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 » NASA Funds Designs for a Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Rocket

Sunday 12 November 23:22:00 UTC 2017

"Dangerous radiation. Overstuffed pantries. Cabin fever. NASA could sidestep many of the impediments to a Mars mission if they could just get there faster," writes, which reports NASA is now exploring an alternative to chemical rockets. In August, NASA announced an $18.8-million-dollar contract with nuclear company BWXT to design fuel and a reactor suitable for nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP), … [Link]

Mashable » Eminem performs 'Walk on Water' live for the first time (sans Beyoncé, sadly)

Sunday 12 November 23:03:42 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookEminem’s Revival is off to a great start.  Two days after the rapper dropped the first track from his new album, he showed up at the MTV EMAs to perform it in person. SEE ALSO: We made a Beyoncé-only version of Eminem's 'Walk On Water' so you don't have to And even though Beyoncé wasn't around to lend her vocals this … [Link]

Mashable » Here, at last, are the other 'Stranger Things' child experiments and their powers

Sunday 12 November 23:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookAfter watching Stranger Things 2, we now know there are more experiments than just Eleven. In the middle of the season we meet Eight, so we can only expect that we'll learn more about her in the next season, and also about the other experiments.  Here's what we can assume about the other experiments and what powers they will have: Ten … [Link]

Mashable » Gal Gadot met Brooklynn Prince and we don't know which one we're more jealous of

Sunday 12 November 22:54:07 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookGal Gadot's got fans all over the world, and over the weekend she got to meet a very special one who's got a few fans of her own. SEE ALSO: This exclusive clip from 'The Florida Project' is better than a cruise At the Governors Awards on Saturday, the Wonder Woman star posted for a photo with Brooklynn Prince, the 7-year-old … [Link]

Mashable » Chinese shoppers spent $25 *billion* on Alibaba's Singles Day

Sunday 12 November 22:20:11 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookSingles Day is like if Amazon Prime Day was a real national holiday. And this year, shoppers in China spent $25 billion in 24 hours.  The 8-year-old e-commerce holiday promoted by Alibaba—Amazon's biggest competitor and an e-commerce force in China—started as an anti-Valentine's Day encouraging single people to buy gifts for themselves every Nov. 11. Now, it comes with crazy deals … [Link]

Slashdot » Linux 4.14 Has Been Released

Sunday 12 November 22:18:00 UTC 2017

diegocg quotes Kernel Newbies: Linux 4.11 has been released. This release adds support for bigger memory limits in x86 hardware (128PiB of virtual address space, 4PiB of physical address space); support for AMD Secure Memory Encryption; a new unwinder that provides better kernel traces and a smaller kernel size; support for the zstd compression algorithm has been added to Btrfs … [Link]

Mashable » The 'Stranger Things' memes that will make you say 'whoa'

Sunday 12 November 22:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookStranger Things is an addicting experience that always seems to hit the right nostalgic senses in your brain that make you think, “let me throw away my entire weekend by binging this show.”  SEE ALSO: The 'Stranger Things' cast has some strong feelings about the Season 2 ending After you’ve devoured the second season you scour the internet for super fans … [Link]

Slashdot » US Airports Still Fail New Security Tests

Sunday 12 November 21:14:00 UTC 2017

schwit1 quotes ABC News: In recent undercover tests of multiple airport security checkpoints by the Department of Homeland Security, inspectors said screeners, their equipment or their procedures failed more than half the time, according to a source familiar with the classified report. When ABC News asked the source if the failure rate was 80 percent, the response was, "You are … [Link]

Mashable » Fiona the hippo's best moments of 2017

Sunday 12 November 21:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookFiona the hippo, queen of the Cincinnati Zoo and our national daughter, has had a banner year. She swam. She ate snacks. Friends, she lived her life. And she did it against all odds! It's true: Fiona, whose ears wiggle when she pops out of the water, is the only being on earth who had a pleasant 2017. And she deserved … [Link]

Mashable » Sean Hannity's defense of Roy Moore is costing him advertisers

Sunday 12 November 20:45:29 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookSean Hannity's been reluctant to distance himself from Roy Moore. So now Hannity's advertisers are distancing themselves from him. SEE ALSO: So many politicians gave the same terrible response to the Roy Moore abuse allegations Keurig, Green Mountain Coffee (which is owned by the same company as Keurig),, 23andMe, and Nature's Bounty have all spoken up to say they have … [Link]

Mashable » YouTube finally blocks a known terrorist propagandist from its site

Sunday 12 November 20:41:34 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookThe extremist jihadist cleric Anwar al-Awlaki was killed in a U.S. drone strike six years ago. But until this month, he was the leading English-speaking jihadist recruiter through more than 70,000 videos posted on YouTube.  Three-quarters of those videos are now gone from YouTube's archives, the New York Times reported Sunday. The Times called the move by YouTube a "watershed moment" … [Link]

Mashable » Gal Gadot reportedly won't play Wonder Woman again until Brett Ratner gets the boot

Sunday 12 November 20:37:52 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookThe very first thing audiences will see next weekend when the lights go down for Justice League is a logo for RatPac-Dune Entertainment – the financing company of disgraced Hollywood producer/director Brett Ratner. Gal Gadot is reportedly saying enough is enough. SEE ALSO: Please stop applauding Louis C.K. for doing the bare minimum As Page Six reported this weekend, citing an … [Link]

Slashdot » The iPhone X Becomes Unresponsive When It Gets Cold

Sunday 12 November 20:10:00 UTC 2017

sqorbit writes: Apple is working on a fix for the newly release iPhone X. It appears that the touch screen can become unresponsive when the iPhone is subjected to cold weather. Users are reporting that locking and unlocking the phone resolves the issue. Apple stated that it is aware of the issue and it will be addressed in a future … [Link]

ProgrammableWeb » Daily API RoundUp: FullContact, Personio, VergeSense, Paccurate

Sunday 12 November 20:09:42 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 » What Happens to Open Source Code After Its Developer Dies?

Sunday 12 November 19:06:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader writes: The late Jim Weirich "was a seminal member of the western world's Ruby community," according to Ruby developer Justin Searls, who at the age of 30 took over Weirich's tools (which are used by huge sites like Hulu, Kickstarter, and Twitter). Soon Searls made a will and a succession plan for his own open-source projects. Wired … [Link]

Mashable » This parrot potty almost makes bird poop adorable. Almost.

Sunday 12 November 18:20:57 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookPolly want a potty?  Parrot potty training is a thing – and Japanese bird owners have apparently taken it to the next level with a potty that's just for parrots. It looks kind of like an ashtray with a bird-shaped perch attached. SEE ALSO: Cops respond to calls for help, but it was just a dramatic parrot The parrot potty pictures … [Link]

Slashdot » Is Physical Law an Alien Intelligence?

Sunday 12 November 18:02:00 UTC 2017

What if alien life were so advanced that its powers were indistinguishable from physics? It's the one-year anniversary of a startling article which appeared in Nautilus magazine. Long-time Slashdot reader wjcofkc writes: Caleb Scharf, astronomer and the director of the multidisciplinary Columbia Astrobiology Center at Columbia University presents an intriguing thought experiment. "Perhaps Arthur C. Clarke was being uncharacteristically unambitious. … [Link]

Mashable » Ohio State fans had the best response to Apple's iOS 11 glitch

Sunday 12 November 17:03:10 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookOhio State crushed Michigan State yesterday—and they also crushed Apple.  Ohio State fans perfectly executed a timely prank directed at the iPhone maker. During an O-H-I-O chant, when they would usually represent the "I," fans instead held up signs that read "A[?]."  Yep, they replaced the "I" with the nonsense "A[?]"—just as Apple did with an autocorrect suggestion for iOS 11 … [Link]

Slashdot » CopperheadOS Fights Unlicensed Installations On Nexus Phones

Sunday 12 November 16:58:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader writes: Earlier this week security-hardened Android build CopperheadOS temporarily blocked Nexus updates on its servers after finding out that other companies have been flashing the ROM onto Nexus phones and selling them commercially in violation of the CopperheadOS licensing terms. The incident highlights an inherent problem in getting open source to be used by the masses: the … [Link]

Mashable » This stunning kitty is like two adorable cats in one

Sunday 12 November 16:42:15 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookMeet Quimera, the (maybe) chimera. This striking creature looks like two cats in one. One side of her face is orange, with an amber eye; the other is black, with a blue eye. SEE ALSO: Get your fluffy cat snuggles without the cat A post shared by Quimera twofacedcat (@gataquimera) on Oct 11, 2016 at 8:41pm PDT Though Quimera's name means … [Link]

Mashable » Donald Trump denies he's using the AT&T-Time Warner merger to get revenge on CNN

Sunday 12 November 16:27:39 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookPresident Donald Trump was always against a merger between AT&T and Time Warner, and he's always hated CNN. So the appearance that he was using his position to force Time Warner to ditch CNN to close the $85 billion deal made a strange, vindictive kind of sense.  Now, however, Trump is denying any attempts to exact revenge on his cable news … [Link]

Mashable » Test your eyesight with your smartphone

Sunday 12 November 16:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookDo you have perfect vision? This device can tell you easilyEyeque Insight is an at-home vision screener that uses your smartphone to test if you have 20/20 eyesight or less. Read more…More about Tech, Kickstarter, Health, Smartphone, and Eye [Link]

Slashdot » Lockheed Martin To Build High-Energy Airborne Laser For Fighter Planes

Sunday 12 November 15:54:00 UTC 2017

Slashdot reader Big Hairy Ian quotes New Atlas: In a move that could revolutionize aerial combat, the US Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) has awarded Lockheed Martin a US$26.3 million contract to design, develop, and produce a high-power laser weapon that the AFRL wants to install and test on a tactical fighter jet by 2021. The new test weapon is … [Link]

Mashable » Cardi B, Kit Harington, and Lin-Manuel Miranda audition for 'The Lion King' on 'SNL'

Sunday 12 November 14:53:58 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook Beyoncé is starring in the new remake of The Lion King, but did you know Cardi B auditioned first? Saturday Night Live presented auditions from Cardi B, Kit Harington, Oprah, Eminem, Sterling K. Brown, Celine Dion, and plenty of other stars who could have appeared in the movie. It's amazing none of them got the parts they were going for. … [Link]

Slashdot » Your Visual Skills Are Not Correlated To Your IQ

Sunday 12 November 14:50:00 UTC 2017

Science_afficionado writes: Psychologists at Vanderbilt University have conducted the first study of individual variation in visual ability. They have discovered that there is a broad range of differences in people's capability for recognizing and remembering novel objects and this ability is not associated with individuals' general intelligence, or IQ. Or, as the article puts it, "Just because someone is smart … [Link]

Mashable » Taylor Swift sang on a jewel-encrusted snake microphone at 'SNL' because of course she did

Sunday 12 November 14:45:18 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook The old Taylor can't come to the phone right now, but the new one was more than happy to pick up when Saturday Night Live came calling. Over the weekend, Taylor Swift hit 30 Rock as a musical guest for the first time since 2009, bringing her reputation with her.  SEE ALSO: Taylor Swift's new album 'reputation' confirms she's mad … [Link]

Mashable » Learn how to build Raspberry Pi computers with this $15 online class

Sunday 12 November 14:41:28 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookJust to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission. A partnership between Broadcom and the University of Cambridge, the U.K. based Raspberry Pi Foundation creates credit card-sized computers that promote learning how to code and educational research. Since the computers went on the market in 2012, Raspberry Pi has sold over eight million … [Link]

Mashable » Roll your own sushi rolls at home with this $13 device

Sunday 12 November 14:32:19 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookJust to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission. Making sushi is an art. It takes many hours (even years) of training to become a master at crafting those delicate rolls. If you don't have the patience to take classes and are craving some homemade sushi, then this device could help. SEE ALSO: … [Link]

Mashable » The Leslie Jones-Kyle Mooney love match on 'SNL' takes a violent turn

Sunday 12 November 14:31:44 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook The sweet love story of Saturday Night Live cast members Leslie Jones and Kyle Mooney has been chronicled in detail on the weekly series. We were there when the two met and formed a connection, and we were there months later when their relationship was tested. Now, the focus shifts to Mooney's college pal and fellow cast member Beck Bennett. … [Link]

Mashable » 10 useful gift ideas that also make great stocking stuffers

Sunday 12 November 14:21:32 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookJust to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission. Back away from the Yankee Candle. This holiday season, let’s vow to get a little more creative (and practical) with our stocking stuffers. Pick up these gifts instead — we guarantee that they won’t end up in a regift pile. And remember: use coupon … [Link]

Mashable » Germophobes would love this bacteria detecting towel

Sunday 12 November 14:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookThe Mizu Smart Towel changes color when it detects bacteria, telling you when to throw it in the wash.  Read more…More about Health, Mashable Video, Hygiene, Sanitation, and Real Time [Link]

Mashable » 'SNL' Weekend Update drags sexual predators with workplace training from HR

Sunday 12 November 13:41:57 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook There are some strong Trump burns to kick off the latest edition of Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update, but the real highlight is the sketch's takedown of sexual predators in Hollywood and beyond. OK fine, here's one Trump joke: "Well, it's Veteran's Day. And Donald Trump celebrated by finally going to Vietnam." Really though, the heart of this sketch is … [Link]

Mashable » Tiffany Haddish crushed her hilarious 'SNL' monologue, and she made history in the process

Sunday 12 November 13:10:13 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook Saturday Night Live guest host Tiffany Haddish kicked off her evening with an uproarious opening monologue that touched on the news of the day (Trump and other awful men), her wardrobe (she's very passionate about her Alexander McQueen dress), and her hit summer 2017 comedy, Girls Trip. Less funny was the context around her hosting gig. This Saturday, 11/11 on … [Link]

Mashable » 10 times typos almost ruined your life

Sunday 12 November 13:00:00 UTC 2017

Twitter FacebookEverything we do rides on a few stokes of the keypad. Unfortunately, sometimes our minds and our fingers are not always on the same page. SEE ALSO: 20 Awful Grammar Mishaps to Make You Feel Smarter The dreaded typo can be harmless. They can be caught by your spellchecker or edited out by some simple proofreading, but in this day and … [Link]

Slashdot » Ask Slashdot: Can You Convert Old iPods Into A Home Music-Streaming Solution?

Sunday 12 November 11:46:00 UTC 2017

Slashdot reader zhennian wants to stream music throughout his entire house, "and was hoping that with three old iPods I might be able to put together a centrally managed house-wide audio system." Ideally it would be possible to control what's playing from a central web interface using an app on an IOS or Android device. With the iPods already plugged … [Link]

Slashdot » Bill Gates Just Bought 25,000 Acres in the Arizona Desert

Sunday 12 November 8:42:00 UTC 2017

What's the world's second-richest man up to now? A Phoenix news station reports: One of Bill Gates' investment firms has spent $80 million to kickstart the development of a brand-new community in Arizona's far West Valley. The large plot of land is about 45 minutes west of downtown Phoenix off I-10 near Tonopah. The proposed community, made up of close … [Link]

Mashable » 'SNL' takes Roy Moore to task with some Alabama sensibility, courtesy of Kate McKinnon

Sunday 12 November 5:54:59 UTC 2017

Twitter Facebook Another week, another 34,989 sexual assault and harassment stories in the news (that’s an official number). On Saturday night, Saturday Night Live tackled the highly icky report that Alabama Republican senatorial candidate Roy Moore engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a minor with the man whose seat he’s filling: Jeff Sessions. This week's cold open started with a sensible Vice … [Link]

Slashdot » Equifax Tells Investors They Could Be Breached Again – And That They're Still Profitable

Sunday 12 November 5:38:00 UTC 2017

"Equifax executives will forgo their 2017 bonuses," reports CNBC. But according to the New York Post, the company "hasn't lost any significant business customers… Equifax largely does business with banks and other financial institutions — not with the people they collect information on." Even though it's facing more than 240 class-action lawsuits, Equifax's revenue actually increased 3.8% from July to … [Link]

Slashdot » ESR Sees Three Viable Alternatives To C

Sunday 12 November 2:34:00 UTC 2017

An anonymous reader writes: After 35 years of programming in C, Eric S. Raymond believes that we're finally seeing viable alternatives to the language. "We went thirty years — most of my time in the field — without any plausible C successor, nor any real vision of what a post-C technology platform for systems programming might look like. Now we … [Link]

Slashdot » iPhone Encryption Hampers Investigation of Texas Shooter, Says FBI

Sunday 12 November 0:34:00 UTC 2017

"FBI officials said Tuesday they have been stymied in their efforts to unlock the cellphone of the man who shot and killed at least 26 people at a church here on Sunday," reports the Houston Chronicle. Slashdot reader Anon E. Muss writes: The police obtained a search warrant for the phone, but so far they've been unable to unlock it. … [Link]


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