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Pakistan Bans Encryption
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 03:01 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's for-undecipherable-reasons department:
An anonymous reader writes "After some rumors of this last month, Pakistan has now officially told all of the country's ISPs that they need to block all encrypted VPNs since content running over such services cannot be monitored by the government."

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Novell Wins Against SCO Again
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 02:16 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's case-finally-closed department:
duh P3rf3ss3r writes "The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals has just affirmed the District Court ruling in SCO v Novell (PDF) in its entirety. The decision is quite a good read and lays out the reasons why the court has rejected, in toto, SCO's attempt to re-argue the case before the Court of Appeals. Is this the last gasp for SCO or will they try to appeal this to the Supreme Court? The betting lines open at 11..."

Realistically this is the end of the line for the case.

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A Look Back At the Career of Steve Jobs
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 01:31 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's remember-when-he-wasn't-evil department:
Zothecula writes with a rather extensive piece in Gizmag about Steve Jobs's various business endeavors. From the article: "Revered by many, hated by some, but respected by most, the indisputable fact remains that Steve Jobs is the most successful business leader of his generation and quite possibly of all time. The numbers are impressive in themselves but the most remarkable aspect of his success is how it was achieved. Though he remains at Apple, the end of his tenure as CEO is the end of an era and an opportunity to try and grasp just exactly what it is he did and what lessons there are for all of us 'trying to make a dent in the universe.'"

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Publicly Shaming Laptop Thieves Catches Bystanders in the Crossfire
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 12:46 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's proprietary-software-watches-you-sleep department:
nonprofiteer writes "Embarrassing thieves by exposing them using laptop recovery software makes for fun tech stories, but what about a case of a person being literally exposed after cops and a software company got their hands on naked photos she exchanged with her long-distance boyfriend, not realizing the machine was stolen? (She bought it for $60 so she should have known, but still). The case is going to trial in Ohio in September. The plaintiffs argue that the software company had the right to get the computer's location in order to recover it, but that it should not have intercepted the nude photos and shared those with the cops. Seems like a legitimate complaint and the plaintiffs are especially sympathetic in not realizing the device was stolen."

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Baby Red Dwarf Found Just 27 Light Years Away
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 12:16 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's think-i'll-swing-by-for-lunch department:
bazzalunatic writes "Astronomers have found an infant red dwarf star 27 light years away from Earth, and it's just 40 million years old. 'The star has been known about and studied for the past 15 years, but it wasn't realized it was so young and so close, until now,' co-author Simon Murphy, a PhD student from the Australian National University said in the story. More accurate measurements from telescopes have aided the revised distances of the star dubbed 'AP Colombae'."

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One Final Manufacturing Run of Touchpads
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 11:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's this-is-too-painful-to-watch department:
Accepted on the first attempt, lochnessie writes "HP has announced a limited manufacturing run of Touchpads to be available in the next few weeks. The HP employee making the announcement posted 'I think it's safe to say we were pleasantly surprised by the response' to their massively discounted, sold-at-a-huge-loss tablet."

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EPIC Files For Rehearing In Body Scanner Case
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 11:31 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's movement-is-a-privilege-peon department:
OverTheGeicoE writes "The Electronic Privacy Information Center has filed for a rehearing in their case against DHS regarding airport body scanners. In their latest court filing (PDF), EPIC argues that last month's ruling requiring a public comment period but no other changes was based on incorrect information. From TFA: '"The court overstated the effectiveness of the body scanner devices and understated the degree of the privacy intrusion to the travelling public," stated EPIC President Marc Rotenberg. EPIC's petition challenged the Court's finding that the devices detect "liquid and powders," which was never established and was not claimed by the government. EPIC also argued that the court wrongly concluded that the TSA is not subject to a federal privacy law that prohibits video voyeurism. The panel found that TSA body scanner employees are "engaged in law enforcement activity," contrary to the TSA's own regulations.'
Note that this is a request for a rehearing with the same court that rejected their request to stop TSA's use of body scanners. It is not an appeal to a higher court. Is EPIC likely to obtain a more favorable ruling from the same court?"


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Only Idiots Don't Give Back To Free Software
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 10:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's contribute-or-die department:
Julie188 writes "Taking without contributing back to the upstream project defeats the benefit of open source and sooner or later, all open source users realize this, contends Jim Zemlin, executive director of the nonprofit Linux Foundation. So the time for cajoling those users — even commercial projects like Canonical — into participating is over. Contributing is 'not the right thing to do because of some moral issue or because we say you should do it. It's because you are an idiot if you don't,'" he says."

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Spammers Bribe Russian Officials
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 10:00 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's ten-thousand-volleyballs department:
hellkyng writes with a transcript of interesting chat logs in Krebs on Security. From the article: "Leaked online chats between the co-owners of the world's largest pharmacy spam operation reveal the extent to which illicit organizations in Russia purchase political protection, and bribe public officials into initiating or stalling law enforcement investigations."

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Google and OpenDNS Work On Global Internet Speedup
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 09:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's greased-lightning department:
Many users have written in with news of Google and OpenDNS working together on The Global Internet Speedup Initiative. They've reworked their DNS servers so that they forward the first three octets of your IP address to the target web service. The service then uses your geolocation data to make sure that the resource you’ve requested is delivered by a local cache. From the article: "In the case of Google and other big CDNs, there can be dozens of these local caches all around the world, and using a local cache can improve latency and throughput by a huge margin. If you have a 10 or 20Mbps connection, and yet a download is crawling along at just a few hundred kilobytes, this is generally because you are downloading from an international source (downloading software or drivers from a Taiwanese site is a good example). Using a local cache reduces the strain on international connections, but it also makes better use of national networks which are both lower-latency and higher-capacity."

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Scientists Sequence Black Death Bacteria
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 08:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's what-could-go-wrong? department:
First time accepted submitter Quince alPillan writes "The bacteria behind the Black Death has a very unusual history. Its ancestor is an unassuming soil bacterium and the current strains of Yersinia pestis still infects thousands of people annually, but no longer causes the suite of horrifying symptoms associated with the medieval plagues. The radical differences, in fact, had led some to suggest that we had been blaming the wrong bacteria. Now, researchers have obtained DNA from some of London's plague victims, and confirmed that Y. pestis appears to be to blame. But the sequences also suggest that the strains of bacteria we see today may be different from the ones that rampaged through Europe."

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Diginotar Responds To Rogue Certificate Problem
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 07:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's our-bad department:
An anonymous reader writes "Vasco, the owner of the DigiNotar CA implicated in the MITM attacks on Iranian Google users has responded to their fraudulently issued certificate problems. The press release reads: 'On July 19th 2011, DigiNotar detected an intrusion into its Certificate Authority (CA) infrastructure, which resulted in the fraudulent issuance of public key certificate requests for a number of domains, including Google.com. Once it detected the intrusion, DigiNotar has acted in accordance with all relevant rules and procedures. At that time, an external security audit concluded that all fraudulently issued certificates were revoked. Recently, it was discovered that at least one fraudulent certificate had not been revoked at the time. After being notified by Dutch government organization Govcert, DigiNotar took immediate action and revoked the fraudulent certificate'. It is not clear whether the latter certificate is the one used in Iran, or whether other certificates remain at large. I guess removing the root certificate from browsers is the correct response."

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Windows 8 To Natively Support ISO and VHD Mounting
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 07:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's new-tools department:
MrSeb writes "With a masterful nail in the optical disc coffin, Microsoft has announced that its new operating system will natively mount ISO disc images. On the slightly more enterprisesque side of the equation, VHD files will also be supported by Windows 8. Both new features will be smoothly integrated into Windows 8 Explorer's ribbon menu, and mounting an ISO or VHD is as simple as double clicking the file. This is obviously an important addition with Windows 8 being available on tablets — and in a year or two, it wouldn't be surprising if all software is made available as an ISO on a USB drive which can be read by tablet and PC alike."

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Cornell's Creative Machines Lab Lets Chatbots Interact
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 06:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's not-quite-there-yet department:
mikejuk writes "When Cornell's Creative Machines Lab got two chatbots to settle down for a short interaction the result was surreal, to say the least. Is one of them the future winner of the $100,000 Loebner prize or a future TV show host? From the article: 'This years Loebner prize is on the 19th of October and as a sort of curious run up activity Cornell's Creative Machines Lab pointed two chatbots, Cleverbots, at each other and let them talk. You can see and hear the result in the video and it is both hilarious and some how very disturbing. It this the future of AI?'" It's funny how quickly they become aggressive towards each other, and what the male claims to be instead of a bot is priceless.

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The Pirate Bay Founders Go Legit With BayFiles
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 06:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's now-with-90%-less-stuff department:
An anonymous reader writes "The founders of The Pirate Bay, possibly the best-known BitTorrent tracking service in existence, are going legit with a new file-sharing site which they claim will adhere to all copyright rules and takedown requests. BayFiles, as the new service is named, isn't BitTorrent powered. Instead, the site borrows its method of operation from the likes of Megaupload and RapidShare: a user selects a file and uploads it to the site via their web browser, after which it becomes available for anyone to download, assuming they have the link."

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New USB 3.0 Flash Drive Has 2 TB of Storage
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 05:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's thumb-drive-of-holding department:
First time accepted submitter Dr Max writes "During Display Taiwan, Transcend and Taiwan's ITRI displayed a finger-long USB stick that reportedly offers 2 TB of storage. That's no typo. It somehow holds up to 2 terabytes worth of information. So far neither company has released anything official in regards to specs or a simple introduction, nor does the high-capacity USB 3.0 stick appear on Display Taiwan's website. But as seen in the video below, the 'Thin Card' thumb drive is even smaller than a thumb, measuring slightly thicker than a penny. It offers a minimum of 16 GB and a maximum of 2 TB."

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Google Explores Re-Ranking Search Results Using +1 Button Data
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 05:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's circle-search department:
tekgoblin writes "Google plans to use data from its +1 button to re-order search results and keep spammers at bay. While this would bring Google’s search engine into the social networking era, it would also create a new avenue for blackhats to manipulate search results. From the article: '"Google will study the clicks on +1 buttons as a signal that influences the ranking and appearance of websites in search results," a spokesman wrote. "The purpose of any ranking signal is to improve overall search quality. For +1's and other social ranking signals, as with any new ranking signal, we'll be starting carefully and learning how those signals are related to quality."'"

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Verizon Kills Free FTP Access
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 04:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's would-you-like-to-check-a-bag department:
First time accepted submitter JP205 writes "Verizon recently disabled FTP access for its Internet customers who use its proprietary service to build their personal websites. It turns out that if you want FTP access restored, Verizon is happy to grant it to you for an extra $6 a month."

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Microsoft Wants Your Feedback On Its New Python IDE
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 04:15 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's is-the-embrace-part-of-the-python? department:
First time accepted submitter phoolishcyrus writes "Dear Slashdot: would you kindly take a look at our little project, PTVS — Python Tools for Visual Studio? It helps you develop Python (using any interpreter, not just IronPython) and comes with a few other goodies. Spare no punches."

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US Gov't Lobbied EU To Approve Oracle-Sun Merger
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '11 at 01:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's how-could-george-bush-do-such-a-thing department:
littlekorea writes "Cables leaked by Wikileaks have revealed that the U.S. Government actively pressured the EU Competition Commissioner to approve Oracle's acquisition of Sun Microsystems. The cable reveals that the U.S. went to great lengths to discover how the competition commissioner felt about the 'pro-competitive' nature of open source software and whether this would represent a threat to the US$7.4 billion deal."

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