By timothy from Slashdot's pay-per-view department
McGruber writes: Citylab has the news that the U.S. Federal Highway Administration is revoking its 2004 approval of the "Clearview" font for road signs. Clearview was made to improve upon its predecessor, a 1940s font called Highway Gothic. Certain letters appeared to pose visibility problems, especially those with tight interstices (or internal spacing)—namely lowercase e, a, and s. At night, any of these reflective letters might appear to be a lowercase o in the glare of headlights. By opening up these letterforms, and mixing lowercase and uppercase styles, Clearview aimed to improve how these reflective highway signs read. Now, just 12 years later, the FHWA is reversing itself: "After more than a decade of analysis, we learned—among other things—that Clearview actually compromises the legibility of signs in negative-contrast color orientations, such as those with black letters on white or yellow backgrounds like Speed Limit and Warning signs," said Doug Hecox, a FHWA spokesperson, in an email. The FHWA has not yet provided any research on Clearview that disproves the early claims about the font's benefits. But there is at least one factor that clearly distinguishes it from Highway Gothic: cost. Jurisdictions that adopt Clearview must purchase a standard license for type, a one-time charge of between $175 (for one font) and $795 (for the full 13-font typeface family) and up, depending on the number of workstations. That doesn't seems like a very good use of tax money, for something that can be nondestructively reused once created.Read Replies (0)
By timothy from Slashdot's documentation-is-nice department
An anonymous reader writes: After MSN Chat closed in 2003, and then again in 2006, some guy has finally documented the authentication system used — over a decade later! Developer Joshua Davison writes by way of explanation:
I think itâ(TM)s important to document the challenge we (users, scripters, hackers) faced connecting to MSN Chat, which is the only known 'proper' implementation of IRCX v8.1 at this time.
MSN Chat introduced a GateKeeper SASL authentication protocol, which implemented 'GateKeeper' and 'GateKeeperPassport' (not dissimilar to the widely documented NTLM authentication protocol, which was also implemented as NTLM, and NTMLPassport)
The GateKeeper Security Support Provider (GKSSP) functioned in two ways; allowing a user to login with a Microsoft Account (Previously known as Microsoft Passport, .NET Passport, Microsoft Passport Network, and Windows Live ID), and also allowed guest authentication for users without, or not willing to use a Microsoft Account.
While most users didn't need or want to understand how the protocol worked, there were many of us who did, and many that just preferred to use MSN Chat outside of the browser.Read Replies (0)
By timothy from Slashdot's black-sails-in-the-sunset department
itwbennett writes: Over the weekend, Brian Krebs reported that Sam Glines, CEO of threat intelligence vendor Norse Corp., was asked to step down by the board of directors and employees were told that they could report to work on Monday, but that there was no guarantee they'd be paid for their work. 'Less than a day after Krebs published his article, Norse Corp.'s website was offline, and attempts to email the company failed,' writes CSO's Steve Ragan. 'The ever-popular Norse attack map was online for some of the weekend, but that too had gone dark by Sunday evening.' In the aftermath of the company's disappearance, the topic of flawed data and assumptions once again resurfaced in a blog post written by ICS expert, Robert M. Lee.Read Replies (0)
By timothy from Slashdot's never-underestimate-a-hyperloop-full-of-tapes department
The Dallas Morning News reports that a team from MIT has topped competitors from around 100 universities around the world at a competition held on the campus of Texas A&M by presenting a workable design vision for Elon Musk's dream of a hyperloop. The hyperloop concept, mentioned several times before on Slashdot, involves rapidly shuffling passenger pods through 12-foot-wide tubes evacuated of air, and would mean terrestrial transport at speeds topping those of commercial air travel. From the Morning News article:
Delft University of Technology from The Netherlands finished second, the University of Wisconsin third, Virginia Tech fourth and the University of California, Irvine, fifth.
The top teams will build their pods and test them at the world's first Hyperloop Test Track, being built adjacent to SpaceX's Hawthorne, Calif., headquarters.Read Replies (0)