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EXT4 Data Corruption Bug Hits Linux Kernel
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 11:30 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's plenty-of-time-to-fix department:
An anonymous reader writes "An EXT4 file-system data corruption issue has reached the stable Linux kernel. The latest Linux 3.4, 3.5, 3.6 stable kernels have an EXT4 file-system bug described as an apparent serious progressive ext4 data corruption bug. Kernel developers have found and bisected the kernel issue but are still working on a proper fix for the stable Linux kernel. The EXT4 file-system can experience data loss if the file-system is remounted (or the system rebooted) too often."

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Would You Put a Tracking Device On Your Child?
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 10:45 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's does-that-mean-i-don't-have-to-watch-them-anymore department:
Hugh Pickens writes "In 2007 businessman Russell Thornton lost his 3-year-old son at an amusement park. After a frantic 45-minute search, Thornton found the boy hiding in a play structure, but he was traumatized by the incident. It spurred him to build a device that would help other parents avoid that fate. Even though most statistics show that rates of violent crime against children have declined significantly over the last few decades, and that abductions are extremely rare, KJ Dell'Antonia writes that with the array of new gadgetry like Amber Alert and the Securus eZoom our children need never experience the fears that come with momentary separations, or the satisfaction of weathering them. 'You could argue that those of us who survived our childhoods of being occasionally lost, then found, are in the position of those who think car seats are overkill because they suffered no injury while bouncing around in the back of their uncle's pickup,' writes Dell'Antonia. 'Wouldn't a more powerful sense of security come from knowing your children were capable, and trusting in their ability to reach out for help at the moment when they realize they're not?'"

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A Look At Competitors to the Surface and iPad
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 10:15 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's not-necessarily-also-rans department:
"Asus and other Microsoft OEM partners have also launched their own versions of Windows RT tablets that will compete with Microsoft's Surface. It's interesting to see the different design approaches being taken, some of which are similar to Android devices currently on the market. The Asus Vivo Tab RT, for example, is based on a 1.3GHz Tegra 3 SoC with 2GB of DDR3 memory, 32GB or 64GB of on board Flash storage, and looks a lot like their Transformer Prime 10-inch slate. The internal electronics are similar to Surface, with NVIDIA's Tegra 3 claiming the lion's share of Windows RT designs at launch. Microsoft's new touch-centric OS handles smoothly on the tablet and performance looks to be impressive, especially with respect to multitasking and application switching."
There's also the newly-launched Samsung Galaxy Note II (Android-based, and a so called "phablet," rather than a tablet), the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga (an upcoming Windows RT tablet with a keyboard permanently attached), and the Archos 101 XS.

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One Screen, Multiple Views
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 09:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's digital-catan-expansion department:
First time accepted submitter e-sas writes "Researchers from the University of Bristol have built a new type of display which allows both a shared view and a personalised view to users at the same time. Through the two view-zones, PiVOT provides multiple personalized views where each personalized view is only visible to the user it belongs to while presenting an unaffected and unobstructed shared view to all users. They conceive PiVOT as a tabletop system aimed at supporting mixed-focus collaborative tasks where there is a main task requiring the focus of all individuals of the group but also concurrent smaller personal tasks needing access to information that is not usually shared e.g. a war-room setup. Imagine you and your friends playing multiplayer Starcraft on one big screen instead of individual computer screens!"

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How a Google Headhunter's E-Mail Revealed Massive Misuse of DKIM
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 09:30 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's insecurity-through-blatant-idiocy department:
concealment writes with a tale of how an email sent to a mathematician led to him discovering that dozens of high profile companies were using easily crackable keys to authenticate mail sent from their domains. From the article: "The problem lay with the DKIM key (DomainKeys Identified Mail) Google used for its google.com e-mails. DKIM involves a cryptographic key that domains use to sign e-mail originating from them – or passing through them – to validate to a recipient that the header information on an e-mail is correct and that the correspondence indeed came from the stated domain. When e-mail arrives at its destination, the receiving server can look up the public key through the sender's DNS records and verify the validity of the signature. Harris wasn't interested in the job at Google, but he decided to crack the key and send an e-mail to Google founders Brin and Page, as each other, just to show them that he was onto their game."

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NBC Erases SNL Sketch From Digital Archive For Fear of Copyright Lawsuit
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 09:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's nbc-plans-to-sue-nbc department:
M.Nunez writes with a tale of copyright woes. From the article: "The digital 'Saturday Night Live' archive does not feature a recent Bruno Mars sketch because it includes impersonations of pop singers and their chart-topping hits. Bruno Mars sings several songs that are not owned by NBC, so it can be presumed that the company refrained from uploading the sketch into its digital archive to avoid any legal issues. Convoluted music licensing laws have essentially erased the Bruno Mars sketch from the digital archives of SNL. In the short comedy sketch, Bruno Mars impersonates vocal performances by Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day), Steven Tyler (Aerosmith), Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, Louis Armstrong, and Michael Jackson. The sketch cannot be found on NBC.com or Hulu, as a short clip or in either full editions of the episode."

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Windows 7 Not Getting A Second Service Pack
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 08:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's mark-shuttleworth-becomes-filthy-rich department:
An anonymous reader writes "Windows 7 was expected to have Service Pack 2 issued roughly 3 years from its introduction (late 2009). People, including myself, have been asking 'Where is it?' and the answer apparently is, 'It isn't, and will never be' which lends itself to the giant pain of installing Windows 7, then Service Pack 1, and hundreds of smaller hotfix patches. Why Microsoft? No go to Service Pack 2 for Windows 7!"

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The Greatest Battle of the Personal Computing Revolution Lies Ahead
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 08:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's google-vs-google department:
As tablets and computer-phones flood the market, the headlines read:
"The Personal Computer is Dying." But they are only half true: an
artifact of the PC is dying, but the essence of the PC revolution is
closer to realization than ever before, while also being closer to loss than ever before.

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Criminals Crack and Steal Customer Data From Barnes & Noble Keypads
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 07:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's cash-only department:
helix2301 writes with an excerpt from CNet "Hackers broke into keypads at more than 60 Barnes & Noble bookstores and made off with the credit card information for customers who shopped at the stores in the last month. At least one point-of-sale terminal in 63 different stores was compromised recording card details. Since discovering the breach, the company has uninstalled all 7,000 point-of-sale terminals from its hundreds of stores for examination."

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FSFE Interview With 'Terms of Service: Didn't Read' Founder
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 07:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's article-didn't-read department:
An anonymous reader writes with an interesting interview "Hugo's project Terms of Service: Didn't Read has recently won international attention in publications such as TIME, Le Monde, and ZEIT, in its campaign to simplify the legal terms of web services. He is FSFE's French Team coordinator, co-founder of the Digital Freedoms association, and in 2009 did extensive work on the impact of Europe's Interoperability Framework (EIF) on Free Software users."

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NASA Engineers Building Mockup of Deep Space Station
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 07:00 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's split-infinitive department:
MarkWhittington writes "NASA engineers at the Marshall Spaceflight Center in Huntsville, Ala., are building a mockup of what appears to be a deep space habitat, though it could also be part of an interplanetary spacecraft. The purpose is to do human factors studies to find out how to sustain astronauts on lengthy deep space missions."

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Boeing's CHAMP Missile Uses Radio Waves To Remotely Disable PCs
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 06:15 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's computer-time-is-over-billy department:
Dupple writes "During last week's test, a CHAMP (Counter-electronics High-powered Microwave Advanced Missile Project) missile successfully disabled its target by firing high power microwaves into a building filled with computers and other electronics. 'On Oct. 16th at 10:32 a.m. MST a Boeing Phantom Works team along with members from the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Directed Energy Directorate team, and Raytheon Ktech, suppliers of the High Power Microwave source, huddled in a conference room at Hill Air Force Base and watched the history making test unfold on a television monitor. CHAMP approached its first target and fired a burst of High Power Microwaves at a two story building built on the test range. Inside rows of personal computers and electrical systems were turned on to gauge the effects of the powerful radio waves. Seconds later the PC monitors went dark and cheers erupted in the conference room. CHAMP had successfully knocked out the computer and electrical systems in the target building. Even the television cameras set up to record the test were knocked off line without collateral damage.'"

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EC Sends Statement of Objections To Microsoft For Violating Anti-Trust Agreement
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 05:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's go-to-court-like-it's-1998 department:
dkleinsc writes "Three years ago, Microsoft came to an agreement with EU regulators that required them to provide users with a choice of web browsers. Last July, they found Microsoft in breach of that agreement. Today, they announced that this will result in charges, potentially resulting in fines as large as $7 billion."

Microsoft gets one last chance to defend itself.

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OpenGL Becoming a Requirement For the Linux Desktop
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 05:30 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's economic-stimulus-plan department:
An anonymous reader writes "Modern Linux desktops like Ubuntu's Unity and the GNOME Shell have placed a requirement on OpenGL 2.0+ support for handling their compositing window managers and desktop effects. Wayland's Weston also needs OpenGL ES 2.0 support. Now with modern Linux distributions like Ubuntu 12.10, rather than falling back to a 2D unaccelerated desktop if you don't have a sufficient GPU or graphics driver, users are being forced to run LLVMpipe as a CPU-based software rasterizer. LLVMpipe works fine if you are on a new PC with a fast x86-64 CPU, but the OpenGL-based Linux desktops are causing growing pains for ARM hardware, virtual machines, servers, multi-seat computers, and of course all older hardware. LLVMpipe is a Mesa Gallium3D driver that uses LLVM for run-time code generation as an attempt at accelerating graphics faster on the CPU. So much for Linux being good for old computers?"

< article continued at Slashdot >

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ARM Code for Raspberry Pi Goes Open Source (Video)
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 05:15 AM
By Roblimo from Slashdot's more-open-than-ever-before department:
"The Raspberry Pi project relies heavily on Open Source and Free Software — heck, it's targeted by more than one Linux distro. But some of the hardware stack that makes up the Pi itself needs closed-source code to run; the code that runs all kinds of low-level hardware is often closed source and closed off. I got wind from project instigator and lead Eben Upton that the system-on-a-chip at the Raspberry Pi's heart is about to get a lot more open. Says Upton: "We're about to open source all of the remaining closed source ARM code for the Pi. This will make BCM2835 the first ARM multimedia SoC with a fully-open-source ARM user and kernel implementation." I spoke for a few minutes with Alex Bradbury, who runs the Linux software work for the project, about licensing and what the new code means not only for Raspberry Pi but for users and other OS projects." (Note: the sound quality on this translantic Skype call is poor. We suggest reading the transcript.) Get the code while it's hot.

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Microsoft Surface Review: a Tale of Two Tablets
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 04:15 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's it-was-the-age-of-wisdom-it-was-the-age-of-foolishness department:
zacharye points out an early review of the Microsoft Surface tablet. Here are some relevant snippets:
< article continued at Slashdot >

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AMD Tightens Bonds With Game Developers
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 02:30 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's clutching-tightly-to-a-life-preserver department:
J. Dzhugashvili writes "Nvidia 'The Way It's Meant To Be Played' splash screens are all over major PC games. AMD's developer relations program used to be a much lower-profile affair, but that's changed recently. New and upcoming games like Sleeping Dogs, Dishonored, Medal of Honor Warfighter, Far Cry 3, BioShock Infinite, and the Tomb Raider reboot are all part of AMD's Gaming Evolved program. As it turns out, that's because AMD's new executive team is more keen on gaming than their predecessors, and they've poured more money into the initiative. The result: closer relationships between AMD and game developers/publishers, better support for Radeon-specific features in new titles, and juicy game bundle offers."

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CyanogenMod Android ROMs Accidentally Logged Screen Unlock Patterns
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 01:15 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's reasons-not-to-run-android-on-your-bank-vault department:
tlhIngan writes "Heads up CyanogenMod users — you will want to update to the latest nightly build as it turns out that your unlock patterns were accidentally logged. The fix has been committed and is in the latest build. While not easy to access (it requires access to a backup image or the device), it was a potential security hole. It was added back in August when Cyanogen added the ability to customize the screen lock size.`"

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UK ISPs Asked To Block More File-sharing Websites
Posted by News Fetcher on October 24 '12 at 12:15 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's shut-down-everything department:
another random user writes with this news from the BBC:
"The UK's major internet service providers have been asked to block three more file-sharing websites. The BPI (British Phonographic Industry), which acts on behalf of rights holders, wants ISPs to prevent access to Fenopy, H33t and Kickass Torrents. The BPI alleges that the sites are illegally distributing music. The ISPs told the BBC they would comply with the new demand, but only if a court order is put in place. It follows a separate court order in April which saw popular file-sharing site The Pirate Bay blocked in the UK. ... The letter, which was not intended to go public, was sent to six ISPs last week, namely BT, Sky, Virgin Media, O2, EE and TalkTalk. It is understood that the BPI is hoping all three sites will be blocked before Christmas — far more quickly than the process has taken previously."

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BBC Turns Off CEEFAX Service After 38 Years
Posted by News Fetcher on October 23 '12 at 11:15 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's retiring-after-years-of-service department:
Kittenman writes "After 38 years (1974 - 2012) the BBC's CEEFAX service has ceased transmission. The service gave on-line up-to-date textual information (albeit in condensed form) to TV viewers in the pre-Internet era and afterwards. Its final broadcast signed off with, 'Goodbye, cruel world.' '... the real impetus for viewers came when BBC Television decided to use a selection of Ceefax pages, accompanied by music, before the start of programming each day. Initially called Ceefax AM and Ceefax In Vision, the Pages From Ceefax "programme" continued for 30 years, being broadcast overnight on BBC Two until this week. As viewers got a small taste of what Ceefax had to offer, millions of Britons during the 1980s invested in new teletext-enabled TV sets which gave them access to the full Ceefax service, which by now included recipe details for dishes prepared on BBC cookery shows, share prices, music reviews and an annual advent calendar.' An British ex-PM (John Major) said, 'From breaking global news to domestic sports news, Ceefax was speedy, accurate and indispensable. It can be proud of its record.'"

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