the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2017-Apr-21 today archive


  1. Britain Set For First Coal-Free Day Since Industrial Revolution
  2. All-Electric 'Flying Car' Takes Its First Test Flight In Germany
  3. Developer of BrickerBot Malware Claims He Destroyed Over Two Million Devices
  4. Cycling To Work Can Cut Cancer and Heart Disease
  5. Apple Hires Top Google Satellite Executives For New Hardware Team
  6. Ask Slashdot: How Do You Explain 'Don't Improve My Software Syndrome' Or DIMSS?
  7. Samsung Will Fix the Galaxy S8 Red Tint Issue With a Software Update
  8. DOJ: Russian 'Superhacker' Gets 27 Years In Prison
  9. Theranos Used Shell Company To Secretly Buy Outside Lab Equipment, Says Report
  10. Microsoft Improves Gmail Experience For Windows 10 Insiders, But There Are Privacy Concerns
  11. Teenage Hackers Motivated By Morality Not Money, Study Finds
  12. LinkedIn Apologizes For Trying To Connect Everyone In Real Life
  13. Court Rules Fan Subtitles On TV and Movies Are Illegal
  14. Ocean Currents Are Sweeping Billions of Tiny Plastic Bits to the Arctic
  15. Developer Publishes Patch To Enable Windows 7 and 8.1 Updates On New Hardware
  16. Red Hat Suffers Massive Data Center Network Outage
  17. Diet Sodas May Be Tied To Stroke, Dementia Risk
  18. Leaked Document Sheds Light On Microsoft's Chromebook Rival
  19. Louisiana's Governor Declares State Of Emergency Over Disappearing Coastline
  20. In The First Months of Trump Era, Facebook And Apple Spent More On Lobbying Than They Ever Have
  21. Trump's FCC Votes To Allow Broadband Rate Hikes Will Deprive More Public Schools From Getting Internet Access
  22. Inside Elon Musk's New Company Neuralink Which Aims To Fight Brain Conditions And Help Humanity Survive in the Age of AI
  23. US Prepares Charges To Seek Arrest of WikiLeaks' Julian Assange
  24. Neuroscientists Offer a Reality Check On Facebook's 'Typing By Brain' Project
  25. CEO of Silicon Valley's $400 Juicer Promises Refunds After Hand-Squeezing Demonstration
  26. Ambient Light Sensors Can Be Used To Steal Browser Data

Alterslash picks the best 5 comments from each of the day’s Slashdot stories, and presents them on a single page for easy reading.

Britain Set For First Coal-Free Day Since Industrial Revolution

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: The UK is set to have its first ever working day without coal power generation since the Industrial Revolution, according to the National Grid. The control room tweeted the predicted milestone on Friday, adding that it is also set to be the first 24-hour coal-free period in Britain. The UK has had shorter coal-free periods in 2016, as gas and renewables such as wind and solar play an increasing role in the power mix. The longest continuous period until now was 19 hours -- first achieved on a weekend last May, and matched on Thursday. Hannah Martin, head of energy at Greenpeace UK, said: "The first day without coal in Britain since the Industrial Revolution marks a watershed in the energy transition. A decade ago, a day without coal would have been unimaginable, and in 10 years' time our energy system will have radically transformed again." Britain became the first country to use coal for electricity when Thomas Edison opened the Holborn Viaduct power station in London in 1882. It was reported in the Observer at the time that "a hundred weight of coal properly used will yield 50 horse power for an hour." And that each horse power "will supply at least a light equivalent to 150 candles."

Re:36% Read your link. They buy nuclear from Swede

By zarr • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
No, in most years, Norway produces more electric energy (virtually 100% renewable) than it consumes. See the first table in

The 36% number comes from the Guarantees of Origin scam. It's an economic system which disconnects the production and consumption of energy from the buying and selling of it. It basically allows renewable energy to produce double the amount of clean conscience, for the same amount of clean energy:

  • Norwegians feel good, because they use locally produced clean energy.
  • Germans feel good because they pay a premium for Norwegian clean energy.

Also, I suspect that the "67.5% of gross final consumption" includes stuff like gas for vehicles, wood for heating, etc, not just electricity, which makes it meaningless in this discussion.

Re:Many examples, if you remember history

By dbIII • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Decades ago, Americans brought all their groceries home in paper bags. Environmentalists freaked out over all the paper being wasted and cried over all the murdered trees, so they helped urge the shift to plastic bags.

Complete and utter fucking bullshit kid. Go ask your dad instead of making shit up. The plastic bags were a shitload cheaper, around an order of magnitude, than paper ones and that was the reason.

That's because coal is rapidly being phased out

By mean pun • Score: 3 • Thread
Nice milestone, but see for a far more informative overview. It looks like coal usage in the UK is falling off a cliff.

Re:Still uses gas

By n3r0.m4dski11z • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

" go all nuclear "

Why do people think of nuclear power as "clean" power? The waste lasts for hundreds of thousands of years, far longer than any co2 we produce. Its the same human mentality that got us into this mess, externalities not being considered for an immediate gain in the moment. (in this case possibly dumping waste on hundreds of generations into the future)

Zero waste is solar, tidal, geothermal, wind and water. The only way forward. Nuclear was a horrible mis-step by humanity and the problems will be easily visible to all in one hundred years. Especially if we have zero waste fusion developed in the next century. All your arguments will seem rather quaint, i hope.

Re:WHO and many other sources

By angel'o'sphere • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Actually we don't know how many cases of what ever cancer there has been.
The numbers are locked down and not public.

However about 20,000 children where treated in Germany for Thyroid Cancer ...

All-Electric 'Flying Car' Takes Its First Test Flight In Germany

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Today, Munich-based Lilium Aviation conducted the first test flight of its all-electric, two-seater, vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) prototype. "In a video provided by the Munich-based startup, the aircraft can be seen taking off vertically like a helicopter, and then accelerating into forward flight using wing-borne lift," reports The Verge. From the report: The craft is powered by 36 separate jet engines mounted on its 10-meter long wings via 12 movable flaps. At take-off, the flaps are pointed downwards to provide vertical lift. And once airborne, the flaps gradually tilt into a horizontal position, providing forward thrust. During the tests, the jet was piloted remotely, but its operators say their first manned flight is close-at-hand. And Lilium claims that its electric battery "consumes around 90 percent less energy than drone-style aircraft," enabling the aircraft to achieve a range of 300 kilometers (183 miles) with a maximum cruising speed of 300 kph (183 mph). "It's the same battery that you can find in any Tesla," Nathen told The Verge. "The concept is that we are lifting with our wings as soon as we progress into the air with velocity, which makes our airplane very efficient. Compared to other flights, we have extremely low power consumption." The plan is to eventually build a 5-passenger version of the jet.

Re: Electric, or Jet?

By Dawn Keyhotie • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Yes, but a jet boat is not powered by a jet engine, that is the difference. A jet boat has a gas engine that powers the water jet.
This doofus specifically said the "car" had many jet engines. It actually has many electrically powered ducted fans. Which are not jets except in the most pedantic sense, and even then, they are not powered by engines, but by motors.

Sorry, have to call BS on this one

By fred911 • Score: 3 • Thread

Whereas there may be a prototype somewhere, this looks 100% CGI. Does anyone actually believe this video demonstrated anything that happened in real life?

Re:Jet engines??

By Tough Love • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

aren't you supposed to spout this kind of: "Man will never fly!" garbage _before_ it's been clearly demonstrated. The video shows it taking off and in forward flight

To call that demonstration "forward flight" you need to be charitable or gullible. Look again. The front motors are pointed straight down. That does not qualify this thing as an airplane at all, it qualifies it as some kind of helicopter. Helicopters also can fly forward, but they are not airplanes, and they suck for fuel efficiency. Like this thing, which claims to be fuel efficient because of its wings, but don't be stupid. Look at it, it doesn't even have wings on the front and the back wing is little more than a spoiler.

You can see what is going on more clearly in this video of their 1/5th scale model (i.e., 1/125 weight) where the motors are always angled down at least 40 degrees, otherwise it will fall out of the sky. If it had proper wings the motors would point straight back. All that downward vectoring comes straight out of the battery life, which is the main selling point of this concept. Well, if you are a snake oil collector then feel free to buy this concept.

Some wise person said "an open mind is a fine thing, but let it not be gaping".

Re:Non-starter 'flying car'

By FlyHelicopters • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

You don't understand the downforce of the air required to lift a few thousand pounds into the air...

You will never, ever, EVER be be able to do vertical take off from normal residential homes using anything that blows air, ever...

Nothing to do with technology, engines, batteries, etc. It is simple physics. Look at my user name, yes I know :)

Aerodynamics don't look right

By Sir Holo • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

IAAEngineer. On the Lilium website, the images show the "flight mode" having all of the impellers on the top of the wings, instead of the bottom. They are all sitting on the portion of the wing where aerodynamic lift is generated. There's a wing-surface on top of the nacelles, but the design still looks like it would have negative lift. Anyone who knows how a wing generates lift will understand.

The impellers, necessarily pushing air through faster than the vehicle is traveling, would create a low-pressure zone right in front of them, where flowing air is supposed to be compressed. It's the lower air-pressure over the back of a wing that generates lift. The nacelles are sitting right in the way.

Or does their design position the front-face of the impellers right in that spot. They would have a lower relative air pressure just in front of them, of course. It's hard to tell from the few images the exact positioning, but can an Aeronautical Engineer chime in?

Developer of BrickerBot Malware Claims He Destroyed Over Two Million Devices

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader writes: In an interview today, the author of BrickerBot, a malware that bricks IoT and networking devices, claimed he destroyed over 2 million devices, but he never intended to do so in the first place. His intentions were to fight the rising number of IoT botnets that were used to launch DDoS attacks last year, such as Gafgyt and Mirai. He says he created BrickerBot with 84 routines that try to secure devices so they can't be taken over by Mirai and other malware. Nevertheless, he realized that some devices are so badly designed that he could never protect them. He says that for these, he created a "Plan B," which meant deleting the device's storage, effectively bricking the device. His identity was revealed after a reporter received an anonymous tip about a HackForum users claiming he was destroying IoT devices since last November, just after BrickerBot appeared. When contacted, BrickerBot's author revealed that the malware is a personal project which he calls "Internet Chemotherapy" and he's "the doctor" who will kill all the cancerous unsecured IoT devices.

If he gets busted...

By Type44Q • Score: 5, Funny • Thread
If he gets busted, I'm good for a $20 towards his legal costs... but if he's willing to target all IoT devices, I'll make it a hundred. ;)

Re: If he gets busted...

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

But is this retribution? The problem is that manufacturers don't secure the IoT devices they produce, and that's who your ire should be directed at. However, this punishes the users who purchased those devices, usually out of ignorance. If users have their devices bricked, they may simply buy another vulnerable IoT device to replace it, perhaps from the same manufacturer. It's possible that this may actually drive sales for manufacturers who produce poorly secured IoT devices. That's the opposite of retribution, if you're actually helping them to increase revenue and profits. Instead, there needs to be consequences for the manufacturers that are serious enough that they are significantly more expensive than the cost of making secure devices.

There is a time for everything.

By Gravis Zero • Score: 3 • Thread

I guess it is time.

Re: If he gets busted...

By bill_mcgonigle • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

If users have their devices bricked, they may simply buy another vulnerable IoT device to replace it, perhaps from the same manufacturer.

Are you suggesting there are people who will keep buying the same type of e.g. WiFi lightbulbs that work for a couple hours and then stop working, without returning them?

A return usually costs more than the profit on a device; it's an economically valid feedback mechanism assuming that kind of person isn't actually common. It seems unlikely to me that it is the typical behavior pattern.

Not a permanent solution.

By Gravis Zero • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

The problem with this solution is that the companies are not getting the negative finacial feedback (punishment) that they need to correct their behavior.

I've said it before but it's worth repeating.

IoT vendors will only secure their devices after it starts costing them money or are legally required to do so.

The best option is to high jack the IoT devices to DDoS their makers because it creates a direct feedback loop. The more insecure devices they sell, the more it will cost them to host their company's website(s). For extra points, only target their parent company. ;)

Cycling To Work Can Cut Cancer and Heart Disease

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
randomErr quotes a report from BBC: Want to live longer? Reduce your risk of cancer? And heart disease? Then cycle to work, say scientists. The five-year study of 250,000 UK commuters also showed walking had some benefits over sitting on public transport or taking the car. Published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) today, the University of Glasgow study compared those who had an "active" commute with those who were mostly stationary. Overall, 2,430 of those studied died, 3,748 were diagnosed with cancer and 1,110 had heart problems. But, during the course of the study, regular cycling cut the risk of death from any cause by 41%, the incidence of cancer by 45% and heart disease by 46%. The cyclists clocked an average of 30 miles per week, but the further they cycled the greater the health boon. However, the effect was still there even after adjusting the statistics to remove the effects of other potential explanations like smoking, diet or how heavy people are.

Re: It would be...

By 101percent • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Clearly you don't bicycle. I contest that sans "steel protection" you are an idiot if your senses aren't heightened. From this behavior you will quickly learn most drivers are the ones who don't understand how to drive. I've seen it all and it is thoroughly documented. Go Pro mounted cyclists have revealed much in the past few years.

who are cyclists?

By Goldsmith • Score: 3 • Thread

People who cycle to work are people who:
1) Don't need to personally take care of their children in an emergency
2) Live close to work
3) Have flexible working hours and standards
4) Have a nice enough job to support an office and a place to put a bike

In short, cyclists have a lower stress life. I would argue very strongly that cycling to work is the result of a lower stress life, not the cause. It is not a lifestyle that most of us can afford for reasons that have nothing to do with cycling.

Re:On-site service; cargo

By hawguy • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Moving closer doesn't help if it is part of your job description to visit clients' land or haul more work equipment than will fit in a reasonable bike trailer.

The major downside: if you don't ride your bike, the public will miss getting to see you in the tight black spandex that all bikers seem to feel a compulsion to wear. The gay community in particular will be disappointed. In the name of tolerance you should not disappoint the gay community. Therefore car travel is a bigoted idea and supports hatred of LGBT people. So you see, you must bike, for the good of the society!

It's lycra, not spandex, and few commuters wear full-on bike gear. Most people wear the same clothes they wear at work. It's the recreational riders that are more likely to wear bike gear... and there's a good reason for it -- similar to why few people wear jeans to lift weights at the gym.

Re: cut the risk of death from any cause by 41%

By hawguy • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

outweigh any of the additional risks

If that includes getting run over by a transit bus, the benefits must be truly remarkable.

You ought to look up "risk" -- few cyclists will be run over by a transit bus. And it's not like a car commute is free of risk.

Re:It would be...

By hawguy • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Look, roads were made for cars and trucks. If you ride a motorcycle or bicycle on the road, anything that happens to you is your fault. A smart person surrounds himself in steel to protect him from stupid assholes on the road. Only retards think that they don't need it.

Actually, roads were originally made for (and paid by) cyclists:

Surrounding yourself in steel doesn't seem to make drivers very safe when 35,000 people a year are killed in car crashes.

Apple Hires Top Google Satellite Executives For New Hardware Team

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Verge: The iPhone maker has recruited a pair of top Google satellite executives for a new hardware team, according to people familiar with the matter. John Fenwick, who led Google's spacecraft operations, and Michael Trela, head of satellite engineering, left Alphabet Inc.'s Google for Apple in recent weeks, the people said. They report to Greg Duffy, co-founder of camera maker Dropcam, who joined Apple earlier this year, the people said. With the recruits, Apple is bringing into its ranks two experts in the demanding, expensive field of satellite design and operation. At the moment, these endeavors typically fall into two fields: satellites for collecting images and those for communications. In a regulatory filing last year, Boeing Co. detailed a plan to provide broadband access through more than 1,000 satellites in low-earth orbit. The aerospace company has talked with Apple about the technology company being an investor-partner in the project, a person familiar with the situation said. It's unclear if those talks will result in a deal. At the annual Satellite 2017 conference in Washington D.C. last month, industry insiders said Boeing's project was being funded by Apple, Tim Farrar, a satellite and telecom consultant at TMF Associates Inc., wrote in a recent blog. A Boeing spokesman declined to comment.

Ask Slashdot: How Do You Explain 'Don't Improve My Software Syndrome' Or DIMSS?

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
dryriver writes: I am someone who likes to post improvement suggestions for different software tools I use on the internet. If I see a function in a software that doesn't work well for me or could work better for everyone else, I immediately post suggestions as to how that function could be improved and made to work better for everybody. A striking phenomenon I have come across in posting such suggestions is the sheer number of "why would you want that at all" or "nobody needs that" or "the software is fine as it is" type responses from software users. What is particularly puzzling is that its not the developers of the software rejecting the suggestions -- its users of the software that often react sourly to improvement suggestions that could, if implemented well, benefit a lot of people using the software in question. I have observed this happening online for years even for really good software feature/function improvement ideas that actually wound up being implemented. My question is -- what causes this behavior of software users on the internet? Why would a software user see a suggestion that would very likely benefit many other users of the software and object loudly to that suggestion, or even pretend that "the suggestion is a bad one?"

People have workflows.

By aussersterne • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

They invest the time and the learning to master a workflow. They expect a payoff from this investment in their ability to use these workflows to achieve other ends. When you mess with a workflow, you negate that investment. They have to spend time learning and mastering a workflow all over again before they can apply it toward their actual goals.

Nobody uses software "to be using software" or "for a good experience." They use it to get things done. If they have to spend two weeks mastering a new workflow then your improvements had better deliver a multiple of that value in return, or they're going to come back with "that's cool, but it would trip me up for all of my muscle and click memory to be invalidated."

People aren't averse to improvements. They're averse to evolutionary improvements that cost more to the user in practice (time invested and mistakes avoided) than they deliver on the other end. "Small tweaks" often fall into this category. Some dev moves a button to a more "logical" placement and for the next two weeks, the users lose five or ten seconds every single time they need to use it because their absent minded clicking—absent-minded because they're focusing on what they're really trying to accomplish, not on 'using the software'—keeps ending up in the wrong place vs. what they're accustomed to.

Dev says "BUT IT'S BETTER." User experience is actually that of being irritated and not getting things done as efficiently as usual, so their response is "IN PRACTICE, IN THE CURRENT CONTEXT OF MY LIFE, NO IT'S NOT."

You are not alone.

By Foresto • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

I see this behavior surprisingly often as well. Any explanation I offered would just be conjecture, I'm afraid. I have some guesses about why people do this, but they're just guesses. I think it would make for an interesting psychology study.

Anyway, I'm mainly posting here to offset the toxic comments I see in response to your question. I, too, have been there. I've been attacked by onlookers for making suggestions, with the naysayers backing off only when the project leads decided that my suggestions were good ones. I've watched other people get attacked similarly, sometimes when I was a newcomer, and sometimes when I was the developer. It doesn't seem to matter if you're making suggestions for someone else to implement or offering to do the work yourself; some people seem just as likely to sling mud at you either way.

The internet has no shortage of obstructionist personalities, and the communities that gather around software projects are no exception. It makes me sad every time I see it, because to me, it is the antithesis of open software development. When it happens, everybody loses.

The only advice I can think of right now is to accept constructive criticism of your ideas, but also don't assume that your ideas suck just because some internet troll says so. A lot of them are wrong.

Re:Pretty obvious

By Carewolf • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

One of two very very scenarios arises in my mind:

1) The person(s) does not want the software to change at all because they are comfortable with how it works. This is seen all the time when companies are pushing upgrades to a new version of Windows or Office or *insert a different product*

2) Your suggestions are really not all that useful and are rightfully be lambasted

I much more commonly see:

3) Your suggestion sounds like an attack, and fans will automatically defend what they like.

Re:Some people are just naturally contrarian

By Hylandr • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

This right here.

There have been tons of applications that I have loved that had reached a perfect balance of usability and performance. Then the dev takes the development beyond useful with shit like skins or Adding this or that and it begins a downward spiral. Instead of calling the work 'good' and doing something new they latched onto their one app as cash cow to start milking their existing customers for upgrades.

Winamp was a prime example of this. When it came out it worked, it had a minimal footprint and was lightweight. Same for the image utility Acdsee, and believe it or not photoshop.

Winamp and acdsee are apps I kept in a personal library to re-install after building a new machine because I detested the complexity and garbage the newer versions became. Photoshop used to come on 7 floppy disks and did everything I use Krita for today. Although Krita is far more capable today than Photoshop of the late 90's, it's still lightweight and doesn't insist on hooking into every bloody thing on your computer and calling home to authenticate.

Add to this model the fact that now acdsee and photoshop requires a 'subscription' to operate is why I am wary of new versions.

Re:There's plenty of good reasons No There's not

By Casualposter • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

You're going to change how the software interacts with the user because you got a nifty tool kit upgrade? Because you went from Programing Language Not Currently in Vogue to Programing Language De Jour? You think the software should work on a desktop bolted to a desk at a shipping department just like it works on your child's IPAD? The latest iteration of homo-sapiens isn't fawning over the fully functioning design? You should get out of programming and move into a more useful career: Ocean water garbage removal. Sure, it might seem like a good idea for the UI to be changed so that some feature can better fit in to the latest UI concept, or even be cool to the latest crop of budding consumers just entering college, but changing how something works is a huge deal - not for you programmers, but for the millions of people that actually use the software to get things done.

Software is a tool, not an art project to stick in your effing portfolio. First off, UI design must be functional and then elegant. It matters not one wit if the UI is pretty or even if it wins awards for its looks if the thing doesn't effectively and efficiently do the damn job its supposed to do. Changing the UI design, especially deleting functions or moving them around is equivalent to breaking the software. It doesn't work like it did yesterday and NOW it is neither effective nor efficient. Now it requires learning, and then re-learning, and if used often will require UNLEARNING the old way -- something humans don't really do well at all. If you can't make the changes you need to the code to both improve the underlying performance, add a feature, appeal to the "youts of 'murica", and still keep the old stuff where it was and working as it was, then get out of programming. Just quit. Save me the time and aggravation of figuring out what is going through that two cell based life form you call a brain while I have a multi-million dollar project idling because the people working on it can't figure out where those vital features are now located or worse deprecated, a fancy word for too fucking lazy to keep a feature working.

And don't get me started on the "what we changed in the latest upgrade" document. I get better change logs in World of Warcraft patches than any other piece of recently "upgraded" software. Hiring some stoner you met at the Weed Works to write "We changed stuff" and hide it in a PDF buried more effectively than landslide victims in Washington State, isn't sufficient so mitigate the change chaos. SO stop lying to yourself about how it's really okay and people will get over it. No THEY WON'T. We don't get over being blamed for the consequences of some anonymous jackass programmer's design changes. We get to SUFFER because of it. And that is NEVER going away. We remember it because you're the reason the budget was blown, the system failed, we missed a deadline because the software got upgraded. We didn't get new training because we had to spend the training budget on teaching folks how to use the upgrade instead of something that might actually get our productivity up. Yeah, change that UI, will ya? We need more stress and aggravation.

Remember when Microsoft moved the print function in office? That little bitty change was a juggernaut of wasted time and effort trying to first, figure out where this common function had be re-located, and then passing that knowledge on to people who really only want to print documents as a part of their job. That's right, printing documents was the core piece of their job and one night it got upgraded into some other part of the software. Brilliant. Now we have employees approaching retirement age who already hate computers and software trying to figure out how to print documents so that they can ship product to customers while the trucks are idling outside the office at $200/hour demurage causing the shipping department to watch their quarterly bonus vanish as they struggled to figure out how to PRINT. Yeah that was a great move. I'm sure those guys w

Samsung Will Fix the Galaxy S8 Red Tint Issue With a Software Update

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
When the Galaxy S8 and S8+ first launched, several users reported a red tint to the displays. But then a few days passed and more reports emerged about the issue being widespread, especially in South Korea where many owners are facing this issue. According to XDA Developers, Samsung is aware of the issue and will be issuing a software update to fix it. From the report: Some thought this was just the nature of OLED technology. Because it's organic, it is expected to have some sort of variance from one device to another. We've seen this time and time again on Samsung devices, and others which are using AMOLED panels that were sourced from Samsung. This is generally not a widespread issue though and most of the time the difference is rather small. For whatever reason though, this doesn't seem to be the case with the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8+. This new OTA update to fix the red tint issue is said to be coming next week at the end of April, and Samsung assures their customers that there isn't a problem with the phone itself.

Software update?

By fredrated • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

They are going to change the color of the software?

I was looking forward to S8

By imidan • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

I've been using an S4 for a couple years, and I was looking forward to possibly upgrading to the S8. But it seems like a bit of a shitshow. The fingerprint scanner is in a weird place, apparently as a last-minute change because they couldn't get it working on the touchscreen. The software assistant doesn't work in English. This wouldn't be that big a deal to me because I probably wouldn't use it anyway, but the hardware button for activating it is not re-programmable, so it's a complete waste at the moment. Obviously, no removable battery. And now the screen is red. At least it has a headphone jack, I guess?

Meh. I guess my current phone is good enough.

Utter twaddle

By Hognoxious • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Because it's organic, it is expected to have some sort of variance from one device to another.

Are they breeding them instead of manufacturing them? Or is there perhaps some inherent unpredictability in carbon chemistry that I'm not aware of and that the brewing, pharmaceutical & petroleum industries have found a way to overcome?

DOJ: Russian 'Superhacker' Gets 27 Years In Prison

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
According to the Justice Department, a 32-year-old Russian "superhacker" has been sentenced to 27 years in prison for stealing and selling millions of credit-card numbers, causing more than $169 million worth of damages to business and financial institutions. The Daily Beast reports: Roman Valeryevich Seleznev, 32, aka Track2, son of a prominent Russian lawmaker, was convicted last year on 38 counts of computer intrusion and credit-card fraud. "This investigation, conviction and sentence demonstrates that the United States will bring the full force of the American justice system upon cybercriminals like Seleznev who victimize U.S. citizens and companies from afar," said Acting Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Blanco said in a statement. "And we will not tolerate the existence of safe havens for these crimes -- we will identify cybercriminals from the dark corners of the Internet and bring them to justice."

Separation of powers

By mi • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread

The Department of Justice has sentenced a Russian "superhacker" to 27 years in prison

WTF? Since when is the Executive Branch doing the sentencing?!

Bigger Hacks

By rtb61 • Score: 3 • Thread

So the neocons hacked the US government and started a war over nonexistant weapons of mass destruction, penalty, zero. The banksters purposefully ran a scam to inflate profits and their bonuses whilst cheating customers and investors of billions, penalty, zero.

The Russian broke the law, hacked computer networks and copied credit card numbers, which he then sold to criminals. Those criminals did the stealing, fraudulently using those insecure numbers. Compared to those other crimes with zero penalty, what is going on. I was surprised there was no claim of refusal to help or it appears any effort what so ever to get those criminals who used those credit card numbers (makes the whole thing stink of politics). I would have liked to have seen a reduced sentence, say minus a month for each prosecution the defendant helped to gain against the criminals who used the credit card numbers, or at the very least that effort made. Perhaps the Russian government would have cooperated but no politics seemed to have been the focus.

It seems a major opportunity to track down more Russian criminals was wasted, stupid as.

Wrong focus.

By Gravis Zero • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Everyone involved is completely ignoring the fact that the companies involved were not properly secured. It doesn't take a "superhacker" to get past shitty security and we shouldn't be protecting companies with shitty security. Sure, punish the hacker but you need to also punish the executives that decided security shouldn't be the highest priority. When you put profit comes before security, you are asking, nay, begging to get hacked and that's exactly what happened here.

Theranos Used Shell Company To Secretly Buy Outside Lab Equipment, Says Report

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: On Friday, the Wall Street Journal reported that the company "allegedly misled company directors" regarding its lab tests and used a shell company to buy commercial lab gear. These are just a few of the new revelations made by the Journal, which also include fake demonstrations for potential investors. The new information came from unsealed depositions by 22 former Theranos employees or members of its board of directors. They were deposed by Partner Fund Management LP, a hedge fund currently suing Theranos in Delaware state court. Theranos is also facing multiple lawsuits in federal court in California and Arizona, among others. The Journal, which did not publish the new filings, quoted former Theranos director Admiral Gary Roughead (Ret.), as saying that he was not aware that the company was using "extensive commercial analyzers" until it was reported in the press. The Journal described the filings as "some of the first substantive details to emerge from several court proceedings against the company, though they include only short excerpts from the depositions."

I thought women made better CEOs

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 3, Funny • Thread

I thought women made better CEOs: more honest, less greedy, less "old boy network."

Did the media lie to me?

How is Holmes not indicted yet?

By JoeyRox • Score: 3 • Thread
The Feds have been investigating her and her company for a long time and here are details of obvious illegal activity (fraud) discovered by a civil investigation during the course of an investor lawsuit.

Re:How is Holmes not indicted yet?

By udachny • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Let's see, how about all these other people (from Wikipedia):

former Secretary of State George Shultz, William Perry (former Secretary of Defense), Henry Kissinger (former Secretary of State), Sam Nunn (former U.S. Senator), Bill Frist (former U.S. Senator and heart-transplant surgeon), Gary Roughead (Admiral, USN, retired), James Mattis (General, USMC), Richard Kovacevich (former Wells Fargo Chairman and CEO) and Riley Bechtel (chairman of the board and former CEO at Bechtel Group). ...
The board included past presidents or board members of the American Association for Clinical Chemistry such as Susan A. Evans, William Foege, former director U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, David Helfet, director of the Orthopedic Trauma Service at the Hospital for Special Surgery and professors, Ann M. Gronowski, Larry J. Kricka, Jack Ladenson, Andy O. Miller and Steven Spitalnik.

Fabrizio Bonanni (former executive vice president of Amgen), Richard Kovacevich and William Foege, (former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), who would help to publicly introduce its technologies....

there were many people involved there, people with government ties. This con was beautifully done, all the way till the inevitable failure. It may be not so easy just to pin everything on Holmes. The best con men (and women) are those, who are true believers in their own con, I wonder if she was (is) a true believer, did she con everybody else or also herself?

Re:How is Holmes not indicted yet?

By tomhath • Score: 4 • Thread
It's tempting to think she really believed the technology was almost working, that they just needed a little more time and money to iron out the kinks. But what makes me suspect she was a fraud from early on was her attempt to build a mystique around herself - the black turtleneck, bleached blond hair, all the VIPs she had on the board - it all reeks of snake oil.

Re:I thought women made better CEOs

By sexconker • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

When you put a woman in as your CEO because they're a woman, you're going to have a bad time.
The same goes for race, religion, sexual identity, whatever. Of course, this also includes straight, white, Christian males, though I suspect I've already offended certain people past the point of no return.

How about you hire the best person for the job?

How many Meg Whitmans, Elizabeth Holmeses, and Marissa Mayers are we going to see trotted out to kill companies for the sake of diversity?
The worst part is that we see all the awful female executives getting pats on the back, accolades, etc., but the ones that are competent like Carly Fiorina (compare her to her successor) or even great (Lisa Su) get almost no fucking recognition.

Remember when HP mattered? And Yahoo?

Microsoft Improves Gmail Experience For Windows 10 Insiders, But There Are Privacy Concerns

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Reader BrianFagioli writes: Today, Microsoft announced a new Gmail experience for Windows 10. While only available for Windows Insiders as of today, it uses the same concept as the Outlook mobile app, but for the Mail and Calendar apps. Microsoft will provide you with an arguably improved experience as long as you are OK with storing all of your Gmail messages in Microsoft's cloud. What types of features will the new experience offer? Things such as tracking packages, getting updated on your favorite sports teams, and a focused inbox. "To power these new features, we'll ask your permission to sync a copy of your email, calendar and contacts to the Microsoft Cloud. This will allow new features to light up, and changes to update back and forth with Gmail -- such as creation, edit or deletion of emails, calendar events and contacts. But your experience in or apps from Google will not change in any way."

Microsoft Has An Odd Obsession With The Cloud...

By dryriver • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Yes, I get it. Satya Nadella is from Microsoft's Cloud Division so all things MS/Windows 10 have to go "cloud" now and of course all your dataz haz to bee in ze Maikrozoft Klaud az zoon az pozzible. But here's my question: If Windows 10 as an OS cannot be trusted with very basic Privacy - phoning home all the time and such - why on earth would I put all my Gmails in the Microsoft Cloud? If I cannot trust your OS sitting on my own harddrive, why would I trust your Cloud sitting on your servers somewhere? Can you trust Google more than Microsoft? I don't know the answer to that. All I know is - if Windows 10 isn't private, your Cloud service probably isn't very private either. My 2 Cents.

Is it Google sanctioned?

By HalAtWork • Score: 3 • Thread

Or will you get cut off when Google changes something on their end?

Re:Microsoft Has An Odd Obsession With The Cloud..

By dryriver • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
And I suspect that Windows as an OS is dying slowly, to be replaced by Android/iOS powered computing devices in the next 5 years. So Microsoft desperately needs a new "Windows" like platform - this time it is the Microsoft Cloud. They are trying desperately to shift all your shit into the Cloud, so you become DEPENDENT on using the Cloud. Once Microsoft has you in the Cloud, they will push SAAS - Software As A Service - on you hard. There won't be any significant "software" sitting on your harddrive anymore. Just little front-end "Apps" - essentially just GUIs - that connect to a cloud server back end. Of course you will have to "rent" those apps just like you have to with Adobe/Autodesk software. This means that you will have to provide things like credit card data to Microsoft, which of course Microsoft will datamine and sell to Big Data companies for a lot of money. Its "1984", just that this time, 1984 happens "in the Cloud".

How can this be an improvement?

By 140Mandak262Jamuna • Score: 4 • Thread
Letting one corporate giant rifle through your personal email is bad enough. Letting two of them? Why? "I have a hole in my head. Let me improve it by drilling another hole in the head"!!!! How can that be an improvement?

Teenage Hackers Motivated By Morality Not Money, Study Finds

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Teenage hackers are motivated by idealism and impressing their mates rather than money, according to a study by the National Crime Agency. From a report: The law enforcement organisation interviewed teenagers and children as young as 12 who had been arrested or cautioned for computer-based crimes. It found that those interviewed, who had an average age of 17, were unlikely to be involved in theft, fraud or harassment. Instead they saw hacking as a "moral crusade", said Paul Hoare, senior manager at the NCA's cybercrime unit, who led the research. Others were motivated by a desire to tackle technical problems and prove themselves to friends, the report found. Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Hoare said: "They don't understand the implications on business, government websites and individuals."

No shit?

By grasshoppa • Score: 3 • Thread

Seriously, how do these chuckleheads get funding for studying the obvious?

In other news, researchers are asking for funding to study whether water is wet or if the sun is hot.

Moral Crusaders

By PopeRatzo • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread

I'm a lot more suspicious of moral crusaders than I am of criminals who are looking to make a buck or just make mischief.

I don't think I have to list the atrocities that have been committed in the name of a "moral crusade". If you really don't know what I'm talking about, then you are probably already a moral crusader.

LinkedIn Apologizes For Trying To Connect Everyone In Real Life

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
LinkedIn has apologized for a vague new update that told some iPhone users its app would begin sharing their data with nearby users without further explanation. From a report: The update prompted outrage on Twitter after cybersecurity expert Rik Ferguson received a strange alert when he opened the resume app to read a new message: "LinkedIn would like to make data available to nearby Bluetooth devices even when you're not using the app." That gave Ferguson, vice president of research at the cybersecurity firm Trend Micro, a handful of concerns, he told Vocativ. Among them: "the lack of specificity, which data, when, under what conditions, to which devices, why does it need to happen when I'm not using the app, what are the benefits to me, where is the feature announcement and explanation, why wasn't it listed in the app update details." Reached for comment, LinkedIn said it's a mistake -- that some iPhone users were accidentally subject to undeveloped test feature the company is still working on.

sounds like a good reason

By FudRucker • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
to not trust any social media website with your personal information (are you listening facebook zombies?)


By DogDude • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
I remember when it was about business.

It hasn't changed. It was always about their business, and it still is. The business is: you give them information, and then they sell it.

Re:It was a mistake

By zifn4b • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

You found out about this horrible feature before you clicked through the EULA without reading it.

You don't need to read a EULA to understand that social networking is a huge risk to privacy. LinkedIn, in particular, wants your details as transparent as possible because of who pays their bills. That's precisely what they want. They want to know if you're too smart to figure them out or just smart enough to work for them without asking too many questions and to be a good, little subservient drone.

Nothing new

By 93 Escort Wagon • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

This isn't the first time LinkedIn did something shady via their iPhone app. Frankly, I'm not sure why anyone would still trust them enough to install it.

Bad security practices and double standards

By ukoda • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
My current pet peeve with LinkedIn is the weekly requests for access to my email contact list. Would you employ someone to work with technology who gave out their email password just to share their contact list? I emailed them to complain that if I didn't compromise my security the first time they asked why do they keep on asking? They bounced my email because they couldn't do a reverse lookup on my email server. Apparently a SPF record is not good enough for them, I need to have enough money to be able to pay for service that will allow reverse lookup. A real double standard considering they want access to my contact list.

While I am complaining, I am really tempted to bounce any incoming emails with a noreply reply address. Is anyone doing that yet? If I am prepared to accept their email I think it is only reasonable they should be prepared to accept my reply.

Court Rules Fan Subtitles On TV and Movies Are Illegal

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
A court has just ruled that making fan subtitles or translations is not protected by the law. From a report: A Dutch group called the Free Subtitles Foundation took anti-piracy group BREIN to court over "fansubbing." BREIN has previously been active in taking fan subtitles and translations offline, and the Foundation was hoping a Dutch court would come down on the side of fair use. The court didn't quite see it that way. It ruled that making subtitles without permission from the property owners amounted to copyright infringement. BREIN wasn't unsympathetic, but said it couldn't allow fansubbers to continue doing what they're doing.

Unusual way to be offended

By Whooty McWhooface • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread
So, the there is a copyright violation because people are providing a service (subtitles) for movies/shows that were released without subtitles, either in other languages or in any languages because the studios were too damn cheap to provide them?

So, if I see a fire break out and I put it out on my own, am I infringing on the work of the firefighter that either were not called or had not yet arrived?

Sure, you are producing a textual version of the movie, but it would be utilized in conjunction with the movie/show. It's not like someone is going to read subtitles on a movie they have not seen and feel, "Gosh! Now I don't have to see the movie at all! I can't believe Bruce Willis was actually a ghost. Didn't see that one coming.... (Sorry for the spoiler, you should have watched it by now.)

So are they actually upset because it is now becoming public how cheap and unsupportive the studio executives are to the hearing impaired?

Re:Sucks, but derivative work

By dfn5 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Um.. no. Just like you can't just re encode a movie, you can't do a sentence by sentence translation, as the original material is copied in a form.

I have been learning a foreign language over the last few years and the one thing I have concluded is that translation is an art form. One must convert the original language into a concept and then restate that concept in the target language in a natural way that makes sense to the target audience. The translation may look entirely different than the source material. And two people may translate the same material very differently. Transcription may be one thing but I would think translation would be protected.

Are they subtitling, or distributing the movie?

By MobyDisk • Score: 3 • Thread

Most fansubs I have seen are rips and re-encodes of the video with the subtitles baked into the video. That is clearly a derived work and subject to copyright law. If they just distributed an .srt file then they might not have the problem. There's technical issues with rendering the .srt from within an Amazon or Netflix player, or on your streaming media box, but that could be dealt with.

Re:Unusual way to be offended

By pjt33 • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

I can't believe you would spoil Die Hard like that. Have you no pity, no compassion, no feeling for your fellow man/woman/small furry creature from Alpha Centauri?

Former fansubber here

By snarfies • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Back in the pre-digital days, I was part of a fansubbing group called Lupin Gang Anime. These days, I capture laserdiscs of the many titles that have never been reissued on DVD or better (

I will continue to capture these endangered titles and put them on the internet. I will continue to do my best to preserve these titles from being lost. The only way I will stop is if I am locked up. Given the choice between following the law and doing what's right, I'll chose the later.

Ocean Currents Are Sweeping Billions of Tiny Plastic Bits to the Arctic

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The world's oceans are littered with trillions of pieces of plastic -- bottles, bags, toys, fishing nets and more, mostly in tiny particles -- and now this seaborne junk is making its way into the Arctic. From a report: The plastic was discovered by an international team of researchers who circumnavigated the Arctic on a five-month journey aboard the research vessel Tara in 2013. They sampled the ocean water along the way, looking at plastic pollution. And though the plastic concentrations were overall low, they located a specific region located north of the Greenland and the Barents seas with unusually high concentrations. They published their results in the journal Science Advances this week. It seems that the plastic is riding up to the pole with the Thermohaline Circulation, a "conveyor" belt ocean current that transports water from the lower latitudes of the Atlantic Ocean toward the poles. "[A]nd the Greenland and the Barents Seas act as a dead-end for this poleward conveyor belt," Andres Cozar Cabanas, lead author of the study and researcher at the University of Cadiz, Spain, says in a press release.

I don't expect action on this

By DeplorableCodeMonkey • Score: 3 • Thread

Because the environmental movement has been anti-human for a long time and never concerned itself with pragmatism. Hence the knee-jerk hostility toward all--all--nuclear power, instead of saying we should make it safer as we invest in it. This issue is hard, but something governments can actually pursue aggressively without intruding hard into the economy. Simple solution: phase out disposable plastic as much as possible. Going to glass and aluminum will make soda too expensive for the poor? Good. Now we're tackling public healthcare-subsidized obesity at the same time.

Re:I don't expect action on this

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Going to glass and aluminum will make soda too expensive for the poor? Good. Now we're tackling public healthcare-subsidized obesity at the same time.

Back when sodas were sold in glass bottles, Coke (and their forgettable competitors) implemented a bottle buyback model so they could clean and re-use the bottles.

Soda companies did not move from this model to thin plastic because plastic was cheaper, they moved away because of a germaphobic generation obsessed with discarding anything that might carry pathogens just to be safe. Faced with the widescale rejection of their bottle reclamation and re-use program, soda companies found the cheapest disposable resource, which was also a favorite of the sanitary dogma, plastic.

Cans survived because even though there was also a can buyback process, the mechanism of opening a soda can is destructive and non-trivially reversible. Even the more extreme of the sterile fanatics could accept that melting tin or aluminum and recasting a new can would be destructive enough to kill any bacteria from prior human contact.

Developer Publishes Patch To Enable Windows 7 and 8.1 Updates On New Hardware

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Earlier this month, Microsoft locked Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 PCs running on select Intel and AMD processors from receiving future security updates. Now, a developer has found a workaround. From a report on ZDNet: The new patch, from a developer using the name 'Zeffy' on GitHub, may help people caught by Microsoft's update policy for PCs running older versions of Windows on hardware with Intel's seventh-generation Kaby Lake processors and AMD's recently released Bristol Ridge Ryzen chips. [...] Zeffy's patch promises to get around this situation, which stems from non-security updates released in March that added a function to detect the hardware's CPU generation. The developer notes that Microsoft's March 16 rollup updates for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 contained one particularly offensive changelog entry. As reported by Ghacks at the time, the two preview updates stated: "Enabled detection of processor generation and hardware support when PC tries to scan or download updates through Windows Update."


By Mister Transistor • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Now, if only they had hardware capable of detecting dupes on /.

Oh, editors...

By creimer • Score: 3 • Thread
Wasn't it earlier this week that we had an article on this patch? Must be a slow news day.

Re:Looking forward to Microsoft's response

By retchdog • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

or 3. Ignore him because all Microsoft really wants is to minimize the amount of Win7 support they have to deal with, and only a small percentage of people are going to patch their OS with some random Github code in the first place, and the few who do probably know what they're doing anyway and even if they do still complain to Microsoft, they've modded their OS binaries with a third-party patch and can safely be told to pound sand.

Is the a patch for Slashdot...

By SeaFox • Score: 3 • Thread

that will stop it from installing duplicate stories?

Re:This is very important news.

By supremebob • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I'd like to think that most businesses and IT professionals aren't going to install a Windows patch written by "Zeffy" on their customers computers, when doing so basically insures that what little support that they were still getting from Microsoft for Windows 7 installations disappears once they find that installed.

Besides, the existence of this patch isn't going to fix the lack of new or updated drivers for Windows 7 on newer hardware.

Personally, I find it kind of kind of scary that people are still trying to install an 8 year old OS on shiny new hardware, especially when knowing that you're not going to be able to get security patches for it about 2 1/2 years from now. Didn't people learn this lesson the hard way when they tried to cling onto Windows XP long after it left mainstream support? Once again, many people are going to eventually end up with is a bunch of unpatched systems still running out in the field, just waiting become a botnet the second someone installs malware or misconfigures the firewall at the site.

Red Hat Suffers Massive Data Center Network Outage

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader writes: According to multiple reports on Twitter, the Fedora Infrastructure Status page, and the #fedora-admin Freenode IRC channel, Red Hat is suffering a massive network outage at their primary data center. Details are sketchy at this point, but it looks to be impacting the Red Hat Customer Portal; as well as all their repositories (including Fedora, EPEL, Copr); their public build system, Koji; and a whole host of other popular services. There is no ETA for restoration of services at this point.

Re:DeadHat !!

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

That's what you get from running systemd in production.

Re:DeadHat !!

By courteaudotbiz • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
I don't understand all this systemd bashing. I've been working with it for a few months on CentOS 7, and all I can say is that it is easy to work with and until now, it has proven to be very stable. Never had a crash related to systemd.

Can't they just run ...

By fahrbot-bot • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

... systemctl restart datacenter

(Okay, maybe only if systemd ran as PID 2 ...)

Re:DeadHat !!

By CanadianMacFan • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The problem is that systemd keeps on expanding and that goes against the philosophy of UNIX/Linux where each thing is kept small in scale and does it well. systemd keeps up integrating applications that have worked perfectly for a long time for the philosophy of one person who isn't really well respected in some areas of Linux development.

Re:DeadHat !!

By F.Ultra • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Not exactly true. The systemd that you talk about (encompassing applications) are the systemd the project and not systemd the pid 1 (init) application. Each new "application integration" is done via a separate application so the UNIX philosophy still stands. And these are not done in order to match the philosophy of one person (the whole systemd project have lots of developers this day) but are done in order to present a common plumbing layer mostly aimed at container developers at this moment, i.e to present a common set of tools that work and look the same.

Diet Sodas May Be Tied To Stroke, Dementia Risk

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Gulping down an artificially sweetened beverage not only may be associated with health risks for your body, but also possibly your brain, a new study suggests. From a report: Artificially sweetened drinks, such as diet sodas, were tied to a higher risk of stroke and dementia in the study, which published in the American Heart Association's journal Stroke on Thursday. The study sheds light only on an association, as the researchers were unable to determine an actual cause-and-effect relationship between sipping artificially sweetened drinks and an increased risk for stroke and dementia. Therefore, some experts caution that the findings should be interpreted carefully. No connection was found between those health risks and other sugary beverages, such as sugar-sweetened sodas, fruit juice and fruit drinks.


By Joce640k • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

It's not even that. This is just another "study" by somebody with an agenda against sweeteners.

There's no data, no evidence, just a guy manipulating numbers with excel until he finds a result he likes.

Re:Huh? What?

By Ol Olsoc • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

It suggests a link. It will take further study to determine whether there is actual causation or whether other factors may be involved.

It's almost like you don't know how science works.

Agreed, but I'm even skeptical about the entire study. Remember - we live in an age where cane sugar is considered healthy. Micro, non angry rant follows.

What is remarkable about this study is that apparently every single artificial sweetener has exactly the same association with stroke and dementia.

This is truly groundbreaking, because different artificial sweeteners have wildly different compositions.

Stevia, aspartame, sucralose, neotame, acesulfame potassium, saccharin, and advantame, Cyclamates, allulose, monk fruit, Sorbitol and xylitol. All artificial, and every single one is associated with stroke and dementia. I left out lead acetate because not many people think that is safe at all - although in the anti science age, perhaps the deniers want to try it.

Back to the study, and lest I be accused of being sarcastic, the researchers are very, very clear about this. To wit:

After adjustments for age, sex, education (for analysis of dementia), caloric intake, diet quality, physical activity, and smoking, higher recent and higher cumulative intake of artificially sweetened soft drinks were associated with an increased risk of ischemic stroke, all-cause dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease dementia. When comparing daily cumulative intake to 0 per week (reference), the hazard ratios were 2.96 (95% confidence interval, 1.26–6.97) for ischemic stroke and 2.89 (95% confidence interval, 1.18–7.07) for Alzheimer’s disease. Sugar-sweetened beverages were not associated with stroke or dementia.

There is no distinction between the different types of artificial sweeteners, therefore they tested all of them. And sugar sweetened beverages ha no association. Which apparently means both sucrose and corn syrup.

This sounds like a study where we might want to look into the money path, because the abstract is so remarkably bad that it is difficult to put much credence into any of it, and the skeptic in me finds some groups with a financial interest in the "results" might have a profit motive.

Tea is the Solution

By Yergle143 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

This story is probably relevant to /. because I've known many coders who suck down sugar soda or Aspartame soda like no tomorrow. Having followed the dementia research I put it to ya'll that a nice hot cup of tea most probably the best way to a slake thirst and keep those neurons chugging away. A bit of cream or sugar is just fine. There is a growing body of evidence correlating Alzheimers/Dementia to diabetes and metabolic imbalance and our choice of drinks is likely to be a contributing factor. Plus it is so civilized.

The wrong order

By irrational_design • Score: 3 • Thread

The dementia lead to drinking diet soda, not the other way around.


By Khashishi • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread


That's not how science works. A lot of studies do turn out to be false, but that's not because some guy is fudging numbers. It does happen sometimes, but it's a serious allegation, and for you to simply dismiss a peer reviewed study without evidence puts you in the anti-science crowd.

Leaked Document Sheds Light On Microsoft's Chromebook Rival

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Microsoft has announced plans to host an event next month where it is expected to unveil Windows 10 Cloud operating system. Microsoft will be positioning the new OS as a competitor to Chrome OS, according to several reports. Windows Central has obtained an internal document which sheds light on the kind of devices that will be running Windows 10 Cloud. The hardware requirement that Microsoft has set for third-party OEMs is as follows: 1. Quad-core (Celeron or better) processor.
2. 4GB of RAM.
3. 32GB of storage (64GB for 64-bit). 4. A battery larger than 40 WHr.
5. Fast eMMC or solid state drive (SSD) for storage technology.
6. Pen and touch (optional).
The report adds that Microsoft wants these laptops to offer over 10-hour of battery life, and the "cold boot" should not take longer than 20 seconds.


By Frederic54 • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

It depends on the price, if it is ~$249 it will be nice especially if we can install a linux distro on it!


By Danathar • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread
Keep in mind Microsoft would of NEVER done this had Google not had success with the Chromebook model.

Re:Could be useful

By MightyYar • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

No, that would ruin it for this niche. You can buy a cheap laptop right now that is not locked down. The benefit to a Chromebook or Chromebook clone like these is that you can hand it to a school age kid and not worry at all about viruses, malware, misconfiguration, etc. It just works all the time.

I completely agree that it makes these things unattractive to a large number of Slashdotters. I'm one of them, and I only have Chromebooks for the kids and wife, not myself. I have spent _zero_ hours screwing around with the Chromebooks*, which is something I cannot say about any other computer that I've ever owned.

* So technically, I did screw around with them because I'm a big dork. I played with developer mode, but my wife blew away my efforts by hitting the space bar on boot. Which is for the best. Also, printing can be hard to set up but I got lucky because I already had Chrome set up to share a printer.

Rather than HW Specs, what is SW Infrastructure?

By mykepredko • Score: 3 • Thread

In this space, you're not going to see any Kaby Lakes or massive amounts of memory or even impressive video/audio so listing the hardware doesn't mean much.

What I'm most interested in is what will be the application infrastructure is (ie a useable version Office) as well as document distribution for classes (Google Classroom has developed into a pretty slick tool). Another question would be what Microsoft will do for a browser on the device as Edge doesn't work all that great and pages don't display the same as they do on Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari, etc.

So, what will make Microsoft's offering special/compelling against ChromeOS?

Schools won't want it

By ITRambo • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Chromebooks are successful because if one breaks you simply give the kid another. When they log in it'll quickly be their machine again. Windows is going to be to slow to repair/replace. Even the best they can do is come within 25% of Chrome's boot time. Nothing Windows is "fast". I don't expect any OEM's to use a high end quad core CPU, just Celeron J1900 and AMD 5350 types. I see no advantage to end users here. Microsoft is again grasping at straws.

Louisiana's Governor Declares State Of Emergency Over Disappearing Coastline

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards has declared a state of emergency over the state's rapidly eroding coastline. From a report on NPR: It's an effort to bring nationwide attention to the issue and speed up the federal permitting process for coastal restoration projects. "Decades of saltwater intrusion, subsidence and rising sea levels have made the Louisiana coast the nation's most rapidly deteriorating shoreline," WWNO's Travis Lux tells our Newscast unit. "It loses the equivalent of one football field of land every hour." More than half of the state's population lives on the coast, the declaration states. It adds that the pace of erosion is getting faster: "more than 1,800 square miles of land between 1932 and 2010, including 300 square miles of marshland between 2004 and 2008 alone."

Re: Louisiana is one big sinkhole

By Khyber • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

"What is the ground composed of and what does the water table underneath look like?"

That entire area is in the Mississippi Delta Floodplains. Everything from Memphis to the Gulf of Mexico is practically FLOATING on a giant aquifer. All it takes is for New Madrid to go 7.5 or higher to put most of everything from Memphis down to Hattiesburg underwater. A large influx of water on the floodplains further south would probably cause a quicksand effect (and in fact there's tons of that in Louisiana) and simply wash everything away or drag much of it under the ground (as we witnessed with Katrina and New Orleans.)

They Made This Mess

By EndlessNameless • Score: 3 • Thread

Louisiana consistently elects small-government, anti-EPA, anti-climate Representatives and Senators. Now they want an environmental conservation bailout? They decry federal handouts, and then they turn around begging for help. How about "No".

They cite:

"Decades of saltwater intrusion, subsidence and rising sea levels"

Yet, they ousted their only politician who even pretended to care about the environment and replaced her with Cassidy, whose policies will only hasten that outcome.

New Orleans couldn't be arsed to maintain their levees, then Hurricane Katrina happened. Now this. Louisiana should change their motto to "The No Foresight State".

The end for the southern coastal towns

By Mysticalfruit • Score: 3 • Thread
I've long mused that despite the climate deniers howls, at some point we're going to hit an impasse. Due to historical reasons, we'll save New Orleans and other big name towns on the gulf coast in regions that sit at or below the water line.

However, if you're from some town nobody's ever heard of that's on the coast, you're pretty much fucked. If we believe the models and so far they've been spot on, every year some percentage of these towns are going to get flooded and/or walloped by hurricanes.

Each year the federal government and insurance agencies swoop in (for some value of swooping) and rebuild these towns. At some point insurance companies are going to cry uncle. They'll boost rates so high that literally nobody will be able to afford to rebuild. I could even see a situation where after a federal government has to step in and say "We're moving your entire community 50 miles in land and combining it with this other community" Why? Money and resources. At some point as wasteful as the government is, they're going to see the folly of rebuilding a town over and over and as the tide rises it's going to become less and less financially tenantable and take more and more resources.

Re: Louisiana is one big sinkhole

By silentcoder • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Companies do not own the atmosphere. Citizens do. If they want to put things in our property we have every right to charge them rent by means of a tax.

Re:Its pretty important...

By Beezlebub33 • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

I'd have a lot more sympathy for people from LA, if their representatives didn't vote against aid for people affected by Hurricaine Sandy. That would be Reps. Steve Scalise, John Flemming and Sen. Bill Cassidy. See: for example. And I'd be more sympathetic if Sen. Cassidy wasn't a climate change skeptic. If the oil companies want to buy a themselves a LA senator, they can pay for protecting the state from climate change too.

In The First Months of Trump Era, Facebook And Apple Spent More On Lobbying Than They Ever Have

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares a report: According to federal lobbying disclosures filed Thursday, Facebook and Apple set their all-time record high for spending in a single quarter. Facebook spent $3.2 million lobbying the federal government in the first months of the Trump era. During the same period last year, Facebook spent $2.8 million (about 15% less). The company lobbied both chambers of Congress, the White House, and six federal agencies on issues including high-tech worker visas, network neutrality, internet privacy, encryption, and international taxation. Facebook was the 12th-highest spender out of any company and second-highest in tech. [...] Apple spent $1.4 million, which is just $50,000 more than during the final months of the Obama presidency, when it set its previous record, but the most it has ever spent in a single quarter. Apple lobbied on issues including government requests for data, the regulation of mobile health apps, and self-driving cars. Google, once again, outspent every other technology company. It was 10th overall, tallying $3.5 million.


By mfh • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Buzzfeed seems to only link their own articles in their stories, so it's not convenient to fact-check them. I would have prefered some other information on this subject and since there is none in the TFA, I will provide you with some more info on this lobbying dollout:

From an obnoxious website that I won't link because of how totally obnoxious their javascript is; you may wish to read this anyway:

f the surprising election win by President-elect Donald Trump left you feeling dispirited, you may be looking for a way to take action.
One way you could do so is donating money or time to causes you believe stand against Trump's politics. Conversely, you could hold back your money â" by boycotting companies and/or corporate executives that stand against your beliefs.
As of mid-September, no CEO of a Fortune 100 company supported Trump by donating to his campaign.
But in other ways, and in the time since, a few big companies have shown support for the president-elect â" directly or indirectly.
Here are five examples.
New Balance
The day after the election, Matthew LeBretton, vice president of public affairs for the sneaker brand New Balance, told a Wall Street Journal reporter: "The Obama administration turned a deaf ear to us and frankly with President-elect Donald Trump, we feel things are going to move in the right direction."
After that message went out, angry people on Twitter shared photos showing them destroying or trashing their New Balance shoes.
In response, New Balance issued a statement to Sole Collector clarifying its position.
"As the only major company that still makes athletic shoes in the United States, New Balance has a unique perspective on trade and trade policy in that we want to make more shoes in the United States, not less," the statement reads. "New Balance publicly supported the trade positions of Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump prior to Election Day that focused on American manufacturing job creation and we continue to support them today."
On a final campaign swing through Pennsylvania at the end of October, Trump's son Eric stopped by the Yuengling Brewery in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.
Richard "Dick" Yuengling Jr., who is 73 and the fifth-generation owner of the nation's oldest beer company, gave him a tour.
"Our guys are behind your father," Yuengling said, the Reading Eagle reported. "We need him in there."
Eric Trump promised a Trump presidency would help businesses like Yuengling, a $550 million company with breweries in Pottsville and East Norwegian Township in Pennsylvania and Tampa, Florida.
"Maybe your dad will build a hotel in Pottsville, or serve Yuengling in his hotels," Yuengling said, jokingly, according to the Eagle.
Following the visit, there were calls on Twitter for a consumer boycott of the beermaker.
Home Depot
Kenneth Langone, one of the co-founders of Home Depot, has been publicly supporting Trump since May.
After supporting GOP presidential candidates New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and then Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Langone settled on Trump.
"And you want to know something?" Langone said on CNBC's "Closing Bell" in May. "I think he'll do a hell of a good job. At least I'm hoping."
Langone even doubled down after Trump bragged about sexual assault in the bus video leaked in October.
When asked for comment about the Langone's support, Stephen Holmes, the director of corporate communications for Home Depot said: "The Home Depot nor our CEO endorse Presidential candidates. Ken is a co-founder, and was once on our board of directors, but he retired from the board several years ago and is not speaking on behalf of the company."
Deactivating your Facebook account might be really hard â" scientific research suggests the social media site really is addictive.
But in a big way, Facebook played a role in this presidential election.
One way is the unchecked proliferation of shared fake news stories on the site that were partly responsible for Trump's rise.
Another? One of the company's board members and also one of the co-founders of PayPal, Peter Thiel, spoke in support of Trump at the Republican Convention in July.
Thiel began publicly supporting Trump in May â" and pledged more than $1 million to Trump's campaign in October.
When he spoke at the National Press Club in October, Thiel said what Trump represents "isn't crazy and it's not going away."
Thiel said he doesn't love everything about Trump does support Trump's plan to reduce waste in government, which he says is throwing away trillions of dollars of taxpayer money.
In a post-election interview with the New York Times, Thiel said he is currently in Trump's inner circle as an informal tech adviser.
Hobby Lobby
Despite his conservative background, Hobby Lobby CEO David Green did not endorse Trump in the primaries.
As you may recall, in 2014 the Supreme Court ruled that companies with religious owners â" like Green â" can't be compelled to pay for insurance coverage for women's contraception.
It's been called the "Hobby Lobby decision," because his was the company that brought it.
Green even talked down Trump during the primaries, telling Politico that Trump "scares me to death."
He added he would like the president to be someone "my kids, my grandkids and my great-grandkids can emulate."
Then, in October, Green apparently changed his mind. He threw his support behind Trump because of a hope for conservative judges on the Supreme Court, he wrote in opinion piece for USA Today.
"Fortunately, the Supreme Court issued a 5-4 ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby in 2014, but it's frightening to think that we â" and all Americans â" were just one judge away from losing our religious freedom," he wrote.
Requests for comment sent to New Balance, Yuengling and Facebook were not returned by press time. Hobby Lobby declined to comment.

Did You Vote Yet?

By bill_mcgonigle • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Now I'm wondering if Facebook's "Did you vote yet?" campaign last November was a last gasp of thinking that the system is actually democratic before just knuckling down and paying for favorable treatment or if by then they were already participating as part of the system that keeps the People cowed into thinking that their vote is a symbol of freedom rather than one of control.

Perhaps as these companies broaden out to be real multi-nationals and they gain experience with governments around the world, they're becoming astutely aware of how commonplace bribery and corruption is and that helps them lift the veil on the reality of DC politics.

We can not like it and not blame them for doing what it takes to survive at the same time. "Blame the system, not the player," as they say.

Damned straight, I don't want cheap politicians!

By pecosdave • Score: 3 • Thread

No more of these dime a dozen problems caused by cheap bribery, I only want to deal with massive high dollar issues caused by bribery!

Trump's FCC Votes To Allow Broadband Rate Hikes Will Deprive More Public Schools From Getting Internet Access

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The FCC voted on Thursday to approve a controversial plan to deregulate the $45 billion market for business-to-business broadband, also known as Business Data Services (BDS), by eliminating price caps that make internet access more affordable for thousands of small businesses, schools, libraries and hospitals. The Outline adds: The price caps were designed to keep phone and, later, broadband, access cheap for community institutions like schools, hospitals, libraries, and small businesses. Now, there will be no limit. A spokesperson for the trade association Incompas, which advocates for competition among communications providers, told The Outline that the increase is expected to be at least 25 percent across the board. Low-income schools already don't have enough money; according to a report last year in The Atlantic, schools in high-poverty districts, where the property taxes are lower, spend 15.6 percent less per student than schools in low-poverty districts. If internet costs go up by 25 percent, it may make more sense to cut that budget item, or, for schools that still don't have internet, never add it at all. Add it to the list of things that well-funded schools in already-rich neighborhoods get that schools in low-income neighborhoods don't. New textbooks. Gyms. Advanced Placement classes that let students earn college credits. Computers. Internet access.

Might be an unpopular opinion, but ....

By King_TJ • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread

I'm just going to point out that the public schools in poor districts who supposedly "never got Internet yet" OR are supposedly in real need of reduced cost Internet broadband because they can't afford to pay the "going rate" for it are, indeed, PUBLIC schools.

When you hear about our failing school systems and those pushing to allow tax dollars to fund sending their kids to private alternatives via a voucher system of some sort -- this is a good example of why. Any government run public school that's so bad off, it still hasn't even obtained Internet access is a FAILURE. It doesn't need subsidized broadband to fix it. It need to be completely gutted and overhauled! Tax dollars pay for everything it does already. If that's not sufficient to pay its bills for things like its Internet connection, then it's not really viable.

Re:Make America Great Again

By Jason Levine • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

The thing is, I'd be all for "let the markets fix it" if the ISP market actually had competition. If I could choose between 12 different comparable ISPs, I could easily vote with my wallet. When I only have one option, though, voting with my wallet doesn't work. The ISP market is broken and this means "let the markets fix it" won't do anything. Government regulations might not fix the market, but they can stem abuses in the short term and possibly even lay the groundwork for competition to sprout up in the longer term.

Re:Price caps cause market distortions.

By Jason Levine • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

On the flip side, if you remove minimum wage, what's to stop an employer from paying nearly nothing for work that generates the employer more money? If an employee generates $25 an hour in value and the employer pays $0.50 an hour, what would protect the worker? Before you say "they can just change jobs", recognize that you could have an industry "race to the bottom" with salaries. The ones that pay less might make more profits and can gobble up (or force out of business) the ones that pay more.

To give an example, my son recently went to a local museum where he learned about the NYC garment district around the early 1900's. There was no minimum wage or safety regulations so people were worked 15 hours (6am - 9pm) for $3 a week. (That's about $1 an hour in today's money.) If people didn't want to work those hours or asked for more money, they were fired and people who would accept the hours/pay were hired. Every employer in the area paid about the same, so you couldn't just go to another employer. (The lack of safety regulations caused a fire that killed 146 workers.)

Minimum wage laws can help to keep employers from forcing workers to work long hours for little to no pay. They can help keep employees from falling below the poverty line or from having to work three jobs just to make ends meet. They might not be perfect, but doing away with the minimum wage entirely would be disastrous.

Re:Price caps cause market distortions.

By LeftCoastThinker • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

That was one of the reasons that Americans hated fresh off the boat immigrants in the early 1900s (Irish need not apply and all the rest). Americans knew (unlike most people today) that fresh immigrants would work for less and drive down wages and were also creating a glut in the labor market. From your example, employers can only "race to the bottom" when there is a glut in labor force. If paying too low a wage or working too long hours causes you to lose employees that you cannot find replacements for, you go to extra lengths to avoid losing those employees (better pay, better hours etc.). For 75 years since then, we had immigration laws that capped legal immigration (its about 1M per year these days, far more than any other country, but not too much for us to absorb). This kept us from developing a glut of low skill workers. However, big business (who wants cheap labor) and the unions (who want more members) and the Democrats (who want ignorant voters) have all been colluding for the past 40 years to import ignorant, low skilled workers from the third world illegally and then try to legalize them. In the 1980s, the voters fell for the canard that legalizing the illegals then would fix the problem and the government would get strict on illegal immigration, but it didn't happen. The corporations got an infusion of cheap labor, and the state of California has never voted Republican in any presidential race since. Obama was selling this same crap again, but a lot of voters are fed up with it and voted for putting the American worker first in this last election. They do not want another 12 million illegals to be made citizens (along with 24M of their families, which is what some of the Dims proposed), they want them out so their wages can go up and their vote will not be diluted by ignorants from the third world who vote only for the person offering them the most free stuff and have no knowledge or respect for American values or culture...

Fiber not expensive?

By Pollux • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Installing fiber isn't that expensive. I live in a semi-rural area several miles outside of the nearest small town, and 25 miles from the nearest big town, ~50 miles from a city, and ~100 miles from a major metro area. And I have three fiber pedestals near my house, from two different cable companies.

Nice anecdote. By the way, have you ever trenched fiber for a local telecom? It's not cheap. Two minutes of Google searching gave me this neat data. A couple installs in Florida ran about $10,000 per mile back in 2013. Let's use that as a base cost. Wikipedia then tells me that Google needed 4,000 miles of fiber to setup in San Antonio. So, $40 million dollars, just for one city. And if there already was one or two other providers there offering services, able to price-cut their services to maintain their subscriber base, that would give me even less reason to start breaking ground.

I've spoken with two different telecoms about their fiber install over the last five years. Both of them say that there's a substantial initial investment, just to develop a core community of subscribers, which then provides the profits necessary to branch out into neighboring territories, especially in rural areas. (Both teleco's said that rural areas don't turn a profit. The urban areas subsidize the costs.)

No, it is expensive.

Inside Elon Musk's New Company Neuralink Which Aims To Fight Brain Conditions And Help Humanity Survive in the Age of AI

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk has confirmed plans for his newest company, called Neuralink Corp, revealing he will be the chief executive of a startup that aims to merge computers with brains so humans could one day engage in "consensual telepathy." In an interview with explainer website Wait But Why (36,000-word), Musk said Neuralink aims to implant tiny brain electrodes that first would be used to fight brain conditions but later help humanity avoid subjugation at the hands of intelligent machines. From the report: "There are a bunch of concepts in your head that then your brain has to try to compress into this incredibly low data rate called speech or typing," Musk said. "That's what language is, your brain has executed a compression algorithm on thought, on concept transfer. If you have two brain interfaces, you could actually do an uncompressed direct conceptual communication with another person." Musk says he expects the project to take eight to 10 years before being usable by people with no disability. He anticipates tons of regulatory challenges in his way.

If you're nice, it's consensual telepathy ...

By Ihlosi • Score: 3 • Thread
... but if you're not, they'll turn it into involuntary telepathy.

Have a nice day.

The biggest unknown to date?

By wjcofkc • Score: 3 • Thread
So the goals of the technology have been outlined. However, I don't think the totality of how this will be used can be guessed at outside of a flying leap. I suspect the outcome will be stranger than it's stated goals. Here is my flying leap, brains for hire:

Imagine shifts running around the clock where all you do is come in and be rendered unconscious so your brain can be linked with thousands of others to perform massive computational tasks. After being revived you go about your business until your next shift.

Philosophical problem: Can you be sure you ever actually woke up, or are you still sitting there in a dream that your are awake while your brain is still crunching numbers?

Not exactly a neural lace

By Robyrt • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread

The parts of the brain that most of us would like to be technologically enhanced - memory, facial recognition, mental math - are very poorly understood. Even if we had a device allowing us to fire neurons on command, we have no idea how to write a program that helps with these problems.

Musk is smart to focus on medical applications, where even an implant that functions poorly is much better than the alternative. It's a lot easier to make a pacemaker than to perform a heart transplant, and the same holds true for the brain.

Re:If you're nice, it's consensual telepathy ...

By bill_mcgonigle • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

... but if you're not, they'll turn it into involuntary telepathy.

Elon has three main obstacles:
1) understand the brain
2) figure out how to engineer an enhancement system
3) perfect computer security

I don't know who else is more up to those challenges, but boy are they huge challenges (electric cars and rockets do seem like warm-up practice).

Without 3) I'm not interested. With 3) we advance as a society way more than just the neural lace will provide.

Regardless, the endeavor should yield significant progress in all three areas, so even if this Holy Grail isn't achieved, the effort will be worthwhile nonetheless.

US Prepares Charges To Seek Arrest of WikiLeaks' Julian Assange

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from CNN: U.S. authorities have prepared charges to seek the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, U.S. officials familiar with the matter tell CNN. The Justice Department investigation of Assange and WikiLeaks dates to at least 2010, when the site first gained wide attention for posting thousands of files stolen by the former U.S. Army intelligence analyst now known as Chelsea Manning. Prosecutors have struggled with whether the First Amendment precluded the prosecution of Assange, but now believe they have found a way to move forward. During President Barack Obama's administration, Attorney General Eric Holder and officials at the Justice Department determined it would be difficult to bring charges against Assange because WikiLeaks wasn't alone in publishing documents stolen by Manning. Several newspapers, including The New York Times, did as well. The investigation continued, but any possible charges were put on hold, according to U.S. officials involved in the process then.
The U.S. view of WikiLeaks and Assange began to change after investigators found what they believe was proof that WikiLeaks played an active role in helping Edward Snowden, a former NSA analyst, disclose a massive cache of classified documents.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions said at a news conference Thursday that Assange's arrest is a "priority." "We are going to step up our effort and already are stepping up our efforts on all leaks," he said. "This is a matter that's gone beyond anything I'm aware of. We have professionals that have been in the security business of the United States for many years that are shocked by the number of leaks and some of them are quite serious. So yes, it is a priority. We've already begun to step up our efforts and whenever a case can be made, we will seek to put some people in jail." Meanwhile, Assange's lawyer said they have "had no communication with the Department of Justice."

Re:No, the real crime here is...

By interkin3tic • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
The worst they showed is that Hillary was paid by banks to speak. We knew that already. We also know that corruption did not win HRC the nomination.

The big news organizations didn't publish on it? Yeah, I forgot only the little guys like Time or CNN ran with stories from it.

(/sarcasm) The big news organizations if anything failed to report clearly enough on the DNC e-mails. Too many bernie-bros who were convinced it proved the Clintons used their Benghazi military to crush Sanders, rather than "There was nothing much interesting in them."

As for not publishing the e-mails themselves, that's kind of the SOP. Wikileaks publishes everything down to social security numbers and GPS coordinates of informants in war zones, responsible news organizations attempt to hide private details like phone numbers. No shit they didn't publish the leaks directly, that would have been irresponsible.

Re:This is meaningless.....

By jez9999 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Erm, you're assuming that he wouldn't have been extradited to the US before getting to Sweden, which was always his issue. Not dodging Swedish "justice".

The moral of this story

By nehumanuscrede • Score: 3 • Thread

If you ever embarass the United States Government, there is no limit to the amount of time, resources and, if necessary, dirty or downright illegal tricks to ruin your life.

Their reaction, however, pretty much legitimizes the Wikileaks documents as no one puts this much effort into removing a source vs disproving false information.

It's hilarious the USG would rather go after the messenger vs leading by example and just following the rules.

Quit doing illegal shit and there won't be much to report on will there ? :|


By david_thornley • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

So, what is the failure about the Obama economy? Do you object to the massive deficit reduction? The decrease in unemployment? The millions of people who could finally afford health care? The growth of the economy as a whole?

Poor Assange!

By SoftwareArtist • Score: 3 • Thread

After all his efforts to help Trump get elected! He's been claiming for years the U.S. was out to get him, and he couldn't return to Sweden to face his rape charges because if he did they'd extradite him. But through all that time, the Obama administration never made any move to charge him with anything.

Then Trump comes into office with help from Assange. And hardly three months later, they're preparing to charge him. I don't think you got what you were hoping for!

Neuroscientists Offer a Reality Check On Facebook's 'Typing By Brain' Project

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
the_newsbeagle writes: Yesterday, Facebook announced that it's working on a "typing by brain" project, promising a non-invasive technology that can decode signals from the brain's speech center and translate them directly to text (see the video beginning at 1:18:00). What's more, Facebook exec Regina Dugan said, the technology will achieve a typing rate of 100 words per minute. Here, a few neuroscientists are asked: Is such a thing remotely feasible? One neuroscientist points out that his team set the current speed record for brain-typing earlier this year: They enabled a paralyzed man to type 8 words per minute, and that was using an invasive brain implant that could get high-fidelity signals from neurons. To date, all non-invasive methods that read brain signals through the scalp and skull have performed much worse. Thomas Naselaris, an assistant professor at the Medical University of South Carolina, says, "Our understanding of the way the words and their phonological and semantic attributes are encoded in brain activity is actually pretty good currently, but much of this understanding has been enabled by fMRI, which is noninvasive but very slow and not at all portable," he said. "So I think that the bottleneck will be the [optical] imaging technology," which is what Facebook's gear will be using.


By 110010001000 • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread
Those fuddy duddy scientists know nothing. Facebook will make an APP for it. In the Cloud. VR and IoT ready.

I have EEG experience and my two cents

By TheOuterLinux • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
From what I learned doing research, I also think 100 words per minute is extreme. You wouldn't believe the artifacts you get just from blinking or moving a leg or finger, and I had a 21 channel MITSAR and WinEEG to work with. The only way this is going to work is if Facebook has plans involving AI and quantum computing, a very dangerous combination for privacy. This is because an AI would have to get to know your brain waves on an incredibly intimate level, making encryption a joke when your brain is getting digitally fingerprinted. If what they say works, both the polygraph test and "truth serum" would be a joke. The only actual application for finding brainwave averages between people currently is to add to the "what are artifacts" knowledge and perhaps a quick and dirty diagnoses. Very rarely have I ever been able to use EEG to find correlations in research because everyone is too different and there is always some kind of confounding variable. Biofeedback projects in EEG sort of works for fun little things, but it's not the same thing as "mind reading" or 100 words per minute good. Now, I've played around with Tobii eye tracking, and that would be their best bet. In the the Linux and open source world we have a program called Dasher that may work with eye tracking to get their quota. Besides, doesn't Facebook have enough biometric data or are their government overlords hungry for more? This is why they'll never go bankrupt, as long as they have projects like this. Meanwhile, other more important research gets cut.


By Nidi62 • Score: 5, Funny • Thread
I would have had first post, but I used a prototype to type this :(

CEO of Silicon Valley's $400 Juicer Promises Refunds After Hand-Squeezing Demonstration

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Anthony Ha writes via TechCrunch: Jeff Dunn, the former Coca-Cola executive who became CEO of Juicero last year, has responded to a wave of coverage suggesting that the company's juice press isn't all that was promised -- and he's offering dissatisfied customers their money back. A Bloomberg report showed that Juicero's packs could be squeezed by hand, no expensive juicer required. Dunn's response? He doesn't deny that hand-squeezing is a very real possibility, but he does quibble about what you'll find inside, saying it's "nothing but fresh, raw, organic chopped produce" -- see, it's not juice yet because it hasn't been pressed. "What you will get with hand-squeezed hacks is a mediocre (and maybe very messy) experience that you won't want to repeat once, let alone every day," he argued. More importantly, he said, "The value of Juicero is more than a glass of cold-pressed juice. Much more." At the beginning of his post, Dunn said his goal was to "demonstrate the incredible value we know our connected system delivers." And if you're not convinced this is worth $400, well, there's another option for disillusioned Juicero buyers -- Dunn said the company's "Happiness Guarantee" (i.e. its return policy) has been extended to cover anyone who's ever purchased a Juicero Press. So for the next 30 days, anyone who's bought a Press should be able to return it for a full refund.

Once again a handjob brings down a ceo...

By Leslie43 • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Re:The packs made of very inorganic plastic

By Overzeetop • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Oh, but you can recycle the packs! They'll even send you a *Free* mailing label to send them back once you fill a box with discarded bags. Of course, you need to cut the pack open and use your hands to remove the pulp remnants before you do that - literally scoop out the goo with your hands and throw it away.

And you've totally missed that this is a zero-cleanup device - it's perfect for when you don't have time to go through the messy process of cleaning a traditional juicer. (but, apparently, have time to go through the messy process of cutting open and cleaning out the bag)

Personally, I still can't get over the $1/oz pricetag on the juice packs that have a shelf life of a week.

Re:Why would he care?

By squiggleslash • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Note that $400 is the price to consumers, of which I suspect there aren't many. The real value of the machine is in hotels and other hospitality businesses (they like it because it's easy to clean and maintain, and everything arrives ready chopped), and that's where they're selling. To businesses, the machine costs a cool $1200. The articles I've read suggests that there's no difference between the commercial and personal versions of the machine.

So yeah, I think they're making a huge profit out of the press.

Re:How can we give a fuck?

By Luthair • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

The original shouldn't have been here either. Unfortunately we've moved from technical articles to a dumping ground for tech blogs which are pretty much the lowest on the tech totem pole.

If you look at the article submissions its pretty clear that they should be considered spam as they are often submitted by the authors or site promoters e.g. MojoKid, MirandaKatz, BrianFagioli, Trailrunner7, sciencehabit, the_newsbeagle, Esther Schindler, wisebabo, and a bunch of anonymous submissions.

I think there are two problems, not enough people are marking these as 'spam', and we as readers aren't submitting enough of the articles appropriate for the site.

Re:Expensive bullshitmachine

By hey! • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

In other news, VCs can be fucking stupid.

Or they think that consumers are fucking stupid, which is a pretty safe bet. The tricky thing is to find a way in which people will be predictably stupid which nobody has thought of exploiting before.

This thing is pretty much in the right ballpark; it's an attempt to exploit a cultural weakness: people want to add things to their lives that have the same effect as taking things out of their lives -- e.g. they want to eat something that will make them lose weight. Among the few things that actually fits that bill are vegetables. But if you're drinking vegetable juice you aren't eating vegetables any longer; you're eating pre-digested vegetable concentrate.

Trying to get the benefits of vegetables by reducing them to a convenient candy slurry you can slurp down quickly is futile, because many of the key benefits of vegetables that people are pursing are entailed in the fact that they take time to eat and are difficult to digest. But this does't make selling that proposition to consumers a bad idea. Setting consumer off on a futile quest can be profitable, which is why the cosmetic industry doesn't just pitch looking good -- it tells women they need to pursue eternal youth.

The trick is to package futility so it's convenient and price it/pitch it so that it is either an impulse buy or an object of intense longing. That's not easy. Keurig got all the parameters right, starting with the story they tell you about how your life will be different with their product. You get up in the morning in a caffeine-withdrawal fog, you pop the pod into the machine and your coffee comes out. Then you toss the pod in the trash. What they are selling is the will-o-the-wisp of convenience, and they've managed to sell it at a staggering markup. The truth is that it's just as easy to make that cup of coffee with an Aeropress, especially if you have an electric tea kettle, and it's a hell of a lot cheaper.

Ambient Light Sensors Can Be Used To Steal Browser Data

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader writes: "Over the past decade, ambient light sensors have become quite common in smartphones, tablets, and laptops, where they are used to detect the level of surrounding light and automatically adjust a screen's intensity to optimize battery consumption... and other stuff," reports Bleeping Computer. "The sensors have become so prevalent, that the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has developed a special API that allows websites (through a browser) to interact with a device's ambient light sensors. Browsers such as Chrome and Firefox have already shipped versions of this API with their products." According to two privacy and security experts, Lukasz Olejnik and Artur Janc, malicious web pages can launch attacks using this new API and collect data on users, such as URLs they visited in the past and extract QR codes displayed on the screen. This is possible because the light coming from the screen is picked up by these sensors. Mitigating such attacks is quite easy, as it only requires browser makers and the W3C to adjust the default frequency at which the sensors report their readings. Furthermore, the researcher also recommends that browser makers quantize the result by limiting the precision of the sensor output to only a few values in a preset range. The two researchers filed bug reports with both Chrome and Firefox in the hopes their recommendations will be followed.

"At last! Light sensor support in my browser!"

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

... said no-one, ever.

Feature creep in standards.

By Gravis Zero • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

What we're seeing here is the result of feature creep being integrated into standards because the W3C is financed by donations of corporations. As a result they have lost their spine and the ability to say no to bad ideas. So now, the inmates are running the asylum.

Re: Theoretical nonsense

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Intelligence you say? Here's an idea: malicious code uses sensor to measure light output of whole screen. It then - like a CRT scanning from top left to bottom right - pixel by pixel obscures the original page with a certain colour. If the total light output decreases, the underlying pixel must have been one with a higher intensity. For text this probably means a light background. Conversely, if it increases, it may be a text pixel. Repeat with different intensities, perhaps relying on differences gleaned from putting a pixel next to the one you measure (font aliasing, display specific RGB patterns) and you can even distinguish between different colours with the same light intensity (might be why you see a green pixel in the QR demo).

If your light sensor is sensitive enough and it can measure with a high frequency (and the victim is not a disco fan) the attack becomes not just possible (i.e. NOT theoretical), but actually practical. Which is exactly why the researcher proposes lowering both the resolution and measurement sensitivity of the sensor in browsers. This offers a good middle ground between commercial interests (having the sensor enabled by default) and security.

Re:yea right

By Errol backfiring • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

In a way you would be turning your light sensor into a light pen. Yes, this is grandpa speaking, who can still remember how beautiful his Commodore 64 was with a light pen. In effect, the screen is built up of horizontal lines that are "painted" sequentially. So the light pen would detect a light peak, send a signal to the computer, who looked at the where the video chip was currently painting. That way, the computer "knew" where you pointed the light pen at.

So yes, I can totally imagine that you would be able to read a QR code from your own screen that way.