true, but if they think she is dead she won't get much help. Maybe she hit her head or maybe she has something blocking her breathing. She might just freeze to death because someone mistook her for dead and didn't wrap her in blankets.
That said, I am undergoing training as a first responder and we are instructed to not bother with checking the pulse, too many false readings, both positive and negative. We check breathing and whether they respond to voice, touch or pain (in that order). If they don't have pulse, they are not breathing, and if they are not breathing you do CPR no matter if they have pulse or not.

Artificial Heart Recipient Has No Pulse 465

laggist writes "A heart patient in Singapore has been implanted with an artificial heart that pumps blood continuously, allowing her to live without a pulse. From the article: '... the petite Madam Salina, who suffers from end-stage heart failure, would not have been able to use the older and bulkier models because they can only be implanted in patients 1.7m or taller. The 30-year-old administrative assistant is the first recipient here to get a new artificial heart that pumps blood continuously, the reason why there are no beats on her wrist.'" The story is light on details, but an article from last year in MIT's Technology Review explains a bit more about how a pulse-less artificial heart works.

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