Tech Today w/ Ken May

Featured entries

Sci-Hub, a Site With Open and Pirated Scientific Papers

Posted by kenmay on February - 13 - 2016

lpress writes: Sci-Hub is a Russian site that seeks to remove barriers to science by providing access to pirated copies of scientific papers. It was established in 2011 by Russian neuroscientist Alexandra Elbakyan, who could not afford papers she needed for her research and it now claims to have links to 48 million pirated and open papers. I tried it out and found some papers and not others, but it provides an alternative for researchers who cannot afford access to paid journals. After visiting this site, one cannot help thinking of the case of Aaron Swartz, who committed suicide as a result of prosecution for his attempt to free scientific literature. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Hertz Is Pulling a Disney

Posted by kenmay on February - 13 - 2016

New submitter wcrowe writes: Hertz is laying off over 200 IT employees, outsourcing the work to IBM India Private Limited, which has filed paperwork for H1-B visas to bring in replacements from overseas. This sounds pretty similar to what Disney did a year ago. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Looking for new book suggestions or just curious to see if you missed out on some classics in college? Open Syllabus Project can help you on both fronts. Read more…

MojoKid writes: OCZ’s Trion 150 SSD is an update to the company’s Trion 100, which was the first drive from OCZ to feature TLC NAND and all in-house, Toshiba-built technology. As its branding suggests, the new Trion 150 kicks things up a notch over the Trion 100, thanks to some cutting-edge Toshiba 15nm NAND flash memory and a tweaked firmware, that combined, offer increased performance and lower cost over its predecessor. In testing, the Trion 150 hits peak reads and writes well north of 500MB/sec like most SATA-based SSDs but the kicker is, at its higher densities, the drive weighs in at about 28 cents per GiB. This equates to street prices of $70 for a 240GB drive, $140 for 480GB and $270 for a 960GB version. It’s good to see mainstream solid state storage costs continuing to come down. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

The fall… and rise and rise and rise of chat networks

Posted by kenmay on February - 13 - 2016

At the end of October 2014, something very important came to an end. After 15 years of changing the way people communicated forever, Microsoft closed down its MSN Windows Live service. Originally named MSN Messenger, its demise was not an overnight failure. Microsoft’s acquisition of Skype for £5.1 billion in 2012 meant it was only a matter of time before it was finally closed. China was the last territory to migrate the service to Skype; other countries did so 12 months earlier. At its height, MSN Messenger had more than 330 million users after originally being launched to rival the emerging chat networks of AOL’s AIM service and ICQ, followed by the entry of Yahoo Messenger. It was the social network of its day and as influential and dominant as Facebook is today. Read 47 remaining paragraphs | Comments

See sample pages from this book at Wink. I saw the sour plums on the cover of Preserving the Japanese Way calling out to me from the highest bookshelf at teeny-tiny Moon Palace Bookstore, Minneapolis. As the Master Food Preserver for my county, I’m a sucker for beautiful books on food preservation. Angela, the owner, clapped and oohed as I plunked it down. “I love this book. I can’t cook, but this book makes me want to eat!” I’m authorized by the State of Wisconsin to teach the safest scientifically proven methods of food preservation. In my teaching, I’ve heard lovely stories of immigrant grandmothers and their favorite recipes and the joy keeping these traditions alive brings to people. This connectivity to our shared and adopted cultures is one of the most compelling aspects to Preserving the Japanese Way . Nancy Singleton Hachisu is a wonderfully opinionated ex-pat who embraced rural Japanese culture with her marriage to a Hokkaido farmer nearly thirty years ago. Her notes and recommendations are informed by her American “keep trying” attitude, coupled with the Japanese concept of perfecting a singular thing. Hachisu follows her insatiable curiosity in discovering the old ways. Her vignettes of meetings with artisanal makers are entertaining and informative. Her explanations and definitions of very specific Japanese ingredients are profoundly useful; for the first time ever I understood the nuances of soy sauces. She also acknowledges that artisanally made food is expensive. She recognizes that not everyone has the monetary luxury of purchasing small-batch regional soy sauces and offers accessible and easily available substitutes. I’ve taught classes in making Tsukemono (Japanese-style quick pickles) and am familiar with both the techniques and concepts on why preservation food-science works. Hachisu doesn’t dwell on the science of Why, which might be off-putting to both food scientists and beginners. Beginning food preservers will want to take a basics class or contact their local Master Food Preserver to give you the rules for fermentation. That being said, if you have interest in Japanese cuisine and culture, not to mention food preservation, Preserving the Japanese Way is book that you will return to many times. – Christina Ward Perserving the Japanese Way: Traditions of Salting, Fermenting and Pickling for the Modern Kitchen Preserving the Japanese Way: Traditions of Salting, Fermenting, and Pickling for the Modern Kitchen by Nancy Singlton Hachisu Andrews McMeel Publishing 2015, 400 pages, 8.2 x 9.9 x 1.5 inches $27 Buy a copy on Amazon

Google is shutting down Picasa in favor of Photos

Posted by kenmay on February - 13 - 2016

Google has been steadily migrating its resources towards the Photos ecosystem since the company first announced it at last year’s I/O developers conference. It’s already shut down Google+ photos in lieu of the newer service and linked Photos to your phone’s native camera app. Today Google announced that it will shut down Picasa . The move will occur over the next several months, beginning on May 1, 2016. Take note, however, that the Picasa desktop application won’t work after March 1st. Current Picasa users simply have to log into Photos — all of their content has already been moved over. Source: Google (Picasa Blog)

Enlarge (credit: Backblaze) Adobe Systems has stopped distributing a recently issued update to its Creative Cloud graphics service amid reports a Mac version can delete important user data without warning or permission. The deletions happen whenever Mac users log in to the Adobe service after the update has been installed, according to officials from Backblaze , a data backup service whose users are being disproportionately inconvenienced by the bug. Upon sign in, a script activated by Creative Cloud deletes the contents in the alphabetically first folder in a Mac’s root directory. Backblaze users are being especially hit by the bug because the backup service relies on data stored in a hidden root folder called .bzvol. Because the folder is the alphabetically top-most hidden folder at the root of so many users’ drives, they are affected more than users of many other software packages. “This caused a lot of our customers to freak out,” Backblaze Marketing Manager Yev Pusin wrote in an e-mail. “The reason we saw a huge uptick from our customers is because Backblaze’s .bzvol is higher up the alphabet. We tested it again by creating a hidden file with an ‘.a’ name, and the files inside were removed as well.” Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

AT&T gets ready to test 5G technologies this 2016

Posted by kenmay on February - 12 - 2016

AT&T has been working on possible 5G technologies, such as millimeter waves, for years. Now that it’s time to get serious, it’s teaming up with Ericsson and Intel to ramp up its development in the lab in the second quarter of the year. After that, it’s moving its 5G endeavors out of the lab and into the field, starting with outdoor tests over the summer. The carrier says 60 percent of its mobile traffic in 2015 came from video. It’s moving forward with its 5G plans, because emerging technologies like virtual reality, 4K video, robots, Internet of Things and self-driving cars will be even more demanding. As AT&T’s Chief Strategy Officer John Donovan notes, those technologies “will be immersive, pervasive and responsive to customers. 5G will help make them a reality.” 5G internet could be anywhere from 10 to 100 times faster than LTE, with users observing downloads going gigabits (yes, giga bits) per second. Imagine being able to finish downloading a TV show for less than three seconds. That’s nowhere near enough time to get up and microwave some popcorn. AT&T believes its 5G network will even be able to start streaming videos much, much faster — just 1 to 5 milliseconds from the moment you press play — than an LTE connection. If everything goes well, some parts of Austin, Texas will be able to test out Ma Bell’s 5G tech by the end of this year. The company says it’s conducting tests in a way that enables it to deploy the network commercially as soon as 5G standards are set. You’d have to wait a while for that to happen, though. 3GPP, the international consortium in charge of hashing out network standards, is working on it right now. However, phase one (of two) won’t be completed until the first half of 2018. By the way, AT&T isn’t the only US carrier gearing up to test its next-gen mobile network: Verizon will soon begin its 5G wireless service trials, as well. [Image credit: Mike Mozart/Flickr ] Source: AT&T

Netflix finishes its massive migration to the Amazon cloud

Posted by kenmay on February - 11 - 2016

(credit: Netflix) Netflix has been moving huge portions of its streaming operation to Amazon Web Services (AWS) for years now, and it says it has finally completed its giant shift to the cloud. “We are happy to report that in early January of 2016, after seven years of diligent effort, we have finally completed our cloud migration and shut down the last remaining data center bits used by our streaming service,” Netflix said in a blog post that it plans to publish at noon Eastern today. (The blog should go up at this link .) Netflix operates “many tens of thousands of servers and many tens of petabytes of storage” in the Amazon cloud, Netflix VP of cloud and platform engineering Yury Izrailevsky told Ars in an interview. Netflix had earlier planned to complete the shift by the end of last summer . Read 19 remaining paragraphs | Comments

  • RSS
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Facebook
  • Linkedin
  • Twitter

Search Site

Popular Posts

Users Revolt Over...

An anonymous reader writes "The new NEO format of Yahoo ...

iOS 7.1 released,...

After months of testing, iOS 7.1 is finally here. ...