By timothy from Slashdot's what-he-meant-to-say-was department
jamie writes "In a story on Thursday, Slashdot and its readers had a little fun at the expense of Al Gore, who was quoted as saying that the hurricane severity scale was going to go to 6. A correction was made the next day. The author of the piece that Slashdot linked now writes 'I retract the balance of my criticism.' Turns out Gore was misquoted. Luckily for Gore, this is the first time he's been ridiculed for something he didn't actually say. Well, except for Love Story, Love Canal, farm chores, and everyone's favorite, inventing the internet. (The original Slashdot story is here and its central link now includes the Washington Post's correction.)"
From Ezra Klein's update on his earlier piece: "I'm out-of-town and so away from my tape recorder. So I asked Gore's staff about the line and they have Gore saying: 'The scientists are now adding category six to the hurricane ... some are proposing we add category 6 to the hurricane scale that used to be 1-5.' That doesn't offend my memory of the discussion and it's entirely possible I missed Gore's qualifying sentence while trying to keep up. If so, that's my fault, and I apologize."Read Replies (0)
Break Microsoft Up
Posted by News Fetcher on August 27 '13 at 04:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's or-just-give-up department
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Tom Worstall writes in Forbes that the that the only way to get around the entrenched culture that has made Microsoft a graveyard for the kind of big ideas that have inspired companies like Apple, Google, and Amazon is to split the company up so as to remove conflicts between new and old products and with Ballmer's departure instead of finding someone new to run the company, bring in experts to handle the legal side and find suitable CEOs for the new companies. 'The underlying problem for Microsoft is that the computing market has rapidly left behind the company's basic strategy of controlling the machines that people use with operating-system software,' says Erik Sherman. 'The combination of mobile devices that broke Microsoft's grip on the client end, and cloud computing that didn't necessarily need the company in data centers, shattered this form of control.' Anyone can see how easily you could split off the gaming folks, business division, retail stores, and hardware division says John Dvorak. Each entity would have agreements in place for long-term supply of software and services. 'This sort of shake up would ferret out all the empire builders and allow for new and more creative structures to emerge. And since everyone will have to be in a semi-startup mode, the dead wood will be eliminated by actual hard work.'"Read Replies (0)
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's security-through-obscurity-problems department
Trailrunner7 writes, quoting Threat Post "By tweaking the firmware on certain kinds of phones, a hacker could make it so other phones in the area are unable to receive incoming calls or SMS messages, according to research presented at the USENIX Security Symposium. The hack involves modifying the baseband processor on some Motorola phones and tricking some older 2G GSM networks into not delivering calls and messages. By 'watching' the messages sent from phone towers and not delivering them to users, the hack could effectively shut down some small localized mobile networks. Essentially the hacked firmware ... can block ... pages by responding to them before the phones that were initially intended to receive them do, something Kevin Redon and company called during their research 'the race for the fastest paging response time.'"
Thanks to the power of Osmocom BB
, which has implemented Free Software baseband for several GSM devices. Also see the research paper
.Read Replies (0)
By samzenpus from Slashdot's clicking-it-twice department
An anonymous reader writes "A new report today has ranked the Top 10 'Internet Cities' around the globe, based on a set of five criteria: connection speed, availability of citywide WiFi, openness to innovation, support of public data, and security/data privacy. One might expect high-tech cities like San Francisco and Tel Aviv to appear on a list of 'Internet Cities,' but they don't. Indeed, no Middle Eastern cities appear here at all, and — due, largely, to the United States' poor Internet speeds — the only US city to make this ranking is Seattle."Read Replies (0)
By samzenpus from Slashdot's take-a-message department
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "L. J. Williamson writes in the LA Times that with no running water, no plumbing, and no electrical outlets Burning Man isn't the kind of place to expect full bars on your smartphone and for many of the participants that's a big part of its charm. 'If you want to partake in the true Burning Man experience, you should leave your phone at home,' says Mark Hansen. In past years, the closest cellular towers, designed to serve the nearby towns of Empire (population 206) and Gerlach (population 217), would quickly get overwhelmed each August when Black Rock City (population 50,000 or so) rose from the featureless playa. Although Burning Man attracts a sizable Silicon Valley contingent including tech giants like Jeff Bezos, Larry Page, and Sergey Brin — the feeling of being 'unplugged' has become an integral part of the Burning Man experience. But another part of the event is an intrepid, DIY ethos, and in that spirit, David Burgess, co-creator of OpenBTS, an open-source cellular network software, brought a homemade in 2008, an 'almost comical' setup that created a working cellular network that routed a few hundred calls over a 48-hour period. In each subsequent year, Burgess has improved the system's reach and expects to have about three-quarters of this year's event covered. Burning Man proved an ideal test bed for development of Burgess' system, which he has since made available for use in other areas without cellular networks. 'People who have a lot of experience in international aid say Burning Man is a very good simulation of a well-organized refugee camp,' says Burgess. 'Because there's no infrastructure, it forces us to contend with a lot of problems that our rural customers have to contend with in very remote places.'"Read Replies (0)