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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 82 declined, 18 accepted (100 total, 18.00% accepted)

+ - Bezos's Blue Origin Part of Boeing Team Bidding for Taxi to ISS->

Submitted by Baldrson
Baldrson (78598) writes "The WSJ reports that: "The long-secretive space ambitions of Jeff Bezos, founder and chief executive of Amazon.com Inc., suddenly are about to get a lot more public. Blue Origin LLC, the space-exploration startup Mr. Bezos has been quietly toiling over for years, is part of a team led by Boeing Co. that is expected to soon garner a NASA contract to ferry astronauts to and from the international space station, according to people familiar with the matter.""
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+ - NASA Langley Study On Cold Fusion's Potential in Aviation->

Submitted by Baldrson
Baldrson (78598) writes "Perpetually in-flight "skytrains" with which smaller aircraft would temporarily dock to exchange passengers and cargo, ground-effect flying container ships ala the Hughes Spruce Goose (only bigger and not made of spruce) and vertical takeoff and landing supersonic business jets were among among the aircraft potentials of cold fusion technology presented at NASA Langley's ARMD Seedling Seminar, February 25, 2014 in a study titled "Low Energy Nuclear Reaction Aircraft" (Warning: Adobe Connect). One comment heard: "There is a similar initiative in Lockheed/Martin.""
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+ - NYT: Massive Study Questions H-1b Policies->

Submitted by Baldrson
Baldrson (78598) writes "The New York Times reports: "An LCA is not an actual H1-B application rather an intent to hire an H1-B worker after an unsuccessful domestic search...Within the top 10 jobs, there are an estimated 134% more candidates nationwide than there were positions requested. Additionally, we found that domestic student enrollment in computer and mathematical graduate programs has grown 88% in the last decade, while foreign student enrollment has dwindled 13%. There does not appear to be a sudden mass shortage of educated domestic workers, rather a handful of outsourcing firms who file a majority of the LCAs and are uninterested in domestic candidates. 82% of the positions requested by the top 20 companies were requested by outsourcing firms.""
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+ - Forbes Takes a Second Look At Rossi's E-Cat Cold Fusion Device->

Submitted by Baldrson
Baldrson (78598) writes "Forbes technology contributor Mark Gibbs reports that: "I haven’t posted about Rossi and his E-Cat since last August simply because there wasn’t much to report other than more of Rossi’s unsupported and infuriating claims ... What everyone wanted was something that Rossi has been promising was about to happen for months: An independent test by third parties who were credible... much to my, and I suspect many other people’s surprise, a report by credible, independent third parties is exactly what we got. Published on May 16, the paper titled “Indication of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device” would appear to deliver what we wanted...And now, the big reveal the authors’ conclusions are (again, the emphasis is mine): ' if we consider the whole volume of the reactor core and the most conservative figures on energy production, we still get a value of (7.93 ± 0.8) 102 MJ/Liter that is one order of magnitude higher than any conventional source.'""
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+ - Independent Academic Validation of Industrially Useful Cold Fusion Device 2

Submitted by Baldrson
Baldrson (78598) writes "An energy revolution has been reported in a joint paper by scientists from Bologna University, Uppsala University and Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, titled "Indication of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device containing hydrogen loaded nickel powder." This is the long-awaited independent validation of the infamous "E-Cat" or "Energy Catalyzer" by controversial inventor Andrea Rossi. Quoting the paper: "Even by the most conservative assumptions as to the errors in the measurements, the result is still one order of magnitude greater than conventional energy sources.""

+ - Applied Oceanic Geoengineer Spurs Mass Hysteria Among Political Class->

Submitted by
Baldrson
Baldrson writes "The UK Guardian via io9 reports that "A massive and illegal geoengineering project has been detected off Canada’s west coast." An Amerindian tribe in the Pacific NW that depends on salmon contracted to have 100 tonnes of iron sulphate spread across a huge area in order to spur plankton growth. The entrepreneur, Russ George, hopes to cash in on the carbon credits and the Amerindian tribe on an increased salmon harvest. This is inducing mass hysteria among the poltical class."
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+ - H-1bs Drive Out Skilled But Not Unskilled->

Submitted by
Baldrson
Baldrson writes "From a Notre Dame press release: "In the first study to measure the temporary impact of highly skilled immigrants on native populations, University of Notre Dame EconomistAbigail Wozniak and Fairfield University's Thomas J. Murray — a former Notre Dame graduate student — found that when highly skilled immigrants move to a city or town, the U.S. natives in that area who are also highly skilled tend to move away. However, the study found that the same immigrant group's presence decreases the chances that low-skilled natives would leave." This, of course, contrasts with pundits such as Tim O'Reilly who claim that US skilled workers enjoy greater economic security from skilled immigrants."
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+ - Quadrotor Construction Swarm->

Submitted by Baldrson
Baldrson (78598) writes "In this video teams of quadrotors autonomously build cubic structures from modular parts. Imagine these little guys flying to battery recharge stations, dropping off their discharged batteries and picking up freshly charged batteries. That would take only about 10% off their production time. The battery recharge stations themselves could be autonomously and continuously redistributed to the construction frontier. Autonomous crawlers could weld the positioned joints."
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Space

+ - Falcon 9 Orbits!->

Submitted by Baldrson
Baldrson (78598) writes "Business Week reports that: "SpaceX’s Falcon 9 took off on its first test flight at about 2:45 p.m. local time from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. It reached the Earth’s orbit about nine minutes later." This is a victory not only for Elon Musk's team, but for advocates of commercial space transportation."
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Space

+ - A Space Solar Power Satellite A Day...-> 2

Submitted by
Baldrson
Baldrson writes "I've been following space solar power satellite technology since O'Neill's Stewart Brand days (longer than half of you have been alive) and this is the first time it appears likely to happen in the near future: PowerSat Corporation has filed 2 important patents. One uses the solar array to propel itself from low earth orbit to geostationary orbit. The other one turns a cloud of small geostationary solar power satellites into a huge phased array. The propulsion patent plausibly reduces launch costs by 67%. The satellite cloud microwave phasing patent, however, has a huge hidden benefit that I doubt even Powersat has fully taken into account: industrial learning curve of small launchers. A similar argument has been made before by Autodesk founder, John Walker in "A Rocket A Day keeps the High Costs Away. Basically, if you are going to deploy a system with a large number of repetitions, the total (integral) cost is given by the formula: firstunit*(units^(1-rate))/(1-rate). To replace all fossil fuel baseload generation capacity in the US (250GW) would require 20,000 Falcon 9 HL launches (78Mdollars/15000kg or $5200/kg to geostationary transfer orbit) each of 3 BrightStars (PowerSat's satellite) at nearly 5000kg each. Walk that down down an industrial learning curve at 10% per doubling, the total launch cost of a 250GW cloud would be (1-.67)*1-.67)*5200*3*5000*((200*100)^(1-.1))/(1-.1) = 212G$ or less than a dollar per installed watt of baseload electric generation capacity. Assuming 10% energy loss in transmission to the ground array, each satellite would need to generate around 250GW/(3*5000*200*100)kg/(1-.1) or less than 1kW/kg or 5MW/satellite. At 35% solar conversion efficiency and 1kW/m^2 solar flux most of that would be in a weightless mirror that would have to be about 70m in diameter at 350g/m^2 (5000kg/(5MW/(.35*1kW/m^2))). Weightless mirrors can be very low mass and inexpensive. Looks doable. To pay for the satellite itself let's more than triple the installed cost to $3/W. To understand how big of a deal this is: The other near-term scalable baseload electrical sources are "clean coal" and nuclear power — both of which are, optimistically, at similar capital costs per installed watt."
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First Person Shooters (Games)

+ - Spasim: World's First 3D MOG -> 1

Submitted by
Baldrson
Baldrson writes "The first 3D Multiplayer Online Game was published in — 1994? No. 1984? Sorry, Mac. It was 1974 on the same system that Ray Ozzie, Microsoft's current Chief Architect got his start: PLATO IV. It was for up to 32 world-wide users all shooting it up in a space simulation called "Spasim". Watch the video of a recent demonstration running on a CDC Cyber emulated by an AMD64 system."
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Space

+ - Armadillo Aerospace Wins First Lunar Lander Prize->

Submitted by
Baldrson
Baldrson writes "By flying a rocket for 90 seconds to a soft landing on another pad, and then relaunching for a similar 90 second flight, John Carmack's rocket company, Armadillo Aerospace has won the first, and smaller, of two prizes in the Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge. The first flight was completed this morning but the second flight was delayed until this afternoon due to air traffic conflicts. Carmack and crew have been at this for a number of years with some near misses in prior competitions. This winning flight is welcome good news at a time when many have concerns about a down-turn in commercial space and the likely next President of the United States has recently said of such prizes, "When John F. Kennedy decided that we were going to put a man on the moon, he didn't put a bounty out for some rocket scientist to win — he put the full resources of the United States government behind the project...""
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Programming

+ - Fear and Loathing in AIG's IT Department->

Submitted by
Baldrson
Baldrson writes "John Miano of The Programmer's Guild writes: "In the late 1990s the world of computer consulting took me to AIG. Only superlatives can describe what I saw while working at AIG's computer operation. It was the most mismanaged company of any type that I have ever seen...So why are you and I bailing out this company? In a free market, the penalty for mismanagement is going out of business. America owes AIG nothing. AIG has no loyalty to America or the American people. They were willing to replace Americans with foreign workers in a futile attempt to save a few dollars.""
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Data Storage

+ - $1M In Compression Prizes Announced by Ocarina->

Submitted by
Baldrson
Baldrson writes "Ocarina, a storage compression company, is offering $1 million in prize increments of $10,000 for each 3% advance in compression on what Ocarina's Chief Scientist, Matt Mahoney, describes as "extremely challenging data". Matt should know, since, in addition to originating a leading class of compression algorithms and maintaining a benchmark list of top compressors, he is on the board of directors of The Hutter Prize for Lossless Compression of Human Knowledge, which stimulated a number of 3% incremental improvements in compressing Wikipedia."
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Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (10) Sorry, but that's too useful.

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