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Books

U of Michigan and Amazon To Offer 400,000 OOP Books 160

Posted by timothy
from the had-no-idea-so-many-people-loved-object-oriented-pumas dept.
eldavojohn writes "Four hundred thousand rare, out of print books may soon be available for purchase ranging anywhere from $10 to $45 apiece. The article lists a rare Florence Nightingale book on Nursing which normally sells for thousands due to its rarity. The [University of Michigan] librarian, Mr. Courant said, 'The agreement enables us to increase access to public domain books and other publications that have been digitised. We are very excited to be offering this service as a new way to increase access to the rich collections of the university library.' The University of Michigan has a library where Google is scanning rare books and was the aim of heavy criticism. (Some of the Google-scanned books are to be sold on Amazon.) How the authors guild and publishers react to Amazon's Surge offering softcover reprints of out of print books remains to be seen."
Space

Black Hole Swallows Star 166

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the put-it-in-yer-mouth dept.
Thorfinn.au writes "The New Scientist writes a conjectural piece to explain the light pattern of SCP 06F6 in what was first identified as a supernova — but observations show a skewed and stretched light curve not fitting with an current theoretical explanation of exploding stars. Also, the discussion in the comments is interesting."

Comment: Re:Norton is going to be pissed... (Score 2) 304

by Atilla (#26616043) Attached to: Midnight Commander Development Revived

Norton Commander was great until it hit ver. 5, when it became bloatware. It felt sluggish and ate a ton of memory, which was still pretty important then (especially for those that still sported 640K-1M of RAM)... Volkov Commander became a great substitute, since it was written in assembly and the executable was quite a bit less than 100K in size (comparing to ~300K or so of NC executable).. It was so common in some places (like Russia) that people thought there was something wrong with a PC if NC or VC wasn't installed.

*sigh*... The screen covered up by two big blue panels is forever etched onto my retinas... :-)

Medicine

Stem Cells From Fat Create Beating Heart Cells 198

Posted by kdawson
from the for-the-love-of-god-montressor dept.
Amenacier writes "Melbourne scientists recently discovered that stem cells isolated from human fat could be made to turn into beating heart muscle cells when cultured with rat heart cells. This discovery may lead to the use of fat stem cells in repairing cardiac damage, or fixing such cardiac problems as holes in the heart. It is proposed that culturing the stem cells with rat heart cells allows them to differentiate into heart muscle through signals from the rat cells. In the future it may be possible to inject/transplant the stem cells into the damaged area and have them naturally differentiate into the type of cell required, with only the natural stimuli provided by surrounding cells, without any danger of rejection by the body. Quoting: 'The next step is to implant the human heart cells onto the damaged heart of a laboratory rat to see whether they repair the heart. Then they would be trialled in higher species such as sheep and pigs before human applications could be considered. Clinical application could be five years away ...'" The Age has a multimedia treatment (Flash) of the discovery.
Yahoo!

Yahoo Changes User Profiles, To Massive Outrage 255

Posted by kdawson
from the why'd-you-go-and-do-that dept.
Wiseleo writes "Yahoo decided to massively screw up their entire userbase by changing all user profiles to blank. No warning, no automated way to get data back, and other unwanted changes. The blog has such choice quotes as 'We know this has been a rough transition for some of you and, and are committed to helping you use, understand, and (hopefully) enjoy your new profile,' and, 'We also know lots of you worked hard on your old profiles and want your data. If you feel like you're missing data, we've saved a copy of your old profile (and alias) and our Customer Care team can retrieve this information. You won't, however, be able to revert back to your old profile format, but you will be able to get any data that you think is missing. To do this, please go here to contact Customer Care.' There were 850 comments posted, all negative, on the first day. There are hundreds more today. There is even more outrage on the Yahoo Messenger blog."
Transportation

Qantas Blames Wireless For Aircraft Incidents 773

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the lotta-finger-pointing dept.
musther writes "An Australian airline Qantas Airbus A330-300, suffered 'a sudden change of altitude' on Tuesday. "The mid-air incident resulted in injuries to 74 people, with 51 of them treated by three hospitals in Perth for fractures, lacerations and suspected spinal injuries when the flight bound from Singapore to Perth had a dramatic drop in altitude that hurled passengers around the cabin." Now it seems Qantas is seeking to blame interference from passenger electronics, and it's not the first time; 'In July, a passenger clicking on a wireless mouse mid-flight was blamed for causing a Qantas jet to be thrown off course.' Is there any precedent for wireless electronics interfering with aircraft systems? Interfering with navigation instruments is one thing, but causing changes in the 'elevator control system' — I would be quite worried if I thought the aircraft could be flown with a bluetooth mouse."
Technology (Apple)

Toxic Fumes From Mac Pros? 267

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the that-might-explain-john-hodgmen dept.
Fanboi Killa writes "Apple is investigating damning claims, published in a leading French newspaper, that its computers emit a toxic odor containing chemicals including the cancer-causing benzene. Apple has not denied the accusations. Its spokesman, Bill Evans, told Macworld the company had not found any evidence to support the claim but Apple would continue to investigate. Posts on Apple's own discussion boards suggest the Mac maker knew about potentially toxic odors being linked to its computers as early as December last year."
The Internet

Vint Cerf Says It's Every Machine For Itself 82

Posted by timothy
from the and-works-for-google dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "The Guardian has an interesting story on Vint Cerf, the 'father of the internet,' in which he says there's no silver bullet for scammers, spammers and criminals running zombie networks and porn-to-porn file swapping because 'the internet was designed that way.' Cerf adds, 'Like every medium, the internet can be abused. When we think about it, we can commit fraud locally and internationally using the telephone system and postal service.' However, Cerf is also convinced that it's the internet's openness — in allowing people with new ideas to do their thing without getting anyone's permission — that is the main source of its power, and he is against the idea of a two-tier internet with a trusted, controlled 'overnet' for commercial and business use, and an 'undernet' where anything goes. 'My bias right now tends to be "It's every man for himself" — you need to be suspicious whether you're inside the trusted cloud or not, and when it fails, the house of cards tends to collapse.'"
The Internet

China To Run Out of IPv4 Addresses In 830 Days 619

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the blame-canada dept.
JagsLive writes "China is running out of IP addresses unless it makes the switch to IPv6. According to the China Internet Network Information Center, under the current allocation speed, China's IPv4 address resources can only meet the demand of 830 more days and if no proper measures are taken by then, new Chinese netizens will not be able to gain normal access to the Internet. Li Kai, director in charge of the IP business for CNNIC's international department, says that if a netizen wants to get access to the Internet, an IP address will be necessary to analyze the domain name and view the pages. At present, most of the networks in China use IPv4 addresses. As a basic resource for the Internet, the IPv4 addresses are limited and 80% of the final allocation IP addresses have been used."
NASA

Russian Invasion of Georgia Might Jeopardize Space Station 515

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the you-can't-get-there-from-here dept.
mknewman writes "Sen. Bill Nelson, one of NASA's biggest proponents on the Hill, is openly questioning how Russia's military intervention in Georgia will affect our access to the space station after the Shuttle is retired in 2010. Currently, NASA is able to use Soyuz vehicles for crew access and lifeboat operations thanks to an exemption from the Iran Non-Proliferation Act. The exemption expires in 2011, only one year after the Shuttle is due to head to the museums."
Security

Disgruntled Engineer Hijacks San Francisco's Computer System 1082

Posted by timothy
from the wait-'til-he-turns-off-the-earthquake-preventor dept.
ceswiedler writes "A disgruntled software engineer has hijacked San Francisco's new multimillion-dollar municipal computer system. When the Department of Technology tried to fire him, he disabled all administrative passwords other than his own. He was taken into custody but has so far refused to provide the password, and the department has yet to regain admin access on their own. They're worried that he or an associate might be able to destroy hundreds of thousands of sensitive documents, including emails, payroll information, and law enforcement documents."
Biotech

UK Approves Human-Pig Embryo Stem-Cell Harvest 139

Posted by timothy
from the but-I-know-plenty-of-half-pig-humans dept.
An anonymous reader writes "British biologists have received government approval to create the world's first human stem cells from hybrid embryos, part pig, part human. The Warwick Medical School team, led by Justin St. John of the Clinical Sciences Research Institute, was granted the country's third animal-human embryo license from the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, which goes into effect today (July 1)." The above link requires (free) registration; the Telegraph's coverage does not.
The Courts

Supreme Court Holds Right to Bear Arms Applies to Individuals 2221

Posted by timothy
from the founders'-rolling-speed-reduced-slightly dept.
Now.Imperfect writes "In its last day of session, the Supreme Court has definitively clarified the meaning of the Second Amendment. The confusion is whether the Second Amendment allows merely for the existence of a state militia, or the private ownership of guns. This ruling is in response to a case regarding the 32-year-old Washington DC ban on guns." This is one of the most-watched Supreme Court cases in a long time, and Wikipedia's page on the case gives a good overview; the actual text of the decision (PDF) runs to 157 pages, but the holding is summarized in the first three. There are certainly other aspects of the Second Amendment left unaddressed, however, so you can't go straight to the store for a recently made automatic rifle.
Security

Two Trojans For Mac OS X 326

Posted by kdawson
from the knock-knock-who's-there-trojan dept.
I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "F-Secure is reporting that there are two new Mac OS X trojans. The first is just a proof-of-concept from the MacShadows people that takes advantage of the unpatched ARDAgent vulnerability to get root access when run by the user. The second relies on social engineering: it's a poker game that requests the user's password, claiming to have detected a 'corrupt preference file.' It then takes control of the computer. Now that the source of the proof-of-concept is publicly available, we can expect that future trojans won't just politely request your password."

Wasn't there something about a PASCAL programmer knowing the value of everything and the Wirth of nothing?

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