John Gordon Ross

A Man for All Reasons

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Anyone who works as a freelancer these days has to be at least a bit familiar with techie things. But it isn’t just that. When I was a kid and those vaguely SF puppet shows were on the television and all the other kids wanted to be Greg Gogetem or Steve Savetheuniverse, I wanted to be the guy in a white coat and glasses called Doc or Brains. Here are some technology-related feeds I find useful and/or entertaining.

Slashdot » NYT Op-Ed Argues Amazon 'Took Seattle's Soul'

Saturday 21 October 23:49:00 UTC 2017

New York Times columnist Timothy Egan was part of the paper's Pulitzer Prize-winning team in 2001. Now he's written an op-ed arguing Amazon "took Seattle's soul." An anonymous reader writes: Since Amazon arrived "we've been overwhelmed by a future we never had any say over," Egan writes, with a message for cities competing to be the site of Amazon's next … [Link]

Slashdot » Amazon Patents Drones That Recharge Electric Vehicles

Saturday 21 October 22:44:00 UTC 2017

slash.jit shared an article from Futurism: Amazon has been granted a patent for an ambitious new method of maintaining a charge in electric vehicles. The company wants to use drones to allow drivers to top up their vehicles without having to visit a charging station. Drivers would request a top up from a central server, which would dispatch a charging … [Link]

Slashdot » See Giant Robots Fight. US vs Japan Match On YouTube

Saturday 21 October 21:39:00 UTC 2017

AmiMoJo writes: Suidobashi Heavy Industries and MegaBots agreed to test their piloted giant robots in combat a few years back, and the content is finally available on YouTube. It ended in a draw, with Japan decisively winning the first bout with a single punch and the US team winning the second thanks to a chainsaw weapon. There have been some … [Link]

Mashable » Protester hugs a Nazi and asks 'Why do you hate me?'

Saturday 21 October 21:34:06 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookThe age-old debate: Should you punch a Nazi?  Here's a new one: Should you hug one? Probably not, but a protester outside white supremacist Richard Spencer's failed speech in Gainesville, Florida this week tried the tactic.  SEE ALSO: A handful of racists snuck back to Charlottesville under the cover of night for another 'protest' High school football coach Aaron Courtney approached … [Link]

Mashable » The cutest photos from the annual Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

Saturday 21 October 21:21:43 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookNow in its 27th year, the annual Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade in New York City continued its reign as October's cutest event on Saturday, bringing together New York's fluffiest pets and their ever-creative owners.  This year's crop of dog models – dressed in costumes that ranged from the Pope to the Devil to Kellyanne Conway – put on a delightful … [Link]

Slashdot » YouTube Suspends Account of Popular Chinese Dissident

Saturday 21 October 20:34:00 UTC 2017

schwit1 brings news about an exiled Chinese billionaire with 500,000 followers on YouTube. The Washington Free Beacon reports:YouTube has suspended the video account of popular Chinese dissident Guo Wengui amid a mounting pressure from the Beijing government to silence one of its critics. According to a person familiar with the action, YouTube issued what the company calls a 'strike' against … [Link]

Slashdot » 2 Million IoT Devices Enslaved By Fast-Growing BotNet

Saturday 21 October 19:34:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader writes: Since mid-September, a new IoT botnet has grown to massive proportions. Codenamed IoT_reaper, researchers estimate its current size at nearly two million infected devices. According to researchers, the botnet is mainly made up of IP-based security cameras, routers, network-attached storage (NAS) devices, network video recorders (NVRs), and digital video recorders (DVRs), primarily from vendors such as … [Link]

Mashable » Bille Lourd posts a touching tribute on Carrie Fisher's birthday

Saturday 21 October 19:32:51 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookSaturday marks Carrie Fisher's first birthday since her death last December. The Star Wars star would have turned 61 on Oct. 21.  It's a sad day, but Fisher's family, friends, and fans are making the milestone a little less bittersweet with tributes to the actor and author.  SEE ALSO: Carrie Fisher once sent a cow tongue to a sexually inappropriate Hollywood … [Link]

Mashable » This clip of animals eating pumpkins is a delightful palate cleanser

Saturday 21 October 19:17:01 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook For those feeling particularly world weary this week, consider this palate cleanser: the animal residents of Brookfield Zoo in Illinois devouring pumpkins ahead of Halloween. This clip from the Associated Press shows some of the zoo's cutest residents chomping down on enormous helpings of squash.  May the delightful image of a python making its home inside a jack-o'-lantern carry you … [Link]

Slashdot » Data Science Meets Sports Gambling: How Researchers Beat the Bookies

Saturday 21 October 18:34:00 UTC 2017

"A trio of data scientists developed a betting strategy to beat bookmakers at football games," writes austro. [The game Americans call soccer.] New Scientist reports: The team studied 10 years' worth of data on nearly half a million football matches and the associated odds offered by 32 bookmakers between January 2005 and June 2015. When they applied their strategy in … [Link]

Mashable » Kit Harington clarifies his 2016 comments about sexism 'towards men': 'I was wrong'

Saturday 21 October 18:24:42 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookKit Harington has clarified comments he made in 2016 about his experience with "sexism" as a male actor, in a new interview with The Guardian  The Game of Thrones star said he "was wrong" to conflate his experiences as a man with that of the very real sexism women face in the film industry.  SEE ALSO: Rose Leslie forced Kit Harington … [Link]

Slashdot » Google Offers $1,000 Bounties For Hacking Dropbox, Tinder, Snapchat, and Others

Saturday 21 October 17:34:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader quotes Mashable: Google, in collaboration with bug bounty platform HackerOne, has launched the Google Play Security Reward Program, which promises $1,000 to anyone who can identify security vulnerabilities in participating Google Play apps. Thirteen apps are currently participating, including Tinder, Duolingo, Dropbox, Snapchat, and Headspace… If you find a security vulnerability in one of the participating apps, … [Link]

Mashable » Elon Musk's Boring Company gets permission to dig a 10-mile tunnel in Maryland

Saturday 21 October 17:23:16 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookThe hyperloop is moving ahead.  Elon Musk got permission from Maryland officials for his Boring Company to build a 10-mile tunnel in the state, the Baltimore Sun reported. The tunnel would be the first part of Musk's envisioned hyperloop to transport people underground between New York and Washington, D.C.  “This thing is real. It’s exciting to see,” Maryland Transportation Secretary Pete … [Link]

Slashdot » Why Are We Still Using Passwords?

Saturday 21 October 16:34:00 UTC 2017

Here's some surprising news from the Akamia Edge conference. chicksdaddy writes: [E]xecutives at some of the U.S.'s leading corporations agreed that the much maligned password won't be abandoned any time soon, even as data breaches and follow-on attacks make passwords more susceptible than ever to abuse, the Security Ledger reports. "We reached the end of needing passwords maybe seven years … [Link]

Mashable » Actor known for 'Twin Peaks' and 'Parks and Recreation' dead at 56

Saturday 21 October 16:18:39 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookActor Brent Briscoe – known best for his role as JJ of JJ's Diner fame on Parks and Recreation – died at 56 on Wednesday. Per Variety, the cause of death is internal bleeding and heart complications sustained after "a serious fall" that put him in the hospital.  SEE ALSO: Ben Wyatt and Jean-Ralphio respond to 'Parks and Rec' fan theories Mashable … [Link]

Mashable » 5 super spooky Halloween sex toys

Saturday 21 October 16:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookWhat better way to get into the Halloween spirit than by getting freaky? There’s already a glut of sexy halloween costumes —  have you seen Sexy Jon Snow and Sexy Fake News? But if that's not kinky enough for you, here are a few seasonally appropriate sex toys that will help you bring the spooky times between the sheets.  Dracula Fleshlight … [Link]

Mashable » The woman who took down Uber gives her first interview since speaking up

Saturday 21 October 15:52:26 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookEight months ago, engineer Susan Fowler published a blog post describing a culture of sexism and sexual harassment throughout Uber.  Her words set off a firestorm at Uber that led to the ouster of founder Travis Kalanick as CEO, predated widespread allegations of sexual harassment against venture capitalists in Silicon Valley this summer, and even seems to draw a trail through … [Link]

ProgrammableWeb » Daily API RoundUp: Airbnb, LIFX,, FormAPI

Saturday 21 October 15:49:59 UTC 2017

Every day, the ProgrammableWeb team is busy, updating its three primary directories for APIs, clients (language-specific libraries or SDKs for consuming or providing APIs), and source code samples. [Link]

Slashdot » Code School Fined $375K Over Employment Claims and Licensing Issues

Saturday 21 October 15:34:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader quotes Ars Technica: [O]ne of the most prominent institutions, New York's Flatiron School, will be shelling out $375,000 to settle charges brought by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's office. The AG said the school operated for a period without the proper educational license, and it improperly marketed both its job placement rates and the salaries of … [Link]

Mashable » 'Stranger Things' star fires agent accused of sexual assault after he Facebook 'poked' his victim

Saturday 21 October 15:07:13 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookStranger Things actor Finn Wolfhard has fired his agent after allegations of sexual assault surfaced, Entertainment Weekly reported.  Tyler Grasham, who was also fired from his job as a talent agent at APA, was accused of sexual assault by a former teen actor.  SEE ALSO: Jennifer Lawrence, Reese Witherspoon speak out about sexual harassment in Hollywood Blaise Godbe Lipman, who appeared … [Link]

Mashable » All measuring cups are wrong

Saturday 21 October 15:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookA former software engineer for Google and Facebook has combined his love of cooking and mathematics to make this innovative kitchen product. Read more…More about Facebook, Google, Food, Kickstarter, and Mashable Video [Link]

Mashable » Now's not the time to politicize the roving gangs of giant spiders slowly taking over America

Saturday 21 October 15:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookFirst and foremost, let me say that what’s happening in this country right now is simply tragic. Families have lost loved ones, and this nation mourns with them.  But it is both premature and reprehensible to inject politics into this sudden, aggressive infestation of roving gangs of giant, six-foot-tall spiders, the likes of which have never been witnessed by mankind in … [Link]

Slashdot » Friendlier GPL-Enforcement Permission Proposed By Linux Kernel Developers

Saturday 21 October 14:34:00 UTC 2017

The former Executive Director of the Free Software Foundation — and Slashdot user #41121 — contacted Slashdot with this announcement. bkuhn — now president of the Software Freedom Conservancy — writes: Software Freedom Conservancy, home of the GPL Compliance Project for Linux Developers, publicly applauded today the proposal of the Linux Kernel Enforcement Statement, which adds a per-copyright-holder-opt-in additional permission … [Link]

Mashable » A Brooklyn chemist's 1800s photos capture New York in motion

Saturday 21 October 14:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookJune 26, 1886Jamie Swan jumps off a short stone wall at Fort Greene Park in Brooklyn.Image: Wallace G. Levison/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty ImagesWallace G. Levison was a chemist, inventor, and lecturer who founded the Departments of Mineralogy and Astronomy at the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences in the latter half of the 19th century.He was also an avid photographer, using … [Link]

Mashable » What can a 24-megapixel selfie camera do for you? We reviewed the Vivo 7+ to find out

Saturday 21 October 13:22:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookMy wife recently decided to print out a hundred or so of the best photographs we've taken with our smartphones over the years. Looking at them, I've noticed something interesting: More than half of them were selfies. It's hardly surprising. Rear cameras are great for taking photos of sunsets, but for those family moments you really want to remember, a selfie … [Link]

Mashable » This full-size travel bag fits in a shoe box

Saturday 21 October 13:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookFreitag has completely changed the way your travel bag is made. Instead of a heavy metal frame, the bag uses compressed air for support, making the Zippelin bag the inflatable gear you never knew you needed. Read more…More about Travel, Transportation, Mashable Video, Real People, and Real Time [Link]

Slashdot » Tech Companies To Lobby For Immigrant 'Dreamers' To Remain In US

Saturday 21 October 13:00:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Reuters: Nearly two dozen major companies in technology and other industries are planning to launch a coalition to demand legislation that would allow young, illegal immigrants a path to permanent residency, according to documents seen by Reuters. The Coalition for the American Dream intends to ask Congress to pass bipartisan legislation this year … [Link]

Mashable » The origins of trick-or-treating begins and ends with honoring the dead on Halloween

Saturday 21 October 12:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookThe best part of Halloween by far is the candy.  If you're young and hungry for those sweets, obviously the best way to get them is to go trick-or-treating  But, have you ever wondered who created this prestigious celebration (still not a federal holiday, but whatever) and who decided to add trick-or-treating to the mix.  One spooky night… Image: giphyHalloween derives … [Link]

Mashable » Become fluent in Arduino for less than $30

Saturday 21 October 10:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookJust to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission. Today's aspiring robot inventors have an advantage over droid-loving Anakin Skywalker and it comes in the form of the Ultimate DIY Arduino Robotics Bundle. Over the course of 22 hours of expert training, you'll get familiarized with the world's most popular open-source electronics platform so you can … [Link]

Slashdot » Tim Cook Confirms the Mac Mini Isn't Dead

Saturday 21 October 10:00:00 UTC 2017

Apple has refreshed just about every Mac product within the last couple of years — except for the Mac Mini. Naturally, this has left many analysts questioning whether or not the company would be phasing out the Mini to focus more on its mobile devices. A MacRumors reader decided to email Apple CEO Tim Cook to get an update on … [Link]

Mashable » Pay $25 for these Bluetooth earbuds that are usually $90

Saturday 21 October 10:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookJust to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission. Choosing a new pair of workout headphones is more complicated than it should be. Beats are too expensive, Bose are way too expensive (the dream), and the internet is full of knockoff pairs that were potentially built with Elmer's Glue. And all you want … [Link]

Mashable » Take an online class in business management and skip the MBA

Saturday 21 October 10:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookJust to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission. Two years of business school? Hard pass. Student debt? Double hard pass. SEE ALSO: If you want to grow your business, start by increasing your social media following Avoid both of these factors on your journey to becoming an expert manager or executive by enrolling … [Link]

Mashable » 7 'Stranger Things' Season 2 predictions

Saturday 21 October 8:30:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookIt’s been over a year since we rampantly binged our way through the sweet '80s nostalgia of Stranger Things Season 1, and now — finally — the sequel is less than 10 days away. The final trailer is out, a clip of Eleven has been released, and the Upside Down is so close you can practically smell it. SEE ALSO: Netflix … [Link]

Slashdot » The US Government Keeps Spectacularly Underestimating Solar Energy Installation

Saturday 21 October 7:00:00 UTC 2017

Michael J. Coren reports via Quartz: Every two years, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), America's official source for energy statistics, issues 10-year projections about how much solar, wind and conventional energy the future holds for the U.S. Every two years, since the mid-1990s, the EIA's projections turn out to be wrong. Last year, they proved spectacularly wrong. The Natural … [Link]

Slashdot » Body Camera Study Shows No Effect On Police Use of Force Or Citizen Complaints

Saturday 21 October 3:30:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader quotes a report from NPR: Having police officers wear little cameras seems to have no discernible impact on citizen complaints or officers' use of force, at least in the nation's capital. That's the conclusion of a study performed as Washington, D.C., rolled out its huge camera program. The city has one of the largest forces in the … [Link]

Slashdot » Software Developer Creates Personal Cryptocurrency

Saturday 21 October 1:25:00 UTC 2017

mirandakatz writes: If you want to pick Evan Prodromou's brain — as many people often do — you'll have to pay him. And not just a consulting fee: You'll have to pay him in his own personal cryptocurrency, dubbed Evancoin. Currently, 20 days after his Initial Coin Offering, a single Evancoin is worth $45. As Prodromou tells Scott Rosenberg at … [Link]

Slashdot » Elon Musk Begins Digging a Hyperloop Tunnel In Maryland

Saturday 21 October 0:45:00 UTC 2017

Elon Musk has been granted permission by Maryland to start digging tunnels for his hyperoop transit system that he wants to build between New York and Washington. "Hogan administration officials said Thursday the state has issued a conditional utility permit to let Musk's tunneling firm, The Boring Co., dig a 10.3-mile tunnel beneath the state-owned portion of the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, … [Link]

Mashable » MasterCard will finally stop forcing people to sign receipts

Saturday 21 October 0:42:55 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook“Can I get you to sign on the bottom?" "Your signature, please?" "Sign here." Those prompts that you've heard forever after shopping, eating out, and spending money are coming to an end. SEE ALSO: Personalize your credit cards (and support a good cause) with these custom card covers MasterCard is doing away with signatures on purchases starting in April. It's the … [Link]

Mashable » Hillary Clinton tried to use a very relatable trick to skip Trump's inauguration, but alas, it didn't work

Saturday 21 October 0:34:10 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook Hey, it's October and here we are, still talking about President Donald Trump's inauguration. Hillary Clinton was on The Graham Norton Show on Friday to promote the release of her book What Happened when the two got talking about Trump's inauguration in January, which she attended alongside other former presidents and their spouses.  Obviously, Clinton, who won the popular vote … [Link]

Slashdot » Vungle CEO Arrested For Child Rape and Attempted Murder

Saturday 21 October 0:07:00 UTC 2017

Freshly Exhumed writes: Axios is working to get details about a revelation on a government website that Vungle CEO Zain Jaffer is facing charges at the Maple Street Correctional Center in Redwood City, California of attempted murder, a lewd act on a child, oral copulation of a person under 14, child abuse, assault with a deadly weapon and battery upon … [Link]

Mashable » Google officially flips on Project Loon in Puerto Rico

Saturday 21 October 0:06:26 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookPuerto Rico is in trouble. Approximately 3 million of its residents are still without electricity after the island was devastated by Hurricane Maria, and 30% lack access to drinkable water. Exacerbating the process of recovery is the fact that communication infrastructure in general, and the internet specifically, is experiencing trouble across the U.S. territory. Enter Alphabet's Project Loon, which on October … [Link]


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