malraid writes "The White House has issued a statement in which they refuse to comment on the petition to investigate Chris Dodd for bribery from the MPAA to pass legislation. The reason given: 'because it requests a specific law enforcement action.'"
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MojoKid writes "When AMD announced the high-end Radeon HD 7970, a lower cost Radeon HD 7950 based on the same GPU was planned to arrive a few weeks later. The GPU, which is based on AMD's new architecture dubbed Graphics Core Next, is manufactured using TSMC's 28nm process and features a whopping 4.31 billion transistors. In its full configuration, found on the Radeon HD 7970, the Tahiti GPU sports 2,048 stream processors with 128 texture units and 32 ROPs. On the Radeon HD 7950, however, a few segments of the GPU have been disabled, resulting in a total of 1,792 active stream processors, with 112 texture units and 32 ROPs. The Radeon HD 7950 is also clocked somewhat lower at 800MHz, although AMD has claimed the cards are highly overclockable. Performance-wise, though the card isn't AMD's fastest, pricing is more palatable and the new card actually beats NVIDIA's high-end GeForce GTX 580 by just a hair."
sciencehabit writes "In a new study, neuroscientists connected a network of electrodes to the hearing centers of 15 patients' brains and recorded the brain activity while they listened to words like 'jazz' or 'Waldo.' They saw that each word generated its own unique pattern in the brain. So they developed two different computer programs that could reconstruct the words a patient heard just by analyzing his or her brain activity. Reconstructions from the better of the two programs were good enough that the researchers could accurately decipher the mystery word 80% to 90% percent of the time. Because there's evidence that the words we hear and the words we recall or imagine trigger similar brain processes, the study suggests scientists may one day be able to tune in to the words you're thinking."
alphadogg writes "Many IT departments are struggling with Apple's 'take it or leave it' attitude, based on discussions last week at MacIT, which is Macworld|iWorld's companion conference for IT professionals. Much of the questioning following technical presentations wasn't about Apple technology or products. It was about the complexities and confusions of trying to sort out for the enterprise Apple's practices. Those practices include the use of Apple IDs and iTunes accounts, which are designed for individual Mac or iPad or iPhone users, and programs like Apple's Volume Purchase Program, which, according to Apple 'makes it simple to find, buy, and distribute the apps your business needs' and to buy custom, third-party B2B apps."
New submitter jpwilliams writes "Gizmag reports that researchers at Sandia National Laboratories have tested a 10-centimeter bullet that can be fired from a smooth-bore rifle to hit a laser-marked target one mile away. The bullet 'includes an optical sensor in the nose to detect a laser beam on a target. The sensor sends information to guidance and control electronics that use an algorithm in an eight-bit central processing unit to command electromagnetic actuators. These actuators steer tiny fins that guide the bullet to the target.' Interestingly, accuracy improves with targets that are further away, because 'the bullet's motions settle the longer it is in flight.'"
jfruh writes "Mandriva, a venerable Linux distro, is on the verge of shutting down. One of its main problems is that it never grew into more than just an OS vendor. The big players in the commercial Linux space — Red Hat, SuSE, Canonical — all built Linux into their larger computing visions. Is there any room in the marketplace for just a straight-up Linux distro anymore?"
Lanxon writes "An in-depth feature in Wired explores the reason science may be failing us. Quoting: 'For too long, we've pretended that the old problem of causality can be cured by our shiny new knowledge. If only we devote more resources to research or dissect the system at a more fundamental level or search for ever more subtle correlations, we can discover how it all works. But a cause is not a fact, and it never will be; the things we can see will always be bracketed by what we cannot. And this is why, even when we know everything about everything, we'll still be telling stories about why it happened. It's mystery all the way down.'"
MrSeb writes "Since Slashdot first covered lovotics back in July 2011, its creator — Hooman Samani — has been busy working on a couple of new applications for his fledgling scientific sphere of human-robot love: Kissenger and Mini-Surrogate. Kissenger is a robot with highly-sensitive and motor-actuated lips, which you can use to transmit a kiss to another Kissenger robot (held by a friend or loved one) over the internet. Mini-Surrogate is basically a real-world avatar that adds a physical element to video conferencing. Both are primarily for human-human use, but it's easy to imagine a Kissenger hooked up to an AI or video game. Likewise, the next Elder Scrolls game could come with a Mini-Surrogate, so that you can communicate with your in-game wife while you're knee-deep in fireballed orc."
thrill12 writes "The Dutch Supreme Court ruled on January 31st that the taking away of possessions in the game Runescape from a 13-year-old boy, who was threatened with a (real) knife, was in fact theft because the possessions could be seen as actual goods. The highest court explained this not by arguing it was software that was copied, but by stating that the game data were real goods acquired through 'effort and time investment,' and 'the principal had the actual and exclusive dominion of the goods' — up until the moment the other guy took them away, that is."
An anonymous reader writes "A post at the Raspberry Pi blog shows an image containing the device's SoC and memory chip to help explain why the tiny PC won't ship in kit form. Clearly, the chips are so small, and the solder blobs required so tiny, that most people would mess up doing it by hand. Add to that the fact one chip has to sit on top of the other, and if you're a millimeter out, your chips are fried." The post also addresses the use of closed source libraries for graphics acceleration.
Gunkerty Jeb writes "Researchers have identified a strain of malware that's being used in a string of targeted attacks against defense contractors, government agencies and other organizations by leveraging exploits against zero-day vulnerabilities. The attacks may have been going on since 2009 in some form and the emails containing the malicious attachments are specifically targeted at executives and officials in various industries using fake conference invitations. The attack campaign, as many do, appears to be changing frequently, as the attackers use different binaries and change up their patterns for connecting to remote command-and-control servers. The research, done by Seculert and Zscaler, shows that the attackers are patient, taking the time to dig up some information about their potential targets, and are carefully choosing organizations that have high-value intellectual property and assets (PDF)."
smitty777 writes "According to the Pentagon, the 30,000-pound, precision-guided Massive Ordnance Penetrator GBU-57 bomb is just too small. Concerns around Iran's fortification of their nuclear program facilities has the DoD seeking from Congress something not quite as subdued as the GBU-57, the largest non-nuke bomb operated by the USAF. This 'smaller' bomb just recently won a prize for its ability to cut through 60 feet of concrete. The upgrades will cost $82 million on top of the $330 million spent so far to develop the system. There is some interesting high speed camera footage of the GBU-57 in the video below."
New submitter Killer Panda sends word that a German Appeals Court has upheld the injunction prohibiting sales of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Germany. Apple convinced lower courts to issue and uphold the injunction last year by making the case that Samsung's devices "slavishly" copied the iPhone and iPad. "Samsung, which is Apple's supplier as well as a competitor, has been trying to have the German decision overturned while also seeking other means to fight Apple. It redesigned the Galaxy Tab 10.1 for the German market only and named it Galaxy Tab 10.1N to get around the sales ban. Apple challenged the reworked version but a German court last month rejected Apple's claims in a preliminary judgment." The European Union announced some more bad news for Samsung: they'll be investigating the company to see whether its use of patent lawsuits is illegally hindering other companies' use of standardized 3G technology. "Under EU patent rules, a company that holds patents for standardized products is required to license them out indiscriminately at a fair price."
An anonymous reader writes "Technology Review reports on a startup with software used by stores to track, count and log people captured by security cameras. Prism Skylab's technology can produce heatmaps showing where people went and produce other statistics that the company claims offer tracking and analytics like those used online for the real world. One use case is for businesses to correlate online promotions and deals — such as Groupon offers — with real world footfall and in-store behavior."
Velcroman1 writes "Julian Assange's investors are in the process of purchasing a boat to move WikiLeaks servers offshore in an attempt to evade prosecution from U.S. law enforcement, FoxNews.com has learned. Multiple sources within the hacker community with knowledge of day-to-day WikiLeaks activities say Assange's financial backers have been working behind the scenes on the logistics of moving the servers to international waters. One possible location: the Principality of Sealand, a rusty, World War II-era, former anti-aircraft platform off the coast of England in the North Sea. Based on a 1968 British court ruling that the facility is outside the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom, Sealand's owner has declared the facility a sovereign state, or 'micro-nation.'"