the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2017-May-19 today archive


  1. Robots Could Wipe Out Another 6 Million Retail Jobs
  2. Uber Starts Charging What It Thinks You're Willing To Pay
  3. UK Conservatives Pledge To Create Government-Controlled Internet
  4. BlackBerry Working With Automakers On Antivirus Tool For Your Car
  5. London City First In UK To Get Remote Air Traffic Control
  6. Sweden Drops Julian Assange Rape Investigation
  7. Uber Threatens To Fire Engineer Accused of Stealing Trade Secrets From Waymo
  8. About 37,000 AT&T Workers Go On Three-Day Strike
  9. Almost All WannaCry Victims Were Running Windows 7
  10. Federal Agents Used a Stingray To Track an Immigrant's Phone
  11. A Bug in Twitter's Old Vine App May Have Exposed Your Email
  12. Linux Distros Won't Run On Microsoft's Education-Focused Windows 10 S OS
  13. Americans No Longer Have To Register Non-Commercial Drones With the FAA
  14. CIA Co-Developed 'Athena' Windows Malware With US Cyber Security Company, WikiLeaks Reveals
  15. 'Without Action on Antibiotics, Medicine Will Return To the Dark Ages'
  16. A Tip for Apple in China: Your Hunger for Revenue May Cost You
  17. IBM is Telling Remote Workers To Get Back in the Office Or Leave
  18. Facebook and Twitter 'Harm Young People's Mental Health'
  19. French Researchers Find Last-ditch Cure To Unlock WannaCry Files
  20. America's Cars Are Suddenly Getting Faster and More Efficient
  21. 2B Pages On Web Now Use Google's AMP, Pages Now Load Twice As Fast
  22. ReactOS 0.4.5 Released
  23. China Successfully Mines Gas From Methane Hydrate In Production Run
  24. Rising Seas Set To Double Coastal Flooding By 2050, Says Study

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

Robots Could Wipe Out Another 6 Million Retail Jobs

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
According to a new study this week from financial services firm Cornerstone Capital Group, between 6 million and 7.5 million retail jobs are at risk of being replaced over the course of the next 10 years by some form of automation. "That represents at least 38% of the current retail work force, which consists of 16 million workers," reports CNN. "Retail could actually lose a greater proportion of jobs to automation than manufacturing has, according to the study." From the report: That doesn't mean that robots will be roving the aisles of your local department store chatting with customers. Instead, expect to see more automated checkout lines instead of cashiers. This shift alone will likely eliminate millions of jobs. "Cashiers are considered one of the most easily automatable jobs in the economy," said the report. And these job losses will hit women particularly hard, since about 73% of cashiers are women. There will also be fewer sales jobs, as more and more consumers use in-store smartphones and touchscreen computers to find what they need, said John Wilson, head of research at Cornerstone. There will still be some sales people on the floor, but just not as many of them. Rising wages are also helping to drive automation, as state and city governments hike their minimum wages. Additionally, several major retailers including Walmart, the nation's largest employer, have increased wages in order to find and retain the workers they need. The increased competition from e-commerce is also a factor, since it requires retailers to be as efficient as possible in order to compete.


By Max_W • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Retail work is some of the most thankless, soul-flaying work there is.

Airline checkin and Lost&Found beat it hands down.

It's not automation when I have to do it

By Hentes • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

In self checkout, I end up doing all the work that the cashier used to. Checking out quickly and professionally is a service I'm willing to pay extra for, I don't care about self checkout even if makes the prices a whopping 1% lower.

Re:Is this a bad thing?

By pipingguy • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
" More painters, more singers, more writers and some people to create art I didn't even know I'd love"

Many people produce "art" that no one else is willing to pay for. How are these "artists" supposed to earn a living wage - via grants bestowed by government or something?

" Some of the progress will suck. There is no denying that some things will suck for some people"

I think you misspelled 'tens of millions' there.

" My job is automating things [...] doesn't look like there is any chance of automating my part anytime soon"

Ahh, I see. Your income security is OK. For now. Everyone displaced (in part) by the automation you're doing should just go and be an artist, rock star or YouTube hero, I guess.

Although I can appreciate where you're coming from; those who do still have jobs in an increasingly automated workforce will be relentlessly worked and constantly in fear of losing their own jobs as the ratio of employed to unemployed gradually but consistently diminishes.

Re:No worries... socialism will prevail (living wa

By K. S. Kyosuke • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

This is another socialist myth where people will gather an income for doing nothing.

That's not a socialist myth, that's just your misconception of the notion of socialism. Back in the 19th century, nobody conflated socialism with the notion of robotic utopia - there were no robots after all!


By stabiesoft • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Don't blame the cashier for that, blame the upper store management. Think wells fargo and what happened with the fake accounts so the peons could keep their job. If you were a cashier, and the boss told it has been commanded, you shall push store credit cards or you shall be fired, would you push or be fired? The big stores have demanded this kind of behavior.

Uber Starts Charging What It Thinks You're Willing To Pay

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Motherboard: Uber drivers have been complaining that the gap between the fare a rider pays and what the driver receives is getting wider. After months of unsatisfying answers, Uber is providing an explanation: It's charging some passengers more because it needs the extra cash. The company detailed for the first time in an interview with Bloomberg a new pricing system that's been in testing for months in certain cities. On Friday, Uber acknowledged to drivers the discrepancy between their compensation and what riders pay. The new fare system is called "route-based pricing," and it charges customers based on what it predicts they're willing to pay. It's a break from the past, when Uber calculated fares using a combination of mileage, time and multipliers based on geographic demand. Daniel Graf, Uber's head of product, said the company applies machine-learning techniques to estimate how much groups of customers are willing to shell out for a ride. Uber calculates riders' propensity for paying a higher price for a particular route at a certain time of day. For instance, someone traveling from a wealthy neighborhood to another tony spot might be asked to pay more than another person heading to a poorer part of town, even if demand, traffic and distance are the same.

Re:Don't think Uber will be alone with this

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

The customer has the right to know how much it will cost before the transaction occurs.

Taxis don't do that. Why should Uber? At least Uber gives you an estimate, but the final price can depend on traffic delays. I don't use Uber, but Lyft estimates are usually accurate.

Re: Don't think Uber will be alone with this

By gweilo8888 • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Yes, they do. Your taxi has a set rate for every mile driven, a set rate for every minute of waiting, and a set rate for any addons like baggage etc.

Re:Amazon does this with in-demand items...

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Huge queues at all petrol stations. One owner of a petrol station decided to take advantage of the situation and doubled his prices.

There are plenty of people who would much rather pay double than waste an hour in a queue. These people would be grateful that someone had the sense to price to market.

People had to pay, he made a mint.

Except that no one HAD to pay. They could continue to wait in the queues at the other petrol stations. They were just offered the additional option of paying with money rather than time. Since he "made a mint" it is clear that many people preferred than option.

Then the strike was over. His petrol station was absolutely empty. It took six weeks until he was bankrupt.

Of course you just made all this up. In the absence of price controls, ALL of the stations would have raised their prices. Feel free to provide a citation to prove me wrong.

Re:Don't think Uber will be alone with this

By TWX • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

That's not true that no one has batted an eye, and it's also not entirely true that airlines have been doing exactly this either.

If I understand Uber and its ilk, the amount of time between booking a ride and taking the ride is short, minutes to hours, to the point that it's essentially a single act. By contrast, the amount of time between booking an airline seat and taking the flight is usually days or weeks, and sometimes even months, and since airlines themselves are financially tied to the aircraft (either leasing or outright ownership) they are paying for the the vehicle in addition to the staffing and everything else; the airline takes on the financial risk. Fares start low-ish to attract travelers, rise as time to the flight shortens, then may plummet reasonably close to the flight to try to fill-in seats, then skyrocket in the last couple of hours to profit off of demand for last-minute bookings before getting even cheaper as standby passengers are booked.

I do not care for how airlines price fares, but since airlines are the entity bearing the financial burden of the entire aspect of the flight then I am less annoyed by it. Uber doesn't own the cars, doesn't pay salaries to the drivers whether they're driving or not. If Uber is pushing the financial aspect of the risk to the drivers then it shouldn't claim one thing to the passenger and another thing to the driver.

peace of mind

By Tom • Score: 3 • Thread

Back to the robber baron times.

People think they are smarter than their grandparents when actually they are so much more dumb that they don't even notice it.

You see, there is a reason for regulations, for fixed fares, for trade union wages and all that "evil government" stuff. The reason is called peace of mind.

Sure I can go through life negotiating every small deal, always checking all the prices, always on the edge making sure nobody takes advantages of me while I try to use every opportunity there is. What a stressful way to live your life!

When you travel the same way multiple times, you learn very fast how much the taxi rate is. If you travel in the same city a lot, you can quickly make reasonable estimates. Because of fixed prices. I can decide to take the taxi to the airport tomorrow, estimating what it will cost me and deciding the saved time is worth it. But when prices change all the time depending on a hundred variables half of which I don't even know, then there is no such calmness. I need to check all the different driving services and compare, and just before booking, not the evening before. Then I need to make sure none of the surge charging or other modifiers changes the price at the last minute.

Why should I fuck my brain like that to maybe save a few bucks? Why should the driver go to work in the morning with not the slightest clue how much he'll earn today? The slavery to market mechanics sucks the souls out of all the human beings involved in the transaction. You can do business like that when you have machine-to-machine trading, but us humans, for us all of this dealing is not an end in itself, it is just a tiny part of the life we live, and the mental burden, the uncertainty and unpleasant surprises have an effect far stronger than the monetary optimisation effect.

The "gig economy" is not a new invention. Millions of people throughout the ages lived their lives like that. Short, miserable and poor lives. Nobody ever became rich with gigs. It's just a trick to swindle us out of the health care, unemployment and other social security systems that older generations fought and died for to establish. Everyone pushing this misery ought to be ashamed and beg for forgiveness at the graves of their grand- and grand-grand-parents.

UK Conservatives Pledge To Create Government-Controlled Internet

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Martin S. writes: Theresa May, the leader of the UK Conservative Party has pledged to create new internet that would be controlled and regulated by government on re-election. An early lead in the polls appears to be slipping but not slowly enough to change the result. Social Media has rapidly become an intense political battlefield. Known as #Mayhem in some circles, but seemingly able to command significant support from new and old media. Also, applying new social media analytics. According to the manifesto, the plans will allow Britain to become "the global leader in the regulation of the use of personal data and the internet." It states, "Some people say that it is not for government to regulate when it comes to technology and the internet... We disagree."

Re:isn't the internet Gov controlled now?

By coastwalker • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Good points. Not only that but the right wing Conservative party have seen an opportunity through the Brexit process for a land grab of unimaginable proportions. The policies they have put in their manifesto will take them forward a quarter of a century on the path to oppression in a single election. This is a disaster of epic proportions because no party once in power has ever stepped away from the levers of power once acquired. So all this shit is here to stay even if they get voted out in the future. Given the strength of the position they are giving themselves on big data I doubt they will leave power for the next quarter century either. This is the biggest political disaster in my lifetime, the end of politics; total corruption.

The UK will indeed be leading the world, leading the world with a right-wing big-government totalitarian hell hole.

Dear Mrs. May

By Opportunist • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I usually sell good advice. Actually, that's my job. This one is just for you, and it's free: Don't even try.

In the end, what you will get if you actually go through with your plan is heaps of cost, very little gain and lots and lots of pissed off people who break any law you try to make in this area with impunity. And, to make matters worse, you create a society that doesn't take you or your state serious anymore when it comes to its ability to pass sensible laws.

What you're heading for is essentially what fell the East Bloc: That the people you are trying to govern do not believe in your ability to govern anymore. Now, in a truly democratic society, this problem can be solved: You'll be voted out and someone who the people believe in gets voted in. Sadly, this option is not really a viable one anymore since whoever would get voted in would only continue to abuse the system you are trying to create just as much as you do.

What people do in such a case is to simply create a society outside yours. A parallel society that lives with your laws, but basically ignore them. And such societies rarely stop at ignoring those laws that they (rightfully) identified as evil, useless and detrimental. The problem with such parallel societies is that once they start breaking laws, they cannot rely on your legal system and executive anymore to protect them against breaking other laws.

Mrs. May, don't make the same mistake the East Bloc made. You still have a working country, despite your government, don't squander that.

Re:The independent is bollocks

By serviscope_minor • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

I remember when the Independent was a politically neutral dull and worthy newspaper. Now it has become an anti-government clickbait site.

No, you're falling into the same trap that much of the media has fallen into. If one side is worthy of more criticism, then it is neutral to do so.


By polyp2000 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

This really depends on who's media you read. If you are basing those facts on British TV and Newspapers the chances are you wont have noticed that Theresa May's party could equally be branded with the "dumpster fire" slur. After all , her party was fighting over the manifesto and was the last to get it released. And my what a nightmarish proposition it is. But the BBC and even "reputable" newspapers are guilty of bias.

I would remind voters that they are NOT voting for the leader of the party ,they are voting on their candidate. Read the manifesto's and decide which policies you think are beneficial. Try not to be selfish , think about how those policies will affect not you , but everyone else in the coutry. Try to think about how those policies will affect the environment and the planet. But do NOT vote because you have a thing against a certain person.

Reading the Conservative manifesto is basically a death wish for millions of needy people and also for the environment. FFS do not endorse the Tory manifesto by voting for it.

Previously ...

By Martin S. • Score: 3 • Thread

Theresa May was previously the Minister for the Home Office and therefore responsible for the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and the failure of IT governance in that made the NHS vulnerable to attack last week.

The conservatives also passed the Digital Economy Act 2017 Described as 'unacceptable', 'unaffordable', and 'infeasible' by the UK Open Right Group which an erosion of consumer Digital Rights and considered by many to be quid pro quo to old media barons for their support.

BlackBerry Working With Automakers On Antivirus Tool For Your Car

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Reuters: BlackBerry is working with at least two automakers to develop a security service that would remotely scan vehicles for computer viruses and tell drivers to pull over if they were in critical danger, according to a financial analyst. The service, which would also be able to install security patches to an idle car, is being tested by luxury automakers Aston Martin and Range Rover. The service could be launched as early as next year, generating about $10 a month per vehicle for BlackBerry, according to Papageorgiou, who has followed BlackBerry for more than 15 years. Vehicles increasingly rely on dozens of computers that connect to each other as well as the internet, mobile networks and Bluetooth communications systems that make them vulnerable to remote hacks.


By ArylAkamov • Score: 3 • Thread


Until then, I'll gladly stay with my 90s funcar. Basic, lightweight, fairly quick with megasquirt III. Sure, it can't wipe my ass for me, but that also means I don't have to worry about hackers screwing with my ass. And nobody wants ass hackers.

Re:That's insane

By taustin • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

While you are undoubtedly correct, given how many times it has been demonstrated that cars are not currently secure, the fact is, cars do need this. The alterative is not between cars needing this and cars not needing this. The alternative is between cars need this and having it and cars needing this and not having it.

A boon for car-jackers

By chrism238 • Score: 3 • Thread
Car-Jackers currently report to your car that one of your tires is flat, encouraging you to pull over. Now car-jackers will be able to report that your car has a virus..... I guess that that's progress, all in the name of security.

Re:That's insane

By Ol Olsoc • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

While you are undoubtedly correct, given how many times it has been demonstrated that cars are not currently secure, the fact is, cars do need this.

You make automobiles safe by not making them accessible, not by turning them into cum dumpsters for every malware writer who want to send you over a cliff for the LuLz.

There is no such thing as an internet secure device, even try to mname one, and it will be cracked in no time. If software can be made, allowing others access to it means they can compromise it.

Now educate me how I am wrong, and we are not just introducing another Internet of things disaster, only with people ending up dead.

The alterative is not between cars needing this and cars not needing this. The alternative is between cars need this and having it and cars needing this and not having it.

Isn't it just freaking amazing that we have had road travelling vehicles for over a hundred years, and now it is mandatory that we open the gates for the visigoths to come in and play with them?

Technology can be awesome, But stupid technology is always stupid.

"You are experiencing a car accident"

By WaffleMonster • Score: 3 • Thread

So you decided to connect cars and shit to the Internet and results have been gloomy and unpleasant? Facing multi-million dollar lawsuits, bad PR and expenditures related to massive recall campaigns?

Don't sweat choosing between dangerous and irresponsible use of technology and juicy perpetual cyber stalking related profits.

Path to success is paved by doubling down on "defense in depth" shell games in a bid to prevent sufficient number of critically injured whiners and crying babies from coming to the otherwise obvious conclusion.

Virus scanners in particular are a fabulous choice:

- Positive public perception
- Subscription fees (or else) show you care
- Stunning record against unknown and targeted threats
- Marvelous record of scanners leveraged as vectors to compromise otherwise secure systems.

London City First In UK To Get Remote Air Traffic Control

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
New submitter lifeisshort writes: "Instead of sitting in a tower overlooking the runway, controllers will be 80 miles away, watching live footage from high-definition cameras," reports BBC. "The new system, due to be completed in 2018, will be tested for a year before becoming fully operational in 2019. The technology has been developed by Saab, the Swedish defense and security company, and will be introduced as part of a 350 million EUR development program to upgrade London City Airport. It will also include an extended terminal building, enabling it to serve two million more passengers a year by 2025.The remote digital system will provide controllers with a 360-degree view of the airfield via 14 high-definition cameras and two cameras which are able to pan, tilt and zoom. The cameras will send a live feed via fibre cables to a new operations room built at the Hampshire base of Nats, Britain's air traffic control provider." As far as reliability is concerned, "the system will use three different cables, taking different routes between the airport and the control centre, to ensure there is a back up if one of those cables fails." In spite of recent large scale hacks, what could possibly go wrong? And the next obvious step is giant Bangalore ATC outsourcing company...

Why remote

By manu0601 • Score: 3 • Thread
Is there a benefit to being remote? They could have installed high resolution cameras on existing tower.

IoT IP-based cameras?

By dwywit • Score: 3 • Thread

I do hope they have dedicated fibre.

Re:As an stupid American...

By radarskiy • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

London City (LCY) is the name of the airport, to distinguish it from the other five London airports: London Heathrow(LHR), London Gatwick (LGW), London Luton(LTN), London Stansted(STN), and London Southend(SEN). Of the six, only London City and Heathrow are within the boundaries of Greater London, neither of which are in the City of London.

Sweden Drops Julian Assange Rape Investigation

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
rmdingler writes: "Sweden is dropping its investigation into WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on rape allegations, according to a prosecution statement released Friday," reports CNN. "Assange, who has always denied wrongdoing, has been holed up at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London since 2012, in an effort to avoid a Swedish arrest warrant." Despite Friday's announcement, he's unlikely to walk out of the embassy imminently. There is no apparent change in the risk of being detained in the west, particularly in the U.S., but it's definitely a win for Assange. Joshua.Niland adds: The pressure on Julian Assange may have lifted ever so slightly with Swedish prosecutors dropping their investigation into the allegations of rape. A brief statement ahead of a press conference by the prosecutor later on Friday said: "Director of Public Prosecution, Ms Marianne Ny, has today decided to discontinue the investigation regarding suspected rape (lesser degree) by Julian Assange." This will not likely deter the United States from pursuing their own charges against him for publishing tens of thousands of military documents leaked by Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning. After describing the development as "an important victory," Assange said, "[...] it by no means erases seven years of detention without charge under house arrest and almost five years here in this embassy without sunlight. Seven years without charge while my children grow up without me. That is not something I can forgive. It is not something I can forget."

Re:See slashdot he's not so bad...

By arth1 • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

He did present himself to Sweden, and Sweden refused.

No, he did not. He agreed to do an interview from the embassy to an Ecuadorian intermediary, but not to present himself. The "interview" took place last year, but was worthless in that none of questions asked were answered, and instead deflected to a pre-written statement. It was a farce. As a result, the Swedish prosecutors upheld the charges.

The investigation is now dropped, mainly because after the election in Ecuador, there seems to be no way to negotiate an extradition. With no way to bring the investigation to a conclusion, the investigation has to be dropped. But if he presents himself, the charges can be brought forward, and he will have a chance to defend himself and actually answer the questions given.

Re:Victory redefined?

By Hentes • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Wikileaks had a working "economic model" (it was financed by donations), until their accounts got frozen.


By Rei • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

He was actually under house arrest at one point in the UK, while the UK court cases were playing out - although said "house" was a luxurious country mansion. He had to cut his tracking bracelet before fleeing to the embassy.

Re:Assange deserves the benefit of a doubt

By BlueStrat • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

because US went off the reservation in pursuit of those guys (him and Snowden). And since that part was very publicly proven [], it throws some serious shade on the whole accusation thing.

The US going after Assange is pure, unadulterated, extra-legal revenge for the public political embarrassment WL has caused the US government by exposing their wrongdoing. Assange no more broke US laws than Woodward & Bernstein did in printing the Pentagon Papers, and W & B are US citizens and were on US soil when they printed the PPs, totally unlike Assange.

But then, if we've learned anything over the past 10 years, it's that those in power believe themselves above the law and think they can do whatever they want and to whomever they want with little consequences.


Re:Slashdot can't be bothered to post the statemen

By doom • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

If he, at a later date, makes himself available,

He's always been available-- they could come to talk to him at the embassy, interview him on the phone, or whatever. He just won't go where it's easy for the US to grab him, which is not at all an unrealistic fear at this point.

A modest proposal: if we're the good guys, we shouldn't go around acting like the bad guys in a cold war spy novel.

Uber Threatens To Fire Engineer Accused of Stealing Trade Secrets From Waymo

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Uber's general counsel Salle Yoo has warned Anthony Levandowski that if he doesn't return the files he's accused of stealing from Google's self-driving car unit and using them to develop similar technology at Uber, or open deny taking them, he could be fired. Gizmodo reports: Uber's general counsel Salle Yoo warned Levandowski in a letter sent Monday and made public last night that, if he didn't return the stolen files or openly deny taking them, he could be fired. The letter is a result of a court order issued Monday, and Levandowski has until the end of the month to comply. "We understand that this letter requires you to turn over information wherever located, including but not limited to, your personal devices, and to waive any Fifth Amendment protection you may have," Yoo wrote. "While we have respected your personal liberties, it is our view that the Court's Order requires us to make these demands of you." Despite the allegations against him, Levandowski's job at Uber has been protected so far by his reputation as a rising star in the self-driving industry and his close friendship with CEO Travis Kalanick, who called Levandowski his brother from another mother. However, Yoo's letter hints that the tide at Uber may be turning against Levandowsk -- in addition to demanding he return Waymo's documents, Yoo also asks Levandowski to return any Uber files he may have and to only use Uber-issued devices for work, where his actions will be monitored. "If you have not fully complied with our prior request to return all Uber-owned documents in your possession, custody, or control, you must immediately return all such documents to us," Yoo wrote.

About 37,000 AT&T Workers Go On Three-Day Strike

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Roughly 37,000 AT&T workers -- less than 14 percent of the company's total workforce -- began a three-day strike on Friday after failing to reach an agreement with the No. 2 U.S. wireless carrier over new contracts. Reuters reports: This is the first time that AT&T wireless workers are on strike, which could result in closed retail stores during the weekend, according to the Communications Workers of America (CWA) union. The workers on strike are members of the CWA. The workers are demanding wage increases that cover rising healthcare costs, job security against outsourcing, affordable healthcare and a fair scheduling policy. Slightly over half of the workers on strike are part of the wireless segment and the rest wireline workers, including a small number of DirecTV technicians, AT&T spokesman Marty Richter told Reuters. The CWA had said on Wednesday that wireless workers across 36 states and Washington, D.C. would walk-off their jobs if an agreement was not reached by Friday 3 p.m. ET.

Re:Contradictory summary?

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Also, going on strike doesn't seem like a good way to convince your employer to not outsource your job.

Almost All WannaCry Victims Were Running Windows 7

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Verge: According to data released today by Kaspersky Lab, roughly 98 percent of the computers affected by the ransomware were running some version of Windows 7, with less than one in a thousand running Windows XP. 2008 R2 Server clients were also hit hard, making up just over 1 percent of infections. Windows 7 is still by far the most common version of Windows, running on roughly four times as many computers as Windows 10 worldwide. Since more recent versions of Windows aren't vulnerable to WannaCry, it makes sense that most of the infections would hit computers running 7. Still, the stark disparity emphasizes how small of a role Windows XP seems to have played in spreading the infection, despite early concerns about the outdated operating system. The new figures also bear on the debate over Microsoft's patching practices, which generated significant criticism in the wake of the attack. Microsoft had released a public patch for Windows 7 months before the attack, but the patch for Windows XP was only released as an emergency measure after the worst of the damage had been done. The patch was available earlier to paying Custom Support customers, but most XP users were left vulnerable, each unpatched computer a potential vector to spread the ransomware further. Still, Kaspersky's figures suggest that unpatched XP devices played a relatively small role in the spread of the ransomware.

Re:MS Broke Windows 7 Updates

By sniper86 • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Someone wrote an automated tool to install all KB's to fix Windows Update for Win 7:

Worked on all 3 machines I used it on, in various WU states (endless loop, failing to install).


Re:Why not patched?

By Kjella • Score: 4 • Thread

Same reasons as always. Lazy and incompetent IT staff at corporations, low knowledge techies that disable Windows Update, long beards who only install certain updates manually after reading the associated KB article and self-determining whether or not they need an update. This is one of the reasons that Microsoft set Windows Update to be automatic in Windows 10. It makes the OS much safer and generally makes the internet safer as a whole.

And if they put in a safe, encased the safe in concrete and dumped it at the bottom of the ocean it'd be even safer. Not very user-friendly though, neither is the force-feeding of random feature updates at inconvenient times. They could have had a category for "Security bulletins and critical updates" that contained only tiny, to-the-point patches for exploits and other big malfunctions, no feature upgrades, no license checks, no trivial extras just the absolute minimum no sane user should disable and 99% of this problem would go away. I'm happy running an OS from 2009. Before that I was running an OS from 2001. I don't need feature updates twice a year and particularly not GUI makeovers.

I realize though that having a zillion combination of patches might be a pain to support, so here's what I'd like to have seen:
1. Microsoft releases version A. You can either stay on stable branch A or get rolling updates A*.
2. After 4 years Microsoft takes the current setup, calls it B. You now have three supported configurations A, B, B*.
3. After 8 years Microsoft takes the current setup, calls it C. You now have four supported configurations A, B, C and C*.
4. After 10 years support for A ends, before that you should migrate to B, C or C*.
From there they'd just bounce between 3-4 supported configurations of N-2, N-1, N and N*.

Most importantly still regardless of when it's updated everything should come with an off switch. I don't mind if Microsoft asks for telemetry. I have a problem with Microsoft demanding telemetry. It's like my car dealer refusing to service the car unless I've kept a log of how I've used it. I could almost live with that if you had to find some obscure setting only 0.01% would turn off. But it's when you deny me that choice this smells really foul. Not that I expect Microsoft to do anything really ugly until most people are on Win10 and can't disable the updates.

Re: Win X Upgrade

By TWX • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

You've obviously never worked enterprise IT. You don't roll-out new versions of anything until they're thoroughly tested, and sometimes you find that you can't roll-out a new version of some software because other mission-critical software is not compatible with whatever new thing you're trying.

Case in point, all of those ATMs and Point of Sale systems that are still running XP, that Microsoft is still supporting.

Windows 7 has more support for legacy applications than 8/8.1, and Windows 10 has even less support than 8/8.1. If those legacy applications provide the profit or are otherwise of primary importance to the organization then it does not make sense for the organization to change software. The operating system is merely a means to an end, not the end itself.

Re: Win X Upgrade

By jimtheowl • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Not all people will accept being forced to Windows 10, and that is why they are not patching their machines.

That is regardless of the fact that the ones that did update were secure.

Re: Win X Upgrade

By mea_culpa • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Microsoft broke Windows Update on Windows 7 soon after the Windows 10 Upgrade windows closed with some botched updates.
Windows 7 computers that didn't take the update were treated with a runaway svchost.exe processes that consumed 100% of a core and near a GB of RAM while halting future updates at the same time. The only way to get performance back was to disable Windows Update. Even reloading Windows 7 from scratch didn't solve the problem. Updates would never come, and svchost.exe was stuck at 100% and massive amounts of memory. Microsoft let this problem linger for months probably in the hopes that users would upgrade to 10. Others here have suggested that it was due to MS not releasing roll-up updates and letting the library grow beyond what Windows Update was able to process. Since the April 2017 security patch Microsoft has begun roll-up updates to solve this problem.

This is 100% Microsoft's fault.

Federal Agents Used a Stingray To Track an Immigrant's Phone

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares a report: Investigators from Immigration and Custom Enforcement as well as the FBI have been using controversial cell-spoofing devices to secretly track down undocumented immigrants, court records show. According to a report the Detroit News, which obtained an unsealed federal search warrant affidavit, FBI and ICE agents in Michigan used a Stingray device to ensnare a restaurant worker from El Salvador in March. The devices, which were originally intended for counter-terrorism use, have come under fire because there are currently no clear rules governing when law enforcement is allowed to deploy them. Even in cases where authorities have a clear target in mind, they run the risk of exposing personal information of other innocent people in range. Until 2015, Federal investigators were free to deploy the devices without a search warrant. At that point the Justice Department laid out a policy requiring investigators get approval to use the devices first.

DUI and hit and run are not serious crimes?

By xxxJonBoyxxx • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
>> "only brushes with the law involve drunken driving allegations and a hit-and-run crash"

Um...if the dude's that dangerous, yes, please, kick him out. There are plenty of cooks that aren't threats to innocent people.

Need to fix cell phone protocols

By Gravis Zero • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

The fact that such a device exists is clear evidence that the protocols for cellular phones need to be fixed so that they will only connect to a master list of cellular towers that are in specific locations. What you may not know about cellular phones is that much more than this is possible. You can push an "update' from a tower to your cell phone and it's all done without any consent. Even if you have the latest security focused Blackphone, your phone will still accept any update pushed to your phone by any tower. The reason for this is that the baseband modem functions independently and always trusts that the network is not compromised.


By KiloByte • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Sooooo... These guys are upset that the Feds followed the law and got a warrant???

Except we were promised these things won't be used except for matters of national security.

Also, Stingrays have no way to selectively MitM only the target, so they spy (in violation of the 4th Amendment) on every single innocent person in a large radius.

They're illegals - not undocumented.

By sethstorm • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

There is no defense for allowing illegals in this country, much less the crimes they commit.

A Bug in Twitter's Old Vine App May Have Exposed Your Email

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares a report: If you had a Vine account, there's an alert you may want to know about. The video app, which Twitter bought in 2012 and shut down last year after its six-second videos failed to take off, sent out emails to some users Friday alerting them to a vulnerability in its service. Yeah, that's right, Vine is dead, but your account may have been compromised anyway. Apparently, the "bug" potentially exposed email addresses to hackers or other "third parties under certain circumstances." The vulnerability apparently existed for less than 24 hours, or 14,400 Vine videos. "We take these incidents very seriously, and we're sorry this occurred," Vine wrote in its email. It also said the information exposed could not be used to access accounts, and there were no indications any of the data had been misused.


By cigawoot • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

There is a big difference between "A Bug in Twitter's Old Vine App May Have Exposed Your Email" and "A Bug in Twitter's Old Vine App May Have Exposed Your Email Address".

Not a big deal, and correct response

By JoshuaZ • Score: 3 • Thread
Exposure of email addresses just isn't that big a deal. You should in most circumstances be operating under the assumption that email addresses are not private to start with. Nevertheless, this is exactly the right response by Twitter by promptly alerting people. I'm not a fan of Twitter at multiple levels, but this seems exactly correct from both a security standpoint and a PR standpoint.

Linux Distros Won't Run On Microsoft's Education-Focused Windows 10 S OS

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Reader BrianFagioli writes: I was sort of hopeful for Windows 10 S when Microsoft made a shocking announcement at Build 2017 that it is bringing Linux distributions to the Windows Store. This gave the impression that students using the S variant of the OS would be able to tinker with Linux. Unfortunately, this is not the case as Microsoft will be blocking Linux on the new OS. In other words, not all apps in the store will be available for Windows 10 S. "Windows 10 S does not run command-line applications, nor the Windows Console, Cmd / PowerShell, or Linux/Bash/WSL instances since command-line apps run outside the safe environment that protects Windows 10 S from malicious / misbehaving software," says Rich Turner, Senior Product Manager, Microsoft. Tuner further explains, "Linux distro store packages are an exotic type of app package that are published to the Windows Store by known partners. Users find and install distros , safely, quickly, and reliably via the Windows Store app. Once installed, however, distros should be treated as command-line tools that run outside the UWP sandbox and secure runtime infrastructure. They run with the capabilities granted to the local user -- in the same way as Cmd and PowerShell do. This is why Linux distros don't run on Windows 10 S: Even though they're delivered via the Windows Store, and installed as standard UWP APPX's, they run as non-UWP command-line tools and this can access more of a system than a UWP can."

Re:Windows S O S

By green1 • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

It took you a month 10 years ago, today it would only take a minute, I can't believe the improvements to Linux since I switched completely back around 2000

Linux is far easier to use than Windows, and it "just works", no fiddling with drivers, no searching for codecs, you just use it. Every time I have to sit down in front of a Windows machine for any reason I cringe, they're slow, unintuitive, and incredibly difficult to configure to do what you need. I don't want to spend hours trying to figure out how to do the simplest tasks, I just want it to work.

Everyone who claims Linux isn't the alternative either:
- has never tried Linux
- last tried Linux in the mid '90s
- is a paid shill for MS
- is part of an extremely tiny minority of users who uses one of the very few applications that refuse to run on Linux and have no practical alternative (and even most people who think they belong to this group don't as their app has a replacement in Linux that they haven't been willing to consider, or runs just fine in wine)

Re:Once Again

By green1 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Just wait. Soon running Linux will be as convenient as running rooted Android, sure, you CAN do it, but you'll have to give up the ability to watch any (legal) media, or do any online financial transactions, etc.

Computers are going the way of smartphones, completely locked down, and even if you break the lock, you'll lose the ability to do half the things you want to do on a daily basis.

Re:Windows S O S

By farble1670 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Everyone who claims Linux isn't the alternative either:

Everyone who claims Linux is an alternative doesn't use their PC for gaming. Or, is part of the extremely tiny minority of gamers that is happy with the limited subset of games run on Linux.

See what I did there?

Re:as a workaround

By KiloByte • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

There's one small detail here, though: there are two keys: one, the "Microsoft Windows Production PCA" is used to sign Windows only, while the other, "Microsoft Corporation UEFI CA" is the one they for antitrust reasons "kindly" allow certain biggest distributions to be signed with. Inclusion of the former is mandatory, while the other OEMs merely "should consider including".

Doesn't sound that ominous yet? Then recall what the way Windows is sold: there's a ridiculously high official price no one pays, and "volume discounts" every single mainstream PC maker gets, negotiated under strict non-disclosure. You can bet that when the time is ripe, all the makers will suddenly fail to include the UEFI CA key (as losing the volume discounts would effectively put them out of business).

And even while the UEFI CA key lasts, you lose the main reason to use Linux rather than some proprietary kernel: there's no way you can edit the kernel, install a non-distro version, build your own modules, etc. You no longer can insert unsigned modules, kexec an unsigned kernel, use a number of facilities that could be used to gain control over your own machine.

And what's the gain for you? Precisely nothing! A thief can still install Windows on a stolen machine, someone who wants your data can boot Windows (or, for now, one of the "blessed" distros). The UEFI CA doesn't sign particular kernel builds but distro signing keys, so you can be assured every three letter agency of US, Russia, China and any other country Microsoft wants to sell their software in do have such a signing key. Thus, the malware the thugs use against your machine on the border will also boot fine.

Ie, "Secure" Boot is strictly negative for you unless you can remove all keys not under your control.

Re: as a workaround

By Zero__Kelvin • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
In fact you CAN'T use Windows to run it. They are trying to confuse people and doing a great job at it. Don't help them. BASH isn't Linux. The various CLI tools aren't Linux. Now we have a whole lot of people thinking they have Linux who have never seen Linux and never will because they think they already have it. This is Microsoft's end game. It has always been their modus operandi. Foster the ignorance and prey upon it. If you run Windows, and you aren't running virtualization software and installing a complete Linux distribution, you aren't running Linux. Don't fall for the trap. The cake is a lie.

Americans No Longer Have To Register Non-Commercial Drones With the FAA

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
A federal appeals court on Friday struck down a federal rule that required owners of recreational drones and other model aircraft to register the devices with the Federal Aviation Administration. The FAA had announced the rule in 2015 in response to growing reports of drones flying near manned aircraft and airports. Drones have become increasingly popular with hobbyists and more than 550,000 unmanned aircraft were registered within the first year it was required. From a report: The court ruled that the FAA's drone registration rules, which have been in place since 2015, were in violation of a law passed by Congress in 2012. That law, the FAA Modernization and Reform Act, prohibited the FAA from passing any rules on the operation of model aircraft -- in other words, rules that restrict how non-commercial hobbyist drone operators fly. Now, if a person buys a new drone to fly for fun, they no longer have to register that aircraft with the FAA. But if flying for commercial purposes, drone buyers still need to register. The lawsuit was won by John Taylor, a model aircraft enthusiast, who brought the case against the FAA in January 2016. Since first opening the FAA's registration system in December 2015, more than 820,000 people have registered to fly drones.


By SlaveToTheGrind • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

The 2012 law explicitly prohibited the FAA from doing exactly what it did. The court's opinion is only 10 pages and gets directly to the point:

In short, the 2012 FAA Modernization and Reform Act provides that the FAA “may not promulgate any rule or regulation regarding a model aircraft,” yet the FAA’s 2015 Registration Rule is a “rule or regulation regarding a model aircraft.” Statutory interpretation does not get much simpler. The Registration Rule is unlawful as applied to model aircraft.

Re:Democrats strike again

By olsmeister • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Registering or not registering a drone will not change the behavior of idiots who use them dangerously.

Re:This is kinda what I was wondering

By ScentCone • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Why would we have a rash of something that we didn't have BEFORE the FAA started collecting their $5, but when we already had literally millions of these devices flying around, and untold millions of hours of airtime without any such thing happening? Please explain.

Re:Woo hoo!

By ColdWetDog • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

No, you can't. The Fine Regulation states that you can only fly according to AMA (Academy of Model Aircraft) rules. Anything else is subject to fines, jail time and the Spanish Inquisition.

CIA Co-Developed 'Athena' Windows Malware With US Cyber Security Company, WikiLeaks Reveals

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader writes: Today, WikiLeaks leaked documentation about a tool called Athena. According to leaked documents, which WikiLeaks previously claimed it received from hackers and CIA insiders, Athena is an implant -- a CIA technical term for "malware" -- that can target and infect any Windows system, from Windows XP to Windows 10, Microsoft's latest OS version. Documents leaked today are dated between September 2015 and February 2016, showing that the CIA had the ability to hack Windows 10 months after its launch, despite Microsoft boasting about how hard it would be to hack its new OS. [...] The documents reveal that CIA had received help from a non-government contractor in developing the malware. The company is Siege Technologies, a cyber-security company based in New Hampshire, which was acquired on November 15, 2016, by Nehemiah Security, another US company, based in Tysons, Virginia, on the outskirts of Washington and near CIA's headquarters, in a zone peppered with various military and defense contractors.

CIA Fronts

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

"Siege Technologies, a cyber-security company based in New Hampshire, which was acquired on November 15, 2016, by Nehemiah Security, another US company, based in Tysons, Virginia, on the outskirts of Washington and near CIA's headquarters, in a zone peppered with various military and defense contractors."

Many of which are CIA front companies. Essentially the CIA contracts with companies it controls moving the money away from any elected meddling - aka oversight. The money is then used to fund "special projects" that don't need to be reported to anyone.

Re:Need to curtail the CIA and NSA

By The Real Dr John • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

No, everyone is responsible. All the spy agencies are involved, and corporations are clearly involved. It was done under Bush/Cheney and Obama, and so far the American public has failed to complain enough, and the media have failed their role as watchdogs. It is everybody's fault. If people don't start complaining a lot more to their representatives, and vote in more honest representatives, it will only get worse.

Re:Need to curtail the CIA and NSA

By The Real Dr John • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

And by the way, Obama is not the left. He may be the center-right, but he has nothing to do with the Bernie Left. The spy agencies are all right wing. The military is right wing, the wars are done by right wing Democrats and Republicans colluding together. The people least responsible for the spying and the wars are all those lefty anti-war and-spying protesters. But I still maintain that just about everyone is to blame, including the public who barely pays attention to anything other than their phone.

Re:CIA Fronts

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

And many of these TLA front-companies turn a profit which goes straight into the TLA's off-record 'black fund' which has no controls or oversight. We're talking billions here. Whistleblowers and journalists who have tried to expose it have been killed.

Re:Need to curtail the CIA and NSA

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The "resistance" from the left is identical to all the pop-up Communist groups the CIA funded in South America. Everything hit topic from the intersectional corner of bad ideas is designed to form rifts in the community to prevent a unified voter base. You can't occupy wallstreet when part of the crowd calls you racist for daring to speak for them, and the entire movement has to spend all their time checking their privilege.

'Without Action on Antibiotics, Medicine Will Return To the Dark Ages'

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Four years ago professor Sally Davies, England's chief medical officer, gave the world a sombre warning of the growing threat posed by bacteria evolving resistance to life-saving antibiotics. If this were left unaddressed, she argued, it would lead to the erosion of modern medicine as we know it. Doctors and scientists had long warned of the problem, but few outside medicine were taking real heed. Consumption of antibiotics rose 36% between 2000 and 2010, writes Ed Whiting, director of policy and chief of staff at Wellcome, a biomedical research charity based in London. He notes that much of the progress in the field is yet to be made: We urgently need new antibiotics. No new classes of antibiotics have been approved since the early 1980s. Between 1940 and 1962 about 20 classes were produced, but industry backing has decreased significantly since that golden age. The pipeline of new treatments is all but dry, the void fast exploited by resistant bacteria. A concerning number are now resistant to drugs reserved as the last line of defence, and the most vulnerable are in greatest danger -- the young, old and critically ill. Blood infections caused by drug-resistant microbes kill more than 200,000 newborn babies each year. The reason for the lack of interest from the pharmaceutical industry is simple: the economics don't add up. Developing new antibiotics is scientifically challenging, time-consuming and costly. The medicines we so badly need cannot be allowed to be sold in volume; they must be conserved for real need, with fair access guaranteed. This limits their retail value. Many early-stage projects will fail, making them a risky bet. Even those that are successful will take at least a decade to produce medicines that are safe for human use.


By PPH • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

the antibiotics given to animals are very weak

That's bad. Very bad. Because now you've created an environment which knocks off the weak strains of bacteria making room for more robust strains. If you can't administer something strong enough to kill them all, just don't bother.

How about giving farm animals a bit more living space? And more of that outdoors. So when a chicken gets sick, they don't pass it to half a million other chickens crammed in the same factory.


By Waffle Iron • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

So you believe that a million years of evolution happened over night and now there are superbug boogeymen ready to eat you alive????

No, 75 years of bacterial evolution happened in 75 years. That's probably around 1e6 generations, a number which was sufficient for humans to evolve from rather primitive mammals, and it's certainly more than enough generations to to breed superbug bogeymen ready to eat you alive. (Certain bacteria were in fact always able to eat you alive, it's just now they've bred resistance to a handful of chemical road bumps we came up with.)

Re:other therapies

By Wootery • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

It depends. It's pretty rare for a bug to be resistant to all available antibiotics.

Give it time.

proper management of antibiotic use reduces the threat significantly.

We don't have proper management. Hence the article, no?


By angel'o'sphere • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

And after over 20 years of 'struggling' with the EU, the US still have not grasped why the EU has an import ban on meat 'contaminated' by antibiotics.


By tempo36 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Oh boy. You really just made up some shit about antibiotics didn't you? Full disclosure...actively practicing inpatient medical provider here with family practice background and infectious disease training. I prescribe antibiotics.

First off, Amoxicillin is very narrow spectrum. It is also prescribed incredibly commonly despite your claim to the contrary. It is one of the most common pediatric outpatient antibiotics specifically because of it's narrow spectrum of activity and excellent safety profile. It will not knock out "almost any infection you could have." It kills gram positive organisms almost exclusively. Since it is susceptible to penicillinase producing organisms, resistance is reasonably common. Further, it has no, or little, effect on most gram negative organisms because it acts on the components of the bacterial cell wall which are present primarily in gram positive only organisms. Calling it "strong" or weak implies a misunderstanding of antibiotics. While we often use "strong" to imply broad spectrum, any antibiotic is "strong" if it is used against an appropriate organism.

Your suggestion that the newer antibiotics are strictly narrow is flat out wrong. The newest antibiotics in common clinical use are the carbepenems which came into clinical use in the 80s and they are vastly broad spectrum.

The "old" antibiotics are not particularly broad when compared to the newer generations of carbepenems which we utilize heavily in the hospital. Some old antibiotics are narrow spectrum, some are broad. You're making a vague and unsubstantiated claim.

The only thing you are correct in is that you are right that we often prescribe narrow spectrum antibiotics when possible so as to avoid resistance patterns. But this isn't "strong" versus "weak" antibiotics, this is just good antimicrobial stewardship.

A Tip for Apple in China: Your Hunger for Revenue May Cost You

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Li Yuan, writing for the WSJ: Apple's latest predicament centers on its App Store. Last month, Apple told several Chinese social-networking apps, including the wildly popular messaging platform WeChat, to disable their "tip" functions to comply with App Store rules (Editor's note: the link could be paywalled; alternative source), according to executives at WeChat and other companies. That function allows users to send authors and other content creators tips, from a few yuan to hundreds, via transfers from mobile-wallet accounts. Those transfers are offered by the social-networking apps free of charge, as a way to inspire user engagement. Now, those tips will be considered in-app purchases, just like buying games, music and videos, entitling Apple to a 30% cut. For Apple, which has been observing slowing growth in mature markets, China is increasingly becoming important. But the company's my way or high-way approach might hurt the company's image in China. And that image as well as fortunes of local companies, is what the Chinese authorities deeply care about. As Yuan adds, "while it's understandable that Apple wants to tap the App Store for more money, its pressure on the app platforms risks alienating powerful Chinese companies, turning off Chinese iPhone users and drawing unnecessary attention from the regulators." Executives of these IM messaging apps tell WSJ that Apple has threatened that it would kick their apps out of the App Store if they don't comply. The problem is, WeChat is way more popular in China than Apple -- or its iPhones or its services or both combined, analysts say. WeChat is insanely popular in China, and people love to use the app to pay for things they purchase and send money to friends. Apple's greed could end up resulting in millions of new Android users, analysts said.

Re:WSJ links

By msmash • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Hey, WSJ has been doing some exceptional reporting (I'm only talking about tech) lately. We still try to avoid paywalled sources -- WSJ, NYTimes, FT, AFR -- and sites that have policy against ad-blocking -- Wired, for one. But when these websites have exclusive coverage of something (or best reportage/analysis), we can't ignore them. Think of NYTimes' exclusive on Uber's greyballing, WSJ's Theranos coverage. In such cases, we see if any syndicated partner has the same story, but more often than not, they don't post thing for two-three days (and they don't post all the stories). We still scan through other outlets that have rewrote the story and see which one makes the best case. Should we do something differently? We're always listening.

Apple replies:

By Qbertino • Score: 3 • Thread

"Nothing our 280 Billion $ in the bank can't handle. Here, check out our new iPhone ..."

And everybody: "Oooooh, shiny!"

IBM is Telling Remote Workers To Get Back in the Office Or Leave

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
For the last few years, IBM has built up a remote work program for its 380,000 employees. Now the Wall Street Journal reports that IBM is "quietly dismantling" this option, and has told its employees this week that they either need to work in the office or leave the company (Editor's note: the link could be paywalled; alternative source). From the report: IBM is giving thousands of its remote workers in the U.S. a choice this week: Abandon your home workspaces and relocate to a regional office -- or leave the company. The 105-year-old technology giant is quietly dismantling its popular decades-old remote work program to bring employees back into offices, a move it says will improve collaboration and accelerate the pace of work. The changes comes as IBM copes with 20 consecutive quarters of falling revenue and rising shareholder ire over Chief Executive Ginni Rometty's pay package. The company won't say how many of its 380,000 employees are affected by the policy change, which so far has been rolled out to its Watson division, software development, digital marketing, and design -- divisions that employ tens of thousands of workers. The shift is particularly surprising since the Armonk, N.Y., company has been among the business world's staunchest boosters of remote work, both for itself and its customers. IBM markets software and services for what it calls "the anytime, anywhere workforce," and its researchers have published numerous studies on the merits of remote work.

Re:Doesn't make money sense

By David_Hart • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

As an older worker, I'm extremely offended that you would assume I'm unwilling to comply with job requirements and move if necessary to retain a job I am good at and I love. That is extremely discriminatory.

It's not specifically age related. Age is being used as a catchall for people in the age range where they have a family and kids. If your kids are in a good school with lots of friends in a nice community are you going to move or look for another job?

Working in the nearest city may require uprooting the whole family and moving to an area with higher housing prices, etc. People have done it. Most prefer not to if they can help it, at least until the kids are old enough to be in college, etc.

Incompetent overpaid CEO is incompetent news at 11

By LeftCoastThinker • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Nothing to see here, just more of the same.

It is far past time to pass a law that limits CEOs pay to 10x the average pay of their employees in cash and the rest in company stocks that can only be sold 10% per year, requiring CEOs to focus on the long term health and viability of their company, not just short term gains...

Re:The CEO's pay package is objectionable

By twh99 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
That's what IBM wants. This is a stealth layoff.


By cayenne8 • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
It isn't the remote workers that are killing IBM's business.

It is IBM's business and business MODEL that are killing IBM>

In recent years, I had to work with one of their products they bought a couple years back.

The original product, worked GREAT was small, efficient, and on Linux you had a GUI-less install that worked just fine. Easy to configure and just *worked*.

Now..wind forward a couple years to now.

NOW they have forced this great stand alone product, to work on WAS (Websphere Applicaton Server), and other layers of unnecessary applications and abstraction...and the fun thing is...NO ONE at IBM knows how the fuck all the parts and pieces actually work now.

You put in a service request on the product in get help to a point, then they say.. "Oh, that's a WAS problem" and send you there...they send you back saying it is an installer problem...etc, etc etc.

I won't even get into the troubles that come with trying to traverse the cluster fuck that is their IBM Passport advantage, trying to find all the many part numbers that will actually make the *magic* combination of parts that will work together.

They try to sell you to the service guys for this, who often...have problems figuring this out themselves.

IBM is $$$$...bloated, too many groups within that cannot and do not talk to each other...THAT is why they suck.

I remember the old saying:

"No one ever got fired for hiring IBM".

If I were a project manager today, if someone so much as got two of the three letters of IBM out of their mouth...I'd CAN that motherfucker in a heartbeat.

Stealth layoff

By ErichTheRed • Score: 3 • Thread

In a lot of places I've worked (never for IBM, but know a lot of people who have...) this was done as a copycat HR thing ("Google and GE do this, so I'm going to propose it at the next board meeting" says the VP of HR.) -- or a cheap way to get rid of high-talent, high-salary workers.

The first thing is usually just a silly knee-jerk reaction, and is very similar to VPs of IT reading an airline magazine "article" about some buzzwordy technology and suddenly declaring that we're "all-in" on Technology X. The place I work for is very nice to work for job-wise, but often badly copies HR policies that don't really apply to our company. (Our new push to attract hip young Millenials at the expense of everyone else is a perfect example -- comically out of touch with reality and copied word for word from some business rag article about Google.)

The stealth layoff is more sinister. IBM is famous for offshoring every single job they can in recent years, and arbitrary HR policies like this are less likely to be tolerated by older, talented workers. We have a few fully remote workers, and they earn that privilege because they are _really_ good at what they do. I imagine IBM has a very similar situation, with a small cadre of old-timers who really know what's going on secretly directing the newbies behind the scenes. Older workers with families can't move as easily as some new graduate who can fit all their belongings in their car. Old-school IBM, where people had jobs for life, would have been a different story. Those days, if your company moved you for a new project, you moved because it was a good opportunity and it would increase your salary and/or presence within the company. Now, all employees are treated as disposable and knowledge counts for little.

I'm sure they have some people milking the work from home always will, and big companies really do build up a lot of excess staff. This happens a lot with companies that go on acquisition sprees, and people just hide out until the next big clean-out. But in my opinion this will force the few talented US-based workers at IBM out, and allow them to say "See? We can't find anyone willing to work here in the US -- prepare this division for relocation to Bangalore!"

Facebook and Twitter 'Harm Young People's Mental Health'

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Instagram and Snapchat are really bad for young people's mental health, according to research by two health organisations. Virtually all major social media platforms have a negative impact on the well-being of 14-24-year-olds, the study adds. Instagram was the worst -- followed by Snapchat, Facebook, and Twitter. From a report on The Guardian: Instagram has the most negative impact on young people's mental wellbeing, a survey of almost 1,500 14- to 24-year-olds found, and the health groups accused it of deepening young people's feelings of inadequacy and anxiety. The survey, published on Friday, concluded that Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter are also harmful. Among the five only YouTube was judged to have a positive impact. The four platforms have a negative effect because they can exacerbate children's and young people's body image worries, and worsen bullying, sleep problems and feelings of anxiety, depression and loneliness, the participants said.

I would say not just young people...

By gosand • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

I was on IG for about a year and a half, and it was my only form of social media. One day I just realized one day how corrosive it is. I felt like a chicken, always peck peck pecking at my phone, trying to keep up with my feed. I was mainly involved with motorcycle builder, buying/selling parts, etc. People would visciously gang up on others, and do all kinds of nasty things if they didn't like you, or you wouldn't sell parts as cheap as they wanted. I had real-life friends that would get fired up and angry over things that happened on IG. I know people who stopped being friends because of some things that happened in the comments of IG.

I just walked away from it when I woke up to this. Having been around the internet since 1990, I've seen all this stuff before. But with things like IG it has a very low entry point, meaning anyone can join the fray. It's not just for the technically inclined, and quite honestly I think it shows off the worst parts of society. It can do the opposite, but it seems as in life, the ones who make the most noise and are most aggressive ruin it for the rest.

back in my day

By Pedestrianwolf • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread
In school I never understood or tolerated bullying and I was bullied quite a bit. General strategy was to verbally goad the bully into throwing the first punch. I was tall for my age and obese, I usually mopped the floor with them. Fat guy strength is a thing. That generally brought a solid end to the bullying; at least for a good while and never again from the same source. I graduated a few years before MySpace. So when I went home, the whole horrible drama of high-school ended and I could just dial my friends' pagers and play Diablo 2. It was such a relief sometimes to get home. I dreaded going to school but I had a sanctuary at the end of each day. These days it's zero tolerance. Moves I made to thwart bullying would get me expelled in today's schools. It doesn't stop people from being assholes. For these kids the day to day pressure of dealing with social clicks, bullying, being judged, being different, feeling awkward, not fitting in, measuring up... it never ends. They leave the school then go to their screens and it just keeps. on. going. I guess it always did, but at least I didn't have to watch it play out in slow motion on the Internet. How can we get people to just follow Bill & Ted's advice?

Political Motivation/SJW Alert

By Scroatzilla • Score: 3 • Thread

One of the two groups, Young Health Movement, appears to be a subgroup of Royal Society for Public Health.

Looks like a single politically motivated activist group. It is also involved with campaigns to stop smoking, to label alcoholic beverages with calorie information, and the "Health on the High Street" campaign, whose mission is described as to "...ensure that local authorities have the powers they need to curtail business practices which may undermine the public’s health."

In other words, their aim seems to be to increase government intervention—in this case, within the realm of social interaction amongst the proles.

I would interpret this as a thinly veiled attempt to justify some kind of policy to further police language on these platforms to protect those who might be triggered or otherwise require a safe space. It is also kind of a stretch to include YouTube with "social platforms," because that is much more oriented toward pulling desirable content than it is toward open discussion.


By Nidi62 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I had this conversation with my wife last night. She watches (nowhere near as much as she used to though) several Youtube families. One in particular is a Mormon family with about 5 kids; the father started making the videos years ago and ended up starting a youtube/video production company that got bought out by Disney. So they have literally made millions because of Youtube. In any case, they always projected being the perfect, happy (not so) little family in all of their videos. But it just came out that the father has been fooling around with cam girls and is an alcoholic.

It's a perfect example of why people need to teach children not to put so much stock into social media: all you ever see are the good times, and the personas that people want you to see. It gives children the impression that if their life isn't one exciting or fun event after another then they are missing out or something is wrong with them, which fuels depression. It makes them feel like everyone else is having fun all the time, and gives them unrealistic outlooks on what life is supposed to be like. And this is only part of the problem. Add in the ability of social media to allow bullying to follow children home from school and it's no wonder kids these days have so many issues. Parents really need to be parents and make their kids cut back on the social media. It would all their lives so much easier.

I've seen this before...

By creimer • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Reruns of Batman and Three Stooges 'Harm Young People's Mental Health'

I heard that back in the early 1970's when I in kindergarten and the early grades. Teachers didn't like kids using their jackets as capes, jumping off high surfaces and screaming "BATMAN!" at the top of their voice, or trying to poke out each other's eyes like the Three Stooges. Fun times.

French Researchers Find Last-ditch Cure To Unlock WannaCry Files

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
French researchers said on Friday they had found a last-chance way for technicians to save Windows files encrypted by WannaCry, racing against a deadline as the ransomware threatens to start locking up victims' computers first infected a week ago. From a report: WannaCry, which started to sweep round the globe last Friday and has infected more than 300,000 computers in 150 nations, threatens to lock out victims who have not paid a sum of $300 to $600 within one week of infection. A loose-knit team of security researchers scattered across the globe said they had collaborated to develop a workaround to unlock the encryption key for files hit in the global attack, which several independent security researchers have confirmed. The researchers warned that their solution would only work in certain conditions, namely if computers had not been rebooted since becoming infected and if victims applied the fix before WannaCry carried out its threat to lock their files permanently. Also see: Windows XP PCs Infected By WannaCry Can Be Decrypted Without Paying Ransom.

Side note

By 93 Escort Wagon • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread

From TFA:

"This is not a perfect solution," Suiche said. "But this is so far the only workable solution to help enterprises to recover their files if they have been infected and have no back-ups"

If an "enterprise" didn't already have a backup solution in place, their CIO - and relevant members of their IT staff - should be fired.


By Jzanu • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

No, I'm afraid this is an instance of the American's surrendering and the French fighting. In other words, this reflects more of reality as America fails at not just its international obligations but even its intra-national ones. In contrast France actively fights terrorist groups in Mali and Niger so that they don't link in Nigeria and create a greater problem for the western world.

Topically, this is a sign of the strength of the French university system superseding the American system in one of the most important fields for future security.


By Jzanu • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
I'm German you fucking idiot - go troll somewhere else. Look up, I replied to the idiocy of another poster with information from reality. If you consider that a problem then perhaps you need some mental health treatment. Reality isn't flexible, and it is what it is.

America's Cars Are Suddenly Getting Faster and More Efficient

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Kyle Stock and David Ingold, writing for Bloomberg: Sometime in the next couple of months, the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon and its 808 horsepower will show up in dealership windows like some kind of tiny, red, tire-melting factory. Yes, 808 horsepower. There's no typo. Last year, U.S. drivers on the hunt for more than 600 horsepower had 18 models to choose from, including a Cadillac sedan that looks more swanky than angry. Meanwhile, even boring commuter sedans are posting power specifications that would have been unheard of during the Ford Administration. The horses in the auto industry are running free. We crunched four decades of data from the Environmental Protection Agency's emission tests and arrived at a simple conclusion: All of the cars these days are fast and furious -- even the trucks. If a 1976 driver were to somehow get his hands on a car from 2017, he'd be at grave risk of whiplash. Since those days, horsepower in the U.S. has almost doubled, with the median model climbing from 145 to 283 stallions. Not surprisingly, the entire U.S. fleet grew more game for a drag-race: The median time it took for a vehicle to go from 0 to 60 miles per hour was halved, from almost 14 seconds to seven.

All for nothing, but the chicks are free?

By burni2 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

808 hp in a country with 70-75-80(-85) mph speed limits,

What will happen with american built high power cars when - perhaps even by committing a crime - being pushed to the max speed? (breaking apart?)

Because its no such big deal to put much power into a car, the problem of aerodynamic lifting forces come into play interacting with shock absorbers.

The space between the street and your cars under-floor at high speed can make out the difference between driving and flying,
because more distance to the road = more air being pushed under the car = lifting your car off the ground.

So a bump on the road can send you flying, and I don't think american highways are designed for speed like the german "Autobahn".

Just saying:

4 times the horsepower you need

By Rick Schumann • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Great. Muscle cars are back, and they're high-tech. Meanwhile, we haven't been educatiing, training, or testing drivers properly for at least 20 or 30 years, which means we have an entire generation on the roads who really aren't competent, which has sparked an entire legion of idiots who claim that 'humans aren't capable of operating a motor vehicle competently, therefore we need to ban them from driving and have self-driving cars instead!' which of course is nonsensical bullshit. So we'll have under-educated, under-trained, inadequately-tested drivers behind the wheel of vehicles as powerful as a goddamned Formula-1 racecar, who will wrap it around trees and telephone poles and kill more people, which will just strengthen the strawman argument in favor of taking away everyones' driving privilege and making us risk our lives riding in shitty so-called 'self driving cars' that are not anywhere NEAR up to the task.


What we REALLY need is reforms in driver education and trianing (read as: fund highschool driver-ed and driver-training programs again!) and reforms in how the DMV tests new drivers.

Oh and while we're at it: Educate and train new drivers to recognize and properly, safely deal with cyclists on public roads. There should never ever again be an excuse of "I didn't see him" when someone hits a cyclist.

Dear Editors,

By fahrbot-bot • Score: 3 • Thread

America's Cars Are Suddenly Getting Faster and More Efficient

With a title that notes cars getting "faster" and "more efficient", it would be nice if the, fairly long, summary actually mentioned both things rather than just the faster part -- especially as the latter is more important. Seriously, I can only go so fast so quickly, but efficiency helps out all the time.

As for "suddenly," the only time comparison in TFS is between 1976 and 2017:

If a 1976 driver were to somehow get his hands on a car from 2017, he'd be at grave risk of whiplash.

We, apparently, have different definitions of the word "suddenly".

Re:An unfortunate use of technology

By phantomfive • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

The reality is that even here, with the highest speed limits in the US, a 180hp coupe can go fast enough to get jail time on an 85mph road, people are buying these purely for vanity reasons.

It's not about max speed (unless they take it to the track), it's about acceleration.


By Jfetjunky • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
To everyone thinking people are suddenly going to be blasting around in the Dodge Demon, it's quite obviously a car designed to be capable of fast drag strip times while also being street legal. And yes, I'm sure some dunce will wrap one around a telephone pole, but they are not going to be hugely prolific cars.

And as someone who is involved in both drag racing and oval dirt track racing, I prefer a car with good mileage, only modest power, and very good handling for a daily driver.

There ARE pretty high performance cars that get mileage I never even believed would be possibly, usually to displacement on demand technologies where cylinders are literally shut off when not needed. This was tried many many years ago with little success, but now they have the ability to actually collapse the lifters and keep the cylinder sealed so pumping losses drop to a minimum and you can realize the full benefit.

And as for the "squishy" torque converter, that was solved years ago with a lock-up converter. The converter only acts as a converter during necessary transitional states. The rest of the time, a clutch inside it locks up and turns it into a direct drive mechanism, removing most of the fluid losses inside.

One of the big gains to thermodynamic efficiency can be had with compression ratio increases, which has been seen. Historically, due to only crude control over the combustion process (carburetor, mechanical/vacuum based ignition timing curves), an increase in compression ratio pretty much necessitated increased fuel octane. Now this isn't as true, given the much more precise control over combustion with direct cylinder injection and individual coil per spark plug . So compression ratio can be increased with advanced control to prevent getting into knock, then detonation, the pre-ignition, then ultimate failure.

EGR is good for efficiency in some cases, but is a horsepower killer. Racing engines intentionally keep the exhaust valve and intake valve open simultaneously (known as overlap) to pull fresh air and fuel through the cylinder on every cycle to "scavenge" out and clean all combustion products out from the previousl cycle. The downside is that some raw fuel is discharged out the exhaust.

Bottom line is we have cars now with horsepower ranges from a 4 cylinder that would have been tough at times with an 8 cylinder engine and getting 2x or 3x the mileage (sometimes even more!). We are on the right track. High performance cars have been ingrained in auto industry DNA for a long time.

2B Pages On Web Now Use Google's AMP, Pages Now Load Twice As Fast

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
At its developer conference I/O 2017 this week, Google also shared an update on its fast-loading Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP). The company says that over 900,000 domains on the web have enabled AMP, and over two billion pages now load faster because of it. Taking things forward, Google says AMP access from Google Search is now twice as fast. From a report: Google first unveiled the open source AMP Project in October 2015. Since then, the company has been working hard to add new features and push AMP across not just its own products, but the larger web. Google Search only launched AMP support out of developer preview in September 2016. Eight months later, Google has already cut the time it takes to render content in half. The company explains that this is possible due to several key optimizations made to the Google AMP Cache. These include server-side rendering of AMP components and reducing bandwidth usage from images by 50 percent without affecting the perceived quality. Also helpful was the Brotli compression algorithm, which made it possible to reduce document size by an additional 10 percent in supported browsers (even Edge uses it). Google open-sourced Brotli in September 2015 and considers it a successor to the Zopfli algorithm.

Twice as fast?

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

I think you mean "half as slow".

Google Sponsored

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

The Register posts this today, and now Slashdot has the rebuttal.

An alternative view from The Register

By cs96and • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Kill Google AMP before it KILLS the web

Re:An alternative view from The Register

By sexconker • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

I don't understand what it so bad about AMP?
It looks like just another framework. In the end it is just a HTML document with a big .js blob that does stuff. Still standards-compliant. You are free to use it or not, or pick the parts that are interesting to you.
You may be required to follow some rules in order to use Google's proxy service but you are not forced to use it.

Seeing how things go on the web, AMP will soon be deprecated. Perhaps with something that support gigabyte-sized minimalist pages better.

It's a subset of HTML, plus new shit Google threw in (so not standards compliant) and a big ol' feed back to Google.
Ultimately, a user sees "AMP" content as a fucking compressed image hosted by Google and devoid of any reference to the original source. When a user wants to interact with it, there's a delay as the page is actually loaded and rendered (as opposed to the shitty jpg), and Google gets all the info of what users do on that page, not the actual author. I believe Google did recently update Chrome on Android to allow people to go to the actual source when viewing an AMP page, but no user is going to bother.

If you have a webpage, and you AMPify it, Google will prefer to show the AMP version in search listings.
When a user stumbles upon it, they'll see a jpg served by Google. If they try to interact with it, Google serves up your AMP page directly. Users don't see the source URL unless they jump through hoops, and you don't see visitors unless you plug in to Google's shitty reporting. Of course, Google gets more data. Lots more.

ReactOS 0.4.5 Released

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares Colin Finck's forum post announcing ReactOS version 0.4.5: The ReactOS Project is pleased to release version 0.4.5 as a continuation of its three month cadence. Beyond the usual range of bug fixes and syncs with external dependencies, a fair amount of effort has gone into the graphical subsystem. Thanks to the work of Katayama Hirofumi and Mark Jansen, ReactOS now better serves requests for fonts and font metrics, leading to an improved rendering of applications and a more pleasant user experience. Your continued donations have also funded a contract for Giannis Adamopoulos to fix every last quirk in our theming components. The merits of this work can be seen in ReactOS 0.4.5, which comes with a smoother themed user interface and the future promises to bring even more improvements. In another funded effort, Hermes Belusca-Maito has got MS Office 2010 to run under ReactOS, another application from the list of most voted apps. On top of this, there have been several major fixes in the kernel and drivers that should lead to stability improvements on real hardware and on long-running machines. The general notes, tests, and changelog for the release can be found at their respective links. ISO images and prepared VMs for testing can be downloaded here.

Re:It is making progress

By The123king • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
I didn't know GNU Hurd could run MS Office 2010!

Office 2010 runs under ReactOS?

By blind biker • Score: 3 • Thread

Holy cow, I am more than happy with Office 2007, for my scientific publishing! If Firefox (for Zotero) works, too, I would be 70% there to ditch Windows.

Numbering system

By ISoldat53 • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
0.4.5 Does this mean that it is half way to being half way to being released?

Re:An effort in insane futility....

By OrangeTide • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I dunno, I wouldn't mind a Windows-compatible OS that is open source and doesn't include a bunch of weird Microsoft marketing telemetry.

I'm a professional Linux developer, and I think there is room in this world for more than one open source operating system. And I still run "legacy" software, why replace software it is working fine and serves my needs, or if it is irreplaceable like a favorite old game?

What do Slashdotters actually think of this OS?

By Rick Schumann • Score: 3 • Thread
Leave comments. I'd like to know. I've been struggling with trying to get Linux Mint working with WINE for the one or two pieces of software that there are no Linux equivalents of, and if this ReactOS is looking decent I'd try it. Please don't query me about 'what Windows software I can't do without' or similar, please stick with the question I'm asking, thanks. :-)

China Successfully Mines Gas From Methane Hydrate In Production Run

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
hackingbear writes from a report via In a world's first, China has successfully extracted gas from gas hydrates in production run in the northern part of the South China Sea. According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), global estimates vary, but the energy content of methane in hydrates, also known as "fire ice" or "flammable ice," is "immense, possibly exceeding the combined energy content of all other known fossil fuels." But no methane production other than small-scale field experiments has been documented so far. The China Geographical Survey said that it managed to collect samples from the Shenhu area in the South China Sea in a test that started last Wednesday. Every day some 16,000 cubic meters (565,000 cubic feet) of gas, almost all of which was methane, were extracted from the test field, exceeding goals for production mining. This is expected to help cut down China's coal-induced pollution greatly and reduce reliance on politically sensitive petroleum imports controlled by the US. "The production of gas hydrate will play a significant role in upgrading China's energy mixture and securing its energy security," Minister of Land and Resources Jiang Daming said on Thursday.

Re:Current state of affairs in the USA worries me.

By DigiShaman • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Last I checked, the Shanghai Maglev was German technology. But other than that, yes, anytime you empower a nation to build because they're the lowest cost supplier that can actually do the job in numbers, you will get an economic boom there. Eventually they become self-sufficient where they too start competing in high tech industries with the rest of the developed world. So the transition from a developing nation to one that is developed is a natural progression. It happened with the Roman Empire, spanning to Europe, across the Atlantic to the America, now back to China, and soon Africa. Now, it's important to note that having a functional government is key here. Pure anarchy and pure totalitarianism are far too extreme to be conducive to mass economic output.

Re:Great.. Methane..

By GLMDesigns • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Guess now you know why the Kyoto and Paris Treaties are foolish and don't accomplish what environmentalists say they will. Why - because they exclude India and China.

Not saying we ought not continue full speed ahead with carbon free alternatives - only say that the Treaties are worthless regarding the global environmental picture.

Re:The ice age had 12 times more CO2, fucking idio

By GameboyRMH • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Why the above is a bunch of bullshit:


The greenhouse effect is a real thing. Deal with it.

When the world had more CO2, it was warmer.

By XXongo • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Since you are cut-and-paste reposting what you already posted, I will cut-and-post what I already replied:

The difficulty here is that you are mixing up stuff that's correct, and stuff that isn't.

For the longest time earth was flooded with CO2 18 times higher than we have today,

That part is true. The Earth has had more carbon dioxide in the past,

and it was colder.

This part is not true. In general, when there's more carbon dioxide it's warmer, and when there's less it's colder.

We had more CO2 in THE FUCKING ICE AGE.

First, to be pedantic, let me remind you that we are in an ice age right now: there are permanent ice caps on the planet that don't disappear in the summers. The detailed place we are in the cycle is that we are in an "interglacial" period, but overall, yes, we're still in an ice age.

It's quite well accepted that the glaciation cycle is driven by Milankovitch variations, the pattern of solar insolation (short for "incident solar radiation," by the way) across the northern and southern hemisphere. Carbon dioxide and water vapor, however-- the greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere-- are the amplifiers that turn the relatively small insolation changes into global temperature changes.

As the cycle of increase of glacial and interglacial periods go, the record is very clear: glacier advance correlate with reduced carbon dioxide, and glacier retreat trends with increased carbon dioxide. So, no, your statement is backwards-- if by "in the fucking ice age" you mean "during the ice covered periods of the current cycle", then, no, we had less CO2 in the atmosphere in the fucking ice age.

The graph you link, with a minimum increment on the time axis of 100 million years, doesn't show the ice age cycle (with time periods three orders of magnitude shorter than that). Here's a graph of temperature and carbon dioxide over the last four glaciation cycles:">

The rest of your post seems to have equivalent random mixing up of facts. You write:

I don't know why you idiots just don't do your own research but keep repeating nonsense just because someone else said so.

But that seems to be exactly what you are doing-- posting a scrapbook of random unrelated stuff without, as far as I can tell, making any attempt to understand it. Here are some links:

Re:About that whole limited supply of fossil fuels

By Waffle Iron • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

We're already well past the point where the planet can safely absorb the byproducts of fossil fuel burning. So the Malthusian issues are just as severe as people have been saying all along.

Rising Seas Set To Double Coastal Flooding By 2050, Says Study

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Coastal flooding is about to get dramatically more frequent around the world as sea levels rise from global warming, researchers said Thursday. Phys.Org reports, "A 10-to-20 centimeter (four-to-eight inch) jump in the global ocean watermark by 2050 -- a conservative forecast -- would double flood risk in high-latitude regions, they reports in the journal Scientific Reports." From the report: Major cities along the North American seaboard such as Vancouver, Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles, along with the European Atlantic coast, would be highly exposed, they found. But it would only take half as big a jump in ocean levels to double the number of serious flooding incidents in the tropics, including along highly populated river deltas in Asia and Africa. Even at the low end of this sea rise spectrum, Mumbai, Kochi and Abidjan and many other cities would be significantly affected. To make up for the lack of observational data, Vitousek and his colleagues used computer modeling and a statistical method called extreme value theory. "We asked the question: with waves factored in, how much sea level rise will it take to double the frequency of flooding?" Sea levels are currently rising by three to four millimeters (0.10 to 0.15 inches) a year, but the pace has picked up by about 30 percent over the last decade. It could accelerate even more as continent-sized ice blocs near the poles continue to shed mass, especially in Antarctica, which Vitousek described as the sea level "wild card." If oceans go up 25 centimeters by mid-century, "flood levels that occur every 50 years in the tropics would be happening every year or more," he said.


By RabidReindeer • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

a few inches of sea level rise in the next 50 years clearly isn't going to do all that much additional harm.

There are people in Miami (and other Florida coastal cities), who beg to differ. And I'm not talking boo-hoo poor little rich people losing some of their exclusive ocean view. Low-lying lower-class neighborhoods are already suffering and city officials are having to deal with the thorny issue of raising funds to buy them out. Another unexpected consequence is that clearances on bridges are being shortened, and boating brings in a lot of money in Florida.

Jacksonville has an upscale neighborhood that also serves as a major traffic connector to downtown. Several years back they had to put pumps in the streets because when the Autumn deluges begin and the Spring High Tide coincides, the St Johns River flows backwards up the storm drains. It has not only caused considerable distress to local merchants, the streets became impassible (to say nothing of the road damage).

Personally, I'm just waiting for the first incursions on Mar-A-Lago. I expect Trump to change his position on climate really fast once that happens. And I'm sure that more than one of the Trump Towers around the world is fairly close to sea level.

Look at depth charts of the Florida Keys and you'll notice that a 1-foot fluctuation in sea level would greatly increase or decrease the land area down there. Whole islands would appear or disappear.

Also it should not noted that not all consequences of rising seas roll in from the coast lines. Florida is largely porous limestone rock. It gets its water from aquifers in that rock, and sea water can and does intrude into that rock. Orlando, which is one of the most land-locked cities in the entire state has been fighting for decades with Brevard County for water resources and the last thing they want is for any of that water to turn brinier. Tampa Bay has already seen shortages because they pipe in water from inland sources but have seen pipe failures. And the less said about the fragile state of fresh water in the upscale areas of Fort Myers and Venice, the better.


By necro81 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Personally, I'm just waiting for the first incursions on Mar-A-Lago. I expect Trump to change his position on climate really fast once that happens. And I'm sure that more than one of the Trump Towers around the world is fairly close to sea level

Nah, he'll probably just find someone else to blame.

Or, given his age, undoubtedly high blood pressure, and obesity, he may well be dead before his monuments to opulent gaudiness are flooded.

Where's this apparent "consensus"?

By moeinvt • Score: 3 • Thread
The linked article reads: "10 to 20 cm of sea-level rise expected no later than 2050."

Huh? I don't try to keep up with all of these doomsday predictions, but I thought it was supposed to be several feet and that huge tracts of land in coastal areas would be underwater by 2050? so I googled

sea level rise by 2050

The first result was a PBS story from 2012. This article quotes a report in the journal Environment Research Letters stating: "Sea levels could rise as much as 19 inches by 2050, according to what the report calls 'mid-range projections.' " Next result was an article from The Guardian in 2015 which states "sea levels may still rise at least 6 meters (20 ft) above their current heights, radically reshaping the world's coastline". They also reference some pseudo-scientists in some scientific publication

I thought there was some "consensus" on this stuff? Have the "climate scientists" reached the consensus that sea levels will rise by anywhere from 10cm to 600cm by 2050, with 48cm being in the "mid range"?

Predicting the future is NOT science.

Cut-and-paste reposting of misunderstood facts

By XXongo • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Since you are cut-and-paste reposting what you already posted, I will cut-and-post what I already replied:

The difficulty here is that you are mixing up stuff that's correct, and stuff that isn't.

For the longest time earth was flooded with CO2 18 times higher than we have today,

That part is true. The Earth has had more carbon dioxide in the past,

and it was colder.

This part is not true. In general, when there's more carbon dioxide it's warmer, and when there's less it's colder.

We had more CO2 in THE FUCKING ICE AGE.

First, to be pedantic, let me remind you that we are in an ice age right now: there are permanent ice caps on the planet that don't disappear in the summers. The detailed place we are in the cycle is that we are in an "interglacial" period, but overall, yes, we're still in an ice age.

It's quite well accepted that the glaciation cycle is driven by Milankovitch variations, the pattern of solar insolation (short for "incident solar radiation," by the way) across the northern and southern hemisphere. Carbon dioxide and water vapor, however-- the greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere-- are the amplifiers that turn the relatively small insolation changes into global temperature changes.

As the cycle of increase of glacial and interglacial periods go, the record is very clear: glacier advance correlate with reduced carbon dioxide, and glacier retreat trends with increased carbon dioxide. So, no, your statement is backwards-- if by "in the fucking ice age" you mean "during the ice covered periods of the current cycle", then, no, we had less CO2 in the atmosphere in the fucking ice age.

The graph you link, with a minimum increment on the time axis of 100 million years, doesn't show the ice age cycle (with time periods three orders of magnitude shorter than that). Here's a graph of temperature and carbon dioxide over the last four glaciation cycles:">

The rest of your post seems to have equivalent random mixing up of facts. You write:

I don't know why you idiots just don't do your own research but keep repeating nonsense just because someone else said so.

But that seems to be exactly what you are doing-- posting a scrapbook of random unrelated stuff without, as far as I can tell, making any attempt to understand it. Here are some links:

Not really referenceable

By Geoffrey.landis • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

There are plenty of actual predictions that are actually published in actual referenceable sources.

I really don't see the point in citing an offhand comment made in a radio interview as a "prediction", when the person quoted has an actual bibliography of hundreds of real publications that can be referenced.
(not to mention the point of misattributing a quote that's citing a guy informally recalling something another guy said in a conversation a decade earlier, and misremembering key details.)