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[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 21:09:00 EST from rss

Subject: The Hairy State of Linux Filesystems

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RazvanM writes "Do the OSes really shrink? Perhaps the user space (MySQL, CUPS) is getting slimmer, but how about the internals? Using as a metric the number of external calls between the filesystem modules and the rest of the Linux kernel I argue that this is not the case. The evidence is a graph that shows the evolution of 15 filesystems from 2.6.11 to 2.6.28 along with the current state (2.6.28) for 24 filesystems. Some filesystems that stand out are: nfs for leading in both number of calls and speed of growth; ext4 and fuse for their above-average speed of growth and 9p for its roller coaster path."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/ASY0SLoKYKM/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 20:18:00 EST from rss

Subject: UPS, Generators Join Servers For Boxed Data Centers

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miller60 writes "As more companies look into using a 'data center in a box,' you can now get your UPS and generator in a box as well. HP and Sun have begun offering containerized power and cooling infrastructure along with their data center containers, offering an expansion path for facility owners that have run out of power and cooling capacity. Microsoft also plans to use containerized power and cooling in its next-generation facilities, allowing it to build them with no roofs (remember its tent data centers?)."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/YJ9E2Emlp7Q/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 19:33:00 EST from rss

Subject: Texas Judge Orders Identification of Topix Trolls

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eldavojohn writes "Ars Technica has a story on a Texas judge who has ordered Topix.com to hand over the identifying details of 178 trolls that allegedly made 'perverted, sick, vile, inhumane accusations' about Mark & Rhonda Lesher. Mark Lesher was accused of sexually assaulting an unidentified former client (and subsequently found not guilty) which prompted the not so understanding discussions on Topix. Topix has until March 6 to give up the information. Let's hope the Leshers don't visit Slashdot!"

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/O7e3SI_Shjg/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 18:49:00 EST from rss

Subject: The Tech Behind Preventing Airplane Bird Strikes

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the4thdimension writes "CNN is running an article covering the technology used at Sea-Tac for preventing airplane bird strikes, like the one that occurred weeks ago to the now famous Flight 1549. The hardware used ranges from low-tech pyrotechnics, to netting, to lasers, to avian radar. Using a combination of all these technologies, Sea-Tac believes they save hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in avoiding dangerous bird strikes."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/iSDk-nOUwN4/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 18:08:00 EST from rss

Subject: Beginning Portable Shell Scripting

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Joe MacDonald writes "The earliest UNIX shell I encountered was the Bourne shell on a SPARCStation 2 at my university. As with many students of my generation, prior to that nearly all of my exposure to command line interfaces was some variant of DOS. I was quite proficient with the primitive scripting language that was available on such platforms but I immediately felt far out of my depth in this new environment. The commands seemed arcane, possibly dangerous, and almost immediately I regretted stepping into this unfamiliar wilderness without some sort of guide." Read below for the rest of Joe's thoughts.

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/oIXIKykC4ro/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 16:39:00 EST from rss

Subject: MS Critical Patch Fixes 8 Vulnerabilities

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nandemoari writes "A hole allowing hackers to take control of Microsoft Exchange was just one 'critical' issue the Redmond-based company promises it has fixed with a patch correcting a total of eight vulnerabilities in its programs, including the Internet Explorer browser, Office, and its SQL Server. Three of the eight vulnerabilities patched yesterday were marked 'critical.' The most concerning is an issue with Exchange that would allow attackers to take over an Exchange server by simply forwarding a carefully crafted message to a corporate mail server. Microsoft has admitted that the vulnerability can be exploited when a user opens or previews an email in the Transport Neutral Encapsulation Format (TNEF)."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/9uPYJuzykkc/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 15:53:00 EST from rss

Subject: Senator Diane Feinstein Trying to Kill Net Neutrality

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An anonymous reader writes "According to the Register, Senator Diane Feinstein is attempting to put language into the stimulus bill that would kill net neutrality. The amendment that her provision was attached to was withdrawn, but lobbyists tell Public Knowledge that Feinstein hopes to put it back into the bill during the closed-door conference committee that reconciles the House and Senate versions." Bad Senator! No Cookie!

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/hwt_CKarg3Q/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 15:15:00 EST from rss

Subject: Author's Guild Says Kindle's Text-To-Speech Software Illegal

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Mike writes "The Author's Guild claims that the new Kindle's text-to-speech software is illegal, stating that 'They don't have the right to read a book out loud,' said Paul Aiken, executive director of the Authors Guild. 'That's an audio right, which is derivative under copyright law.' Forget for a moment that text-to-speech doesn't copy an existing work. And forget the odd notion that the artificial enunciation of plain text is equivalent to a person's nuanced and emotive reading. The Guild's claim is that even to read out loud is a production akin to an illegal copy, or a public performance."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/8GfkXFhuFiU/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 14:34:00 EST from rss

Subject: FAA Network Hacked

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coondoggie writes "The Federal Aviation Administration has joined the growing list of government agencies that have had their supposedly safe systems hacked. The agency this week notified about 45,000 employees that one of its servers was hacked into and employee personal identity information was stolen. The FAA was quick to say the server that was accessed was not connected to the operation of the air traffic control system or any other FAA operational system. It did say two of the 48 files on the breached computer server contained personal information about more than 45,000 FAA employees and retirees who were on the FAA's rolls as of the first week of February 2006."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/VRC7ti9OsSY/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 13:52:00 EST from rss

Subject: Build a BoxeeBox and Wean Yourself From Cable

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Since I've been having serious problems with satellite all week, DeviceGuru's submission was really interesting to me. He says "Inspired by Roku's awesome Netflix video download box and impressed with Boxee's free A/V media center platform, it was merely a matter of time before DeviceGuru blogger Rick Lehrbaum would create the BoxeeBox, an Ubuntu-powered HTPC with Boxee serving as its primary media center UI. Based on a 2.5GHz Core 2 Duo CPU, the BoxeeBox has the look and feel of consumer A/V equipment and packs 2GB RAM, 1TB HDD, CD/DVD drive, USB, Firewire, HDMI, DVI-D, RGB, and 8-channel surround sound audio."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/BPz6OeK4-E8/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 13:05:00 EST from rss

Subject: False Fact On Wikipedia Proves Itself

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An anonymous reader writes "Germany has a new minister of economic affairs. Mr. von und zu Guttenberg is descended from an old and noble lineage, so his official name is very long: Karl Theodor Maria Nikolaus Johann Jacob Philipp Franz Joseph Sylvester Freiherr von und zu Guttenberg. When first there were rumors that he would be appointed to the post, someone changed his Wikipedia entry and added the name 'Wilhelm,' so Wikipedia stated his full name as: Karl Theodor Maria Nikolaus Johann Jacob Philipp Wilhelm Franz Joseph Sylvester Freiherr von und zu Guttenberg. What resulted from this edit points up a big problem for our information society (in German; Google translation). The German and international press picked up the wrong name from Wikipedia — including well-known newspapers, Internet sites, and TV news such as spiegel.de, Bild, heute.de, TAZ, or Süddeutsche Zeitung. In the meantime, the change on Wikipedia was reverted, with a request for proof of the name. The proof was quickly found. On spiegel.de an article cites Mr. von und zu Guttenberg using his 'full name'; however, while the quote might have been real, the full name seems to have been looked up on Wikipedia while the false edit was in place. So the circle was closed: Wikipedia states a false fact, a reputable media outlet copies the false fact, and this outlet is then used as the source to prove the false fact to Wikipedia."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/Z5EN1tdz2AQ/article.pl

[#] Wed Feb 11 2009 09:55:00 EST from rss

Subject: I'm a PC and I'm 4-1/2

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theodp writes "Microsoft's new Windows ad made its debut during the Grammy Awards on Sunday. It stars a 4-year-old cutie named Kylie (Silverlight required) showing how easy it is to use Windows Live Photo Gallery to edit and share photos. And while it's impressive that little Kylie is able to transfer a snapshot of her pet fish from her camera to a PC, color-correct it, and e-mail it to her family, what's truly amazing is that the toddler was also apparently able to read, understand, and accept Windows Live's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. (But minors can't legally execute contracts, can they?)"

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/3TlzCPth5NE/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 00:54:00 EST from rss

Subject: Satellites Collide In Orbit

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DrEnter writes "According to this story on Yahoo, two communications satellites collided in orbit, resulting in two large clouds of debris. The new threat from these debris clouds hasn't been fully determined yet. From the article, 'The collision involved an Iridium commercial satellite, which was launched in 1997, and a Russian satellite launched in 1993 and believed to be nonfunctioning. Each satellite weighed well over 1,000 pounds.' This is the fifth spacecraft/satellite collision to occur in space, but the other four were all fairly minor by comparison."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/8D0tuwNtrwI/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 02:25:00 EST from rss

Subject: Federal Officials and YouTube Nearing a Deal

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GovTechGuy writes "The federal government is on the verge of reaching an agreement with YouTube that would allow agencies to make official use of the popular video-sharing service. A coalition of federal agencies led by the General Service Administration's Office of Citizen Services has been negotiating with Google, YouTube's parent company, since summer 2008 on new terms that would allow agencies to establish their own channels on the site. Agencies have not been able to post videos to YouTube (although many already have) because, under the current terms of service, people who post content is subject to their state's liable laws. Federal agencies must adhere to federal law. On Tuesday, government officials said the negotiations were "very close" to being completed."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/e1GflsoXZ0E/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 04:25:00 EST from rss

Subject: Cuba Launches Own Linux Variation

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willclem writes "According to Reuters, it seems that Cuba has launched it's own variation of Linux in order to fulfill it's government's desire to replace Microsoft operating systems. "Getting greater control over the informatic process is an important issue," said Communications Minister Ramiro Valdes, who heads a commission pushing Cuba's migration to free software."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/I0lv__1s6vY/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 06:55:00 EST from rss

Subject: Some Of Australia's Tubes Are About To Be Filtered

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Slatterz writes "The first phase of Australia's controversial Internet filters were put in place today, with the Australian government announcing that six ISPs will take part in a six week pilot. The plan reportedly includes a filter blocking a list of Government-blacklisted sites, and an optional adult content filter, and the government has said it hasn't ruled out the possibility of filtering BitTorrent traffic. The filters have been widely criticized by privacy groups and Internet users, and people have previously even taken to the streets to protest. While Christian Groups support the plan, others say filters could slow down Internet speeds, that they don't work, and that the plan amounts to censorship of the Internet. At this stage the filters are only a pilot, and Australia's largest ISP Telstra is not taking part. But if the $125.8 million being spent by the Australian Government on cyber-safety is any indication, it's a sign of things to come."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/rLFhKq8H7bw/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 09:59:00 EST from rss

Subject: UK Cinemas Get 3D Projection Rollout

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CNETNate writes "The largest chain of cinemas in Britain, Odeon, has become the first chain to fully roll out 3D projection technology in its theaters. These new projectors will deliver 3D images at a resolution of 2K (2,048x1,080 pixels). Many major cities in the UK will now be able to project the new 3D movies coming out of Hollywood, without it being referred to as a novelty offered in one or two locations."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/KSLZM_m5vrQ/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 11:28:00 EST from rss

Subject: UK University Making Universal Game Emulator

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Techradar reports that researchers at the University of Portsmouth in England are working on a project to create a game emulator that will "recognise and play all types of videogames and computer files from the 1970s through to the present day." One of the major goals of the project is to preserve software from early in the computer age. David Anderson of the Humanities Computing Group said, "Early hardware, like games consoles and computers, are already found in museums. But if you can't show visitors what they did, by playing the software on them, it would be much the same as putting musical instruments on display but throwing away all the music. ... Games particularly tend not to be archived because they are seen as disposable, pulp cultural artefacts, but they represent a really important part of our recent cultural history. Games are one of the biggest media formats on the planet and we must preserve them for future generations."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/uMbGW5rgI40/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 12:57:00 EST from rss

Subject: MIT Team Creates Shock That Recharges Your Car

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An anonymous reader writes "If you had a GenShock, you may not mind those potholes in the road any longer because this new prototype shock actually harvests energy from bumps in the road to save on fuel. A team of students at MIT have invented a shock absorber that harnesses energy from small bumps in the road, generating electricity while it smooths the ride more effectively than conventional shocks. Senior Shakeel Avadhany and his teammates say they can produce up to a 10 percent improvement in overall vehicle fuel efficiency by using the regenerative shock absorbers. They also already have a lot of interest in their design, specifically the company that builds Humvees for the army are already planning to install them in its next version of the Humvee."

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/QmU0XOsQOTk/article.pl

[#] Thu Feb 12 2009 13:47:00 EST from rss

Subject: A Quantitative Study of How Memes Spread

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rememberclifford writes "A survey of about 3,000 people who were tagged in a "25 Random Things About Me" note on Facebook found that memes spread through social networks in a remarkably similar way as diseases do. A biologist who looked at the data says that "'25 Things' authors can be seen as 'contagious' under what's known as a 'susceptible-infected-recovered' model for the spread of disease," with a propagation factor of 0.27 in this case. But like an infection, the whole thing died out as quickly as it exploded once the number of 'victims' — people who were willing to write 25 things about themselves — was depleted." The '25 Things' meme was at least as annoying as a light flu.

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http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/fRSpkZTk2RE/article.pl

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