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Sprint Pushes FPS NOVA With Firmware — and Users Can't Remove It
Posted by News Fetcher on May 28 '11 at 07:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's but-you-love-it department:
theodp writes "If you could change the way wireless companies did things, what would you do?' asked Sprint CEO Dan Hesse. How about stopping the use of Sprint's firmware updates to download apps that aren't wanted and can't be removed, Dan? Sprint confirmed to CNET's Elinor Mills that those strange apps she was shocked to find on her Android phone — sci-fi shooter N.O.V.A. and Blockbuster — with a long list of permissions that couldn't be uninstalled had been sneakily downloaded onto her phone during a firmware update. 'Sprint does offer a variety of partner applications that are optimized for use on our wireless phones,' a Sprint representative explained in an e-mail. 'From time to time, we will provide new apps to our customers in conjunction with a software maintenance release. Also, Sprint, in conjunction with Google, is taking steps to develop a technical solution that would allow customers to remove any unwanted applications that have been preloaded or pushed in an over-the-air software update.'" Asking first would be a nice non-technical solution.

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Nintendo Pulls Dead Or Alive Over Porn Fears In EU
Posted by News Fetcher on May 28 '11 at 07:00 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's scandal-in-scandinavia department:
cpu6502 writes "The new Nintendo 3DS game Dead or Alive: Dimensions is being pulled from EU member states Sweden, Denmark, and Norway. The distributor said an in-game photography mode allows players to look-up the dresses of 17-year-old Ayane, Koroke, and Kasumi — which could be considered 'child porn' by local police."

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Human Skin Cells Converted Directly To Neurons
Posted by News Fetcher on May 28 '11 at 05:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's no-pesky-werewolf-stage department:
Dr. Eggman writes "Standford's School of Medicine brings us an update in the latest achievements towards in-vitro neuron generation via redifferentiation of specialized cells (skin cells in this case.) This important progress follows on last year's success in inducing this change with mice skin cells. The importance of this line of research lies in that the process does not need to first de-differentiate the skin cells into a kind of stem cells known as induced pluripotent stem cells. By skipping this phase, the process avoids potential problems in the body's rejection of the iPS cells. Amazingly, the transformation occurs with the added presence of 4 proteins (one more protein than need to induce the effect in mice) over several weeks (compared to a few days in mice.) Research continues as the study highlights the significant differences in mice and human neural cells as well as the success rate of transformation (2-4% for human cells, 20% for mice.) The resultant cells aren't yet as capable as naturally derived neurons; generating less-robust electrical signals."

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HTC Is Paying Microsoft $5 For Every Android Phone
Posted by News Fetcher on May 28 '11 at 04:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's they've-reached-step-3 department:
jcarr writes "According to Citi analyst Walter Pritchard, HTC is paying Microsoft $5 for each Android phone it makes. This may be related to a report from last year: MS and HTC sign patent deal. So we now we can't even write a free OS?"

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BBC Site Uses Cookies To Inform Visitors of Anti-Cookie Law
Posted by News Fetcher on May 28 '11 at 02:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's only-criminals-will-have-cookies department:
Andy Smith writes "As of 26 May 2011 web sites in the UK must get a user's permission to set cookies. If you go to the BBC's commercial TV listings site Radio Times you'll see a message telling you about the new law. Go to the site again, though, and you don't see the message. How does the site know you've already seen it? By setting a cookie of course! It doesn't ask for permission."

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8000 Credit Cards' Details Compromised In Australian Bank Breach
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 11:45 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's 4000-bruce-4000-sheila department:
mask.of.sanity writes "Australia's largest bank, the Commonwealth Bank, has cancelled 8,000 credit cards after it detected a data breach at a merchant. Mastercard and Visa may issue penalties including fines to the acquiring bank under the payment industry's PCI-DSS compliance rules. News of breaches is uncommon in Australia because the nation does not have data breach disclosure laws."

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RadioShack Trying To Return To Its DIY Roots
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 08:45 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's ghost-of-christmas-past department:
An anonymous reader writes "In what seems to be a desperate attempt to keep the company afloat, RadioShack has made a video appeal to the DIY community that helped the retail chain grow into what it is today. The days of amateur radio operators and tinkerers flocking to the store are long gone, but it seems that the company wants to issue a mea culpa and move forward."

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Sony Won't Invest As Heavily In PlayStation 4
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 05:45 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's ungrateful-wretches department:
donniebaseball23 writes "Sony CFO Masaru Kato told investors this week that the company won't be looking to put the same kind of massive R&D into PS4 as they did with PS3. PS3's costs were astronomical because of Blu-ray and the Cell chip, but Sony's bottom line can't take another similar hit. Analysts are speculating that this will leave the door open for competitors like Microsoft. 'PS4's hardware could be less impressive than the PS3 at its launch. I think Microsoft will really be able to put the screws to Sony in the next console war,' Panoptic analyst Asif Khan commented to IndustryGamers."

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Patriot Act Extension By Autopen Raises Questions for Congressman
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 05:00 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's great-and-powerful-oz department:
Okian Warrior writes "Congress passed the [Patriot act extension] bill Thursday night, shortly before certain provisions of the Patriot Act were set to expire. However, Mr. Obama could not sign the bill right away in person, since he was in Europe for the G8 Summit. In order to sign the bill before the measures expired, he authorized the use of the autopen machine, which holds a pen and signs his actual signature. Republican Rep. Tom Graves of Georgia sent President Obama a letter today questioning the constitutionality."

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DoD Paper Proposes National Security Through a Culture of Restraint (and Stigma)
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 03:45 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's shhh-the-fatherland-is-listening department:
decora writes "An SAIC analyst has written a paper [PDF] calling for the 'stigmatization' of the 'unattractive' types who tend to discuss government secrets in public. The plan, described in the Naval Postgraduate School Homeland Security Affairs journal, is to promote self-censorship as a 'civic duty'. Who needs to censor themselves? Amateur enthusiasts who describe satellite orbits, scientists who describe threats to the food supply, graduate students mapping the internet, the Government Accountability Office, which publishes failure reports on the TSA, the US Geologic Survey, which publishes surface water information, newspapers (the New York Times), TV shows, journalism websites, anti-secrecy websites, and even security author Bruce Schneier, to name a few."

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Flight 447 'Black Box' Decoded
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 03:30 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's impressive-feats-come-in-waves department:
fermion writes "An initial report has been released by the BEA concerning the details of the last minutes of Flight 447 en route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. According the report, the autopilot disengaged and stall warning engaged at 2 hours 10 minutes and 5 seconds into the flight. Less than 2 minutes later the recorded speeds became invalid. At 2 hours 14 minutes and 28 seconds, the recording stopped. The final vertical speed was recorded around 10,912 ft/min."

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OpenSSL Timing Attack Can Intercept Private Keys
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 02:45 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's if-you-have-a-very-precise-watch department:
Trailrunner7 writes "Remote timing attacks have been a problem for cryptosystems for more than 20 years. A new paper shows that such attacks are still practical ... The researchers, Billy Bob Brumley and Nicola Tuveri of Aalto University School of Science, focused their efforts on OpenSSL's implementation of the elliptic curve digital signature algorithm, and they were able to develop an attack that allowed them to steal the private key of an OpenSSL server."

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War Over Arsenic Based Life
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 02:00 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's sewer-shark-comes-true department:
Antipater writes "Slashdot readers may remember the announcement and ensuing controversy six months ago over the NASA discovery of microbes that can supposedly incorporate arsenic into their DNA. Now, The Washington Post reports that Science has published a collection of eight scathing critiques of astrobiologist Felisa Wolfe-Simon, her methods, and her conclusions. Wolfe-Simon is starting to fire back and gather her own allies — one wonders if we're in for another cold-fusion style science war."

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MeeGo Being Ported To Wayland
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 01:45 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's netcraft-confirms-x11-is-dying department:
An anonymous reader writes "From the MeeGo SF2011 conference this week it was disclosed that MeeGo may ship the Wayland Server with the tablet version of the MeeGo 1.3 operating system for release in October."

A reasonably annotated version of the presentation slides. Unfortunately video of the talk is not yet available.

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Lockheed Martin Purchases First Commercial Quantum Computer
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 12:45 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's yes-no-maybe-so department:
Panaflex writes "D-Wave systems announced general availability for it's 128 qubit adiabatic quantum machine just two weeks ago, and reports of it's first sale to Lockheed Martin have come out."

The D-Wave Systems site has a rather informative collection of quantum computing papers.

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Zuckerberg Only Eating Animals He Personally Kills
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 12:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's welcome-to-my-food-list department:
theodp writes "Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has begun personally slaying animals for food, part of a resolution to fully appreciate the meat he eats by limiting it to that which he personally kills. Zuckerberg has mostly been vegetarian since making the vow, but his hands-on kills thus far include a goat, pig, chicken and a lobster. 'He cut the throat of the goat with a knife,' Zuckerberg pal Jesse Cool told FORTUNE, 'which is the most kind way to do it.'"

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CmdrTaco Visits Pixar
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 12:15 PM
By CmdrTaco from Slashdot's sometimes-my-job-rocks department:
A couple of weeks ago I scored a visit to Lucasfilm and half jokingly challenged the Slashdot audience to invite me to other cool places. Two brave Pixar employees took me up on my offer and showed me around for Slashdot T-Shirts. It's an amazing campus. Thanks to Mark Harrison and Ralph Gootee for showing me "0% of the render-farm" and making me wish that I was talented enough to have a place in such an amazing world. Soon I'll have a cool story to post about the crazy work Mark is doing with mind boggling volumes of data, but for now I have a picture of me next to a giant Luxo Lamp. Also thanks to Heidi Parmelee who gave me a Woody doll to give to my son and made me a hero. So now the gauntlet has been doubly thrown: Who out there in Slashdot-land works somewhere super cool and can give me a tour in exchange for a T-Shirt?

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Google Deprecates Translation API
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 12:00 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's no-api-for-you department:
An anonymous reader writes "Google is to close down its popular Translate application programming interface — along with a host of others — by the end of the year, owing to what it claims is 'extensive abuse' by users of the service, but has thus far declined to provide details or a sensible alternative for users of the API."

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What Makes Parallel Programming Difficult?
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 11:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's double-the-threads-double-the-fun department:
An anonymous reader writes "Intel's Aater Suleman writes about why parallel programming is difficult. ... I was unaware ... that a major challenge in multi-threaded programming lies in optimizing parallel programs not just getting them to run. His analysis is insightful and the case study is very enlightening if you are unfamiliar with parallel code debugging. "

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Book Review: Scribus Beginners Guide
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '11 at 11:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's read-all-about-it department:
JR0cket writes "Scribus is an open source desktop publishing tool that helps you create professionally laid out documents, from simple documents to full blown magazines, corporate brochures or even books. Desktop publishing tools are not a replacement for word processors, instead they give you the freedom to create uniquely designed documents and help you manage large sets of text and graphic content. Scribus is similar to Adobe InDesign or Quarq Xpress and gives you a wide range of tools to layout content in either print or digital media form. Scribus is pretty easy to get to grips with and has good documentation on the project website. The Scribus 1.3.5 beginners guide is a really handy guide through the workflow of desktop publishing and helps you clearly understand how to create professional looking results." Read below for the rest of JR0ket's review. Scribus 1.3.5 beginners guide
author Cedric Gemy
pages 348
publisher Packt Publishing
rating 9/10
reviewer John Stevenson
ISBN 978-1-84951-300-5
summary Create optimum page layouts for your documents using productive tools of Scribus.

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