the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2019-Feb-09 today archive

83% Of Consumers Believe Personalized Ads Are Morally Wrong

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes Forbes: A massive majority of consumers believe that using their data to personalize ads is unethical. And a further 76% believe that personalization to create tailored newsfeeds -- precisely what Facebook, Twitter, and other social applications do every day -- is unethical.

At least, that's what they say on surveys.

RSA surveyed 6,000 adults in Europe and America to evaluate how our attitudes are changing towards data, privacy, and personalization. The results don't look good for surveillance capitalism, or for the free services we rely on every day for social networking, news, and information-finding. "Less than half (48 percent) of consumers believe there are ethical ways companies can use their data," RSA, a fraud prevention and security company, said when releasing the survey results. Oh, and when a compan y gets hacked? Consumers blame the company, not the hacker, the report says.

What % pay for apps vs. use "free" ad model?

By misnohmer • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

How many of those 83% refuse to use any app which provides them such personalized ads and/or collects their data in exchange for a "free" app? People say a lot of things on the surveys, but do otherwise in life. I seriously doubt that 83% of people purchase apps when given the "free" option with targeted advertisements.

While I have no love for advertisements at all...

By mark-t • Score: 3 • Thread
... if know that I have to see ads, I'd still rather see ads that actually are relevant to my own interests or needs than ones that aren't.

Devils advocate / rant

By geekymachoman • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
I hate ads, personalized or not, and I use an adblocker. However, I also run a site that requires hours of attention every day from multiple people, and many of people here use it often.

When we suggest our users to do donations, they refused.
When we suggested premium membership model, they refused.

99% of the users want the content that 4 people maintain, for free, demand it what's more, and we even got blamed that we're extorting users by having a premium membership and ads, not realizing that if the ads were gone tomorrow - the service would be gone too.. and premium membership was a way for us to DISABLE ads. Eventually, we got rid of premium as it was useless.
Don't want personalized or otherwise fucking ads ? Pay for the shit you use, because ... I don't get the servers for free, nor the bandwidth... nor the knowledge how to program, set servers up, maintain all of that and create content.

Re:All advertising is morally wrong.

By KiloByte • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Nope, all adverts are fraud. Their purpose is to make you buy something you wouldn't otherwise -- ie, to make you do unoptimal decisions. There's also a second effect of making the good's price increased by whatever was the cost of the advertising campaign, making you actually pay for being lied to. The third effect is wasting your time and attention.

Effects 1 and 3 can be countered with an ad blocker. Setting one up properly might take a bit of time but is strongly beneficial to you in the long run.

Not creepy, just oddly useless

By Applehu Akbar • Score: 3 • Thread

Suppose I'm in the market for a new camera lens. I google for tech reviews and user critiques. I make a choice, and then jump onto Amazon.

A week after my new lens arrives, every online ad I see is suddenly for the lenses I searched for, including all the ones I didn't buy. What have all these advertisers bought from Google, exactly? While I'm out on the trail shooting with my new lens, they are funneling targeted ads they paid a premium for to a target market that no longer exists.

Is the Next Big Thing In Tech -- Disconnecting From It?

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes CNBC: It is inevitable that artificial intelligence, machine learning and automation will take over some jobs, internet entrepreneur Arianna Huffington told CNBC in a recent email exchange, but that will place a premium on uniquely human qualities in the future labor market -- creativity, compassion, empathy and complex problem-solving. That's where Huffington sees a pressing problem to solve. She says these human qualities are at risk today and the cause is -- no surprise -- too much technology. Her advice: Reevaluate your relationship with technology before it is too late. "These are the very qualities that are diminished when we're burned out from being always on," Huffington said of human abilities like creativity. "One of the next frontiers in the tech world is technology that helps us disconnect from technology and create time and space to connect not with screens but with other people and with ourselves...."

Huffington, who is an executive producer on the new '90s tech-sector docudrama "Valley of the Boom," said the consumer relationship with technology is one of the most important issues of the modern era, and it is time to reevaluate the seeds that were planted back in the '90s during that first internet boom.... "Even for those of us old enough to remember the first boom and to have lived through it, it's sometimes hard to remember that there was a time before we were all hyperconnected and glued to our screens. And seeing the decisions that were made that led to our current moment makes us realize we can also make decisions about how we use this technology."

To this end Huffington has launched a startup called Thrive Global "to go beyond raising awareness and create something real and tangible that would help individuals, companies and communities improve their well-being and performance and unlock their greatest potential." CNBC reports that Huffington "sees a bright future for a new kind of technology -- the kind that helps individuals disconnect from the damage done by the internet's first generation."

In a related story, Bloomberg reports that the Ashton Kutcher-backed meditation app 'Calm' now has a valuation of $1 billion.

Apps to use fewer apps?

By DogDude • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
This article is beyond stupid.

Self-care and wellness applications for smartphone devices have been booming. Meditation apps, like Headspace and Calm, have grown into huge successes on app stores by helping consumers manage anxiety and stress.

Instead of using an app, how about turning off your fucking phone? Jesus. We don't tell heroin addicts that they'll feel better with a little more heroin. People need to turn their phones off, or even better, get rid of them completely. Almost nobody NEEDS a smartphone for anything.

Re:Compassion and empathy are easy to simulate

By Rick Schumann • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Fake compassion, fake empathy, fake feedback.
Just like so-called 'social media'.

Late to the party, Huffington

By Rick Schumann • Score: 3 • Thread
I've thought for quite a while now that people are too reliant on technology -- and I'm far from alone in thinking that.

A problem of cashing in.

By Gravis Zero • Score: 3 • Thread

The problem here is not the technology, the problem here is the companies that make the technology. In short, they have positioned themselves in such a way that the more you use their technology, the more they profit. It's this parasitic relationship that is the issue. As such, some people are beginning to discover that their lives are better without these parasites invading their lives and stealing their time. A desirable outcome would be application that maximize your capabilities without trying to exploit you endlessly for profit. Unfortunately, I don't see this happening in the mainstream until society hits rock bottom and realizes it has an addiction problem which isn't going to happen any time soon because most fools still have Facebook accounts despite being told how it's hurting them.

The EU is fighting for their countries but the US is really doomed for until most of the current generations die off.

Re:Apps to use fewer apps?

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Instead of using an app, how about turning off your fucking phone? Jesus.

I totally agree.

Sent from my iPhone.

'90s-Style 'Captain Marvel' Website Will Have You Nostalgic for Dial-Up

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes MovieWeb: The official Captain Marvel website is a blast from the past... Marvel Studios is preparing its final promotional push for the project. This includes TV spots, various forms of merchandise, posters, and in this case, a perfect retro website, tailor made to take us all back to a time when the internet was a whole lot simpler.

Instead of flashy high resolution images, we are treated to pixelated versions, which perfectly reimagines the 1990s websites. There's a lot of Word art, a ticker to count how many unique views that the site gets, a guest book, and even a game that lets fans spot the Kree. Instead of the trailers coming through YouTube, they are played using the "Kree Player," which is take on the old Real Player.

MovieWeb writes that the site "also gives younger Marvel Cinematic Universe fans a chance to see what the internet looked like back in the day...."

And though the movie's slogan is "Higher, further, faster," they argue that "The only thing that could have made the Captain Marvel site even better is slow page loading, just to give it a real touch of what it was like surfing the net in the dark ages."


By imperious_rex • Score: 3 • Thread
Back in the 90s, many amateur web sites (I'm looking at YOU GeoCities) really were garish and suffered from their creators' poor sense of design and taste. But sites by professional web design studios looked pretty good (just more primitive JavaScript and almost no CSS at the time) despite severely optimizing their pages for 56K dial-up speeds, and were far better looking than this gaudy Captain Marvel parody of 90s web design sensibility. No 90s pro web designer in their right mind would have abused animated GIFs and fonts (Comic Sans??? WTF?) like this. Using just strictly HTML 3.0 and a sprinkle of basic JavaScript for mouse rollover effects, any web designer could make a tasteful Captain Marvel home page that would be well under 500K in total size.

Re:Not exactly 90's-style

By kackle • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Bah; I usually try to use my 6-year old Opera 12 web browser on a site first (I don't like change), and with it, the page wouldn't load at all.

For the real '90s, check out the Space Jam site!

By ToTheStars • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Others have remarked on the use of Javascript, YouTube videos, and other technology that didn't exist or wasn't widely used until after then '90s, but the original Space Jam movie website is still up in its 1996 glory:

Re:Not exactly 90's-style

By sg_oneill • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Over heavy Javascript wasn't that uncommon back then, although sometimes it was vbScript (Which i rarely saw since Netscape Navigator didnt support it)..

The major things that jump out to me.
1) The JS was almost always inline (I still actually do this. Honestly sometimes throwing the glue script at the end just makes more sense).
2) Div layouts. Back then Table layouts where the norm. Partly because after netscape introduced Div layers, the implementation was confusing as hell and inconsistent across versions
3) CSS. CSS was rare as hell. Things mostly used inline attributes.
4) Wheres the Marquee and Blink tags!!?
5) Needs more jeffk!!!!!!111one

The gif stuff actually was pretty common, and generally irritating as hell, and lead to some stupidly long load times. You kind of developed a habit of learning to read a page as it loaded then.

But yeah, ,the design, rings pretty true to me. I'm getting a giggle out of it, so mission accomplished.

Re:Not exactly 90's-style

By DontBeAMoran • Score: 4 • Thread

More GIFs? Probably. But in those days, animated GIFs were much smaller in both dimensions and filesize and only had a few frames.

Let's check what's on that website:
19 javascript files, for a total of 1,058,266 bytes (yes, one fucking megabyte of javascript on a 1990's-style website... are you kidding me?)
17 GIF images, for a total of 1,149,430 bytes (more than one fucking megabyte)
12 PNG images, for a total of 183,245 bytes (quite normal, although at the time GIF was much more popular even for non-animated images)
6 JPEG images, for a total of 113,833 bytes (again, quite normal)
We won't talk about the 50KB HTML and the 26KB CSS files which are required to display the old-style website on a modern browser. A real 1990's web page would probably have more HTML and less CSS.

Total for everything: 2,795,691 bytes. That's extremely heavy, even for a 2019 website.
I can't imagine anyone waiting to download that monstrosity in the 1990's.

Sony Pictures Open Sources Software Used to Make 'Into the Spider-Verse'

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes Variety: Sony Pictures Imageworks has contributed a software tool used to create movies like "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse," "Hotel Transylvania 3," "Alice in Wonderland" and "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" to the open source community. OpenColorIO, a tool used for color management during the production process, has become the second software project of the Academy Software Foundation, an industry-wide open source association spearheaded by the Linux Foundation.

Sony Pictures Imageworks has for some time given the industry free and open access to OpenColorIO under a modified BSD license. By contributing the tool to the Academy Software Foundation, the studio hopes to encourage the community to take charge of the future of the tool, said Sony Pictures Imageworks vice president and head of software development Michael Ford. "We want to contribute OpenColorIO back to the community that relies on it, and the Academy Software Foundation is the natural fit," he said.

Don't jump the gun.

By Gravis Zero • Score: 3 • Thread

Sony Pictures Imageworks has contributed a software tool used to create movies like "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse," "Hotel Transylvania 3," "Alice in Wonderland" and "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" to the open source community.

This is false. OpenColorIO was not used to create these movies, OpenColorIO is just one of the many tools used in their production. OpenColorIO is specifically for dealing with colors, not rendering 3d stuff or anything else, just colors.

vs Blender

By jwhyche • Score: 3 • Thread

How well does this software compare to Blender? Blender is difficult to use but is very good at what it does.

The Great Colour Leveller

By DThorne • Score: 3 • Thread

It's been integrated in many software products for some time now. The essential gist of it is that light capture, manipulation and display is littered with all sorts of incredibly complicated, and sometimes proprietary encodings that can make combining them a colossal mess. OCIO was an attempt to sit down and formalize the stew into a process that would convert all those colour spaces and light capture methods into a workable primary for manipulation(linear).
I'll be honest, I've been using it for so many years I assumed it was already OS, I guess I was wrong, and now Sony wants to pass control to the community. Cool.

Sony, ILM and others have done things like this for some time, and despite the jokes about embedded hacker code or unreliability, in fact not only is it not true(these are tried and true production tools that tend to be fairly atomic and rigorously tested), but the reasoning behind it are quite pragmatic. The notion of a single FX facility doing an entire movie/show has basically disappeared now - the economic reality is many studios of wildly different sizes will work on a single show, frequently in a panic at the last minute to boot when the workload increases but the delivery won't budge. In the past, every studio had it's own swiss army knife approach to all the countless technical issues in the pipe, so every little thing such as file format(like ILM's venerable EXR - still the major player) or light manipulation that studios can use and not worry about incompatibility is a win/win for everyone. It might seem like a gift, but it's more a hope for striking another obstacle to sharing off the list.

When I saw the article title, I thought it was referencing OpenCue, which Sony and Google have jointly just released to OS. It's a render farm manager, which is limited to the software tools at Sony, but again by OS'ing it, in theory other plugins could be added and released and make it a more general use tool.

After Wells Fargo Outage, Customers Say Direct Deposits Aren't Showing Up

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
Long-time Slashdot reader TheHawke writes that smoke at a data center triggered embarrassing an outage at America's third-largest bank. CBS News reports: Wells Fargo said that a systems outage prevented some customers from using its ATMs and mobile and online banking services, promising to reverse any fees people incurred because of the disruption. Although the bank said the issue was largely resolved on Thursday, customers said they were still having problems accessing their accounts on Friday, including their direct deposits.... The company blamed a "contained issue" at one data center, and said it wasn't a cybersecurity issue.

Wells Fargo said in a statement on Friday that "some transactions and balances were not visible in online banking or ATMs earlier today," but added that "the transactions were processed normally. This issue has now been corrected, and all transactions are now visible," it said. "We are experiencing higher than normal volumes so there still may be delays in online banking and contact center response times...." CEO Tim Sloan apologized for the outage, saying the recovery "was not as rapid as we or our customers would have expected."

Still using a bank?

By DogDude • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Who still uses banks? There's no reason for any regular person to use a bank, when there are plenty of great credit unions. None.

Not the First Time

By jmcharry • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

In the 1980s I worked for a company that ran its payroll through Wells Fargo almost entirely through direct deposit since we were a branch on the east coast. One time they botched the ACH transfers so that money showed up in employees' accounts as expected then disappeared, resulting in bounced checks and ATM withdrawals. Without notifying anyone they printed paper checks and sent them to the companies involved (supposedly all with paydays that day). This resulted in numerous employees being hit with overdraft and bounced check charges, which we covered, but it probably tarnished their credit scores. I don't know if Wells Fargo ever reimbursed us, but I know we fired them.

Has there been a run on the bank?

By ZorinLynx • Score: 3 • Thread

This is the sort of thing that tends to cause bank runs. I know if I had been a WF customer I'd be transferring every penny to a different bank and moving my direct deposit.

Banks are something we need to have 100% trust in.

Re: This level of incompetence should be criminal

By AntronArgaiv • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Better question is why does a [insert derogagory adjective here] company like this still have any customers?

Re:Still using a bank?

By DogDude • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
In my experience, when credit unions make a mistake, they fix it. The depositors are the owners of credit unions.

In my experience, when banks make a mistake, the depositors pay for the mistake. They don't care about the smaller depositors.

Nearly All US Teens Short On Sleep, Exercise

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
UPI reports: Too little sleep. Not enough exercise. Far too much "screen time." That is the unhealthy lifestyle of nearly all U.S. high school students, new research finds. The study, of almost 60,000 teenagers nationwide, found that only 5 percent were meeting experts' recommendations on three critical health habits: sleep; exercise; and time spent gazing at digital media and television... "Five percent is a really low proportion," said study leader Gregory Knell, a research fellow at University of Texas School of Public Health, in Dallas. "We were a bit surprised by that...."

"If kids are viewing a screen at night -- staring at that blue light -- that may affect their ability to sleep," Knell said. "And if you're not getting enough sleep at night, you're going to be more tired during the day," he added, "and you're not going to be as physically active."

Experts recommend a minimum of 8 hours of sleep at night for teenagers, plus at least one hour every day of "moderate to vigorous" exercise.

One professor of adolescent medicine points out that some high school homework now even requires using a computer -- even though too much screen time can affect teenagers' abiity to sleep.

This just in

By Kohath • Score: 3 • Thread

Schools don’t care. Schools care about payroll.

Re:And that's only part of the story.

By b0s0z0ku • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
It's not even the parents' choice in many cases. There's a lot of pressure from society (God, I hate that stinking word). To live like the Joneses, you need two incomes in 2019, and American employers demand 50+ hour work weeks. I mean, you can get around this bullshit by having one income and living in a duplex, driving used cars, not buying electronics every year, but most people are too cowardly to not do what society and the advertisers tell them to.


By b0s0z0ku • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Live below their means. One income or one income and a part-time job. Get on ACA, take the subsidies, don't be too bourgeois to take advantage of Medicaid if needed any your state offers it. It's a public option, and most other civilized countries offer public insurance with no shame. Buy a duplex, not a McHouse, have the tenants pay most of your mortgage. Drive a used car that's paid off. But no ... most "middle class" people are too cowardly and brainwarshed to be seen as "poors."

Re:Kohath the deplorable anti-education retard sez

By Kohath • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Slashdot is so toxic

It's a reflection of the rest of society. Cultural leaders celebrate and reward hate because they're terrible people. Followers respond because they are followers. It's not headed for a peaceful ending. They still have time to change course and give up on being haters. They know it's making their lives worse for no benefit to anyone.

Re: This just in

By c6gunner • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

All students should have to go to public schools. Only then do students all get equivalent quality educations.

This is communism in a nutshell. Bring everyone down to the lowest level! Always willing to sacrifice progress at the altar of equality.

New "Metallic Wood" Is As Strong As Titanium But Much Lighter

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
Titanium "has long been touted as the metal of the future," writes Dwell, "due to its strength, rust resistance, and amazing lightness." But can careful atom-stacking lead to something better?

An anonymous reader writes: Researchers have discovered a way to create a new "metallic wood" material that is as strong as titanium, but five times lighter, reports Dwell. "So far, the researchers have built a sheet of nickel with nanoscale pores that is almost 70 percent empty space... It was created by building tiny plastic spheres, suspending them in water, allowing the water to evaporate, and then electroplating the spheres with nickel. Researchers then dissolved the plastic spheres, producing an incredibly strong, porous metal that floats on water."
Researchers are also considering the possibility of filling its empty space with an energy-storing material. "For example, a prosthetic leg made from this material and infused with anode and cathode materials, could also be a battery."

Hyperion Tree Ships coming

By known_coward_69 • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Just need to make some FTL engines

More like a sponge than wood

By divide overflow • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
Metal sponges are already a thing, only difference between this material and existing metal sponges is the pore size and creation method. This method described is somewhat similar to the way that aerogels are produced. These metal sponges aren't like wood...wood is a composite that derives much of its strength from its fibrous grain.

"Five times lighter"cathode

By Bradmont • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
When did measures like "five times lighter" and "100 times smaller" become accepted? Comparisons don't work that way...

Metallic Foam is ...

By pz • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Metallic foam is already well understood.

(see especially Figure 4 on that page which REALLY looks like metallic wood; the stuff in the article doesn't so much)

What makes the the linked article interesting is the novel manufacturing method.

Re:More like a sponge than wood

By denzacar • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

To be fair "New "Metallic Ass" Is As Strong As Titanium But Much Lighter" simply doesn't have quite the same sound to it.

Eight People Suffer Burns After Attempting Viral 'Boiling Water Challenge'

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
A burn surgeon at Loyola University Medical has treated eight different people for second and third-degree burns after they attempted to replicate the viral "boiling water challenge," according to one local news station. These people (like many others as seen across social media) heated water and threw it into the sub-zero air, expecting it to transform into a powder-like state and blow away in the wind. But that apparently didn't work out for everyone; sometimes the water stayed liquid and hit people. The youngest patient seen at Loyola is 3 years old. Sanford said that individual (like some of the other patients) was just standing next to someone else throwing the water.... Sanford said there are likely several others out there with first degree burns that didn't seek medical attention.
CNN Wire Services also reports at least three more "boiling water challenge" burn victims in Minneapolis and Iowa.

Teh Peoples Beez Dum

By divide overflow • Score: 3 • Thread
Sure, in a macabre way they're entertaining, but then I remember that if they can make it to 18 they will be eligible to vote.

Re:Hydrochloric acid challenge next?

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

So by this logic, you're going to stop going to the doctor and taking medicine when you are sick? If you break a leg or get blinded in an accident someone should just dump you in a remote area to go and die?

Nonsense, nobody is saying that we should kill or mistreat stupid people. We are just saying that they should be sterilized.

Yep, it takes decades to build up blind hatred

By rsilvergun • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
they did the same with Hilary. Not that she didn't have plenty of good reasons to hate her, but the good reasons were things like "she'll sell us out to mega corporations" and "She supports TPP and outsourcing".

You're not allowed to talk about those kind of things; they're profitable business. So you're stuck with trying to instill a general sense of dread.

With AOC it's harder because she doesn't really have any dirt. She's a pretty girl, meaning they probably can find anyone she sexually harassed. She's from a basic, middle class family so they won't find corruption. And so far she knows better than to apologize for anything (Liz Warren shoulda told everybody, including the Cherokees, to go fuck themselves on the Indian thing. Apologizing is never good in politics, Trump taught us that).

Speaking of Trump, AOC has the potential to be the left wing Trump: Somebody who nothing sticks to and who can bypass traditional media and go directly to the voters. With the main difference being that when she says Drain the Swamp see seems to mean it. If you're a billionaire who doesn't like paying taxes you'll spend some time trying to bury her before that happens.

Re:Stupid people are stupid

By Solandri • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

I just had someone argue that a candle could heat an entire room in case of emergency, you just had to put it on fire bricks and a flower pot, the bricks would heat up (somehow) and give off heat.

A single candle won't. But a candle gives off about 50-100 Watts of thermal energy. It's actually close to the thermal output of a human body at rest (about 80-100 Watts). So if the overriding survival concern was temperature (instead of, say, pollutants in the air), then yes, one or two candles will put out as much heat as having another person in the room. And two or three dozen candles will put out as much heat as a 1500W space heater.

People just think candles are weak because they are spectacularly inefficient as a light source. IIRC only 0.04% of the energy goes into light; the rest is given off as heat. So that Earth Day tradition where businesses turn off their 12% efficient T8 fluorescent ceiling lights and use candles instead actually wastes a phenomenal amount of energy. A single T8 bulb consumes 32 Watts, or about as much as those small tea candles. But puts out a helluva lot more light.

That's painfully obvious

By rsilvergun • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
and you're missing my point. She's using the same playbook but for different ends. She's using New Media (Twitter, Youtube, etc) to by pass the media filter and get her message out. It works for her because she's cute and charismatic. Trump pulled it off with Celebrity, but same thing. And she doesn't back down or apologize for gaffs. That's key. Voters are like sharks in a pool, they smell blood they're on you in a second.

Politics has changed and she changed with it. That's why they're scared shitless of her.

And Trump is not a centrists, he's an opportunist. He has no actually political beliefs whatsoever. He's taken virtually every position possible but when it came time to put policy in action everything he did was to benefit him and his. He's a Kleptocrat.

'Why Data, Not Privacy, Is the Real Danger'

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
"While it's creepy to imagine companies are listening in to your conversations, it's perhaps more creepy that they can predict what you're talking about without actually listening," writes an NBC News technology correspondent, arguing that data, not privacy, is the real danger. Your data -- the abstract portrait of who you are, and, more importantly, of who you are compared to other people -- is your real vulnerability when it comes to the companies that make money offering ostensibly free services to millions of people. Not because your data will compromise your personal identity. But because it will compromise your personal autonomy. "Privacy as we normally think of it doesn't matter," said Aza Raskin, co-founder of the Center for Humane Technology [and a former Mozilla team leader]. "What these companies are doing is building little models, little avatars, little voodoo dolls of you. Your doll sits in the cloud, and they'll throw 100,000 videos at it to see what's effective to get you to stick around, or what ad with what messaging is uniquely good at getting you to do something...."

With 2.3 billion users, "Facebook has one of these models for one out of every four humans on earth. Every country, culture, behavior type, socio-economic background," said Raskin. With those models, and endless simulations, the company can predict your interests and intentions before you even know them.... Without having to attach your name or address to your data profile, a company can nonetheless compare you to other people who have exhibited similar online behavior...

A professor at Columbia law school decries the concentrated power of social media as "a single point of failure for democracy." But the article also warns about the dangers of health-related data collected from smartwatches. "How will people accidentally cursed with the wrong data profile get affordable insurance?"


By ve3oat • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
The summary asked "How will people accidentally cursed with the wrong data profile get affordable insurance?"

Answer : Move to Canada. We pay our taxes and the provincial governments provide health care. No middle men. The doctors, nurses and administrators all get paid ultimately by the provincial governments, depending on which province you live in. No external investors wanting big profits. Health care in Canada is (mostly) self-invested by the tax-paying citizens. Even non-citizens and people who are too poor to pay taxes get the same health care as the rest of us. Sure, there are things that can be improved in our system, but one thing is paramount -- no middle men who exist just to get profits out of the system. Some Americans call it "socialism". I have never met an American who really understood socialism. Whatever you want to call it, it works.

As for privacy, that is another problem, caused, I suspect, mostly by big American companies. I wish they would all stay away from my country.

Re:Data is just a reflection of you

By Plus1Entropy • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

You missed an important point in TFS. It was right at the end, so you probably couldn't see it from up on your high horse:

"How will people accidentally cursed with the wrong data profile get affordable insurance?"

The first sentence of your post is flawed, because it assumes that Your Data and My Data are correct, and can't be manipulated. Frankly, that is naive and foolish, and exactly why we need to discuss the issues of how data is collected and who or what has access to it.

We know what you're thinking before you think

By mspohr • Score: 3 • Thread

This is the relevant part:
Your data -- the abstract portrait of who you are, and, more importantly, of who you are compared to other people -- is your real vulnerability when it comes to the companies that make money offering ostensibly free services to millions of people. Not because your data will compromise your personal identity. But because it will compromise your personal autonomy. "Privacy as we normally think of it doesn't matter," said Aza Raskin, co-founder of the Center for Humane Technology [and a former Mozilla team leader]. "What these companies are doing is building little models, little avatars, little voodoo dolls of you. Your doll sits in the cloud, and they'll throw 100,000 videos at it to see what's effective to get you to stick around, or what ad with what messaging is uniquely good at getting you to do something...."

Adblockers, and a practiced lack of attention

By Rick Schumann • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
You want to foil these nosy corporate assholes? Use an Adblocker 100% of the time (I recommend uBlock Origin), NoScript, and most of all, a well-practiced lack of attention for any and all ads that can't be handled by the above. Additionally, either clear your cookies when you close your browser, or use an add-on that clears cookies not whitelisted. You don't have to be subjected to ads, and you can train yourself to let them roll off your forebrain like water off a duck's back and not make their way into your memory.

Of course you should also do everything you can to reduce your digital footprint as much as possible: do not use your real name online, ever. Stay away from so-called 'social media' (which is just a honeytrap for your very-much-personal data anyway; be 'social' for real with people you care to stay in touch with). Don't send anything sensitive in email or even text messages, always assume it's compromised. Don't use 'The Cloud' to store anything for any reason, assume it's compromised and being sifted through, regardless of what they tell you; keep your own data on storage devices you own and physically control. Don't allow people to post pictures of you online, ever; easier by the way to not allow people to take pictures of you in the first place. Don't use a smartphone; they're close to impossible to keep secure, and are easily compromised (documentably so, and if you don't believe that then you're not paying attention). At the very least, limit smartphone internet access as much as possible, and never for anything personally sensitive, always assume your wireless company is snooping into everything you use it for. I'd recommend using a VPN as much as possible except for the fact that you can't necessarily trust VPN providers any more than you can trust wireless companies and ISPs. Likewise I'd recommend using TOR as much as possible, but there's evidence to suggest TOR is compromised, or at least is easily compromised; if you do use TOR, be aware of what country the exit node resides in, and keep changing it until it comes up in a country that (at least theoretically) has laws respecting peoples' privacy (i.e. Russia or Ukraine are bad choices, for instance).

I think the above gives you the general idea. The 'Information Age' has given way to the 'Age of Snooping'. You're right to be paranoid, because someone is indeed watching you, more likely many 'someones'. The only way to 100% protect your privacy anymore is to never use the internet and not have a telephone of any kind (including a landline); i.e. have zero digital footprint. It's possible to live that way but very difficult. The best most of us can do is be vigilant and careful about what we do and say online. Some may say 'The damage is already done, there's no point in trying anymore', but that's nonsense, if you start paying attention and limiting your digital footprint as much as posssible today, after a while all the data that's been collected on you will 'go stale' and predictions of what you might do and say will become less accurate as more time passes. Do yourself a solid and work to make their data on you less accurate.


By memnock • Score: 3 • Thread

A lot of web sites' comment sections rely on Disqus. I haven't looked into Disqus, but if they are like any other of the platforms, they accumulate all the comments a user makes across all the websites that that user logs into on Disqus. How long before Disqus is bought by one of the big 5? Then all those users' comments are linked back to FB or or something else.

YouTube Struggles To Fight Mobs Weaponizing Their 'Dislike' Button

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
"YouTube is no stranger to viewers weaponizing the dislike button, as seen by the company's recent Rewind video, but the product development team is working on a way to tackle the issue," writes the Verge.

Suren Enfiajyan shares their report on a new video by Tom Leung, YouTube's director of project management. "Dislike mobs" are the YouTube equivalent to review bombings on Steam -- a group of people who are upset with a certain creator or game decide to execute an organized attack and downvote or negatively review a game or video into oblivion. It's an issue on YouTube as well, and one that creators have spoken out against many times in the past.... Now, the company is planning to experiment with new ways to make it more difficult for organized attacks to be executed. Leung states that these are just "lightly being discussed" right now, and if none of the options are the correct approach, they may hold off until a better idea comes along.
Ironically, Leung's video itself drew 2,654 "dislike" votes -- nearly double its 1,377 upvotes.

Wish there is a crowd sourced system

By 140Mandak262Jamuna • Score: 3 • Thread
Like one could post interesting and enjoyable content and earn upvotes. Earning so many upvotes gives you a few upvotes to dispense to others. Instead of giving unlimited number of upvotes to random people, you can make the earn it.

Wonder if there is a site/forum that tries this. Does any one in slashdot know such a system?

Anything to distract from the true problem

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread

Likes/Dislikes are dross; if you don't want to see how bad your content is, disable the ratings.
Comments are dross; if you don't want to see what people think about your content, disable the comments.

The truly weaponized button is the report button. False flagging campaigns to get content age restricted, put in limited state, or removed altogether have been around since before likes and comment were a glimmer in the trolls' eyes. Now it has been weaponized to get entire content creators removed from platforms. And coming to a platform near you, we are beginning to see content creators being unpersoned not just from a platform, but from life in general; now the mobs take away your ability to make a living outside the platform (or even more recently your access to the monetary system). While I hate to say this, it will take government intervention to undo the unpersoning we see these days.

If you can't handle likes, dislikes and comments grow a thicker skin or get off the platform. If you can't handle someone else's content to the point of trying to get them kicked off the platform, maybe it's you that really needs to go. If you can't handle someone else's content to the point of trying to get them unpersoned, it's prison time for you.

I remember an old George Carlin bit about someone complaining about content they didn't like on the radio and trying to get it banned. George pointed out that radios have two buttons, one button changes the station -- and the other TURNS IT OFF. Ah the wisdom we now ignore ;(.


By Roger Wilcox • Score: 3 • Thread

Users "weaponize" the dislike button? Seems to me that characterization is a tad overdramatic.

Using "like" and "dislike" is not turning out as pretty as you imagined it would? You've got the data, Google... perhaps you should study it and learn a thing or two about human nature.

Or, you could just redesign your feedback mechanism and stick your head in the sand by coming up with a way to completely sanitize user feedback. I bet your corporate buddies can't wait for that one.

Re: What about the other way

By markdavis • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

>"It's not a difficult concept to get where freedom of expression rights begin and end - your right to swing your fist ends where my nose begins."

Speech [and video] doesn't swing fists at your nose. That is not a valid comparison. A better one is "Sticks and Stones..."

You can't have freedom of speech AND "hate speech" laws/rules. Pick one or the other (I am firmly for the former).

Re:Sorry Mark Davis, that's 100% uneducated horses

By Q-Hack! • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Yes, you can have freedom of speech and hate speech laws, because all rights are limited against each other. Where speech is proven to be a contributing factor in violence with that intent, it's illegal. Your false dichotomy doesn't apply.

The problem here isn't the banning of people trying to start violence. The problem is the banning of people who just have differing opinions than those of the social media corporations. For instance Prager University has had more than 30 videos pulled for so called "hate speech". They were nothing of the sort, but wrongly labeled as such. The true problem is that the definition of hate speech is so nebulous that it becomes impossible to actually define it. Best to let free speech be the default, and provide a better argument for that which you don't agree with.

Python Developer Survey Shows Data Analysis More Popular Than Web Development

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
Over 20,000 programmers from more than 150 different countries provided answers for the second annual Python Developers Survey (conducted by the Python Software Foundation and JeBrains).

An anonymous reader submitted this condensed version of their results: 84% of Python users in our survey use Python as their main language...up 5 percentage points from 79% in 2017. But half of all Python users in the survey also use JavaScript, and 47% more say they use HTML/CSS. Reported use of Bash/Shell has also grown from 36% in 2017 to 45% in 2018. [Later 93% of respondents said that their activities included Software testing/Writing automated tests.] Python users who report that they also use Go and SQL have both increased by 2 percentage points, while many other languages (including C/C++, Java, and C#) have decreased their share...

When asked "What do you use Python for?" data analysis has become more popular than Web development, growing from 50% in 2017 to 58% in 2018. Machine learning also grew by 7 percentage points. These types of development are experiencing faster growth than Web development, which has only increased by 2 percentage points when compared to the previous year...

Almost two-thirds of respondents selected Linux as their development environment OS. Most people are using free or open source databases such as PostgreSQL, MySQL, or SQLite... Twenty-something was the prevalent age range among our respondents, with almost a third being in their thirties. [31% more were between the ages of 30 and 39.]

A new generation of users

By jma05 • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Most of the new users since perhaps around 2012 came for the data analytics side.

IPython, NumPy, SciPy had been around for a while, but with maturing Jupyter, Pandas and TensorFlow/Keras, it really caught on. Other NLP and Machine Learning libraries probably helped too.

My use of Python today is completely different from how I used it earlier, nearly two decades ago, when it was mainly seen as a better Perl, back when Perl was THE scripting language. Now it is seen as a better MATLAB or a better R, even though the base language isn't itself vectorized as the others. The language and the standard library didn't improve much towards this. It was mainly the third party libraries that emerged and matured.

Speaking purely from a language standpoint, Julia has all right features for the analytics side, but the scientific community is right now with Python.

Re:A new generation of users

By Nivag064 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Most of the new users since perhaps around 2012 came for the data analytics side.

IPython, NumPy, SciPy had been around for a while, but with maturing Jupyter, Pandas and TensorFlow/Keras, it really caught on. Other NLP and Machine Learning libraries probably helped too.

My use of Python today is completely different from how I used it earlier, nearly two decades ago, when it was mainly seen as a better Perl, back when Perl was THE scripting language. Now it is seen as a better MATLAB or a better R, even though the base language isn't itself vectorized as the others. The language and the standard library didn't improve much towards this. It was mainly the third party libraries that emerged and matured.

Speaking purely from a language standpoint, Julia has all right features for the analytics side, but the scientific community is right now with Python.

SageMath is free and is easily accessible from Python. It runs on Linux, and other O/S's including those from Microsoft.

SageMath is very powerful and is a good alternative to MatLab and Mathematica.
SageMath is a free open-source mathematics software system licensed under the GPL. It builds on top of many existing open-source packages: NumPy, SciPy, matplotlib, Sympy, Maxima, GAP, FLINT, R and many more. Access their combined power through a common, Python-based language or directly via interfaces or wrappers.

Mission: Creating a viable free open source alternative to Magma, Maple, Mathematica and Matlab.

Hundreds Rally For Their Right To Not Vaccinate Their Children

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
CBS News reports that as Washington state confronts a measles outbreak which has sickened at least 56 people, "hundreds rallied to preserve their right not to vaccinate their children."

They packed a public hearing for a new bill making it harder for families to opt out of vaccination requirements, reports The Washington Post: An estimated 700 people, most of them opposed to stricter requirements, lined up before dawn in the cold, toting strollers and hand-lettered signs, to sit in the hearing.... The Pacific Northwest is home to some of the nation's most vocal and organized anti-vaccination activists. That movement has helped drive down child immunizations in Washington, as well as in neighboring Oregon and Idaho, to some of the lowest rates in the country, with as many as 10.5 percent of kindergartners statewide in Idaho unvaccinated for measles. That is almost double the median rate nationally....

One activist who spoke Friday, Mary Holland, who teaches at New York University law school and said her son has a vaccine-related injury, warned lawmakers that if the bill passes, many vaccine opponents will "move out of the state, or go underground, but they will not comply."

The sponsor of a similar bill in Oregon says that anti-vaxxers "have every right to make a bad decision in the health of their child, but that does not give them the right to send an unprotected kid to public school. So if they want to homeschool their kid and keep them out of other environments, that's their decision."

But there are still 17 U.S. states that allow "personal or philosophic exemptions to vaccination requirements," reports the Post, "meaning virtually anyone can opt out." (Though some states are now considering changes.) "The enablers are state legislators in those states, that have allowed themselves to be played," complains Dr. Peter Hotez, a co-director of the Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.

The World Health Organization estimates that measles vaccines have saved over 21 million lives since 2000. But last year in the European region's population of nearly 900 million people, at least 82,600 people contracted measles, reports Reuters. "Of those, 72 cases were fatal."

Health & diet nursing sunlight exercise sleep

By Paul Fernhout • Score: 3 • Thread

Maybe we should mandate all of these things too? Because there are hundreds of communicable diseases that all those protect people against -- not just measles.
"In Disease-Proof Your Child, Dr. Fuhrman details how a Nutritarian [vegetable-emphasizing etc.] diet increases a child's resistance to common childhood illnesses like asthma, ear infections, and allergies. He explains how eating a high-nutrient diet during childhood protects against developing chronic illness including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and autoimmune disorders."
"What all of this means, unfortunately, is that while breastfeeding generally provides the most protection against measles for babies when they are newborns and up to six months, those antibodies wane as they baby gets older. Currently, the CDC doesn't recommend that infants get the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine until they are 12 months old, so babies who are my daughter's age â" 6 months â" are lacking in that protection."
"It is now clear that vitamin D has important roles in addition to its classic effects on calcium and bone homeostasis. As the vitamin D receptor is expressed on immune cells (B cells, T cells and antigen presenting cells) and these immunologic cells are all are capable of synthesizing the active vitamin D metabolite, vitamin D has the capability of acting in an autocrine manner in a local immunologic milieu. Vitamin D can modulate the innate and adaptive immune responses. Deficiency in vitamin D is associated with increased autoimmunity as well as an increased susceptibility to infection. As immune cells in autoimmune diseases are responsive to the ameliorative effects of vitamin D, the beneficial effects of supplementing vitamin D deficient individuals with autoimmune disease may extend beyond the effects on bone and calcium homeostasis."
"Just like a healthy diet, exercise can contribute to general good health and therefore to a healthy immune system. It may contribute even more directly by promoting good circulation, which allows the cells and substances of the immune system to move through the body freely and do their job efficiently. ..."

Adequate sleep is also important for immune function:
"One reason our immune system function is so closely tied to our sleep is that certain disease-fighting substances are released or created while we sleep. Our bodies need these hormones, proteins, and chemicals in order to fight off disease and infection. Sleep deprivation, therefore, decreases the availability of these substances leaving us more susceptible to each new virus and bacteria we encounter. This can also cause us to being sick for a longer period of time as our bodies lack the resources to properly fight whatever it is that is making us sick."

If the logic of forced vaccination holds up, shouldn't we also be putting people in jail for giving children junk food -- as well as for producing or selling junk food consumed by children?

Or maybe we should jail people who are not getting enough sleep (e.g. people who stay up late reading Slashdot) and so are posing a health risk to everyone?

Or is that too slippery a slope for people here to consider?

Humor also boost the immune system. So maybe people who don't laugh enough should also be sent to jail as a health risk? :-)


By AmiMoJo • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

What about the child's right not to die of a curable disease? Society should protect their human right to life, no matter how stupid their parents are.

Vaccines are proven, safe technology. There is no down side to having them.

Re: Understood

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Increased to the point of functional immunity for all intents and purposes.

This depends on both the disease and the patient.

Some vaccines confer nearly 100% immunity. MMR is 97% effective against measles. The smallpox vaccine was also nearly 100% effective.

Other vaccines are much less effective. Influenza vaccines are estimated to be about 40% effective, and its primary benefit is keeping R0 well below one, so that the disease does not spread through the herd.

License to have kids

By jwhyche • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

You have to have a license to have a dog. Why not a license to have a kid? The application should have some questions like.

There is ___ magical sky fairy?

The magical sky fairy will ___ save my kids?

Science ___ the magical sky fairy.

Some think like that?

Re:Other Religious Exemptions

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

The Anti-Vax Movement is not a left/right issue. Instead, it is correlated with extremism in either direction. Right-wing nutjobs see vaccines as a government conspiracy. Left-wing nutjobs see vaccines as a corporate conspiracy. Moderates on both sides vaccinate their kids.

Anti-Vax beliefs don't follow the usual political polariization

Amazon Quietly Confirms It Is Competing With UPS and FedEx

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
schwit1 shares a report from Business Insider: Amazon declared in its 2018 annual filing that it competes against transportation and logistics companies, as CNBC first reported. It's a clear warning shot against UPS and FedEx, two companies that used to claim Amazon is simply their customer. Meanwhile, Amazon CFO Brian Olsavsky told analysts last week that the retail giant will "continue to expand (its) Amazon logistics and (its) delivery capability" in 2019. Meanwhile, UPS CEO David Abney said the company "monitor(s) them (Amazon) as is if they were a competitor." And FedEx claimed, seemingly out of nowhere, last week that Amazon is not their largest competitor, claiming just 1.3% of the company's 2018 revenue.

Well, hopefully they start doing small electronics

By Mr. Dollar Ton • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

shipments internationally. This is now a FedEx monopoly, and FedEx is the worst of the worst, especially in places where they're using franchises.

Re:and the USPS

By jellomizer • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

This 19.3% of the population, is mainly busy with making sure there is food on your plate, fuel for your car, heat in your home, and lumber for your building.
While these people may have a lot of money in assets, they themselves do not have a lot of money, unable to timely go to stores due to distance and their working schedules, the Internet for shopping is important to them. Increasing fees will only hurt this group of people, who makes services that we need.

Yes these people are mostly Republican Trump Supporters. However they are still the backbone to our country, and we shouldn't try to be Cruel to them, just because they may disagree with our views and sensibilities.

All are subsidized by the USPS

By Sqreater • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
All dump mail that is not lucrative to deliver or cannot be delivered by them into the massive United States Postal Service. Fleas. They will never "not need" the USPS. Only the USPS delivers practically every day to every address in the United States.

Only a matter of time..

By Daemonik • Score: 3 • Thread
Been saying for a while now it's only a matter of time before Amazon starts offering to ship your packages through their network just like UPS & FedEx. Once you've built up all that backend, it only makes sense to use it to capacity, even if you're carrying packages that didn't originate at an Amazon facility.

Re: and the USPS

By dryeo • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

There's the Walmart model too. They strive to be your only customer, at which point they start demanding cheaper and cheaper prices.

Please Stop Using Internet Explorer, Microsoft Says

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Microsoft cybersecurity expert Chris Jackson recently published a post on the official Windows IT Pro blog, titled "The perils of using Internet Explorer as your default browser." Jackson urges users that it's time to stop using its old web browser, a product Microsoft officially discontinued in 2015. From a report: In his post, Jackson explains how Microsoft customers still ask him Internet Explorer related questions for their business. The fact of the matter is that while most average internet users have moved on to Google Chrome, Firefox, or Microsoft's Edge, some businesses are still working with older web apps or sites that were designed for Internet Explorer. Instead of updating its tech, many companies have chosen to just keep using the various enterprise compatibility modes of Microsoft's old web browser. But, Jackson says "enough is enough." It's time to event stop calling Internet Explorer a web browser.

I want to stop, but...

By QuietLagoon • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
... there are still sites that I want to visit where Firefox does not render the site properly, so I have to use Internet Explorer to view the site.

Re:What does the last sentence in the summary mean

By jellomizer • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

There is a cost to Winning. Winning doesn't make you better, or put you on a stronger position in the future. It just means you have met the initial objectives first.

I remember a story on NPR about a Chinese Violinist he was always winning the Violin Contest they have. He went to America to study under one the best Violinist.
While training he was asked "Do you want to keep on winning competitions or do you really want to be good at this?"

Winning a competition or competitive war, strategy isn't being the best. But being good enough to not fall behind, then find ways to make your competitor loose. Wither it being showing all the features your browser cannot do. knowing your competing Violinist may play a rift a little slower then you, so you play faster just to show them off, or find a way to injure your competition and hope the refs (or legal) do not find out (such as hitting a batter known for home runs, and forcing them to walk).

Microsoft won the browser war. But because of that Win, all their underhanded tricks to win, for the short term, is now a generation later biting them back, and is preventing them from future growth.

And then there were two

By DogDude • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
It's a real fucking shame that MS decided to get out of the browser business. I have no idea why they'd give up writing their own browser, and hand it all to the Chrome engine. It's not like MS didn't have the resources. No, as far as I know, there are only TWO web browser engines out there: Chrome and Firefox. That's is not good for the web. And since I don't do Google, that leaves me with *one* browser I can use. That's not good.

Re:ya know ...

By SuricouRaven • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Can they take it out? They spend years baking IE in at the level of a vital, inseparable system component for legal purposes - it might be difficult to remove without the risk of breaking other things, both their own software and third party.

Re:Anybody mentioned South Korea to this guy?

By squiggleslash • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

It's rare that I come to defense of Microsoft but ActiveX has been on death row since Silverlight was released back in 2007, they've had a decade plus to fix their shit.

It isn't an overnight, or even over decade, process to remove all legacy apps from a business, and the bigger the business it's harder to remove "obsolete" software. I guarantee you that there are many big corporations out there still reliant on 16 bit or even DOS software (I don't mean "To control this real time piece of hardware", I mean to run something that was written in 1983 and nobody has been able to set the process in motion of getting it rewritten.)

Now, before you start blaming GM, Sears, Edison, or whatever company you feel is being ignorant by not rewriting all their software using the latest Rust frameworks, and I agree they do share the blame, Microsoft's intention by introducing ActiveX was to get this kind of lock-in. They knew how businesses worked, how big corporations worked in particular, and how smaller businesses needed to be compatible with the big corporations. This is why they actively encouraged people to write "web" software using a technology that gave them full access to the Windows API.

They knew that once a bigger corporation made the decision to build a giant application architecture based on ActiveX, the company would be locked into ActiveX, and Windows, for decades. That IT directors would almost certainly be opposed to rewriting it, but even if they supported the idea, IT directors would have massive difficulty persuading their superiors to support projects to replace a working technology with something functionally identical at a cost of tens of millions of dollars, and even if it passes that hurdle, the average megacorp is so wrapped up with bureaucracy and politics such projects would be unlikely to succeed, being killed by replacement IT managers, or dying with the next company wide reorganization.

Microsoft made this problem and they really have to fix it. Short of creating a cross platform plug-in that implements a 32 bit ix86 VM that includes most of Windows 98 in it, I don't see them doing that.

Tesla Hacker Launches Open-Source Project 'FreedomEV' To Run On Rooted Teslas, Bring New Wi-Fi Hotspot and Anti-Tracking Features

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Slashdot reader internet-redstar writes: The Tesla Hacker, Jasper Nuyens -- who uncovered Tesla's "unconfirmed lane change" last year -- now launched at FOSDEM an open-source project called "FreedomEV" to run on top of rooted Teslas. It adds new features to the vehicles, such as a "Hotspot Mode" for in-car Wi-Fi and a "Cloak Mode" to prevent all location tracking and more. It hopes to become available for other cars too. Full presentation video can be found here. The Github project and the website. He is looking for contributors and support from Tesla.

Re:It's not your car

By AmiMoJo • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Tesla is shipping 100kWh batteries that are software limited to 75kWh for their cheaper cars. Would be nice if you could unlock the extra 25% capacity.

Re:If i was an insurance

By geggam • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Yet you can do complete overhauls of mechanical cars legally.

Personal responsibility is what is missing here. If you don't have the skill to do it. Don't

Will it Pass DMV Inspection?

By schwit1 • Score: 3 • Thread

I suspect vehicle manufacturers will soon lobby state DMVs to fail the inspection of any vehicles that is running has non-manufacturer approved software.

It's for the safety of the children.

Re:If i was an insurance

By nnull • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Huh? People modify their cars all the time. Even the computer in cars. Why is Tesla all of the sudden the exception here?

Re:If i was an insurance

By phayes • Score: 4 • Thread

Changing the injection profile of a ICE car has a very circumcised impact and does not have the same security risks as mucking around the same computers that control the steering acceleration and braking on a Tesla. Do you also play with matches and wonder how people die in building fires?

Where Does a Tip To an Amazon Driver Go? In Some Cases, Toward the Driver's Base Pay

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Amazon at times dips into the tips earned by contracted delivery drivers to cover their promised pay, a Los Angeles Times review of emails and receipts reveals. From the report: Amazon guarantees third-party drivers for its Flex program a minimum of $18 to $25 per hour, but the entirety of that payment doesn't always come from the company. If Amazon's contribution doesn't reach the guaranteed wage, the e-commerce giant makes up the difference with tips from customers, according to documentation shared by five drivers. In emails to drivers, Amazon acknowledges it can use "any supplemental earnings" to meet the promised minimum should the company's own contribution fall short. "We add any supplemental earnings required to meet our commitment that delivery partners earn $18-$25 per hour," the company wrote in multiple emails reviewed by The Times. Only drivers who deliver for Amazon's grocery service or its Prime Now offering -- which brings household goods to customers in two hours or less -- can receive tips through the company's app. Amazon insists that drivers receive the entirety of their tips but declined to answer questions from The Times about whether it uses those tips to help cover the drivers' base pay.

Re:Wait a minute...

By Zontar The Mindless • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Cash is still a thing. If you want to tip, don't do it using the app. Amazon can't figure in tips it doesn't know about, right?

When I pay by card in a US restaurant, I try to avoid tipping using the "add X%" button and leave cash on the table instead because I don't trust the owners not to rip off the waitress in some fashion or another.

BTW, in Sweden, there's no such thing as a "tipped" sub-minimum wage for restaurant workers, and no such thing as tips, either.

Re:And if they don't make enough tips

By digitig • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Income is wages+tips.

It presumably is in the USA, which is how Amazon get away with this. It isn't in places such as the UK, where that practice would be illegal. After all, the supposed reason for tipping is to get better service; how would that work if the person providing the service doesn't get the tip?

Direct deposit!

By DogDude • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Why don't you Amazon drones just direct deposit your paychecks into Mama Amazon's bank account directly? It's more convenient than having to do all that swiping on your gadgets.

It's amazing to see how far the Slashdot community has come in the past 20 years or so. It used to be a group of nerds (of all kinds) who were mostly anti-mega-corporation and pro-privacy.And now, most Slashdotters just can't wait to give all of their money and all of their personal information to just a few giant mega companies in exchange for a little bit of (perceived) convenience.

Re:Wait a minute...

By Cederic • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

No, they're talking about the Amazon Prime Now drivers and the Amazon Fresh drivers.

So basically delivery drivers. We're expected to tip delivery drivers?

No. Simple flat basic no. They've been fucking paid for delivering my package, they've delivered it, now they can go and deliver someone else's.

How is this different?

By cascadingstylesheet • Score: 4 • Thread
How is this different from paying waiters less than minimum wage because they will get tips? The real problem is tipping. Get rid of it.

Facebook Acquires Visual Shopping Startup To Bolster AI Work

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Facebook says it has acquired visual shopping and artificial intelligence startup GrokStyle in a move to bolster the social-media company's own AI work. From a report: GrokStyle's technology, which was integrated into Ikea's mobile app, was simple in practice. A user takes a picture of a piece of furniture and the technology would match it to similar products that could be purchased online. On its website, GrokStyle said it is "winding down" its business, but that it is "moving on as a team" along with its technology. The company didn't disclose it's joining Facebook.