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Making a Liquid Invisibility Cloak 93

Researchers at Fudan University in Shanghai, China are proposing a method which could lead to the first soft, tunable metamaterial, the key ingredient in building an invisibility device. "The fluid proposed by Ji-Ping Huang of Fudan University in Shanghai, China, and colleagues, contains magnetite balls 10 nanometers in diameter, coated with a 5-nanometer-thick layer of silver, possibly with polymer chains attached to keep them from clumping. In the absence of a magnetic field, such nanoparticles would simply float around in the water, but if a field were introduced, the particles would self-assemble into chains whose lengths depend on the strength of the field, and which can also attract one another to form thicker columns. The chains and columns would lie along the direction of the magnetic field. If they were oriented vertically in a pool of water, light striking the surface would refract negatively – bent in way that no natural material can manage."

Submission + - Why Everyone Hopes Apple Will Buck Tablet Trend (

waderoush writes: The deafening roar of anticipation around Apple's expected 'iSlate' announcement on January 27 is strange, to say the least, given the public's utter apathy about tablet computers to date. What's going on? Xconomy's analysis makes three points. 1) Previous tablet makers have shown little imagination around UIs and how a touchscreen changes things. 2) With the iPhone, Apple has shown what's possible in this regard. 3) There's latent demand for a mobile computing device that's smaller and lighter than a laptop but has more screen real estate than a smartphone — something reminiscent of a Star Trek tricorder or PADD. Hence the hopes for the iSlate — which are so high that it may be difficult for even Apple to meet them.
The Internet

IPv4 Will Not Die In 2010 264

darthcamaro writes "A couple of years ago, the big shots at IANA (that's the people that handle internet addressing) issued a release stating that the IPv4 address space was likely to be gone by 2010. Here we are in 2010 and guess what, IPv4 with its 4.3 billion addresses will NOT be all used up this year. In fact there could be another two years worth of addresses still left at this point. 'We're at about 10.2 percent (IPv4 address space) remaining globally,' John Curran, president and CEO of ARIN said. 'At our current trend rate we've got about 625 days before we will not have new IPv4 addresses available. We're still handling IPv4 requests from ISPs, hosting companies and large users for IPv4 address space, but that's a very short time period.'"

Submission + - Blizzard authenticators may become mandatory

An anonymous reader writes: is reporting that a trusted source has informed them that Blizzard is giving serious considerations to making authentricator's mandatory on all accounts (including to play World of Warcraft). The authenticators function the same as ones provided by most banks in that in order to login you must generate a number on the external device. Blizzard already provides a free iPhone app that functions as an authenticator. The source stated "it is a virtually forgone conclusion that it will happen". The move comes after large spates of compromised accounts that left Bizzard game masters severely backlogged by restoration requests.

If you're not careful, you're going to catch something.