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The Google-fication of Yahoo!
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 10:15 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's they're-feeling-lucky department:
Hugh Pickens writes "Since coming to Yahoo!, CEO Marissa Mayer has added a weekly, Friday afternoon all-hands meeting, just like at Google; she announced that henceforth the food in Yahoo's URLs Cafe will be free, just like at Google; and she has begun prepping major changes to the layout of the work spaces and buildings of Yahoo to make it feel more collaborative and cool, just like, well.. you get the idea. Such focus on improving cultural issues is an interesting initial move by the neophyte CEO, since the care and feeding and, most of all, cosseting of employees has been a critical element to Google's success at creating an always-sunny work environment. But Mayer has been up to much more serious business, said several sources, especially product innovation as the savior for Yahoo: Better email! Better search! Better ad-serving! And a special plea to make Flickr awesome again! In other words, better every product Yahoo has to offer. 'This is the sound of Yahoo becoming a technology company again,' says one source. 'It will be all about platforms and products.' Sources say that will likely mean a big splashy tech or product deal in the days ahead, perhaps via an acquisition to signal the new direction, perhaps with the acquisition of a sexy product like Flipboard. In the meantime, many at Yahoo are bracing for a pack of current and former Googlers — Mayer had a lot of loyal staffers — to come on board, writes Kara Swisher. 'And, by the looks of all the Googley changes at Yahoo, they'll feel right at home when they get there.'"

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Content-Centric Networking & the Next Internet
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 09:30 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's bits-must-still-flow department:
waderoush writes "PARC research fellow Van Jacobson argues that the Internet was never designed to carry exabytes of video, voice, and image data to consumers' homes and mobile devices, and that it will never be possible to increase bandwidth fast enough to keep up with demand. In fact, he thinks that the Internet has outgrown its original underpinnings as a network built on physical addresses, and that it's time to put aside TCP/IP and start over with a completely novel approach to naming, storing, and moving data. The fundamental idea behind Jacobson's alternative proposal — Content Centric Networking — is that to retrieve a piece of data, you should only have to care about what you want, not where it's stored. If implemented, the idea might undermine many current business models in the software and digital content industries — while at the same time creating new ones. In other words, it's exactly the kind of revolutionary idea that has remade Silicon Valley at least four times since the 1960s."

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The World's Greatest Competitive Programmer
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 08:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's wait-for-the-congressional-hearings department:
An anonymous reader writes "Technology Review profiles Petr Mitrichev, who has since 2005 dominated the world of competitive programming, a little known sport where competitors furiously code for five hours in pursuit of glory and cash prizes worth tens of thousands of dollars. Mitrichev now works for Google, and competes only for leisure, but is still ranked number one. Many large tech companies, such as Facebook and Google, now sponsor and pay close attention to competitive coding contests, seeing them as a place to recruit new talent."

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Vietnamese Bank Issues Fingerprint-Enabled Debit Cards
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 08:30 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's can't-come-soon-enough department:
sweetpea86 writes "Mekong Development has become the first bank in Vietnam to launch fingerprint authentication enabled debit cards. Fingerprints are captured by Mekong Development at the point of opening an account, and then can be used, instead of a pin, to access funds. Not only has Mekong's account base tripled through the use of fingerprint technology since its launch in June, but the deposit balance per debit card account is two times higher than a regular account."

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The Underground Economy of Social Networks
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 08:15 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's such-a-strange-world-we-live-in department:
An anonymous reader writes "In a new study, Barracuda Labs analyzed a random sampling of more than 70,000 fake Twitter accounts that are being used to sell fake Twitter followers. They also analyzed some of the people that are using such fake followers including the recent example of U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney's Twitter account. Between Facebook's 10-Q filing stating that 83 million of its accounts are fake, to Mitt Romney's Twitter account recently falling under scrutiny for suspicious followings, fake social network profiles are a hot topic at the moment. And these fake profiles are at the center of a very vibrant and growing underground economy. This underground economy consists of dealers who create and sell the use of thousands of fake social accounts, and abusers who buy follows or likes from these fake accounts to boost their perceived popularity, sell advertising based on their now large social audience or conduct other malicious activity."

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Wired Writer Hack Shows Need For Tighter Cloud Security
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 07:15 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's internet-I-think-they-mean department:
Nerval's Lobster writes "Between 4:52 and 5:12 on August 3, attackers used Wired writer Mat Honan's Apple ID to wipe his MacBook, before seizing control of his Gmail and other online identities ('My accounts were daisy-chained together,' he wrote in an Aug. 6 postmortem on Wired), and posting a message on Twitter for all to see: 'Clan Vv3 and Phobia hacked this twitter.' In the wake of Honan's high-profile hack, there are some key takeaways. Even if a typical user can't prevent a social-engineering attack on the company hosting their cloud account, they can armor their online life in ways that make attacks more difficult. First, two-factor authentication can prevent an attacker from seizing control of those vital 'hub' accounts (such as Gmail) where users tend to store much of their most vital information. Google offers two-step verification for signing in, as does Facebook. The truly security-conscious can also uncouple their cloud accounts; for example, making sure that iCloud and iTunes use two different sets of credentials. That might rob daily life in the cloud of some of its convenience, but it could also make you a harder target."

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Ask Slashdot: Understanding the SNES?
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 06:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's when-you-can-snatch-this-pebble-from-my-hand department:
An anonymous reader writes "As a product of the 90s I grew up loving the classics that kids today know about from Wikipedia and pop-culture references. Games like Super Bomberman, Zelda: A Link to the Past, Donkey Kong Country I and III (II was a sellout, come on) are the foundations of my childhood memories. Now, though, as a fourth-year electrical engineering major I find myself increasingly impressed by the level of technical difficulty embedded in that 16-bit console. I am trying, now, to find a resource that will take me through the technical design of the SNES (memory layout, processor information, cartridge pin layouts/documentation) to get a better understanding of what I naively enjoyed 15 some years ago. I am reaching out to the vast resources available from the minds of the Slashdot community. Any guide/blog series that you know of that walks through some of the technical aspects of the, preferably, SNES (alternatively, NES/Nintendo 64) console would be much appreciated."

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Sensor Uses Body's Electrical Signature To Secure Devices
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 06:30 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's stop-lying-so-you-can-use-your-computer department:
coondoggie writes with word that a "group of researchers is proposing a sensor that would authenticate mobile and wearable computer systems by using the unique electrical properties of a person's body to recognize their identity. In a paper [presented Monday] at the USENIX Workshop on Health Security and Privacy, researchers from Dartmouth University Institute for Security, Technology, and Society defined this security sensor device, known as Amulet, as a 'piece of jewelry, not unlike a watch, that would contain small electrodes to measure bioimpedance — a measure of how the body's tissues oppose a tiny applied alternating current- and learns how a person's body uniquely responds to alternating current of different frequencies.'"

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How Haiku Is Building a Better BeOS
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 05:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's 5-7-5-in-the-headline department:
angry tapir writes "BeOS may be dead, but over a decade after its lamentable demise the open source Haiku project keeps its legacy alive. Haiku is an attempt to build a drop-in, binary compatible replacement for BeOS, as well as extending the defunct OS's functionality and support for modern hardware. At least, that's the short-term goal — eventually, Haiku is intended significantly enhance BeOS while maintaining the same philosophy of simplicity and transparency, and without being weighed down with the legacy code of many other contemporary operating systems. I recently caught up with Stephan Aßmus, who has been a key contributor to the project for seven years to talk about BeOS, the current state of Haiku and the project's future plans."

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A New Glider Found For Conway's Game of Life
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 05:15 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's also-a-new-number-between-11-and-12 department:
An anonymous reader writes "Conway's Game of Life is now forty two years old, but it continues toinspire as well as being the basis of an actively researched field, with computer scientists now announcing they have found a new form of the famous 'glider' pattern (once suggested by Eric S Raymond as the insignia of computer hackers) that runs over a so-called Penrose universe."

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MS-DOS Not Stolen, New Forensic Analysis Concludes
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 05:00 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's sorry-to-disappoint-you department:
theodp writes "Challenging earlier assertions that Bill Gates got the rewards due Gary Kildall, a forensic analysis conducted for the latest issue of IEEE Spectrum concludes that the landmark MS-DOS operating system which Bill Gates and Microsoft licensed to IBM was an original piece of work, not stolen goods. Using his company's CodeSuite forensic software, Bob Zeidman said he found no evidence that QDOS or MS-DOS was copied from or was a derivative of Gary Kildall's CP/M. So, what do you think of Microsoft expert witness (pdf) Zeidman's "if-the-codebase-doesn't-fit-you-must-acquit" arguments?"

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Dark Reign 2 Goes Open Source
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 04:30 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's shhhh-now department:
An anonymous reader writes "One of Activision's last RTS games, Dark Reign 2, has gone open source under the LGPL. Although the release by a former Pandemic Studios employee was some time ago, it had happened relatively silently. With the source code now available, it is hoped that online play that isn't dependent on WON servers will be implemented and possibly ports to other platforms."

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NASA Scientist: Heat Waves Really Are From Global Warming
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 04:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's if-you-say-so department:
mdsolar writes with a tidbit from the New York Times on global warming: "The percentage of the earth's land surface covered by extreme heat in the summer has soared in recent decades, from less than 1 percent in the years before 1980 to as much as 13 percent in recent years, according to a new scientific paper. The change is so drastic, the paper says, that scientists can claim with near certainty that events like the Texas heat wave last year, the Russian heat wave of 2010 and the European heat wave of 2003 would not have happened without the planetary warming caused by the human release of greenhouse gases. Those claims, which go beyond the established scientific consensus about the role of climate change in causing weather extremes, were advanced by James E. Hansen, a prominent NASA climate scientist, and two co-authors in a scientific paper published online on Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 'The main thing is just to look at the statistics and see that the change is too large to be natural,' Dr. Hansen said in an interview."

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Kindle E-Book Sales Surpass Print Sales In UK
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 01:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's big-brother-is-quite-pleased department:
twoheadedboy writes "Book lovers are increasingly turning to e-books, and in the UK Amazon has announced it now sells more e-books than physical copies on Amazon.co.uk. Kindle books surpassed sales of hardbacks in the UK back in May 2011 at a rate of two to one and now they have leapfrogged the combined totals of both hardbacks and paperbacks."

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ReactOS Presented To Russian President Putin
Posted by News Fetcher on August 07 '12 at 12:00 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's putin-rears-his-reverse-engineered-head department:
An anonymous reader writes "While President Putin was touring the area of Seliger Youth Forum, Marat Karatov demonstrated what can only be described as a fair amount of daring when he called out to the president and requested to present ReactOS to him. Putin agreed, and the project has now presented ReactOS to two successive Russian presidents. Putin responded to the presentation by stating he would think on it."

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How Apple and Amazon Security Flaws Led To Mat Honan's Identity Theft
Posted by News Fetcher on August 06 '12 at 11:15 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's quick-turnaround department:
An anonymous reader writes "The story behind the hacking of Mat Honan's multiple accounts has been revealed and points to massive failures in how Amazon and Apple handle password recovery. Accounts for both sites can be easily accessed with simple to find publicly available information. If you ask me, both companies should be liable for violating privacy laws."

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The Pacific Ocean Is Polluted With Coffee
Posted by News Fetcher on August 06 '12 at 08:15 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's marianas-trench-starbucks-grand-opening department:
An anonymous reader writes in with this excerpt from Inhabitat:"People aren't the only ones getting a jolt from caffeine these days; in a new study published in Marine Pollution Bulletin, scientists found elevated concentrations of caffeine in the Pacific Ocean in areas off the coast of Oregon. With all those coffee drinkers in the Pacific Northwest, it should be no surprise that human waste containing caffeine would ultimately make its way through municipal water systems and out to sea – but how will the presence of caffeine in our oceans affect human health and natural ecosystems?"

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Time Machines, Computer Memory, and Brute Force Attacks Against Smartcards
Posted by News Fetcher on August 06 '12 at 06:15 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's one-too-many-questions department:
An anonymous reader writes "IEEE Spectrum reports on a method that exploits the decaying contents of unpowered computer memory to create an hourglass-like 'time machine' that rate limits brute force attacks against contactless smartcards and RFIDs. The paper takes an odd twist on the 'cold boot' attack reported four years ago at USENIX Security. Not quite as cool as a hot tub time machine though. "

Full paper (PDF).

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Best Buy Founder Makes $8.5 Billion Bid To Take Company Private
Posted by News Fetcher on August 06 '12 at 04:15 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's escaping-those-annoying-shareholders department:
zacharye writes "Best Buy founder and the company's largest shareholder Richard Schulze has offered as much as $8.5 billion to take the company private. Schulze had been rumored to be preparing a takeover offer for some time, and he recently assembled a team of executives that will run the company if his buyout offer is approved. His offer amounts to between $24 and $26 per share, a premium of as much as 47% over Best Buy's stock price at Friday's close..."

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NASA Releases HiRISE Images of Curiosity's Descent
Posted by News Fetcher on August 06 '12 at 03:45 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's in-space-everything-is-awesome department:
gcnaddict writes "NASA released content from the MRO HiRISE imager taken during the descent of the Curiosity Rover. Among the most notable artifacts are the images themselves as well as a diagram showing the exact location of the rover relative to NASA's target."

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