Anon E. Muss writes: HP formally announced Project Moonshot today, including the "Redstone" ARM-based server. They also announced plans to build servers based on Atom processors. The server is only a prototype at this point, but the concept looks promising. They're packing hundreds of CPU's in a 4U chassis.
Anon E. Muss writes: In a move that nobody saw coming, Hewlett-Packard CEO Mark Hurd "resigned" today. A contractor had accused him of sexual harassment, and the board brought in outside counsel to investigate. While the harassment claim could not be substantiated, the investigation did uncover other misconduct. Hurd's "close personal relationship" with the contractor created a conflict of interest, and he was also found to have misused company assets.
Anon E. Muss writes: In what can only be termed a Sudden Outbreak Of Common Sense, the judge in the Lori Drew case has thrown out her conviction by the jury, and will acquit her instead. A written ruling hasn't been issued yet, so the legal reasoning isn't known. I'm glad the judge was able to look past the awful facts in this case and apply the law. Any other outcome would have created a truly scary precedent. Meanwhile, I hope there's an especially hot corner of hell waiting for Lori Drew. She's a morally bankrupt jerk, and I can only hope that she is punished in the next life since can't be punished in this one.
Anon E. Muss writes: Just because you can put a camera somewhere, doesn't mean you should. Apparently, the Department of Homeland Security Theater doesn't grasp this concept. They've installed video cameras in urinals at Houston's Hobby Airport. At least they weren't sneaky about it — they posted a notice saying "Automatic infrared flush sensors also provide video monitoring for security purposes." (Insert bad joke about bashful bladder syndrome here)
Anon E. Muss writes: Wired is reporting that the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled against Roommates.com in a Fair Housing discrimination suit. Rommmates.com can be held liable for specific "illegal" questions (e.g. age, gender, race, and religion) on their web forms. "Unlawful questions solicit... unlawful answers" chief judge Alex Kozinsiki wrote. "If such questions are unlawful when posed face-to-face or by telephone, they don't magically become lawful when asked electronically online." There was also some good news for Roommate.com — the court upheld their immunity for the "additional comments" section on the forms, where users can write whatever they want. This is consistent with a prior case involving Craigslist.
Anon E. Muss writes: Microsoft has a new Secure Content Downloader tool that sounds an awful lot like Bittorrent clone. It's described as a "peer-assisted technology" where "Each client downloads content by exchanging parts of the file they're interested in with other clients, in addition to downloading parts from the server." Right now MSCD is just a time-limited preview, intended to support downloads of select Microsoft beta releases (e.g. Visual Studio 2008). If this test goes well, Microsoft will probably start using MSCD for all their large downloads. How do you feel about subsidizing Microsoft's bandwidth costs?
Anon E. Muss writes: The Netherlands ended transmission of "free to air" analog television today, becoming the first nation to switch completely to digital signals. There's a story about it on the AP Wire, available from various newspaper web sites.
The statistic I found most interesting is that only 0.4% of Dutch households (77,000 out of 16 million) were still using broadcast analog TV as their primary video service. In the US, the estimate is 16% (20 million out of 155 million). We've got a lot of people still living in the stone age. What do you think the chances are that the FCC will carry through with the plan to end analog TV here in 2009?