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BBC, le ultime tre sinfonie di Beethoven ora scaricabili

BBC - Radio 3 - Beethoven Experience - downloads

I file sono MP3 non protetti, stereo a 44100 Hz, 128 kbps, 32 bit float. Occupano da 27 a 44 mega l'uno.

I discografici vogliono più soldi dal download che dai CD

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | Music | Online music royalties challenged: "The BPI - which represents more than 300 UK record labels - has joined seven online services to bring the action.

They have taken the Mechanical Copyright Protection Society (MCPS) and the Performing Right Society (PRS) to a copyright tribunal.

The MCPS and PRS want to charge more for songs downloaded from the internet than for those on CD.

The MCPS-PRS Alliance - who set and collect royalties on behalf of composers, songwriters and publishers - are proposing a tariff of 12% of gross retail revenues on most online music.

Currently, royalties on CDs stand at 6.5% of retail price, while broadcast radio rates are up to 5.25% of net advertising revenues."

GB: limiti di velocità drastici e sorveglianza sulle strade funzionano

BBC NEWS | UK | Road death toll hits record low: "The number of people dying on UK roads fell to 3,221 last year - the lowest since records began in 1926.

The figures are 8% lower than 2003, when the number of highway deaths rose slightly compared to the year before.

It comes four years after the government set a target to cut the 1994-1998 road deaths average by 40%.

Road Safety Minister Stephen Ladyman said the figures were encouraging, but nearly nine people a day still died on roads last year, which was 'too high'."


Deep Impact, pochi giorni all’impatto con la cometa il 4 luglio

NASA - Encounter Animation: un'ottima animazione di quello che succederà fra pochi giorni. Se non manca il bersaglio :-)

Nuovo sequestro ai danni di Indymedia in GB

Slashdot | Second Indymedia Server Seized in UK Within a Year: "For the second time within the past year, an Indymedia server has been seized in the United Kingdom. This time it is the Bristol Indymedia server (currently redirected to the United Kollectives IMC site); this follows on from the Ahimsa seizure last October. The current seizure was carried out using a search warrant by the UK police at approximately 16:30GMT on June 27th, 2005. This was despite being warned by lawyers 'that this server was considered an item of journalistic equipment and so subject to special provision under the law' (press release). Bristol Indymedia is currently being supported by the National Union of Journalists (NUJ), Liberty and Privacy International. Other media organisations have declared their support."

Altre info e dati da The Register, BBC, e ancora BBC, che si chiede se la libertà di stampa è sotto attacco.

Da Punto Informatico sul caso Autistici: la replica di Aruba

PI: Caso Autistici, la replica di Aruba: "la Polizia Giudiziaria ha potuto acquisire tutti i dati presenti sul server dell'associazione Investici invece dei soli dati presenti sul sito oggetto di indagine non solo perché così disponeva il provvedimento emesso dall'Autorità Giudiziaria, ma anche perché detto server era di esclusiva proprietà dell'Associazione ed era da essa gestito in proprio senza alcun coinvolgimento di Aruba (housing) che, in tali casi, fornisce solo connettività e alloggio al server; viceversa, se il sito oggetto di indagine si fosse trovato su di un server Aruba (hosting), poiché in tale ipotesi esso viene gestito da noi, l'acquisizione sarebbe stata limitata ai soli dati relativi al sito interessato"

Morale della favola: se vuoi fare un sito sicuro, non metterlo in casa d'altri pensando al risparmio.

Sondaggio: le vendite Apple calano dopo l’annuncio Intel?

Apple feels Intel chill | The Register: "A survey by MacWorld magazine in the US indicates that one third of readers are less likely to buy a new Mac computer in the next twelve months. That's rather similar, but slightly more encouraging for Apple than the feedback we received immediately after the announcement that Apple would be moving off PowerPC processors.

Curiously, 13 per cent of readers surveyed said they were more likely to buy an obsolete PPC-Mac in the next year."

Fa più danni la paura che il terrorismo

Bogus analysis led to terror alert in Dec. 2003 - Lisa Myers & the NBC Investigative Unit - MSNBC.com: "Christmas 2003 became a season of terror after the federal government raised the terror alert level from yellow to orange, grimly citing credible intelligence of another assault on the United States.

'These credible sources,' announced then-Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge, 'suggest the possibility of attacks against the homeland around the holiday season and beyond.'

For weeks, America was on edge as security operations went into high gear. Almost 30 international flights were canceled, inconveniencing passengers flying Air France, British Air, Continental and Aero Mexico.

But senior U.S. officials now tell NBC News that the key piece of information that triggered the holiday alert was a bizarre CIA analysis, which turned out to be all wrong.

CIA analysts mistakenly thought they'd discovered a mother lode of secret al-Qaida messages. They thought they had found secret messages on Al-Jazeera, the Arabic-language television news channel, hidden in the moving text at the bottom of the screen, known as the 'crawl,' where news headlines are summarized.

‘Steganography’ suspected
U.S. officials tell NBC News that CIA experts — technicians working for the Directorate of Science and Technology — thought they had found numbers embedded in the crawl signaling upcoming attacks; dates and flight numbers, and geographic coordinates for targets, including the White House, Seattle's Space Needle, even the tiny town of Tappahanock, Va. What the analysts thought they had found was something called 'steganography' — messages hidden inside a video image.

President Bush and Ridge were briefed on the Al-Jazeera analysis, U.S. intelligence sources say."

Possibile che i crittanalisti teoricamente più bravi del mondo non riescano a capire che qualsiasi sequenza random sufficientemente lunga produrrà inevitabilmente alcuni gruppi di dati apparentemente significativi?

Una bella foto di Bill Gates, cosa gli avrà causato quest’espressione?

"Cosa? Firefox ha già il tabbed browsing che Internet Explorer avrà soltanto dalla versione 7??
MAC OS X Tiger ha già la ricerca locale per parole chiave integrata e Windows no??
E in America Latina NON PARLANO LATINO????"

Nikkei Net Interactive - Japan Business News Online: "Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates, center, meets the press in Tokyo Tuesday, accompanied by Japanese university representatives. (AP)"

Tramonto su Marte

Catalog Page for PIA07997: "On May 19th, 2005, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit captured this stunning view as the Sun sank below the rim of Gusev crater on Mars.... Because Mars is farther from the Sun than the Earth is, the Sun appears only about two-thirds the size that it appears in a sunset seen from the Earth."

Presso lo stesso sito Nasa è scaricabile una versione a risoluzione molto più alta.

Immagini da satellite: la casa in Svizzera

[map.search.ch] - Karte: Barbengo

Qui si vede meglio che con Google Maps :-)

Grazie a Marco per la segnalazione.


Google Maps - La casa di Travacò

Google Maps: al centro di quest'immagine c'è la casa dove mi trovo in questo momento.

Google Maps - Casa a Barbengo

Google Maps

Qui c'è la mia futura casa :-)

L’agricoltura è stato il peggior errore della storia dell’umanità?

The Worst Mistake in the History of the Human Race: "archaeology is demolishing another sacred belief: that human history over the past million years has been a long tale of progress. In particular, recent discoveries suggest that the adoption of agriculture, supposedly our most decisive step toward a better life, was in many ways a catastrophe from which we have never recovered. With agriculture came the gross social and sexual inequality, the disease and despotism, that curse our existence."

By Jared Diamond, University of California at Los Angeles Medical School,
Discover Magazine, May 1987.

Controverso e affascinante.


Mac Intel, alcune idee su come permettere OS X su HW non-Apple

Slashdot | First Look at Apple's Intel Developer Macs: "'Think Secret is reporting that developers have started taking receipt of Apple's Intel-based Mac kits. Along with some specs and photos, the site reports that Windows XP installs without a hitch on the systems and that casually trying to install Mac OS X for Intel on a Dell doesn't work... yet...'"


La vera storia del cosiddetto “Osborne Effect”

Taking Osborne out of the Osborne Effect | The Register

"[Osborne] had transitioned to a new model, and it was finally shipping. Sales were going well, and money was flowing back into the company after months of postponed sales (the alleged Osborne Effect). But then a VP discovered the company had $150k of fully equipped motherboards from the previous model, but no parts to build them out, no CRTs, RAM or floppy disk drives, and in worst of all, no plastic cases and bezels. The injection molding company that made the complex Osborne cases had already destroyed the molds since the product was discontinued and no further orders were expected.... The VP pitched Osborne to build out the old models, so they could get some money out of their stock of old parts, but Osborne didn't realize what sort of expenditures would be involved. Before Osborne pulled the plug, the VP spent $2 million to build out the $150k of old parts, the biggest expense was getting the injection molding company to build new molds and start up production on cases. Osborne described this as the classic example of 'throwing good money after bad.'... So that was what really killed Osborne. They had made the transition to the new model, sure sales had slowed for a while, but they were starting to show a profit. Then after the transition, a rogue VP made some really bad decisions that sucked all the money out of the company, and sank it into debt at a time when it couldn't afford ANY new debt. And then when Osborne realized what happened, the company died."

La vera origine del mito del preannouncement:

'The pre-announcement fiasco stems from around 1978 when North Star Computers, one of the two or three major hardware companies at the time, was selling a disk controller for the first 5 1/4-inch floppy drives. With a subsystem you got their OS and their BASIC, which by all accounts was superiror to Microsoft BASIC since it did BCD math which engineers needed.

'One day the company announced that it it had developed and would market a double density controller doubling the disk capacity from 80K to 160K, as I recall. There was no product to ship, it was a preannouncement. Furthermore, the company said it would sell the new controller for the exact same price.

'Sales of the old controller stopped dead and the company nearly went broke scrambling to produce the new controller. This is where the myth began.'

'Note that the company did not go broke in the process. They ALMOST went broke."

L’autore di Bittorrent liquida Avalanche, l’alternativa proposta da Microsoft

Slashdot | Bram Cohen's Response to Microsoft's Avalanche: "Bram Cohen has reduced Microsoft's proposed file-sharing application--codenamed Avalanche--to vaporware, dubbing its paper on the subject as 'complete garbage'. 'I'd like to clarify that Avalanche is vapourware,' Cohen said. 'It isn't a product which you can use or test with, it's a bunch of proposed algorithms. There isn't even a fleshed-out network protocol. The 'experiments' they've done are simulations."

GB, mamma rischia galera per lo scambio di musica fatto dalla figlia

Mum faces jail over 14-year-old daughter's downloading: "Mum, Sylvia Price, was a little startled to find a solicitors letter on her doormat when she came home from work one day.

The letter claimed Mrs Price's daughter, 14 year-old Sylvie, had been breaking the law for two years by downloading songs from the Internet. Sylvie is said to have collected some 1,400 tunes on her PC, including whole albums by her favourite bands, Oasis and Coldplay.

Emily says she didn't know she was doing anything wrong. Her mum, however has to pay a £4,000 fine or face jail.

'I'll have to go to prison because I haven't got that kind of money,' Mrs Price told the Gloucestershire Echo."

ratDVD, comprimere un DVD senza perderne contenuti e menu

ratDVD: The best way to distribute DVDs online?: "In a Nutshell, it is a CFF - Container Format File - technology whereby all the items contained in a DVD are compressed and enclosed into a single .ratDVD format file.

Unlike, say DiVX for example, this one keeps the whole thing intact so that you do not have to make concessions. It plays ingeniously on compression rates and introduces one or two goodies like Dolby Virtual Surround AC-3. More interestingly, it opens up the opportunity for those enterprising enough to sell ratDVD compatible players."

Microsoft, craccato il Genuine Advantage

Slashdot | Microsoft Genuine Advantage Cracked: "An Indian researcher has cracked the much-touted 'impenetrable' Windows Genuine Advantage of Microsoft. According to Microsoft this service would soon require all Windows users to verify their license before downloading updates"

In teoria doveva impedire a chi usa una copia pirata di Windows di scaricare gli aggiornamenti. In teoria.

World Trade Center: rapporto NIST

Rapporto NIST: lettura obbligata per tutti i complottisti

Prima di aprire bocca, scaricare e leggere tutta la documentazione di questo sito: NIST and the World Trade Center.

Telefonini in aereo, no alle chiamate, sì agli SMS

Airline passengers love inflight SMS, hate voice calls | The Register: "The ban on mobile phones on airplanes may soon be lifted, but most people are opposed to their use in-flight for voice calls.

That's according to a worldwide survey by IDC which indicated that far from supporting a lifting of the ban by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the US, a number of consumer groups claim the use of mobile phones on board airplanes would disturb passengers. Only 11 per cent of the 50,000 respondents would support the use of mobile phones for voice calls while on board an airplane.

While the majority of respondents would not approve of passengers making voice calls during flights, some 64 percent of respondents indicated their approval of using mobile phones for data services such as SMS. Of the 11 specified wireless activities, in-flight messaging emerged as the most popular choice among respondents."


[IxT] Carte di credito violate; Microsoft aiuta i truffatori; cos’è il pharming

Avete probabilmente sentito della mega-violazione di sicurezza che ha messo a rischio circa 40 milioni di carte di credito: non ha colpito soltanto i clienti di Mastercard, e c'è rischio anche per gli utenti italiani. Meglio sorvegliare gli estratti conto, anche se valgono le consuete garanzie antifrode offerte dalle società emettitrici:

Sempre a proposito di truffe, il giovane smanettone Salvatore Aranzulla ha scoperto una falla di MSN che agevola non poco i tentativi di truffa secondo il metodo del "phishing":

Come se non bastassero tutte queste magagne, ora arriva anche un'altra tecnica di truffa, chiamata "pharming". Se volete imparare a difendervi anche da questa minaccia, date un'occhiata al mio articolo:

Dedico questa newsletter a Biru, il mio gatto, morto oggi pomeriggio, investito da un'auto. Se avete gatti o altri animali domestici, date loro una carezza in più da parte mia. E provate, per favore, a guidare più piano.

Biru aveva una peculiarità indimenticabile: quando usciva, portava sempre a casa in regalo una foglia, e sceglieva sempre quelle più particolari, spesso coi colori rossi e gialli dell'autunno. Poi miagolava per chiamarci, e depositava la foglia in soggiorno con l'aria di dire "guarda che bella cosa che ti ho portato".

E noi lo ringraziavamo sempre. Ci manchi, Biru. Tanto.


Accademia della Crusca: e-mail, maschile o femminile?

Accademia della Crusca: "In inglese anche mail è neutro e in italiano trova dei corrispondenti in 'posta' e 'corrispondenza' femminili. Anche nel recente Grande dizionario italiano dell'uso di Tullio De Mauro la parola e-mail è indicata come sostantivo femminile invariabile. Il femminile si ha spesso per analogia semantica, cioè un prestito riceve il genere di un sostantivo nella lingua ricevente che ha un significato affine (es. la star, la gang, la performance, la nomination).
E' però abbastanza diffusa l'alternanza, per quel che concerne il genere, nell'uso di questo termine e questa incertezza ritengo sia prodotta da due principali fattori:
1) La presenza di altri termini inglesi formati che hanno acquisito il genere maschile dal neutro inglese, considerato come genere più adattabile al maschile in quanto comunque meno marcato, in italiano, rispetto al femminile.
2) Il corrente uso metonimico cui è sottoposto il termine, per cui dal più generale 'posta elettronica' è arrivato immediatamente ad indicare il singolo 'messaggio' inviato tramite posta elettronica. In questo processo entra in gioco una nuova parola 'messaggio' (peraltro molto diffusa anche nella forma 'messaggino' per indicare i brevi testi che si inviano con i cellulari) che introduce il genere maschile e genera confusione e incertezza (in particolare in chi non conosce l'inglese), insinuando il dubbio, che può essere rafforzato anche dalla casualità per cui le due parole hanno anche la stessa iniziale, che mail abbia come forma corrispondente italiana messaggio, quindi una parola di genere maschile."

BBC offre download MP3 Beethoven gratis, 700˙000 copie scaricate

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | TV and Radio | 700,000 download Beethoven music: "Nearly 700,000 listeners of BBC Radio 3 downloaded live performances of Beethoven's first five symphonies, with number one proving the most popular."

Decisamente un modo efficiente per divulgare cultura.

[IxT] XP snobbato da metà dei PC aziendali; Beethoven scaricabile legalmente; Acchiappavirus in TV

Nonostante la gran pubblicità e la preinstallazione su praticamente tutti i PC nuovi, Windows XP ha a malapena raggiunto il 50% dei PC aziendali, a quattro anni dal suo lancio. Non è un buon presagio per Longhorn, il suo futuro sostituto. Come farà zio Bill a mantenersi?


La BBC fa "pirateria": permette a chiunque di scaricare le sinfonie di Beethoven in MP3. Niente sistemi anticopia, ed è tutto legale. L'offerta è limitata nel tempo, se vi piace Ludwig van, vi conviene prenderne nota in agenda:


Qualcuno ha visto (e soprattutto registrato) il programma Galatea di Raidue ieri notte (stamattina) alle 0.40 circa? Mi dicono che sono apparso in un'intervista registrata qualche tempo fa. Il bello è che hanno mandato in onda un pezzo che non era inizialmente previsto nel copione: quello in cui ho strappato la pagina del dodecalogo di sicurezza dal libro per invitare ad appenderla accanto al monitor come promemoria.

Se qualcuno avesse una registrazione, mi farebbe molto piacere averla: scrivetemi al solito indirizzo topone@pobox.com.


BBC riferisce sulla sperimentazione biometrica inglese (2004)

BBC NEWS | UK | 'I've got a biometric ID card': "No cheesy grins will be allowed, because the machine is scanning the measurements of your face and 'doesn't like teeth'.

Current cost predicted £1.3bn to £3.1bn

The iris scan required more concentration because I had to stare hypnotically at two ellipses in the camera, while the machine verbally directed me.

'Come closer,' says a Big Brother-like voice, instructing me to shuffle my seat forward while keeping my eyes fixed on the shapes.

After about 60 seconds, the machine indicated the scanning was complete.

No messy carbon required for the fingerprints. Instead I had to put each hand's four fingers, then the thumb, on a glass scanner.

My prints appeared on a computer screen and within minutes were compared against one million others which, for the sake of the pilot scheme, had been imported from the US.

With all three tests completed, I had to give a copy of my signature which they stored electronically."


[IxT] Attenti alle nuove truffe ai danni dei correntisti italiani; addio al superpassaporto

Grazie a tutti per le numerosissime segnalazioni degli ultimi tentativi di "phishing" che hanno interessato i titolari di conti correnti italiani; mi spiace non potervi rispondere singolarmente. Nel mirino dei truffatori sono finiti Banca Intesa (di nuovo), Unicredit e Banca di Credito Cooperativo.

Confermo che tutti gli e-mail che invitano a visitare (apparentemente) queste banche per ritirare un premio di 100 euro o per un "controllo di sicurezza" sono tentate truffe.

Se vi interessano i dettagli:


Se state meditando di andare a fare un viaggetto negli Stati Uniti e avete letto che presto ci vorrà un passaporto con chip e dati biometrici, niente paura: gli americani si sono arresi all'evidenza che la biometria non funziona. Tutte le info sono qui:


Primo pianeta extrasolare non gassoso?

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Smallest extrasolar planet found: "The researchers have measured a minimum mass for the planet of 5.9 Earth masses. It orbits Gliese 876 with a period of 1.94 days at a distance of 0.021 astronomical units (AU), or 3.2 million km (2 million miles).

Though the team has no direct proof the planet is rocky, its low mass precludes it from holding on to gas in the way that Jupiter does.

Three other supposed rocky planets have been reported, but they orbit a pulsar, the corpse of an exploded star.

'This planet answers an ancient question,' said team leader Geoffrey Marcy, professor of astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley.

'Over 2,000 years ago, the Greek philosophers Aristotle and Epicurus argued about whether there were other Earth-like planets. Now, for the first time, we have evidence for a rocky planet around a normal star.'"


Figuraccia per ZoneAlarm a pagamento

Allarme per ZoneAlarm

PI: ZoneAlarm, un update che sa di bug: "L'ultimo update disponibile, rilasciato ufficialmente il 9 giugno, ha causato crash in oltre 50mila computer... Il bug riguarda solamente le versioni commerciali del software, destinate soprattutto all'utenza aziendale su piattaforme Windows XP.

Molti utenti hanno lamentato che all'apertura del browser Internet Explorer, DLL di True Vector causano inaspettatamente il blocco della macchina non appena inizia la ricezione di dati dalla Rete.

L'azienda dichiara di avere giàidentificato ed eliminato il problema... Zone Labs si scusa pubblicamente con i numerosi clienti in tutto il mondo."


Ci hanno lasciato Ed Straker e Paul Foster di UFO

Doppio lutto per i fan di UFO

I fan di fantascienza che hanno qualche anno sulle spalle ricorderanno UFO, una serie TV inglese ideata dal grande Gerry Anderson che spopolò nei primi anni Settanta.

Purtroppo pochi giorni fa sono morti sia Edward Bishop (il comandante Straker), sia Michael Billington (il suo braccio destro Paul Foster).

Ci mancheranno.


[IxT] Flash: violato il sito del Riformista

È almeno dalle 19.30 che il sito del Riformista è stato manomesso da un attacco:

La prima pagina è a posto, ma se cliccate sulle notizie, noterete che c'è qualcosa che non va.

Ho allertato la redazione del Riformista, adesso vediamo quanto tempo ci mettono a sistemare il pasticcio.

Dettagli, schermate catturate e aggiornamenti sono qui su Zeus News.


OpenOffice.org 2.0 Beta per MacOSX

OpenOffice.org 2.0 Beta MacOSX — FreeSMUG: "OpenOffice.org 2.0 Beta MacOSX"

Molto interessante, per chi vuole testare OOo 2.0 sul Mac. Versione che gira sotto X11.


[IxT] Lo spam maccheronico; Apple passa a Intel; Acrobat spione; XML standard del prossimo Office

Perbacco! Mi avete quasi intasato la casella di posta con le segnalazioni dello spassoso messaggio di "Mario Bravetti" e del suo affarone Italpay.com, quello dall'italiano partorito da uno dei peggiori programmi di traduzione automatica al mondo, con il suo "Anti codice di protezione dello Spam" e il suo "Lascilo darLe tre buone ragioni" e altre perle.

È una truffa, da non toccare assolutamente ma da cancellare e basta: i dettagli sono in quest'articolo:


XApple passa a Intel

Se stavate pensando di comperare un Mac, vi conviene aspettare l'anno prossimo, quando ci saranno i nuovi Mac basati su processori Intel Pentium. E' una rivoluzione notevole, annunciata ieri (6/6). Ho preparato un rapido commento con le info che ho a questo punto:


File Acrobat spioni

Una società americana offre un servizio che consente di sapere quando viene letto un documento PDF (Acrobat) senza informare il lettore. Utile per gli editori di e-book, ma anche per spiare le abitudini di lettura degli utenti e bloccare le fughe di notizie:


XML default del prossimo Office

Microsoft ha annunciato che il prossimo Office non userà più i formati binari (.doc, .xls eccetera), ma salverà i documenti automaticamente in XML. Questo dovrebbe rendere molto più facile scrivere programmi compatibili con i formati di Microsoft Office, dando una botta non indifferente all'attuale costoso monopolio di zio Bill:



Due arresti per tentata divulgazione del nuovo libro di Harry Potter

CNN.com - Arrests 'in Potter leak attempt' - Jun 4, 2005: "LONDON, England -- Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has won a court order to stop two men leaking details of her latest work after they were arrested in a dramatic operation to recover two copies of the book.

The novel, due to be released July 16, was offered to two British newspapers ... Rowling was granted a British High Court injunction against the two men, ages 19 and 37, after they were accused of attempting to sell printed copies of 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.'

The newspapers said one of the suspects worked at a distribution warehouse where copies of 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince' are being stored ahead of their release."

Ancora una volta, la pirateria opera dentro le organizzazioni di distribuzione, non fuori, e le fughe sono dovute agli addetti ai lavori.

Il futuro della pubblicità in TV: integrata direttamente nei telefilm

Wired News: Gadget Promos Creep Into TV Shows: "Tech product placement is going into overdrive, with several prime-time shows basing plot lines around hip gadgets and gizmos. And soon, thanks to interactive 'object-tracking' technology, consumers may be able to buy featured products with a click of the remote.

As consumers turn away from traditional advertising, tech marketers are picking up the slack by weaving lots of gadgets into the fabric of TV shows and movies. The net, video games and ad-skipping DVRs are forcing marketers to focus more attention on 'branded entertainment.'

Movies like Sony Pictures' Hitch, starring Will Smith, gave prominent placement to several Sony products, as well as the popular BlackBerry e-mail device. The plots of high-energy shows like CBS' CSI franchise, and Fox's 24 and Alias, often hinge on technology. The first season of 24, in fact, made novel use of competing computer platforms to denote the goodies and the villains....Cisco Systems, whose security-cum-video phones have appeared on 24, has provided networking technology to the show's production team for the past four years, according to Cisco."

Nomi, cognomi e abitudini delle ditte che inseriscono i propri prodotti nei telefilm. E se l'intero telefilm venisse sponsorizzato da questi prodotti? A quel punto sarebbe nell'interesse degli sponsor farlo vedere il più possibile, e quindi consentirne la libera distribuzione.

Fra qualche anno, scaricarsi il telefilm preferito non sarà più illegale :-)

Da XP Home a XP Pro cambiando due soli bit

Hack can upgrade XP Home to XP Pro Lite | The Register: "German computer magazine C'T claims that by changing only 2 bytes from the file setupreg.hiv in Windows's XP Home kit, users can get access to certain functions only avalaible in Windows XP Professional, such as Remote Desktop, User management and enhanced security features."

Che bello. XP pro: 480 euro + IVA. XP home: 325 euro + IVA (prezzi Misco.it).

È come scoprire che la Duna e la Ferrari sono la stessa auto, venduta allo stesso prezzo, ma la Duna ha due fili staccati.

DRM nei chip Intel? Intel “smentisce”... o no?

Slashdot | Intel Claims No DRM

"'The Inquirer has an official statement from Intel claiming the Computerworld Today Australia story from May 27th was incorrect, and the Pentium D and the 945 chipsets do not have unannounced DRM technology embedded in them. The statement says Intel products support or will support several copy protection schemes such as Macrovision, DTCP-IP, COPP, HDCP, CGMS-A, and others. The statement concludes: 'While Intel continues to work with the industry to support other content protection technologies, we have not added any unannounced DRM technologies in either the Pentium D processor or the Intel 945 Express Chipset family.' "

Non sono state aggiunte tecnologie DRM non annunciate... nei Pentium D non ci sono tecnologie DRM non annunciate. Ma che razza di smentità è? Allora, ci sono o non ci sono, annunciate o meno?

Falla in Bluetooth consente intrusioni

...ma soltanto se l'utente ingenuamente accetta la nuova richiesta di connessione.

Slashdot | New Way To Crack Secure Bluetooth Devices: "Cryptographers have discovered a way to hack Bluetooth-enabled devices even when security features are switched on, according to a report from New Scientist.com. The discovery may make it even easier for hackers to eavesdrop on conversations and charge their own calls to someone else's cellphone. From the article: 'Our attack makes it possible to crack every communication between two Bluetooth devices, and not only if it is the first communication between those devices.'"

Le macchine che ti incriminano hanno il sorgente chiuso? Assolto!

Slashdot | Closed Source -> Charges Dismissed?: "According to the Tampa Tribune, judges in the central Florida county of Seminole are dismissing DUI charges when the defendant asks for information on how the breath test works. Apparently the manufacturer of the device is unwilling to release the code to the state, and all four judges in the county have been dismissing DUI cases when the state cannot provide the requested information. Could this apply to other situations where technical means (radar guns, video surveillance, wire-tapping, etc.) are used to gather evidence? ' I'd not plan on this as a legal defense, but the question it raises - of public access to information - is an important one."

Occhio all’e-mail che annuncia la cattura di Bin Laden, contiene un virus

BBC NEWS | Technology | Fake Bin Laden e-mail hides virus: "Users are being warned not to open junk e-mail messages claiming Osama Bin Laden has been captured. The messages claim to contain pictures of the al-Qaeda leader's arrest but anyone opening the attachment will fall victim to a Microsoft Windows virus... Anyone opening the attachments or visiting the website will get a version of the Psyme trojan installed on their PC.

The vulnerability exploited by Psyme is found in Windows 2000, 95, 98, ME, NT, XP and Windows Server 2003. Users were urged to update their version of Windows to close the loophole. This latest virus is the third to use the name of the al-Qaeda leader to trick people into opening it.

In July last year an e-mail began circulating that claimed to link to a website holding a video of Bin Laden's suicide. Another virus circulating in November 2004 posed as a video message from the al-Qaeda leader. "

Altre info da The Register:

"The bogus emails attempt to seed infection of a new downloader Trojan, Small-AXR, contained in a pics.scr file within a zip attachment of the fraudulent messages."

Apple passa a Intel, conferma entro oggi?

BBC NEWS | Technology | Rumours fly over Apple-Intel deal: "Apple is about to announce that it is dropping IBM chips in favour of those made by Intel, reports suggest. The first Apple computers with the Intel chips onboard could appear by mid-2006, technology site CNet reported over the weekend.

...Motorola subsidiary Freescale produces chips, known as PowerPC processors, for Apple's notebooks and the Mac Mini. IBM produces PowerPC chips for Apple's G5 machines.

The Mac Mini could be the first Apple machines to move to Intel chips with the more powerful machines following in 2007.

...IBM has the contract to PowerPC chips for Microsoft's imminent Xbox 360 console, Sony's forthcoming PlayStation 3 game machine and Nintendo's future game-playing machine. As a result the cash it gets from making chips for Apple has become a very small slice of its revenue.

...the core software, the operating system, for Apple computers will have to be re-written. This will be easier for the latest version of the operating system, known as OS X, as it is based on software that already runs in Intel chips... Apple has licensed technology from a company called Transitive which makes software that makes it easier to port programs on to different chip architectures. Apple's WorldWide Developers Conference opens on 6 June and in his keynote speech Apple boss Steve Jobs is expected to make the announcement about the tie-up with Intel."


Case modding estremo: il case a forma di caccia TIE di Guerre Stellari

Science Fiction Case Mod Contest: The First Winner!: "The green laser canons on the front of the cockpit are the power-on and HDD activity LEDs. Power and reset buttons are built into a side panel. Red LEDs light up the interior of the case."

Non ho parole.

Come bloccare i banner tramite il file hosts in Mac OS X [UPD 2012/07/08]

Come liberarsi dei banner usando Mac

Da Macwrite.com.

Le istruzioni si riferiscono a Panther, ma vanno bene anche per Tiger almeno queste, che ho provato direttamente e sto usando con estrema gioia per bloccare alcuni banner che rallentano i siti che mi interessano:

  • Aprire una finestra di terminale
  • dare il comando sudo pico /etc/hosts
  • viene chiesta la password di amministratore: dargliela
  • editare il file hosts in modo che a ogni sito che si vuole bloccare corrisponda
  • salvare e chiudere il file hosts
  • attivare le modifiche digitando sudo killall -HUP lookupd

Non occorre riavviare Mac OS X né riavviare il browser.


Una versione più estesa di questo mini-articolo è disponibile qui.

Gauss Rifle - il cannone magnetico

Gauss Rifle: "This very simple toy uses a magnetic chain reaction to launch a steel marble at a target at high speed. The toy is very simple to build, going together in minutes, and is very simple to understand and explain, and yet fascinating to watch and to use."

Come fabbricare un modello di cannone magnetico con un righello, qualche sferetta di metallo e alcune calamite. Spettacolare.

Spazio: La Nasa “ritrova” le tute della stazione spaziale militare mai realizzata

NASA - Suits for Space Spies

"Begun in 1964, the Manned Orbiting Laboratory program was an Air Force initiative that would have sent Air Force astronauts to a space station in a Gemini capsule. After spending a few weeks in orbit, the crew would undock and return to Earth. The Air Force abandoned the program in 1969, but the program produced a great deal of technological development, and three groups of military officers trained to be MOL astronauts.

The spacesuit with identifying number 008 had the name "LAWYER" on the left sleeve. The suit was traced to Lt. Col. Richard E. Lawyer, a member of the first group recruited to be MOL astronauts in 1965.

No records were found for the other suit, with the intriguing identifying number 007."

Apple passa a Intel, le info di ZDNet

Apple to ditch IBM, switch to Intel chips | Tech News on ZDNet: "Apple Computer plans to announce Monday that it's scrapping its partnership with IBM and switching its computers to Intel's microprocessors, CNET News.com has learned."

"Apple plans to move lower-end computers such as the Mac Mini to Intel chips in mid-2006 and higher-end models such as the Power Mac in mid-2007... Motorola spinoff Freescale currently makes PowerPC processors for Apple notebooks and the Mac Mini... Apple openly criticized IBM for chip delivery problems... One advantage Apple has this time: The open-source FreeBSD operating system, of which Mac OS X is a variant, already runs on x86 chips such as Intel's Pentium. And Jobs has said Mac OS X could easily run on x86 chips."

Quest'ultima frase è linkata a questa dichiarazione di Jobs.

"...IBM loses cachet with the end of the Apple partnership, but it can take consolation in that it's designing and manufacturing the Power family processors for future gaming consoles from Microsoft, Sony and Ninendo... according to Dean McCarron of Mercury Research..., Apple has roughly 1.8 percent of the worldwide PC market.. Apple shipped 1.07 million PCs in the first quarter".

Apple passa a Intel? Forse userà questa tecnologia

Transitive Corporation: Products

Consente alle applicazioni compilate per un processore PowerPC di girare su altri tipi di processore, a quanto pare senza perdite significative di prestazioni.


BBC NEWS | Technology | Sex sites get dedicated net home

BBC NEWS | Technology | Sex sites get dedicated net home: "Pornographic websites are about to get their own online home. A proposal to create net domains ending .xxx has been approved by the body that oversees the net's addressing system. Sexually explicit sites will be encouraged to move to the new domains to make it easier for people to filter and avoid them."

"...Icann has rejected the proposal on several occasions before now. In an early report on the idea, Icann experts said the proposal did not "meet an unmet need" because adult content was readily available on the internet.
A report on the proposal noted: "no mechanism (technical or non-technical) exists to require adult content to migrate from existing [domains] to an .xxx [domain].

...ICM Registry might face problems in getting people to sign up, said Mr Robinson.

"If you have a very successful porn site running off a particular domain name you are going to be reluctant to change that," he said.

Icann also rejected the idea because of worries that eventually all sites dealing with sexual matters, including sex education sites or those that support victims of sexual abuse, would be forced to use the .xxx domain and, as a result, be harder to find.

Formati aperti per il prossimo Microsoft Office?

Slashdot | Microsoft Ends Era Of Closed File Formats: "According to an MSDN Channel 9 interview with an Office file-format developer, the next version of Microsoft Office (Office 12) will default to newly-developed XML file formats in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. The new formats will apparently include XML files along with other files (images, etc) inside of a Zip file. Microsoft will also be providing extensive documentation of the new format to the public through MSDN. The developer likewise announced that Microsoft would be releasing updates for Office 2000, XP, and 2003 to read and write the new formats when the new version of Office is released."

Sony prova nuovi CD anticopia (o a copia limitata)

Sony tests anti-pirate CDs: "SONY SAYS that it is testing CDs featuring technology from UK anti-piracy outfit First4Internet, that will allow punters to only make a limited number of copies... the big idea is to stop ‘casual piracy’ which it defines as ripping and burning CDs by people who have actually bought the disk in the first place and give copies to their mates.

Sony said that it will be releasing CDs with the technology soon, but will not say which ones.

Under the cunning plan, a user can rip tracks from Microsoft's Windows Media Audio (WMA) format. But if a CD is burned with protected audio, the DRM on the disc prevents it from being burned again.

This means that users will be able to duplicate CDs for their own use. Although I suspect the bottom will drop out of the second hand CD market pretty quick.

Ne parla anche Slashdot.

"Trying to make bits uncopyable is like trying to make water not wet."
--Bruce Schneier

...The First4Internet CD copy protection technology destroys the registry keys (driver device names) associated with your CD-ROM devices. Then a monitoring app allows or disallows access to the device. The monitoring app is buggy. If it stops running or loses your device references, you will have to reinstall windows to make your CD-ROM devices work again. Also, by messing with the internal driver properties like this, many apps simply hang or crash the system when trying to access the device.
You can forget about using your legitimate buring software after putting one of those CDs in your computer... -- anon DRM developer

Ancora sui PDF spioni

LWN: Unexpected features in Acrobat 7: "By default, Adobe Reader 7 turns on JavaScript, so the 'tagged' document is able to 'phone home' without the user's awareness. Turning off JavaScript disables the document's code, and prevents Remote Approach (or any other entity) from tracking views of the document. No doubt, Remote Approach is using features that would normally be used to submit information from a PDF form....The reader does not inform the user that information is being submitted, so users are likely to be oblivious to the fact that another party is aware of their PDF reading habits. While a user may not find it objectionable to notify the publisher, there are those of us who don't care to allow publishers to snoop on activities taking place on our personal computers."

video4skype: video per Skype (solo per Windows, sigh)


Telefonino-PDA con Skype integrato

Windows PDA offers Skype: "[On the Asus P505] main menu [there was] was a client for Skype’s Internet based voice technology....The P505 is actually a tri-band GSM handset (so it works in the States). In theory, you might just get away with running Skype over GPRS.

However, Wi-Fi would be a more sensible solution and the INQ notes that it is mentioned in the list of compatible accessories. Presumably Asus can supply a SD card style 802.11 interface for the P505."

Quanto costa Windows preinstallato

Mac mini's twin runs Windows: L'articolo parla di Pandora, un'imitazione Windows del Mac mini, ma contiene questo dato interessante: Windows preinstallato costa 70 dollari "millions of apparently sensible people actually want Windows machines and don't want Macs, often for the simple reason that Windows is what they are used to. If Aopen really can get the price as low as they claim (a very difficult task, when things like the $70 OEM price for MS Windows XP are factored in), this could be a hot seller come Xmas time."

I PC zombificati sono più diffusi in Europa

Slashdot | Europe Home to Majority of Zombies: "According to a recent CipherTrust study, the majority of Zombie PCs reside not in the US or China, but in Europe. Of the European zombies, 2/3 were either in Germany, France, or Britain. The results were released with the announcement of CipherTrust's new ZombieMeter. As a response to previous reports of high zombie activity, the London Action Plan launched Operation Spam Zombies in cooperation with numerous governments around the world."

La Gola Profonda del Watergate: come comunicano le spie

BBC NEWS | World | Americas | Woodward tells Deep Throat story:

Altro che alta tecnologia....

"The two men agreed to the famed 'flower pot signal' which involved moving a flower pot on Woodward's apartment balcony if he urgently needed a meeting.

The signal would mean meeting the same night on the bottom level of an underground garage just over the Key Bridge in Rosslyn, Washington DC - although Woodward says it was never clear to him how Mr Felt could have made the daily observation of his balcony.

'There was no fallback meeting place or time. If we both didn't show, there would be no meeting,' he says.

'Felt said if there was something important he could get to my New York Times - how, I never knew.

'Page 20 would be circled, and the hands of a clock in the lower part of the page would be drawn to indicate the time of the meeting that night, probably 0200, in the same Rosslyn parking garage."

Slashdot | The Other Side of BitTorrent

Slashdot | The Other Side of BitTorrent: "one industry's threat is another's opportunity. There's an upside to allowing viewers to transfer copyright material content over BitTorrent. As noted by Japanese entrepreneur Joi Ito, fans of the Japanese anime series Naruto regularly post translated episodes of the show to BitTorrent, which attracts more fans to the series. The relatively obscure program has spawned a global following in online forums, internet relay chat channels and fan sites."

...The show airs in Japan on wednesday night at 7:28pm local time. Within 24 hours, a fansubbed version is released on the internet. The most recent version was released about 13 hours ago, and there are currently 15770 seeds and 13600 peers on this torrent. In 12 hours, 11.5 terabytes has been transferred, and just over 71,000 people have downloaded the episode.

... You need to take the logic one step further.

1) Series is not available outside of Japan.
2) Internet and fansubbing make series available outside of Japan.
3) Fansubs build series' popularity.
4) Publishers see demand and release series worldwide, seeing huge amounts of sale from fans they never would have had before.
5) Profit.

This works out extremely well for the developer, who doesn't need to spend money advertising, and gets a large amount of revenue they wouldn't have seen before.

On the flipside, maybe this is another reason the RIAA/MPAA are afraid of P2P and the internet in general - it allows content from other parts of the world (that they do not necessarily control) to come over here and become popular.

Microsoft: bucato il sito coreano di MSN

Slashdot | Korean MSN Site Hacked: "CNN is reporting that MSN's Korean website was hacked in order to allow usernames and passwords to be stolen. Microsoft is initially blaming unpatched, outsourced servers. Just another embarrassment to Microsoft's security push."

The Inquirer: "[Microsoft] has admitted that the hack took place, but remains clueless about how many of its customers have been compromised."

Ovviamente usano Internet Information Server. Chi è causa del suo mal...


Microsoft aspetta l’ultimo secondo per rispondere all’ultimatum di Bruxelles

BBC NEWS | Business | Microsoft meets Brussels deadline: "US software giant Microsoft has met a 1 June deadline for responding to a landmark European Union antitrust ruling against the company.

'We have submitted proposals and we are awaiting a response from the EU Commission,' a spokesman said.

In 2004, Brussels found Microsoft guilty of abusing its market dominance and fined it 497m euros ($655m; £340m).

If the Commission considers Microsoft's response to have fallen short, it could hit the firm with daily fines of $5m.

A spokesman said it could take 'a few weeks' to come to a decision."

Microsoft passa Office 12 all’XML

BBC NEWS | Technology | Microsoft adopts web file styles: "Attendees at the Tech-Ed 2005 conference will be the first to get more information... Some of Microsoft's competitors, such as Sun's StarOffice and the open source project OpenOffice, already support XML... when people use the 'Save As' option files in the XML format will have an 'x' added to the usual suffix. For instance Word documents saved in XML format will be labelled 'docx'."

Il più vecchio PC ancora attivo in Inghilterra

Tempo fa scrissi un articolo sul PC più vecchio ancora attivo nel Regno Unito, che risultava essere un IBM XT5160 classe 1983, usato dalla Capital Transport Campaign. Pare che il record sia stato battuto: c'è infatti un Amstrad 1649 DD, tuttora usato come database dalla Herne Hill Harriers and Heath Technical Services, che risale al 1980.

Fonte: Business NFO magazine, maggio 2005.

[IxT] Attenti alle letterine del Registro; arriva Palladium; buttate il telecomando; e altre storie

Ho un po' di cose da raccontarvi, ma prima di tutto vorrei scusarmi con tutti coloro che da febbraio scorso hanno inviato donazioni a sostegno del mio sito e di questa newsletter: purtroppo sono mesi che vivo letteralmente con la valigia in mano e questo ha avuto un effetto disastroso sulla prontezza con la quale cito i donatori nei ringraziamenti della newsletter. Garantisco che smaltirò la coda e confermerò a tutti la ricezione non appena passa questo periodo impossibile di trasloco-lumaca.

E grazie a tutti anche per le info preziose sui siti per bambini che mi avete mandato.

Detto questo, se avete un sito Internet aziendale e vi capita di ricevere una lettera che vi chiede di correggere i vostri dati nel "Registro italiano in Internet", attenzione: non è affatto obbligatorio, anche se il marchio richiama molto quello di Telecom Italia. E' un giochino inventato da una ditta tedesca per indurvi a credere che si tratti di un modulo di rettifica ufficiale. Se lo firmate e rispedite, vi esponete al rischio di vedervi addebitare ben 858 euro.

Se vi interessano i dettagli su quella che purtroppo non posso chiamare truffa per ragioni legali, li trovate qui:


Se invece vi capita di comperare la vostra serie TV preferita in DVD e avete l'impressione che sia diversa da come ve la ricordavate, potreste avere perfettamente ragione: i DVD originali di molte serie sono alterati a causa delle pastoie del diritto d'autore. I dettagli, con nomi e cognomi, sono qui:


Guerre Stellari III è nei cinema, ed è anche scaricabile da Internet illegalmente: gli agenti federali USA lanciano un blitz contro chi lo distribuisce proprio mentre Bittorrent inaugura un motore di ricerca che aiuta a reperire i file legali e illegali diffusi con questo efficientissimo sistema:


Ricordate il progetto Palladium di Microsoft? Mica morto. Intel annuncia nuovi chip che integrano funzioni di controllo dei diritti digitali (in pratica, permettono a terzi di decidere cosa far girare sul vostro computer): maggiori info in questo articolo di Michele Bottari per Zeus News:


Se avete notato degli strani messaggi di spam che parlano latino o contengono citazioni letterarie ma nessun nome di prodotto da reclamizzare e vi state chiedendo che senso hanno e come fanno a eludere i filtri antispam, eccovi le info:


Se siete arrivati a leggere fin qui, siete lettori davvero pronti a tutto: in tal caso, magari vi interessa una mia nuova apparizione mistica, che verrà trasmessa oggi (2 giugno) alle ore 12.30 sul canale satellitare in chiaro RaiEdu1, nel programma Explora - La TV delle scienze. Sarò in compagnia di Luciano Onder insieme con Stefano Chiccarelli (Consultant Engineer EMEA Fortinet Inc.), Massimo Melica (presidente Centro Studi Informatica Giuridica), e Gerardo Costabile (Gruppo Repressione frodi della Guardia di Finanza). Buona visione!


Acrobat 7 fa la spia?

LWN: Unexpected features in Acrobat 7: "A company called Remote Approach is promising to alert PDF publishers as to the 'reach and use of their materials.' ... we created a test account and uploaded a PDF to be 'tagged' by Remote Approach, and then downloaded the modified document to see whether Remote Approach could log our use of the document.

Remote Approach's reporting did not work when we viewed the document with Kpdf, Xpdf and Adobe Reader 5.0.10. It also failed using Apple's 'Preview' application on Mac OS X. The document was still viewable with no apparent glitch in other PDF readers, but the reporting function did not work. However, when we opened the file using Adobe Acrobat Reader 7, Remote Approach started logging views from our IP address. After doing a little research, we found that Adobe's Reader was connecting to http://www.remoteapproach.com/remoteapproach/logging.asp each time we opened the document. The information is submitted over port 80 using HTTP, so it is unlikely that a home or office firewall would, in a normal configuration, block the activity, unless the firewall administrator is attempting to block Web browsing.

Apparently, Remote Approach's 'tag' to our document included the addition of JavaScript code causing Acrobat to report back to their server; the information reported includes the fact that the document had been read, our IP address, and which viewer it had been read in. (Interestingly, Remote Approach does not seem to recognize the Linux version of Acrobat Reader, as it left the 'User Agent' field blank in its reports.)

...By default, Adobe Reader 7 turns on JavaScript, so the 'tagged' document is able to 'phone home' without the user's awareness. Turning off JavaScript disables the document's code, and prevents Remote Approach (or any other entity) from tracking views of the document.

...The reader does not inform the user that information is being submitted, so users are likely to be oblivious to the fact that another party is aware of their PDF reading habits."