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Inside the World's Largest LAN Party
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 05:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's we're-gonna-need-a-bigger-bag-of-doritos department:
MrSeb writes "Last weekend, over 12,000 LAN party goers turned up at DreamHack Winter 2011 in Jonkoping, Sweden with a PC under the arm, on their back, or packed carefully in the trunk of their car. Every single attendee is squeezed into just three massive halls — the largest holding 5,000 computers — or four days, only taking brief breaks to sleep or check out one of the many stages (including some of the largest e-sport tournaments of the year). Being the largest LAN party in the world, DreamHack's infrastructure is suitably monumental: it takes days to lay the thousands of cables, and at the heart of the network is tower of Cisco routers that interface with a 120Gbps internet connection provided by Telia."

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Patent Expires On Best Selling Drug of All Time
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 04:45 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's low-cholesterol-for-everyone department:
Hugh Pickens writes "The US patent has just expired on Lipitor, the best-selling drug of all time, as the first generic versions go on sale, marking the end of a brand that has dominated the drug industry, lowered the cholesterol of tens of millions of patients, and generated $10.7 billion last year in annual sales. But drug manufacturer Pfizer, dependent on Lipitor for almost one-fifth of the company's revenue, does not intend to go down without a fight. Pfizer is employing unprecedented tactics to hold onto as many Lipitor prescriptions as it can with an aggressive marketing plan and forging deals with insurers, pharmacy benefit managers and patients to meet or beat the price of its generic replacements because even at the lower price, Pfizer has a huge profit margin because of the relatively low cost of materials for Lipitor. Some deals require pharmacies to reject prescriptions for low-cost generics and substitute a discounted name-brand Lipitor while other deals block generic makers from mail-order services that account for an estimated 40 percent of all Lipitor prescriptions. 'Pfizer's tactic of dressing up as a generics company is pulling the rug under the incentive system created to foster the development of generic drugs,' says attorney David A. Balto."

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GamePro Shutting Down After 22 Years
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 04:00 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's is-this-the-new-gamepro-killer department:
redletterdave writes "Popular gaming magazine GamePro has shut down its U.S. operations after 22 years of publications by its parent company IDG. GamePro's website, which has been online for about 13 years, will be converted to a gaming channel and incorporated into PCWorld on Dec. 5. Sources within the magazine say GamePro's employees, including its executives, received phone calls this morning with the news. The news comes as a relative surprise, as GamePro experienced its highest traffic ever last week. The company also released its first quarterly magazine earlier this month after deciding monthly print issues were too costly to maintain."

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Book Review: The CERT Oracle Secure Coding Standard For Java
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 03:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's read-all-about-it department:
brothke writes "It has been a decade since Oracle started their unbreakable campaign touting the security robustness of their products. Aside from the fact that unbreakable only refers to the enterprise kernel; Oracle still can have significant security flaws. Even though Java supports very strong security controls including JAAS (Java Authentication and Authorization Services), it still requires a significant effort to code Java securely. With that The CERT Oracle Secure Coding Standard for Javais an invaluable guide that provides the reader with the strong coding guidelines and practices in order to reduce coding vulnerabilities that can lead to Java and Oracle exploits." Read on for the rest of Ben's review. The CERT Oracle Secure Coding Standard for Java
author Fred Long, Dhruv Mohindra, Robert Seacord, Dean Sutherland, David Svoboda
pages 744
publisher ddison-Wesley Professiona
rating 10/10
reviewer Ben Rothke
ISBN 0321803957
summary Definitive guide on the topic

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China Wants Cyber Crisis Hotline
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 02:45 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's hello-we're-hacking-you department:
An anonymous reader writes "China should look at establishing a cyber crisis hotline with the United States, according to a Chinese newspaper seen as a window into official thinking. Discussions about a crisis hotline might seem an obvious first step in improving relations. But if it's a sign the Chinese government is beginning to think about how to coordinate a rapid, unified response to cyber emergencies, then it is an extremely important one."

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How Tiny Worms Could Help Humans Colonize Mars
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 02:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's send-in-the-worms department:
Pierre Bezukhov writes "The roundworm has about 20,000 protein-coding genes — nearly as many as humans, who have about 23,000. Furthermore, there is a lot of overlap between our genome and theirs, with many genes performing roughly the same functions in both species. Launching C. elegans roundworms to Mars would allow scientists to see just how dangerous the high radiation levels found in deep space — and on the Red Planet's surface — are to animal life. 'Worms allow us to detect changes in growth, development, reproduction and behavior in response to environmental conditions such as toxins or in response to deep space missions,' said Nathaniel Szewczyk of the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom. 'Given the high failure rate of Mars missions, use of worms allows us to safely and relatively cheaply test spacecraft systems prior to manned missions,' he adds."

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Are Data Centers Finally Ready For DC Power?
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 02:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's edison-wins-again department:
1sockchuck writes "It's been five years since a landmark study outlined the potential benefits of DC power distribution in data centers. But adoption of DC in data centers remains limited, even as the industry aggressively pursues a wide array of other energy savings strategies. Advocates of DC distribution are hoping a new study will jump start the conversation about DC distribution, which can save energy by eliminating several wasteful AC-to-DC conversions within a data center. Meanwhile, an industry association for DC power adoption, the EMerge Alliance, has formed a new technical standards committee for data centers, and is advancing a 380-volt DC power standard. Will DC distribution ever gain momentum in data centers?"

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Fighting Mosquitoes With GM Mosquitoes
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 01:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's it's-a-bug-eat-bug-world department:
doug141 writes "Scientists are releasing genetically modified male mosquitoes that produce flightless female offspring. The male offspring go on to wipe out another generation of females. This is similar to the way screwworms were eradicated in the U.S., except with nature itself making more of the modified males. Field trials are already underway."

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Jetman Yves Rossy Flies In Formation With Jets
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 12:45 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's it's-a-bird!-it's-a-plane! department:
smitty777 writes "Slashdot has been following Yves Rossy in his previous exploits across the Grand Canyon and his attempts at international flight. He is now flying in formations with real jets. He even does a barrel roll around the two fighters in the video below."

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Stephen Wolfram Joins The Life Boat Foundation and Bets On Singularity
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 12:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's whimper-or-bang department:
kodiaktau writes "This week The Lifeboat Foundation announced that Stephen Wolfram would be joining its organization. The purpose of the group is to think through scientific solutions to existential problems that might be used to save humanity from such risks as asteroids hitting the earth or some other diabolical disaster. Wolfram brings computational science to the table and has posited that the earth and universe can be understood as a computer program that can be significantly altered as we continue to advance in technology."

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E-Mail Can Reveal Your Friend Hierarchy
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 11:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's add-them-to-the-list department:
sciencehabit writes "It's not surprising that someone could guess your friends simply by peeking at your e-mail. But a more detailed look at your electronic communications could reveal which friends are closer to you than others, according to a new study. The trick has to do with response time--the time it takes for a sender to respond to e-mails from different contacts. The fastest responses went to friends and that the slowest responses went to acquaintances, with colleagues somewhere in between."

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News Corp. Hacking Scandal Spreads To Government
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 11:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's fox-in-the-house-of-commons department:
wiredmikey writes "The scandal revolving around the News Corporation's now defunct British tabloid, News of the World, has entered a new phase with news that the hacking extended into areas of national security, as detectives working for the Murdoch media empire may have hacked into the computer of a government minister responsible for Northern Ireland. Scary stuff, yet the enterprise security community seems strangely quiet on the topic, aside from showing other journalists how easy it is to do. Potentially, if you know the correct mobile number and you can guess 4 Digits, you too can be listening to your elected leaders personal messages. The chances are pretty good that it could be their birthday."

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Why Was Hypercard Killed?
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 10:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's programming-has-to-be-hard department:
theodp writes "Steve Jobs took the secret to his grave, but Stanislav Datskovskiy offers some interesting and illustrated speculation on why HyperCard had to die. 'Jobs was almost certainly familiar with HyperCard and its capabilities,' writes Datskovskiy. 'And he killed it anyway. Wouldn't you love to know why? Here's a clue: Apple never again brought to market anything resembling HyperCard. Despite frequent calls to do so. Despite a more-or-less guaranteed and lively market. And I will cautiously predict that it never will again. The reason for this is that HyperCard is an echo of a different world. One where the distinction between the "use" and "programming" of a computer has been weakened and awaits near-total erasure. A world where the personal computer is a mind-amplifier, and not merely an expensive video telephone. A world in which Apple's walled garden aesthetic has no place.' Slashdotters have bemoaned the loss of HyperCard over the past decade, but Datskovskiy ends his post on a keep-hope-alive note, saying: 'Contemplate the fact that what has been built once could probably be built again.' Where have you gone, Bill Atkinson, a nation of potential programmers turns its lonely eyes to you."

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Attackers Leak UN Usernames and Passwords
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 10:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's senate-of-world-corruption department:
Orome1 writes "A group of hackers that go by the name of 'Teamp0ison' has apparently compromised one (or more) of UN's servers and dumped over 1000 email addresses, usernames, and passwords of their staff."

The BBC has a bit more, including a denial that anything of value was compromised.

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NVIDIA Launches GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448-Core GPU
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 09:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's more-cores-more-powers department:
MojoKid writes "NVIDIA has just launched the GeForce GTX 560 Ti with 448 cores. Though perhaps a bit unimaginative in terms of branding, the new GeForce GTX 560 Ti with 448 cores is outfitted with the same GF110 GPU powering high-end GeForce GTX 570 and GTX 580 cards, but with a couple of its streaming multiprocessors fused off. The card has 448 CUDA cores arranged in 14 SMs, with 56 texture units and 40 ROPs. Reference specifications call for a 732MHz core clock with 1464MHz CUDA cores. 1.2GB of GDDR5 memory is linked to the GPU via a 320-bit bus and the memory is clocked at an effective 3800MHz data rate. Performance-wise, the new GPU proved to be about 10 to 15 percent faster than the original GeForce GTX 560 Ti and a few percentage points slower than the GeForce GTX 570."

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Duqu Attackers Managed to Wipe C&C Servers
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 09:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's nsa-reads-slashdot department:
Trailrunner7 writes with an update in the saga of Duqu and Stuxnet. From the article: "Shortly after the first public reports about Duqu emerged in early autumn, the crew behind Duqu wiped out all of the command-and-control servers that had been in use up to that point, including some that had been used since 2009. An in-depth analysis of the known C&C servers used in the Duqu attacks has found that some of the servers were compromised as far back as 2009, and that the attackers clearly targeted Linux machines. All of the known Duqu C&C servers discovered up to this point have been running CentOS ... There also is some evidence that the attackers may have used a zero-day in OpenSSH 4.3 to compromise the C&C servers initially."

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AMD Confirms Commitment To x86
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 08:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's amd-versus-world department:
MrSeb writes with an excerpt from an Extreme Tech story on the recent wild speculation about AMD abandoning x86: "Recent subpar CPU launches and product cancellations have left AMD in an ugly position, but reports that the company is preparing to jettison its x86 business are greatly exaggerated and wildly off base. Yesterday, Mercury News ran a report on AMD's struggles to reinvent itself and included this quote from company spokesperson Mike Silverman: 'We're at an inflection point. We will all need to let go of the old 'AMD versus Intel' mind-set, because it won't be about that anymore.' When we contacted Silverman, he confirmed that the original statement has been taken somewhat out of context and provided additional clarification. 'AMD is a leader in x86 microprocessor design, and we remain committed to the x86 market. Our strategy is to accelerate our growth by taking advantage of our design capabilities to deliver a breadth of products that best align with broader industry shifts toward low power, emerging markets and the cloud.' The larger truth behind Silverman's statement is that no matter what AMD does, it's not going to be 'AMD versus Intel' anymore — it's going to be AMD vs. Qualcomm, TI, Nvidia, and Intel."

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UK Announces "Cyber Strategy"
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 07:30 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's you-can't-handle-freedom department:
concealment writes "The UK government has announced a "cyber strategy" outlining its plans to make the UK a safe place to do business online. Not limited to merely defending against attacks, the strategy outlines plans to take aggressive, proactive online action against security threats and criminals. Stricter enforcement of Internet usage restrictions and recruitment of volunteer 'cyber-specials' are also planned."

An interesting bit from the article: "In promising to undertake aggressive, military cyberattacks, the UK will be following in the footsteps of the US and Israel — together the presumed creators of the Stuxnet worm — and China, a nation regularly accused of infiltrating and compromising both private and government organizations to extract information."

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Google Throws /. Under Bus To Snag Patent
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 06:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's google-patents-meta-moderation department:
theodp writes "Before Danny Hillis and Bran Ferren invented Google's newly-patented system for 'Delegating Authority to Evaluate Content', Google says users looking for content evaluation websites were condemned to the likes of Amazon.com and Slashdot. From the patent: 'Many sites found on the World Wide Web allow users to evaluate content found within the site. The Slashdot Web site (www.slashdot.org) allows users to "mod" comments recently posted by other users. Based on this information obtained from the users, the system determines a numerical score for each comment ranging from 1 to 5.' The problem with sites like Slashdot, Google told the USPTO, is that 'because there is no restriction on the users that may participate, the reliability of the ratings is correspondingly diminished.' Commissioning a small number of trusted evaluators or editors would increase the reliability of the evaluations, Google notes, but wouldn't allow nearly as much content to be evaluated. Google's solution? Allow trusted evaluators to transfer a 'quantity of authority' to like-minded 'contributing authorities', who in turn designate and delegate authority to additional like-minded contributing authorities. Think Microsoft Outlook 97 Delegate Access meets Slashdot Karma Points, and you've got the general idea!"

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Groupon Not Doing So Well On Wall Street
Posted by News Fetcher on November 30 '11 at 06:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's bad-business-idea-is-bad department:
bdking writes "Shares of the daily-deals site were up Tuesday, but Groupon's ride on Wall Street since going public in early November has been almost all downhill. And there's no evident catalyst to reverse the slide."

From the looks of it Groupon is blowing all of its money attempting to expand in the face of ever growing competition in a market with trivial start up costs.

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