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The Chicken May Have Come Before the Egg
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 06:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's that-settles-that deptartment:
Muondecay writes "The age old question of which came first, the chicken or the egg, has been tentatively answered. The verdict? The chicken, or rather a key protein needed to form the shell of the egg. The protein, called ovocledidin-17, was known to be involved in binding calcite molecules that formed the shells, but the mechanism behind this was unclear until now (abstract). The protein acts as a molecular machine, binding to nanoparticles of calcite and guiding them to begin self-assembly of the shell. This gives tremendous insight for developing methods of nano-scale self-assembly based on natural processes, as well as settling heated cocktail party arguments everywhere."

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Microsoft Shows Off 'Milo' Virtual Human
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 04:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's patch-often deptartment:
adeelarshad82 writes "Microsoft released a video showing off its 'virtual human' technology, named Milo, designed for the company's hands-free Xbox 360 motion controller called Kinect at TED Global in Oxford. Milo is built to react to people's emotions, body movements, and voice, allowing players to interact with the virtual character. It was built using artificial intelligence developed by Lionhead studios, along with undisclosed technology from Microsoft. According to games designer Peter Molyneux, the game exploits psychological techniques to make a person feel that Milo is real. Each Milo character will be unique because every player's interaction with the virtual character will sculpt the type of virtual person Milo will evolve to become."

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New Chinese Rule Requires Real Names Online
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 03:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's anonymous-howard deptartment:
crimeandpunishment writes "According to a human rights group, a leading Chinese Internet regulator is calling for new rules requiring people to use their real names online and when buying mobile phones. New York-based 'Human Rights in China' says it has obtained the complete text of a speech Wang Chen, director of the State Council Information Office, made in April, and they quote him as saying 'We will make the Internet real name system a reality as soon as possible.'"

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Wireless PCIe To Enable Remote Graphics Cards
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 01:45 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's no-cat-involved deptartment:
J. Dzhugashvili writes "If you read Slashdot, odds are you already know about WiGig and the 7Gbps wireless networking it promises. The people at Atheros and Wilocity are now working on an interesting application for the spec: wireless PCI Express. In a nutshell, wPCIe enables a PCI Express switch with local and remote components linked by a 60GHz connection. The first applications, which will start sampling next year, will let you connect your laptop to a base station with all kinds of storage controllers, networking controllers, and yes, an external graphics processor. wPCIe works transparently to the operating system, which only sees additional devices connected over PCI Express. And as icing on the cake, wPCie controllers will lets you connect to standard Wi-Fi networks, too."

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Sonic Skydive's Real Aim Is To Help Astronauts Survive
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 01:15 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's recoup-the-training-costs-at-least deptartment:
mattnyc99 writes "Earlier this year came reports that Felix Baumgartner (the daredevil who flew across the English Channel) would be attempting to jump from a balloon at least 120,000 feet altitude, break the sound barrier, and live. Now comes a big investigative story from Esquire's issue on achieving the impossible, which details the former NASA team dedicated to making sure Baumgartner's Stratos project will instruct the future safety of manned space flight (including Jonathan Clark, the husband of an astronaut who died in the Columbia disaster). From the article (which also includes pics and video shot by the amateur space photographer we've discussed here before): "that's also precisely what makes Stratos great. It's more like Mercury than the shuttle: They're taking risks, making things up as they go along. But they're also doing important work, potentially groundbreaking work. They're doing what NASA no longer has the balls to do. Hell, he'd do it for free. He is doing it for free. Stratos only picks up his travel expenses. Clark looks at his friend, shrugs. 'This is new space.'""

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Your Feces Is a Wonderland of Viruses
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 12:45 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's and-so-can-you deptartment:
sciencehabit writes "Thanks to an anlaysis of fecal samples from four sets of Missouri-born female identical twins and their mothers, researchers have concluded that human guts harbor viruses as unique as the people they inhabit; the viral lineup differs even between identical twins. Even more surprising? These viruses may be doing good work inside of us."

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Don't Stop File-Sharing, Says Former Pink Floyd Manager
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 12:15 PM
By timothy from Slashdot's leave-those-kids-alone deptartment:
Barence writes "The former manager of Pink Floyd has labelled attempts to clamp down on music file-sharing as a "waste of time". "Not only are they a waste of time, they make the law offensive. They are comparable to prohibition in the US in the 1920s," said Peter Jenner, who's now the emeritus president of the International Music Managers' Forum. "It's absurd to expect ordinary members of the public to think about what they're allowed to do [with CDs, digital downloads, etc]... and then ask themselves whether it's legal or not." The comments come as Britain's biggest ISP, BT, said it was confident that Britain's Digital Economy Act — which could result in file-sharers losing their internet connection — would be overturned in the courts, because it doesn't comply with European laws on privacy."

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Open Source Hardware Definition Hits 0.3
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 11:45 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's but-it's-a-conservative-number deptartment:
ptorrone writes "A group of open source hardware makers have put together a draft of the open source hardware definition which is now a version 0.3 which hopes to further define the making, sharing and selling of hardware within an "Open Source Hardware license". This fall, the day before Maker Faire New York City, the group hopes to have the license finalized and hit v 1.0 and they are holding the first Open Source Hardware Summit. There are currently dozens of companies making open source hardware and millions of dollars."

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Deported Russian (Spy?) Worked At Microsoft
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 11:00 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's sure-why-not deptartment:
subtropolis writes "KOMO News in Seattle is reporting that a recently-deported 23-yr-old Russian man 'appears to have ties to the recently-exposed Russian counterintelligence' (according to unnamed Feds). The article states that he admitted to unspecified immigration violations and was promptly shown the door on Tuesday. It also says that 'Microsoft confirms Karetnikov worked as an entry-level software tester for less than a year.' So, I'm thinking that MS had better take a really good at their logs for that time. He may have got in at 'entry-level' but his abilities may have been a fair bit beyond that. ... Interestingly, his admission to mere 'violations' and swift departure would be right in line with how this swap has gone down. The four Russians who were flown to Britain and the US had to first sign a confession before President Medvedev granted them pardons." The same news is at CBS News, too.

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Spammers Moving To Disposable Domains
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 10:00 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's filling-up-our-landfills deptartment:
Trailrunner7 writes "Spammers and the botnet operators they're allied with are continuing to adapt their techniques to evade security technologies, and now are using what amount to disposable domains for their activities. A new report shows that the spammers are buying dozens of domains at a time and moving from one to another as often as several times a day to prevent shutdowns. New research shows that the amount of time that a spammer uses a given domain is basically a day or less. The company looked at 60 days worth of data from their customers and found that more than 70 percent of the domains used by spammers are active for a day or less."

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NASA's Juno, Armored Tank Heading For Jupiter
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 09:15 AM
By CmdrTaco from Slashdot's gonna-be-a-bumpy-ride deptartment:
coondoggie writes "When it comes to ensuring that its upcoming Juno spacecraft can survive its mission, NASA is surrounding the spacecraft's electronic innards with titanium to ward off mission-threatening radiation. Juno's so-called radiation vault weighs about 200 kilograms (500 pounds), has walls that measure about a square meter (nearly 9 square feet) in area, about 1 centimeter (a third of an inch) in thickness, and 18 kilograms (40 pounds) in mass. About the size of an SUV's trunk — encloses Juno's command and data handling box, power and data distribution unit and about 20 other electronic assemblies, according to NASA."

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Privacy Flaws In Chatroulette Expose Users
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 08:30 AM
By CmdrTaco from Slashdot's users-exposed-themselves-just-fine deptartment:
itwbennett writes "In a paper posted online this week, researchers from the University of Colorado at Boulder and McGill University outline three different types of attacks that could be launched against Chatroulette users. While the new research doesn't expose any gaping privacy holes, it does show how the service could be misused by determined criminals. For example, the researchers were able to use IP-mapping services to get a general idea of users' location (a public Web site, called Chatroulettemap.com already does this). Then by searching Facebook using information obtained in chats and comparing pictures, researchers were able to identify chatters. 'Even in a city as big as Chicago, you can drill down and find the person you're actually talking to,' said Richard Han, an associate professor with the University of Colorado who co-authored the paper."

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OpenSolaris Governing Board Closing Shop?
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 07:45 AM
By CmdrTaco from Slashdot's so-it-comes-to-this deptartment:
echolinux writes "Frustrated by Oracle's refusal to interact with the OpenSolaris community or speak with the OpenSolaris Governing Board, the OGB has issued an ultimatum to Oracle: designate a liaison to the OGB by August 16th or the board will 'take action at the August 23 meeting to trigger the clause in the OGB charter that will return control of the community to Oracle.'"

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Mozilla's New JavaScript Engine Coming September 1
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 07:00 AM
By CmdrTaco from Slashdot's believe-when-it-parses deptartment:
An anonymous reader writes "Mozilla has reached an important Milestone as its new JavaScript engine "JaegerMonkey" is now faster than the current "TraceMonkey" in a key benchmark. Mozilla wants JaegerMonkey to be faster than the competition and launch on September 1, which means that JaegerMonkey will make it into Firefox 4.0."

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iPhone 4 Reception Recall Ruckus Roundup
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 06:30 AM
By CmdrTaco from Slashdot's good-luck-with-that deptartment:
Readers today have been sending tons of stories about the iPhone4, so here are a few of the highlights: Following the Consumers Reports that the iPhone has antenna problems, Andy Patrizio asks if Apple can withstand the pressure to recall, while CNet estimates that a A recall would cost them $1.5B. But that's just the latest on the iPhone4: the long running carrier exclusivity lawsuit rumors have been upgraded to Class Action status.

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Given Truth, the Misinformed Believe Lies More
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 05:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's don't-let-the-truth-get-in-your-way deptartment:
SharpFang writes "In a series of studies in 2005 and 2006, researchers at the University of Michigan found that misinformed people, particularly political partisans, rarely changed their minds when exposed to corrected facts in news stories. In fact, they often became even more strongly set in their beliefs. Facts, they found, were not curing misinformation. Like an underpowered antibiotic, facts could actually make misinformation even stronger."

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PS3 To Gain Support For 3-D Movies On Blu-Ray and YouTube
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 05:15 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's all-one-of-them deptartment:
An anonymous reader writes with news that Sony is planning a firmware update for the PS3 to enable 3-D playback from Blu-ray movies and YouTube. The update is scheduled for September, and support for 3-D photos will come later. Sony's Kaz Hirai spoke recently about how the PS3 was designed with these kinds of upgrades in mind. "Given how fast technology turns over now, we knew going in that we had to pack a lot of horsepower into the PS3. Four years ago — when you look at the console's power and its retail price — a lot of people were critical with the fact that there was so much packed under the hood. Now we're especially pleased to be introducing things like Move and 3-D gaming because we're able to show tangibly why we released the PS3 with the power it has, and why it makes so much sense to future proof a console." Sony also updated its PS3 Terms of Service to warn against too much 3-D viewing.

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Toyota Sudden Acceleration Is Driver Error
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 04:30 AM
By kdawson from Slashdot's fed-findings-fault-fat-feet deptartment:
phantomfive writes "The NHTSA has investigated data recorders from Toyota cars whose owners claimed to have crashed due to an accelerator error. They found that the throttles were wide open and the brakes weren't being pressed. The investigation looked at a sample of the cars, selected by the NHTSA." Jamie found this article with a superior headline at Balloon Juice.

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JavaScript/HTML 5 Gaming?
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 02:45 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's five-by-five deptartment:
cjcela writes "Lately I've seen some HTML 5/JavaScript games popping up on the web. Most of them lack sound, and are not polished, but little by little this is changing. As an example, check Galactic Plunder. While it is only a single-level proof of concept, it is one of the first arcade non-Flash games that I've found playable. Do you know of other comparable or better pure JavaScript games?"

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Italian Draft Wiretapping Law Under Fire
Posted by News Fetcher on July 14 '10 at 01:15 AM
By kdawson from Slashdot's do-not-press-that-red-button deptartment:
newsblaze writes "Italy has a draft law on surveillance and eavesdropping that could jeopardize journalists and threaten freedom of expression. The UN doesn't like it and they are calling for the abolition or revision of the bill. Anyone not accredited as a professional journalist could be imprisoned for up to four years for recording a conversation without the consent of the person involved and then publicizing that information. Four years seems a bit draconian, but people should know they are being recorded. Across Italy, journalists and citizens protested against the draft law, and most journalists went on strike (only the newspaper published by the premier's brother was open for business). I couldn't discover what would trigger the maximum penalty. This is similar to a 2007 bill that was stopped — lobbyists never give up!"

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