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+ - Google Offers a Cool Million Bucks For a Better Inverter

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "With the Little Box Challenge, Google (and IEEE, and a few other sponsors like Cree and Rohm) is offering a $1 million prize to the team which can "design and build a kW-scale inverter with the highest power density (at least 50 Watts per cubic inch)." Going from cooler-sized to tablet sized, they say, would make whole lot of things better, and the prize is reserved for the best performing entrant.

"Our testing philosophy is to not look inside the box. You provide us with a box that has 5 wires coming out of it: two DC inputs, two AC outputs and grounding connection and we only monitor what goes into and comes out of those wires, along with the temperature of the outside of your box, over the course of 100 hours of testing. The inverter will be operating in an islanded more—that is, not tied or synced to an external grid. The loads will be dynamically changing throughout the course of the testing, similar to what you may expect to see in a residential setting." he application must be filled out in English, but any serious applicants can sign up, "regardless of approach suggested or team background, will be successful in registering." Registration runs though September.

#power #google #invertor #contest #ieee #technology"

+ - KDE Releases Frameworks 5->

Submitted by KDE Community
KDE Community (3396057) writes "The KDE Community is proud to announce KDE Frameworks 5.0. Frameworks 5 is the next generation of KDE libraries, modularized and optimized for easy integration in Qt applications. The Frameworks offer a wide variety of commonly needed functionality in mature, peer reviewed and well tested libraries with friendly licensing terms. There are over 50 different Frameworks as part of this release providing solutions including hardware integration, file format support, additional widgets, plotting functions, spell checking and more. Many of the Frameworks are cross platform and have minimal or no extra dependencies making them easy to build and add to any Qt application."
Link to Original Source

+ - Tractor Beam Created Using Water Waves

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "The idea that light waves can push a physical object is far from new. But a much more recent idea is that a laser beam can also pull objects like a tractor beam. Now a team of Australian physicists has used a similar idea to create a tractor beam with water waves that pulls floating objects rather than pushes them. Their technique is to use an elongated block vibrating on the surface of water to create a train of regular plane waves. When the amplitude of these waves is small, they gradually push the surface of the water along, creating a flow that pushes floating objects with it. However, when the amplitude increases, the waves become non-linear and begin to interact with each other in a complex way. This sets up a flow of water on the surface in the opposite direction to the movement of the waves. The result is that floating objects--ping pong balls in the experiment--are pulled towards the vibrating block, like a tractor beam."

Comment: Re:Python FTW (Score 2) 143

Sorry but calling R from Python just doesn't cut it. Some of the best tools in R rely on complex data structures that are not compatible with Rpy. Plus Rpy support on windows is abysmal. You are better off using Python for all non-stats scripting, get your data set up, then analyze and plot with R.

+ - Ask Stewart Brand About Protecting Resources and Reviving Extinct Species

Submitted by samzenpus
samzenpus (5) writes "Stewart Brand trained as a biologist at Stanford, was associated with Ken Kesey and the "Merry Pranksters", and served as an Infantry officer in the U.S. Army. His books include Whole Earth Discipline: The Rise of Ecopragmatism, The Clock of the Long Now, How Buildings Learn, and The Media Lab. He is the founder/editor of the Whole Earth Catalog, the co-founder of The Long Now Foundation, The WELL, and the Global Business Network. His latest project, Revive & Restore, may be his most ambitious yet. Revive and Restore aims to bring back extinct species and provide genetic rescue for endangered species that are spiraling down with inbreeding problems. Mr. Brand has agreed to answer any questions you may have but please limit yourself to one question per post."

Comment: Double slap! (Score 1) 1144

by DaBombDotCom (#45054063) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: How Does the US Gov't Budget Crunch Affect You?
I work for the government half time and am a graduate student the other half. Of course I am furloughed, but on top of that, all the data for my research comes from NOAA which has shut down all its websites! Basically I am stuck doing diagnostics on data I happen to already have. Just loving my gov't right now....

+ - R 3.0.0 Released

Submitted by DaBombDotCom
DaBombDotCom (1587833) writes "R, a popular software environment for statistical computing and graphics, version 3.0.0 codename "Masked Marvel" was released yesterday. From the announcement: "Major R releases have not previously marked great landslides in terms of new features. Rather, they represent that the codebase has developed to a new level of maturity. This is not going to be an exception to the rule. Version 3.0.0, as of this writing, contains only [one] really major new feature: The inclusion of long vectors (containing more than 2^31-1 elements!). More changes are likely to make it into the final release, but the main reason for having it as a new major release is that R over the last 8.5 years has reached a new level: we now have 64 bit support on all platforms, support for parallel processing, the Matrix package, and much more.""
Firefox

+ - Firefox 20 Will Finally Fix Porn Mode->

Submitted by darthcamaro
darthcamaro (735685) writes "Unlike every other major browser vendor, Mozilla today does not allow users to have their private porn mode browser window open at the same time as a regular browser window. That's now set to change. This is a flaw that has been in Bugzilla since 2008 and has been the subject of heated discussion for years."
Link to Original Source
Linux

+ - Would you buy a Linux smartphone?->

Submitted by colinneagle
colinneagle (2544914) writes "I was a huge, huge fan of Maemo – a Debian-based Linux distro focused on phones, such as the amazing Nokia N900 (the old Linux-powered one with a keyboard... you know, the one that Nokia killed off because they hate awesome things). So when Nokia stopped working on Maemo... and then stopped working on Meego (the successor to Maemo), I was, to put it mildly, bummed out.

Luckily, a rag-tag group of engineers (who seem to feel the same way about Maemo/Meego that I do) left Nokia and started their own company to continue this important work. That company, Jolla, has just introduced the first version of its OS, named "Sailfish." And, here is why all nerds should care about this: You get full, RPM-based package management. On your phone. You see, Sailfish is based on a project called "Mer." Mer is based on MeeGo. And MeeGo utilized RPM as the package management system. (There's your technological genealogy lesson for the day.)

In short, there are plenty of apps. And, from a tech-nerd perspective, it has all the right goodies.

But they've got one other thing to offer that looks, well, pretty damned slick. They call it "true multitasking."The idea is simple. Running apps can be pinned to your main home screen as small-ish tiles. So you can keep interacting with multiple apps at the same time, without needing to switch back and forth between a bunch of full-screen apps. Which, at least for a demo, sounds like something I very much want on my phone."

Link to Original Source

+ - Wal-mart files a formal complaint about employee demands for fair wages->

Submitted by ourlovecanlastforeve
ourlovecanlastforeve (795111) writes "In a delicious spout of irony Wal-Mart has filed a complaint with an unnamed federal agency claiming unfairness of actions by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union and its subsidiary known as OURWalmart; that they are trying to force the store into collective bargaining."
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Try `stty 0' -- it works much better.

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