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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Pirate Bay Returns With Guns Blazing

Slashdot It! After initially being taken offline by Swedish authorities, and after its first escape route failed, The Pirate Bay has returned with all guns blazing. With a modified copy of one of Churchill’s most famous speeches, The Pirate Bay team tells the public that they will defend the Internet, with or without the si When The Pirate Bay was shut down yesterday many believed that this was the end for the Internet’s largest BitTorrent tracker. However, despite the fact that the site is set to be sold later this week, the Pirate Bay team worked around the clock to serve their users in these final hours. A mere three hours after it went offline the site reappeared from a different location, but because of technical issues at the new ISP a full comeback took almost a day. The site is back online and the tracker is expected to follow soon. The Pirate Bay team has always anticipated an unwanted disconnection of the site. After their servers were raided in 2006 several measures were taken to ensure that the site could simply come back online from a new location in a few hours, and this is the first time that this backup plan had been executed. With its reemergence the people behind the site hope to show the authorities and the entertainment industry that the war is not over just yet. Perhaps it’s only the beginning of a battle on a different front. The future will tell. A few minutes ago, the Pirate Bay team released the following statement, adapted from Churchill’s famous “We Shall Fight On the Beaches” speech. Make of it what you will. We have, ourselves, full confidence that if all do their duty, if nothing is neglected, and if the best arrangements are made, as they are being made, we shall prove ourselves once more able to defend our Internets, to ride out the storm of war, and to outlive the menace of tyranny, if necessary for years, if necessary alone. Even though large parts of Internets and many old and famous trackers have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Ifpi and all the odious apparatus of MPAA rule, we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the ef-nets and darknets, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Internets, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the, we shall fight on the /. and on the digg, we shall fight in the courts; we shall never surrender, and if, which I do not for a moment believe, the Internets or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the Anon Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in Cerf’s good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old. Signed; The Pirate Bay Crew – Now until needed. Update: Users of the anti-virus program Avast report that TPB has been blacklisted as a malicious site after the site returned. Get Daily Updates via Email Protect your computer with Windows Onecare

Apple to retain, redesign plastic MacBook family

Slashdot It! Once rumored for extinction, Apple's entry-level polycarbonate MacBooks are on the verge of a refresh that will solidify them at the base of the Mac maker's notebook offerings for the foreseeable future, AppleInsider has learned. People familiar with Cupertino-based company's plans say the 13-inch portables are presently undergoing an industrial design overhaul that will see them reemerge in the coming months with a slimmer, lighter enclosure and restructured internal architecture to boot. It'll be the first time in more than three years that the plastic Mac notebooks will receive a visual tune-up. Introduced in May of 2006, the white and black systems replaced the PowerPC-based iBook and 12-inch PowerBook as part of Apple's transition to Intel processors and quickly became the best selling Mac of all time, according to statistics from NPD Group. The MacBooks were also among the first Macs to adopt Apple's MagSafe power connector while pioneering several other features that would become staples of future Mac notebook designs, such as shrunken soft-touch keyboards, glossy displays, and a non-mechanical magnetic latches (see: Magnet madness to hit Intel iBook line - Feb 2006). Earlier this spring, Apple restructured its notebook offerings by repositioning its aluminum unibody MacBooks as premium offerings under the MacBook Pro moniker, adding long-requested features such as FireWire and higher-quality displays. This left the company with just a single MacBook offering, a white polycarbonate model that retails for $999 but sticks out like a sore thumb when positioned alongside its peers. Still, sales of the sub-$1000 system have remained surprisingly brisk amid the economic crunch, leaving management little choice but to allocate R&D expenses in its favor. As of press time, Apple's online store indicates that the white MacBook is outselling all other Macs with the exception of the iMac, while similar rankings from high-volume resellers like MacMall also consistently place it in the top 10 best selling Apple-related products overall, ahead of all desktop-based Macs. While it's unclear how many models or configurations Apple will introduce as part the redesign, Ben Reitzes -- an analyst with Barclays Capital who's been following the Mac maker for years -- sees the company offering several, at various price points. "We [...] believe the MacBook line needs to be revamped (there is only one MacBook available now, an old white model) and that we could see a lower priced line soon, positioned below the new MacBook Pro models," he said. Reitzes' comments on price points echo expectations laid out by AppleInsider this past April in its report on more affordable Macs. More specifically, it's believed that Apple is well-positioned to begin offering a model at considerable discount to the $999 entry-level model that exists today, further narrowing the gap with its Windows-based competitors. MacBook Introduced in May of 2006, the current MacBook design has about run its course. Though details are few and far between, Apple is expected to achieve these markdowns through largely existing tactics, such as using lower-end components and previous-generation Core 2 Duo chips and architectures from Intel Corp. Battery life should receive a boost from cutting-edge technology that recently found its way into the company's other notebook offerings, while high-end legacy features like FireWire connectivity are likely to be sacrificed in the tradeoff. This strategy more closely conforms to Apple's DNA than alternatives that were under consideration late last year. For instance, AppleInsider has heard from multiple sources that the company toyed with the prospect of throwing an Intel Atom processor into the existing white MacBook enclosure as interim solution aimed at delivering a low-cost Mac portable for those consumers eying a Mac but hit hard by the recession. However, at least one person familiar with the matter claims the initiative was abandoned indefinitely earlier this year, around the time that management solidified the forthcoming Newton web tablet for a first quarter 2010 roll-out and instituted a significant restructuring of the Apple TV development team. Regardless of how the pieces fell into place, AppleInsider believes the bigger story is how Apple, once discounted for its role as a niche player in the market for premium computing products, is rapidly adjusting to having been broadsided by the sudden economic downturn. In a matter of mere months, it's successfully applied the same fundamentals and expertise that made it king of the luxury computing market to the space reserved for those strapped for cash. And it's doing so with class. Q2CY2010 Lineup An assessment of Apple's portable computing lineup for Q2CY10 based on information presently available to AppleInsider. Come the second quarter of next year, the company -- whose repertoire three years ago lacked a compelling offering for under a grand -- will off a staggering array of portable solutions ranging from $99 to $999. This includes the $99 iPhone 3G, $199-$499 iPhone 3GS, a sub-$999 MacBook family, and a multi-touch tablet device wedged between the latter two when fully subsidized. Apple's new line of low-end MacBooks could be viewed as the last piece to the puzzle in Apple's top-to-bottom line of product offerings, transitioning the company from a premium PC and phone manufacturer to one that offers truly competitive prices on products in both categories. Considering chief executive Steve Jobs's comments just last year that Apple is incapable of making a $500 computer to compete with netbooks that wouldn't be a "piece of junk," such a move would complete a subtle but significant metamorphosis for the Silicon Valley heavyweight, positioning it as an electronics maker offering a compelling portfolio of feature-rich products at virtually every price point. Get Daily Updates via Email Protect your computer with Windows Onecare

20 of the Worst Designed Websites In the World

Slashdot It! We all come across some seriously bad websites in our day-to-day lives on the Internet. It’s just an unavoidable fact of life, like coming across monsters on the way to the market in video games. When you come across these things, you should approach them with a modicum of fear, for it is something you don’t know, after all. But, more than that, you need to be brave, and you need to relish the experience with full sense of humor employed. These are the 20 worst websites we could find from across the world. Space Is The Place 01 Visit the Page Upon entering this magnificent Canadian specimen of web-dominance, your eyes will immediately be drawn to the one of two key things: The rocket-launch gif image from 1992, or the floating head of the site’s patron saint, the departed Mr. Head. Both are hideous, but at least with the floating head you can spend a solid 20 minutes laughing inappropriately. If the yellow on blue on blue-r approach to color schemes isn’t your style, then you may want to steer clear of this place. Read More>>> Get Daily Updates via Email Protect your computer with Windows Onecare

Google patches severe Chrome vulnerabilities

Slashdot It! Google has fixed two high-severity vulnerabilities in the stable version of its Chrome browser that could have let an attacker remotely take over a person's computer. With one attack on Google's V8 JavaScript engine, malicious JavaScript on a Web site could let an attacker gain access to sensitive data or run arbitrary code on the computer within a Chrome protected area called the sandbox, Google said in a blog post Tuesday. With the other, a page with XML-encoded information could cause a browser tab crash that could let an attacker run arbitrary code within the sandbox. Chrome (click to download for Windows) fixes the issues and another medium-severity issue. Once Chrome is installed, it retrieves updates automatically and applies them when people restart the browser. Google won't release details of the vulnerabilities until "a majority of users are up to date with the fix," Engineering Program Manager Jonathan Conradt said in the blog post. Get Daily Updates via Email Protect your computer with Windows Onecare