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Update On Wayland and X11 Support
Posted by News Fetcher on April 06 '12 at 07:30 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's no-love-for-x11 department:
Phoronix was at the Linux Foundation Collaboration
Summit and has two articles on the status of Wayland and X11
integration. The second talk was about the current
status of Wayland
, and its impending release (version 1.0 is due
this summer). The developers also have an experimental GNOME-Shell
working on Wayland. There's a (kind of shaky) video of this
talk
(attached, and at youtube for those wanting the html5
version). The first talk (by Keith Packard) covered X11
support on Wayland
. It's basically ready to go, but window
management is implemented only as a hack right now. The next year
could be quite exciting for GNU/Linux and BSD users as distributions
begin including Wayland as an alternative to X.org.

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Larry Page Issues Public Update On Google Changes
Posted by News Fetcher on April 06 '12 at 07:30 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's trust-us-we're-not-evil department:
itwbennett writes "Larry Page just wants to be loved. Well, he wants 'Google to be a company that is deserving of great love,' Page wrote in a public letter. But he also wants to offer the kind of personalized service that the requires trampling on your privacy. 'The recent changes we made to our privacy policies generated a lot of interest. But they will enable us to create a much better, more intuitive experience across Google — our key focus for the year,' Page wrote."

From the letter: "Think about basic actions like sharing or recommendations. When you find a great article, you want to share that knowledge with people who will find it interesting, too. If you see a great movie, you want to recommend it to friends. Google+ makes sharing super easy by creating a social layer across all our products so users connect with the people who matter to them." With all the claims of altruistic intent in the open letter, one might wonder why Google has to push their own social network instead of working on open protocols for sharing.

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Majority of Landmark Cancer Studies Cannot Be Replicated
Posted by News Fetcher on April 06 '12 at 05:30 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's scientists-at-work department:
New submitter Beeftopia writes with perhaps distressing news about cancer research. From the article: "During a decade as head of global cancer research at Amgen, C. Glenn Begley identified 53 'landmark' publications — papers in top journals, from reputable labs — for his team to reproduce. Begley sought to double-check the findings before trying to build on them for drug development. Result: 47 of the 53 could not be replicated. He described his findings in a commentary piece published on Wednesday in the journal Nature (paywalled) . ... But they and others fear the phenomenon is the product of a skewed system of incentives that has academics cutting corners to further their careers."

As is the fashion at Nature, you can only read the actual article if you are a subscriber or want to fork over $32. Anyone with access care to provide more insight?

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State Department CIO Interviewed About Post-Wikileaks Changes
Posted by News Fetcher on April 06 '12 at 04:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's leakers-punished-by-death department:
CowboyRobot writes, quoting Information Week: "Eighteen months after its diplomatic cables were exposed in the WikiLeaks breach, the State Department continues to lock down its confidential information, while increasing its use of using social media. The agency is deploying new security technology, including auditing and monitoring tools that detect anomalous activity on the State Department's classified networks and systems. State has also begun tagging information with metadata to enable role-based access to those who need it, and is planning to implement public key infrastructure on its classified systems by the summer of 2014. This is all taking place despite the recent announcement that the IT budget will be cut by nearly 5%"

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Slashdot Coming Attractions
Posted by News Fetcher on April 06 '12 at 04:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's what-we've-done-and-what-we're-going-to-do department:
We've been busy at Slashdot. As you have probably noticed, we've added
a couple of new Slashboxes recently:

Most Discussed: Highlighting recent stories with the most
active discussions

This Day on Slashdot: Featuring the biggest Slashdot stories
of the day all the way back to the beginning.
We also pushed through a number of fixes to the user
experience and upgrades to the site infrastructure in recent months
including:

Upgrading Slashdot to modern hardware and new versions of MySQL and
Apache

Cleaning up the topics pages

Improving methods for sharing submissions

Thumbnails for articles with videos

Flag-a-comment abuse reporting

Removal of old and unused Slashboxes

A much overdue overhauling of the FAQ

Fixes to user preferences

The launch of the Slashdot Hall of Fame (that little badge icon next to the logo)

Fixes to the D2 comment system. Highlights include bug fixes to the comment score slider, a better abbreviated view (if you quote the parent, that's removed so people can see your first sentence instead), and general reliability improvements to the AJAX magic

And many more...
In addition, we're working on modules to highlight top submissions and we've
launched Slashdot TV at http://tv.slashdot.org/ . We plan
on launching more in the weeks to come. Some of these new sections
will feature original content that isn't normally run on the front
page. We're also planning a new mobile experience and we'll need your
feedback to help us with the look and usability. Our goal though all these
changes is to make your Slashdot experience a good one. We
are listening to your complaints and concerns
and promise to keep
giving you News for Nerds and Stuff that Matters.

< article continued at Slashdot >

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Belfast Plots 1Gbps Ultra-Fast Broadband Network
Posted by News Fetcher on April 06 '12 at 01:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's getting-connected department:
twoheadedboy writes "Belfast is going to get ultra-fast broadband, as plans for a 1Gbps network get going. Belfast's City Council has been guaranteed £6m of the UK government's £100m Urban Broadband Fund, but could receive up to £13.7m if the Government approves its plans. The city plans to get the network up and running in three years, which will make it one of the best-connected cities in the world."

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UK Bill Again Demands Web Pornography Ban
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 11:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's internet-has-to-be-for-something-else-now department:
nk497 writes "A new bill presented to the House of Lords demands both ISPs and device makers filter adult content. The Online Safety Bill, raised in the Lords by Baroness Howe of Ildicote, asks for ISPs and mobile operators to 'provide a service that excludes pornographic images' and for device makers to include ways to filter content at the point of purchase. The Bill follows efforts by one MP to make users "opt in" to access pornography, and comes despite ISPs already agreeing to offer all customers parental control software. However, as a Private Members Bill, it doesn't have the backing of the Government, so is less likely to actually be passed."

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Humanoid Robots For the Next DARPA Grand Challenge?
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 09:45 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's thank-you-very-much-mr-roboto department:
HizookRobotics writes "The official announcement should be out very soon, but for now here's the unofficial, preliminary details based on notes from Dr. Gill Pratt's talk at DTRA Industry Day: The new Grand Challenge is for a humanoid robot (with a bias toward bipedal designs) that can be used in rough terrain and for industrial disasters. The robot will be required to maneuver into and drive an open-frame vehicle (eg. tractor), proceed to a building and dismount, ingress through a locked door using a key, traverse a 100 meter rubble-strewn hallway, climb a ladder, locate a leaking pipe and seal it by closing off a nearby valve, and then replace a faulty pump to resume normal operations — all semi-autonomously with just 'supervisory teleoperation.' It looks like there will be six hardware teams to develop new robots, and twelve software teams using a common platform."

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Misleading Ads: ACCC Wins Appeal Against Google
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 08:45 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's on-second-thought department:
theweatherelectric writes "As previously noted on Slashdot, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has been involved in a long-running legal battle with Google. Vijith Vazhayil of Delimiter writes, 'The Full Federal Court of Australia has ruled that Google breached the law by displaying misleading or deceptive advertisements on its search results pages. The decision follows an appeal by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), following an earlier decision in favour of Google. The ACCC had first filed the case in July 2007 in the Federal Court alleging that Google had engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct by publishing eleven advertisements on Google's search results page. The headline of each of the advertisements in question comprised a business name, product name or web address of a competitor's business not sponsored, affiliated or associated with the particular advertiser.'"

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Battery-Powered Plasma Flashlight Makes Short Work of Bacteria
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 07:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's healthy-light department:
cylonlover writes "An international team of scientists has created a handheld, battery powered device that has been shown to effectively rid skin of bacteria in an instant by blasting it with plasma. The plasma flashlight, which shouldn't be confused with a plasma torch that will damage much more than bacteria if used on the skin, could provide a convenient way for paramedics and military personnel to deal with harmful bacteria in the field. The self-contained device is powered by a 12 V battery and doesn't require any external gas feed or handling system. The plume of plasma it generates is between 20-23C (68-73.4F), so it won't damage the skin. It is also fitted with resistors to stop it heating up and becoming too hot to touch. Its creators say it can also be easily manufactured at a cost of less than US$100 per unit."

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Online Services: The Internet Before the Internet
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 06:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's back-in-my-day department:
jfruh writes "The Slashdot readership is probably split pretty evenly into two groups. There are those for whom full-on Internet access has been available for their entire computer-using lives, and then there are those who wanted to use the Net from home before 1991, and who therefore had to use a BBS or an online service. Here's a tour of some of these services, including Prodigy, Compuserve, and of course AOL. This should be a nostalgic trip for the oldsters among us, and a history lesson for Gen Y readers."

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MPAA Chief Dodd Hints At Talks To Revive SOPA
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 04:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's they're-back department:
suraj.sun writes "Christopher Dodd, the former Connecticut senator who now leads the MPAA, hasn't given up on his dream of censoring the Internet. In an interview with Hollywood Reporter, he said that Hollywood and the technology industry 'need to come to an understanding' about new copyright legislation. Dodd said that there were 'conversations going on now,' about SOPA-style legislation, but that he was 'not going to go into more detail because obviously if I do, it becomes counterproductive.' Asked whether the White House's decision to oppose SOPA had created tensions with Hollywood, Dodd insisted that he was 'not going to revisit the events of last winter,' but said he hoped the president would use his 'good relationships' with both Hollywood and the technology industry to broker a deal."

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Pirate Bay Promotion Attracts Over 5000 Artists
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 03:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's do-it-yourself-promotion department:
redletterdave writes "While the movie and music industries would have you think that torrents are a threat to their business, thousands of independent artists heartily disagree. That's why more than 5,000 musicians, actors, writers, filmmakers and artists have signed up to be promoted by The Pirate Bay, the world's largest torrent site. Earlier this year, following the seizures of many popular file-sharing domains like MegaUpload, The Pirate Bay introduced a new promotion platform for artists called 'The Promo Bay,' which let independent artists reach tens of millions of people by offering favorable advertising spots on the The Pirate Bay's homepage. The response to The Pirate Bay's promotion platform has been overwhelming: the company announced on Thursday that it has already received more than 5,000 applications, and has managed to be a quality platform for driving significant interest to independent artists."

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Coming To a War Near You: Nuclear Powered Drones
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 02:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's what-could-possible-go-wrong? department:
An anonymous reader writes "American scientists and engineers are researching a new generation of UAV's that would be nuclear-powered. Why do this? They would have the capacity to stay over a target area for months and only be limited by the ordinance they could drop on a potential foe. They would be similar to a nuclear attack submarine but not limited to the amount of food on-board. The article notes: 'The blueprints for the new drones, which have been developed by Sandia National Laboratories – the U.S. government's principal nuclear research and development agency – and defense contractor Northrop Grumman, were designed to increase flying time "from days to months" while making more power available for operating equipment, according to a project summary published by Sandia,' the paper reported."

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The Story Behind Australia's CSIRO Wi-Fi Claims
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 01:45 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's upside-down-land department:
An anonymous reader writes "U.S. consumers will be making a multimillion dollar donation to an Australian government agency in the near future, whether they like it or not. After the resolution of a recent lawsuit, practically every wireless-enabled device sold in the U.S. will now involve a payment to an Australian research organization called the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, or CSIRO, which hired U.S. patent lawyers who told a very lucrative tale in an East Texas courtroom, that they had '[invented] the concept of wireless LAN ... [and] when the IEEE adopted the 802.11a standard in 1999 — and the more widely-used 802.11g standard years later — the group was choosing CSIRO technology. Now CSIRO had come to court to get the payments it deserved.'"

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World Is Ignoring Most Important Lesson From Fukushima
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 01:15 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's stir-gently-rather-than-shake department:
mdsolar writes "Kenichi Ohmae, an MIT-trained nuclear engineer also widely regarded as Japan's top management guru, is dean of Business Breakthrough University. In the CSM he writes: 'Fukushima's most important lesson is this: Probability theory (that disaster is unlikely) failed us. If you have made assumptions, you are not prepared. Nuclear power plants should have multiple, reliable ways to cool reactors. Any nuclear plant that doesn't heed this lesson is inviting disaster.'"

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Samsung Employees Conspired To Sell AMOLED Tech; 11 Arrested
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 12:30 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's theft-is-intellectual-property department:
zacharye writes with this snippet from BGR: "Nearly a dozen suspects have been arrested and charged with crimes related to the theft and sale of AMOLED display technology under development at Samsung. Yonhap News Agency on Thursday reported that 11 suspects either currently or formerly employed by Samsung Mobile Display have been arrested. One 46-year-old researcher at Samsung is believed to have accepted a payment of nearly $170,000 from an unnamed 'local rival firm' in exchange for trade secrets pertaining to proprietary Samsung technology used in the company's AMOLED panels..."

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Egypt Banned Porn, But How Much of the Internet Is That?
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 11:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's phrase-your-answer-in-fluid-ounces department:
pigrabbitbear writes "The recent web pornography ban in Egypt has raised questions about the evils of censorship (and porn) and the changing tide of popular attitude of Egyptians. It perhaps reflects the emerging influence of more conservative Muslim elements in government, a shift . Apparently the same ban was passed 3 years ago but was not enforced because their filtering system was not effective. But porn bans are nothing new. Other countries with strict censorship laws like China and Saudi Arabia have successfully implemented bans that restrict pornography along with anything else they deem inappropriate for public viewing. In 2010 the UK discussed a ban that would require users to specifically request access to pornographic material from their internet service providers. And porn-banning rhetoric has even stomped through the U.S. news media over the last few months, thanks to GOP also-ran Rick Santorum claiming President Obama is failing to enforce pornography laws. (There have also been some awesomely ridiculous pornography PSAs.)"

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Good News: A Sustained Drop In Spam Levels
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 11:30 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's vienna-sausages-are-also-pretty-good department:
Orome1 writes "Industry and government efforts have dealt a significant blow to spam, according to a Commtouch report that is compiled based on an analysis of more than 10 billion transactions handled on a daily basis. The sustained decrease in spam over the last year can be attributed to many factors, including: Botnet takedowns, increased prosecution of spammers and the source industries such as fake pharmaceuticals and replicas. However, spam is still four times the level of legitimate email and cybercriminals are increasing their revenues from other avenues, such as banking fraud malware."

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Ask Slashdot: Recommendations For Linux Telecommuting Tools?
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '12 at 11:00 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's skype-works department:
First time accepted submitter rodrix79 writes "Hi all. I am trying to move from Windows to Linux (Ubuntu, but maybe to Mint). The problem is I telecommute full time and I am having a hard time trying to find the right tools to keep communication flowing with my clients (which are mostly on Windows / Mac). Any good recommendations from Linux telecommuters?"

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