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BSA Claims Half of PC Users Are Pirates
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 06:15 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's gnu-is-a-crime department:
judgecorp writes "Despite continued pressure on business users to buy legitimate software, the Business Software Alliance (BSA) reports that the campaign seems to be failing. Well over half (57%) of users surveyed in a global survey admit to using pirated software. That's a big increase from the same survey last year — when 43% admitted to using pirated software. The BSA surveyed 15,000 people in 33 countries."

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Emacsy: An Embeddable Toolkit of Emacs-like Functionality
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 04:00 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's ignoring-preexisting-projects-for-fun-and-profit department:
An anonymous reader writes "Emacsy is 'a Guile library that provides Emacs-like facilities — keymaps, minibuffer, tab completion, recordable macros, and major/minor modes — for applications natively.' However, to my eyes, it looks more like an attempt to revive the development style done on Symbolics Lisp Machines that survives to some extent in Emacs. Might be a boon to Emacs users, but where's a comparable VIM alternative?"

The skeptic in me asks what benefit this would have over just using libguile directly, and how it fits in with efforts to port Emacs itself to Guile and things like Englightenment's pluggable event loop. The example code seems to imply Emacs-like APIs will be used (despite not intending to replace parts of Emacs), even when better alternatives exist. Some of the proposed components seem orthogonal to existing interface toolkits; others seem to compete with components provided by various Free desktop environments.

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NRC Chairman Resigns
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 03:00 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's let's-all-get-along department:
After years of accusations of creating a 'chilled work environment,' NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko resigned this morning (PDF). His largest achievement was perhaps killing the Yucca Mountain waste repository, and he oversaw the certification of the AP1000 reactor. It is unknown whether a new chairman will be appointed from within the NRC. Quoting the Washington Post: "The reason for his resignation is unclear. He is stepping down before the release of a second inspector general report rumored to be into allegations of Mr. Jaczko's misconduct. NRC spokesman Eliot Brenner told The Washington Times that the report had no impact on the timing of Mr. Jaczko's resignation announcement. Mr. Jaczko's statement was vague, saying that it 'is the appropriate time to continue my efforts to ensure public safety in a different forum. This is the right time to pass along the public safety torch to a new chairman...' While his statement did not specifically touch on the embarrassing revelations of his tyrannical approach to the job or its impact on NRC staff, he did sound a defiant note by claiming the NRC was 'one of the best places to work in the federal government throughout my tenure.'"

Today also marks the start of the annual nuclear industry conference.

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Foxconn Invests $210 Million To Build New Production Line For Apple
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 02:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's crank-it-out department:
redletterdave writes "On Monday, Foxconn agreed to invest $210 million to help Apple build out a new production line for 'unspecified components.' The 40,000-square-meter plant plans to hire roughly 35,800 new employees to help assemble parts for either desktop and laptop computers, iPhones, iPads, iPods, or possibly even new products or devices. Apple projects the plant's annual output between $949 million to $1.1 billion, and also estimates the import and export value at roughly $55.8 million."

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Rutger's Student Dharun Ravi Sentenced To 30-Day Jail Time
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 01:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's go-directly-to-jail department:
parallel_prankster writes "New York Times reports that a judge in New Jersey has sentenced Dharun Ravi to 30 days in jail Monday for using a webcam to spy on his Rutgers University roommate having sex with a man, in a case that galvanized concern about suicide among gay teenagers but also prompted debate about the use of laws against hate crimes. The case drew wide attention because his roommate, Tyler Clementi, jumped to his death from the George Washington Bridge in September 2010, a few days after learning of the spying. A jury convicted Mr. Ravi in March of all 15 counts against him, which included invasion of privacy and bias intimidation. The relatively light sentence — he faced up to 10 years in prison — surprised many who were watching the hearing, as it came after the judge spent several minutes criticizing Mr. Ravi's behavior."

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Perl 5.16.0 Released
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 01:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's check-it-out department:
An anonymous reader writes "Perl 5.16.0 is now available with plenty of improvements all around. You can view a summary and all the change details here. With Perl on an annual release schedule, and projects like Mojolicious, Dancer, perlbrew, Plack, and Moose continuing to gain in popularity, are we in the middle of a Perl renaissance?"

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Mega-Uploads: The Cloud's Unspoken Hurdle
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 12:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's mountain-of-disks department:
First time accepted submitter n7ytd writes "The Register has a piece today about overcoming one of the biggest challenges to migrating to cloud-based storage: how to get all that data onto the service provider's disks. With all of the enterprisey interweb solutions available, the oldest answer is still the right one: ship them your disks. Remember: 'Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurtling down the highway.'"

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SCOTUS Refuses To Hear Tenenbaum Appeal
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 11:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's pay-up department:
quantr writes "The Supreme Court has declined to hear Joel Tenenbaum's appeal. A jury in 2009 ordered Tenenbaum, of Providence, R.I., to pay $675,000 for illegally downloading and sharing 30 songs. A federal judge called the penalty constitutionally excessive, but the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated it at the request of the Recording Industry Association of America. Tenenbaum's attorney, Harvard law professor Charles Nesson, said he's disappointed the high court won't hear the case. But he said the 1st Circuit instructed a judge to consider reducing the award without deciding any constitutional challenge. Nesson said 'Tenenbaum is just entering the job market and can't pay the penalty.'"

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White House Petition For Open Access To Research
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 11:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's show-your-work department:
dstates writes "You paid for it, you should be able to read the results of publicly funded research. The National Institutes of Health have had a very successful open access mandate requiring that the results of federally funded biomedical research be published in open access journals. Now there is a White House petition to broaden this mandate. This is a jobs issue. Startups and midsize business need access to federally funded technology research. It is a health care issue, patients and community health providers need access, not a few scientists in well funded research institutes, and even wealthy institutions like Harvard are finding the prices of proprietary journals unsustainable."

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Maryland Teen Wins World's Largest Science Fair
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 11:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's wonders-of-evaporation department:
Velcroman1 writes "A Maryland student was awarded the top prize at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair on Friday for developing a urine and blood test that detects pancreatic cancer with 90 percent accuracy. Jack Andraka, 15, claimed the $75,000 prize for his test, which is roughly 28 times cheaper and faster, and over 100 times more sensitive than current tests. Each year, approximately 7 million high school students around the globe develop original research projects and present their work at local science fairs with the hope of winning."

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Allowing the Mind To Wander Aids Creative Problem Solving
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 10:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's daydream-a-better-tomorrow department:
ananyo writes "From the Nature story: 'Scientists from Archimedes to Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein are said to have had flashes of inspiration while thinking about other things. But the mechanisms behind this psychological phenomenon have remained unclear. A study now suggests that simply taking a break does not bring on inspiration — rather, creativity is fostered by tasks that allow the mind to wander.' The researchers gave 145 students 2 minutes to list as many possible uses for an everyday object (the creative thinking task). Participants then either rested, undertook a demanding memory activity that required their full attention or engaged in an undemanding reaction-time activity known to elicit mind-wandering. A fourth group of students had no break. The researchers then set the students a second set of unusual-uses tasks and found those that had, in the interim, been set the undemanding task that encouraged mind-wandering performed an average of around 40% better than they did before. The students in the other three groups showed no improvement."

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Google Chrome Becomes World's No. 1 Browser
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 09:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's top-of-the-class department:
redletterdave writes "Just six months after Google Chrome eclipsed Mozilla's Firefox to become the world's second most popular Web browser, Chrome finally surpassed Microsoft's Internet Explorer on Sunday to become the most-used Web browser in the world, according to Statcounter. Since May 2011, Internet Explorer's global market share has been steadily decreasing from 43.9 percent to 31.4 percent of all worldwide users. In that time, Chrome has climbed from below 20 percent to nearly 32 percent of the market share. Yet, while Chrome is now the No. 1 browser in the world, it still lags behind Internet Explorer here in the U.S., but that will soon change. Chrome currently has 27.1 percent of the U.S. market share, compared to Internet Explorer's 30.9 percent, but IE is seeing significant drop-offs in usage while Chrome continues to rise."

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The Leap: Gesture Control Like Kinect, But Cheaper and Higher Resolution
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 08:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's all-the-better-to-track-you-with department:
MrSeb writes "It seems Minority Report-style computer interfaces might arrive a whole lot sooner than we expected: A new USB device, called The Leap, creates an 8-cubic-feet bubble of 'interaction space,' which detects your hand gestures down to an accuracy of 0.01 millimeters — about 200 times more accurate than 'existing touch-free products and technologies,' such as your smartphone's touchscreen or Microsoft Kinect. Unfortunately Leap Motion (the company behind the Leap) is being very tight-lipped about the technology being used, but it's probably some kind of infrared LIDAR (radar, but using light), or perhaps a high-resolution version of Kinect (which only uses a 640x480 camera). It's available to pre-order for $70 — and developers can register for a free device + SDK."

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Facebook Shares Retreat Below IPO Price
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 08:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's back-to-reality department:
First time accepted submitter gtirloni writes "Just days after wrapping up the biggest initial public offering in Silicon Valley history, shares of Facebook slumped 6% and tumbled below their issue price on Monday, a troubling signal for the newly-public social network. Facebook broke below its $38-a-share issue IPO price in the wake of a highly-anticipated offering that raised more than $16 billion, the second-largest domestic IPO after Visa's 2008 debut. Shares of Facebook were recently off 6.44% to $35.72."

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The State of Linux Accessibility
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 07:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's all-inclusive department:
Dog's_Breakfast writes "This week's edition of DistroWatch Weekly News features a unique story entitled 'Linux Accessibility — What is it and Why Does It Matter?' The article was written by Robert Cole, a blind person with a computer science degree. Mr Cole points out that Linux offers an excellent set of free tools for seeing-impaired users. Putting together a similar set of tools on Windows would cost at least US$600, about double what a retail copy of Windows itself costs."

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Ask Slashdot: Best Way To Monitor Traffic?
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 06:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's keeping-an-eye-on-things department:
First time accepted submitter Shalmendo writes "My client needs to monitor traffic on his LAN, particularly going out to the internet. This will include websites like Facebook, Myspace, and similar, including from mobile devices. So far, based on the network education I have, I've concluded that it might be best to get a tap (And some kind of recording system with wireshark, probably a mini-barebone), or replace the existing Linksys router with a custom built mini barebone system with linux routing software and appropriate storage capacity etc to record traffic internally. (either way it looks like I will need to put together a mini barebone system for some purpose) My client is trying to protect his family from scammers and other unsavory types, and isn't savvy in this matter, so i'm doing it for him. What I need is a way to record the traffic at a singular point, like modem/router areas, or similar, and a way to scrape out Facebook, Myspace, and other messages. It also appears that the client's family is using iPhones and some game called 'words' which has message capability. Is it possible to scrape messages out of that game's packets, or are they obfuscated? Can I write a script? What software would you recommend? Linux routing OS? Can we sniff packets and drop them on the internal hard drive? or would a tap be better? How do I analyze and sort the data afterwards? my client needs easily read evidence (Such as text or screenshots) he can use as proof in discussion with his family to try and intercede in any potentially harmful transactions. In other words, how can I Achieve this goal? I have basic and medium training in computer networking, so I can make my own cables and such, but I've never worked on this exact kind of project before, and thought it might be better to query slashdot instead of do my own research from scratch. After days of discussion with the client, it's not plausible to put monitoring software in the devices on the network (due to legal issues and a few other factors), so I concluded a network tap or other device would be the best way to capture and study what's going on."

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White House Hires a New Cybersecurity Boss
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 06:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's who's-in-charge department:
TheGift73 writes "Last week, longtime chief Howard Schmidt stepped down. He's been replaced by Michael Daniel, who's been in the Office of Management and Budget's national security division for 17 years. What does that mean for the future of the cybersecurity issue? Probably that we can expect his knowledge of the intelligence community to play a part in not just tracking down hackers, but determining the lines that need to be crossed with future SOPA-like bills. So while this sounds like a relatively nondescript appointment, Daniel will almost definitely be a major player the next time someone comes for your internet."

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Ultra-Orthodox Jews Rally For a More Kosher Internet
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 05:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's hold-the-spam department:
Hugh Pickens writes "Michael Grynbaum writes that 40,000 ultra-Orthodox Jewish men filed through the gates of Citi Field to discuss the dangers of the Internet. For the attendees, many of whom said they came at the instructions of their rabbis, it was a chance to hear about a moral topic considered gravely important in the Hasidic community: the potential problems that can stem from access to pornography and other explicit content on the uncensored, often incendiary Web. Schlomo Cohen, 24, said he came to Citi Field because the rally was a good way to remind his community to keep temptation at bay. 'Desires are out there,' said Cohen. 'We have to learn how to control ourselves.' The rally was sponsored by a rabbinical group, Ichud Hakehillos Letohar Hamachane, that is linked to a software company that sells Internet filtering software to Orthodox Jews. Those in attendance were handed fliers that advertised services like a 'kosher GPS App' for iPhone and Android phones, which helps users locate synagogues and kosher restaurants. 'No one here is a Luddite who denies the manifold benefits that technology has brought to mankind as a whole,' says Eytan Kobre, spokesman for the event. 'But at a certain point, a mature, thinking individual stops and says, "I've got to make a cost-benefit analysis [of] what ways it is enriching my life, [and] in what ways it is undermining it."'"

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Employee "Disciplined" For Installing Bitcoin Software On Federal Webservers
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 05:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's bad-idea department:
Fluffeh writes "Around a year ago, a person working for the ABC in Australia with the highest levels of access to systems got caught caught with his fingers on the CPU cycles. The staffer had installed Bitcoin mining software on the systems used by the Australian broadcaster. While the story made a bit of a splash at the time, it was finally announced today that the staffer hadn't been sacked, but was merely being disciplined by his manager and having his access to systems restricted. All the stories seem a little vague as to what he actually installed however — on one side he installed the software on a public facing websever, and the ABC itself admits 'As this software was for a short time embedded within pages on the ABC website, visitors to these pages may have been exposed to the Bitcoin software' and 'the Coalition (current Opposition Parties) was planning on quizzing the ABC further about the issue, including filing a request for the code that would have been downloaded to users' machines,' but on the other side there is no mention of the staffer trying to seed a Bitcoin mining botnet through the site, just that mining software had been installed."

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Amazon Poised To Get Cut of CA Sales Taxes
Posted by News Fetcher on May 21 '12 at 04:15 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's unfettered-free-market-free-of-cronyism department:
theodp writes "Eager to host Amazon warehouses and receive a cut of the tax on sales to customers statewide, the LA Times reports that two California cities are offering Amazon most of the tax money they stand to gain. After agreeing to collect California sales taxes beginning in the fall, Amazon is setting up two fulfillment centers in San Bernadino and Patterson, which will gain not only jobs but also a tax bonanza: Sales to Amazon customers throughout California will be deemed to take place there, so all the sales tax earmarked for local government operations will go to those two cities. The windfall is so lucrative that local officials are preparing to give Amazon the lion's share of their take as a reward for setting up shop there. 'The tax is supposed to be supporting government,' said Lenny Goldberg, executive director of the California Tax Reform Assn., of the proposed sales-tax rebate. 'Instead, it's going back into Amazon's pocket.' Sen. Mark DeSaulnier added: 'It seems like the private sector finds a way to pit one city against the other. You can't give away sales tax in this manner.'"

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