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The Cloud and Open Source Powder Keg – tecosystems
Observation: cloud providers are packaging open source tools (eg: Elasticsearch). This leaves no role for the companies that have grown up around creating and supporting the tools. Some are fighting back with restrictive licenses and similar tools. The conflict seems inevitable.
aws  cloudcomputing  opensource  via:slashdot  history 
march 2019 by mcherm
Programming Interview Questions Are Too Hard and Too Short - Triplebyte Blog
Actual study (no results shown here) says use easier questions to balance the false positives and false negatives.
hiring  softwaredevelopment  via:slashdot 
february 2019 by mcherm
Equifax mystery: Where is the data?
The Equifax data (full credit bureau data on half the population of the US) never turned up anywhere and hasn't (obviously) been used. The guess is that it was a government actor.
security  via:slashdot 
february 2019 by mcherm
DNS flag day
A coordinated attempt to stop accommodating some badly-behaving DNS implementations.
dns  internet  personal_net  via:slashdot 
january 2019 by mcherm
Scientists Have 'Hacked Photosynthesis' In Search Of More Productive Crops : The Salt : NPR
This is the first major (very major!) bioengineering project that I've heard about. The photosynthesis-powered process of creating sugar molecules is inefficient; this changes the molecule that does this so it works more effectively.
bioengineering  biology  npr  science  engineering  via:slashdot 
january 2019 by mcherm
How I Got Locked Out of the NFC Chip Implant in My Hand
Apparently you not only need the right PIN, but also the same software to access the PIN-protected NFC chip he had surgically implanted in his hand. As he didn't know this, he couldn't access it.
via:slashdot  security  wearable 
november 2018 by mcherm
U.S. Secret Service Warns ID Thieves are Abusing USPS’s Mail Scanning Service — Krebs on Security
Sign up to receive a scanned copy of the outside of all mail. Then abuse this to commit credit card fraud.
via:slashdot  security  postalmail 
november 2018 by mcherm
China produces nano fibre that can lift 160 elephants – and a space elevator? - NZ Herald
There is very little reliable information in this high-level newspaper article. Color me skeptical. But if they HAVE made a meaningful breakthrough in the production of flawless carbon nanotubes, that would be awesome!
materialsscience  via:slashdot 
october 2018 by mcherm
San Francisco Just Took a Huge Step Toward Internet Utopia | WIRED
San Francisco will pay to run dark fiber to every home, then allow private internet service companies to bid for the right to use it to provide service.
networking  via:slashdot 
october 2017 by mcherm
Drupal Confessions
An open letter from several leading community members asking that the BDFL of Drupal NOT kick someone out of the community simply for participating in BDSM/Gor privately.
socialcomputing  via:slashdot  freespeech 
april 2017 by mcherm
The Secret Ballot at Risk: Recommendations for Protecting Democracy
Apparently many US states (but not mine) are dabbling in internet voting, with all the terrible insecurities that come with that.
voting  via:slashdot 
august 2016 by mcherm
Professor reveals to students that his assistant was an AI all along
This is the first SERIOUS use of AI that I've read that really, truly impressed me.
ai  singularity  via:slashdot 
may 2016 by mcherm
Ahmed Mohamed demands $15m compensation and written apology for homemade clock arrest | People | News | The Independent
Disappointing. He was misused, but that should not result in a payday. Especially since he was strongly supported from people around the world.
personal_net  via:slashdot 
november 2015 by mcherm
Will The LHC Be The End Of Experimental Particle Physics? — Starts With A Bang! — Medium
If LHC doesn't find new particles soon (besides the single Higgs) then it may be that we need to reach energies closer to the big bang (unreachable with any technology we can imagine trying to build now) to discover anything -- there would be no need for any new particle accelerators.
physics  via:slashdot 
september 2015 by mcherm
A list of essays on why companies failed
Collected for your reading if you are ever inclined to start one.
startup  via:slashdot 
june 2015 by mcherm
Microsoft Word - starwars5_11michigan.docx - starwars.pdf
The making of Star Wars as an analogy to the interpretation of constitutional law, refuting Scalia's form of originalism.
law  via:slashdot  starwars 
may 2015 by mcherm
The Pentagon Finally Details its Weapons-for-Cops Giveaway | The Marshall Project
Actual information about what military equipment has been picked up by various different police departments throughout the country.
transparency  government  via:slashdot 
december 2014 by mcherm
Is Chernobyl still dangerous or was 60 Minutes pushing propaganda? - Atomic Insights
This author claims that 60 minutes put on a piece that was simple fearmongering about radiation based on directly disbelieving what the experts said about it.
via:slashdot  journalism  science 
december 2014 by mcherm
First Experimental Demonstration of a Trapped Rainbow Using Silicon — The Physics arXiv Blog — Medium
A nice trick to "freeze" light in place using simple things like a carefully-spaced grating of silicon.
physics  light  materialsscience  via:slashdot 
november 2014 by mcherm
Protecting Net Neutrality and the Open Internet | Open Policy
A really good proposal from Mozilla for how the FCC could require net neutrality without actually changing the rules for cable providers.
netneutrality  internet  mozilla  via:slashdot 
may 2014 by mcherm
Polypasshash
Clever idea. Don't store the hash of the passwords, use Shamir secret sharing and store a single point on the line. The server does NOT know the line, and at startup it can't validate passwords until after several people have given correct passwords. Probably can be beaten by opening a few accounts on the target system.
security  cryptography  via:slashdot 
april 2014 by mcherm
How Data Mining The Web Reveals What Makes Puzzles Hard For Humans — The Physics arXiv Blog — Medium
They discovered that in addition to the number of steps required to solve a sudoku, one should also factor in whether the steps are sequential or can be done in parallel.
gamedesign  personal_net  via:slashdot  sudoku 
april 2014 by mcherm
BanxCorp v. Costco et al. — Can you copyright the result of a calculation? : Webster & Associates LLC
BanxCorp averages about 5 banks' CD rates and publishes it. They sued Capital One and others for using it in ads, claiming it violated their copyright. The court rules that the rates are a fact, not entitled to copyright protection.
via:slashdot  law  ip-law  copyright  CapitalOne 
february 2014 by mcherm
The entire Google maps leadership team should be fired.
A comment on Slashdot that does an excellent job of explaining what's wrong with the "new" Google Maps.
google  maps  via:slashdot 
january 2014 by mcherm
Bennett Haselton: Google+ To Gmail Controversy Missing the Point - Slashdot
A privacy flaw: signing up for Gmail now signs you up for Google+ which makes you searchable.
privacy  google  googleplus  via:slashdot 
january 2014 by mcherm
Your Smartphone Can Measure Your Radiation Exposure — The Physics arXiv Blog — Medium
A phone actually CAN be used to detect gamma radiation (although many apps on the market claiming to do this probably don't actually work).
science  personal_net  via:slashdot 
january 2014 by mcherm
Facebook self-censorship: What happens to the posts you don’t publish?
Keeping data you type and then delete as part of an unlimited undo functionality makes sense to me. Keeping it just to spy on people, that's Facebook.
privacy  surveillance  facebook  via:slashdot 
december 2013 by mcherm
Wisconsin man sentenced for participating in Anonymous DDoS | ITworld
Apparently using a DDOS tool for *one minute* earns you 2 years probation and a $183,000 restitution payment.
law  overprosecution  via:slashdot 
december 2013 by mcherm
Psychologists strike a blow for reproducibility : Nature News & Comment
Psychology is an area where many studies turn out not to be reproducible. So a large group attempted to replicate 13 studies in 36 different labs. They peer-reviewed experimental methods before starting. The results were pretty good; 2 of 13 could not be replicated.
via:slashdot  science  psychology  ScientificMethod 
november 2013 by mcherm
FEC: Donors Can't Use Bitcoins for Contributions - ABC News
Illegal to donate bitcoins to a political campaign. (Misleading: really all that happened is that the commission is deadlocked along party lines and can't decide anything.)
via:slashdot  bitcoin 
november 2013 by mcherm
To Beat Spam Filters, Look Like A Spammer? - Slashdot
Newsletters get blocked by spam filters sometimes. The things they recommend doing to avoid it all erode privacy protections.
spam  via:slashdot  privacy 
october 2013 by mcherm
Reprogrammed bacterium speaks new language of life - life - 17 October 2013 - New Scientist
They took the invalid "UAG" and made a bacterium which didn't use that as a stop signal but instead incorporated a special amino acid not normally part of proteins when UAG was encountered. Amazing.
science  chemistry  biology  genetics  via:slashdot 
october 2013 by mcherm
Snowden leaks: David Cameron urges committee to investigate Guardian | World news | theguardian.com
I can't believe that David Cameron would use the paper's acquiescence to his government's demand that they physically destroy their servers as "evidence" that they knew they were doing something wrong.
via:slashdot  guardian  journalism 
october 2013 by mcherm
Dutch police recruit rat detectives to sniff out crime | Ars Technica
Using rats to detect smells (like gunpowder). Can't be trained as well as dogs, but they're cheap.
personal_net  ArsTechnica  via:slashdot 
september 2013 by mcherm
Security Dialogs for unsigned applets in Java
Well, that's the FINAL nail in the coffin of the Java Applet.
via:slashdot  java  internet  webdev 
september 2013 by mcherm
Anonymouth Hides Identity
Software that disguises your writing style to prevent you from being identified by it.
anonymity  privacy  via:slashdot 
august 2013 by mcherm
Fake votes mar France’s first electronic election - Europe - World - The Independent
Another example of bad online voting. France ran an electronic voting system and it was riddled with fraud. So they ruled that the candidates weren't allowed to talk about fraud.
voting  via:slashdot 
june 2013 by mcherm
Motion Quotient : Rochester News
A simple visual perception test that they say is incredibly highly correlated with IQ. As usual, I am highly skeptical about nearly all things associated with generalized IQ.
brain  intelligence  iq  via:slashdot 
may 2013 by mcherm
Florida School Responds to Criticism for Expelling Student Over Science Project: "There Are Consequences to Actions" - Miami - News - Riptide 2.0
Student mixes chemicals in a plastic bottle causing a loud "pop". School officials agree her only intention was to conduct a "science experiment". She is expelled from school and prosecuted as an adult for discharging a destructive device.
via:slashdot  kidsrights  overprosecution 
may 2013 by mcherm
DRM CHAIR on Vimeo
A chair with "DRM" -- you can only sit on it 8 times, then it's gone.
drm  law  ip-law  via:slashdot 
march 2013 by mcherm
Python Trademark Filer Ignorant Of Python? - Simon Says...
An interesting case: company applies for a trademark on "Python" for computers in Europe, and the open source community responds. There was some misunderstanding and bad behavior but remarkably little and it looks like the issue is resolving peaceably.
opensource  python  law  ip-law  trademark  via:slashdot 
february 2013 by mcherm
Michael Geist - One Phone Call is Not Enough: Court Rules You Have the Right to Google a Lawyer
A Canadian court ruled that the police should have allowed an arrested teenager to use the internet in order to find a defense lawyer since he didn't seem to know how to do so using a telephone.
via:slashdot  law 
february 2013 by mcherm
PayPal: 'Aggressive changes' coming to frozen funds policy - Jan. 21, 2013
PayPal admits that their policy of freezing money unless people provide often non-existent sales receipts and such may be a bad policy. They plan to change it but won't yet say how.
security  paypal  via:slashdot  payments 
january 2013 by mcherm
A material that most liquids won't wet
A strongly hydrophobic (actually any-liquid-phobic) surface.
via:slashdot  materialsscience  personal_net 
january 2013 by mcherm
The Crown Game Affair « Gödel’s Lost Letter and P=NP
Cheating at chess... and detecting it, not by finding the hidden computer data receiver, but by statistical analysis of the moves made.
personal_net  chess  cheating  via:slashdot 
january 2013 by mcherm
Replicant 4.0 SDK release | Replicant project
Google added terms to the Android SDK that make it no longer "free software". Here is someone offering a version of the API that is not subject to those restrictions.
android  androiddev  google  via:slashdot 
january 2013 by mcherm
Whose bug is this anyway?!? - Code Of Honor
Some recollection by a game developer about interesting bugs he found. Like when they discovered there were hardware issues with 1% of their userbase.
programming  testing  bugs  gamedev  via:slashdot 
december 2012 by mcherm
Theresa Christy of Otis Elevator: Making Elevators Go | Creating - WSJ.com
I've always found this job fascinating, and now I've read an article about someone who does it: writing the algorithms to control elevators.
programming  algorithms  via:slashdot 
december 2012 by mcherm
Swedish Stock Exchange Hit By Programming Snafu - Slashdot
Tried to buy -6 shares. Got 4,294,967,290 shares instead. Oops. Brought down stock market.
bug  via:slashdot  personal_net 
november 2012 by mcherm
GOG- How An Indie Game Store Took On Piracy And Won
A DRM-free game channel (GOG) explains why they think DRM-free is better. As evidence, one of the games they helped launch was hacked: and the hackers bought and cracked a commercial version instead of simply distributing the DRM-free version.
DRM  via:slashdot 
november 2012 by mcherm
Firestorm Erupts Over Virginia's Education Goals | Northwest Public Radio
Virginia has set new education standards. 82% of Asian students should be passing, and only 45% of blacks. They call it "realistic"; opponents call it "Jim Crow".
race  politics  education  ethics  via:slashdot 
november 2012 by mcherm
Quantum measurements leave Schrödinger's cat alive - physics-math - 03 October 2012 - New Scientist
I'll admit I don't understand this one fully. They probed a quantum superposition to observe some orthogonal properties (the frequency of change) without affecting the property of interest (the phase). I think.
via:slashdot  physics  quantummechanics 
october 2012 by mcherm
Google Online Security Blog: Content hosting for the modern web
Google explains that hosting ANY user-supplied content on your own site almost inevitably becomes vulnerable to cross site scripting attacks. Host on a separate domain instead. If the user-supplied content needs to be kept secure across users also then control access with (1) a URL parameter, (2) a short-term cookie, or (3) both.
security  webdevelopment  webdev  google  via:slashdot 
august 2012 by mcherm
Tree's leaves genetically different from its roots : Nature News & Comment
Within a single organism, the DNA can vary widely. With cottonwood trees, the variation from root to top may be greater than the variation from one tree to the next!
biology  science  DNA  via:slashdot 
august 2012 by mcherm
Poison Attacks Against Machine Learning
It's possible to "poison" machine learning algorithms by feeding it carefully chosen bad data. (Like, for instance, fooling a spam-detection network.)
security  ai  via:slashdot 
july 2012 by mcherm
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