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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 17 declined, 2 accepted (19 total, 10.53% accepted)

United States

+ - "Real Superheroes" Take to Streets to Figh->

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "In a case of reality-imitating-Watchmen, many cities and towns across America have witnessed the rise of so-called "real superheroes". These people actually dress up in elaborate costumes, often including real body armor, and take superhero-style names such as "Mr Xtreme" or "Dark Guardian" so that they can roam the streets stopping crimes-in-progress or even just helping out with the recycling. Apparently, the economic recession has made people, "realize that money is fleeting, it's in fact imaginary." They even organize on MySpace and their own website for the NYC area, Superheroes Anonymous.

No word on the presence or absence of blue glowing men with actual powers."

Link to Original Source
Announcements

+ - Barack Obama Inaugurated->

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "Today, Barack Hussein Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the United States. He swore his Oath of Office on the same Christian Bible used by Abraham Lincoln, and delivered an inaugural address worthy of that association. The address was both a celebration of everything accomplished to make Obama President, and a call to action on such issues as the War on Terror and the collapsing American economy — showing an understanding that "[greatness] must be earned" and that hard work will be necessary to revive the American health care system and regain its lead in science and technology. Can Obama accomplish the tasks he has set before himself?"
Link to Original Source
The Almighty Buck

+ - Does Science Suck?->

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "Over the past several years the entire United States has been hearing one repeated chorus from universities and industry: there aren't enough scientists. The phenomenon has been attributed from everything to the teaching of Creationism to a failed secondary education system to grade inflation at colleges to the sheer laziness of American youth. But what if the actual cause is a lack of career paths for new scientists? After all, the last time anyone really checked it seems as though the United States is producing record numbers of science PhDs and record numbers of bachelors of science, so how can anyone complain of a shortage?"
Link to Original Source
Space

+ - Theory Predicts New State of Matter

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "Researchers report that they may have found a new state of matter, called a "string-net liquid". Xiao-Gang Wen's theory designed to explain the fractional quantum hall effect eventually predicted "string-net liquid" state of matter, along with predicting most standard fundamental particles and Maxwell's equations for light. A mineral named Herbertsmithite seems to exhibit many of the predicted properties of the "string-net liquid" stage, such as having its electrons lined up in a triangular lattice. Experiments on the rare (but naturally occurring) substance continue, and appear encouraging.

If the theory stands up to experimentation, Herbertsmithite (and any other string-net liquid materials) could be used in building quantum computers."
Operating Systems

+ - Introducing the Extensible Driver Interface

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "Over on OSNews I have written an introduction to the Extensible Driver Interface.

I noticed a year ago that "fringe" operating system projects never seem to grow to a point where they can even appeal to a market, much less penetrate one. One of the major reasons seemed to be a lack of portable drivers, requiring each OS developer or team of developers to rewrite hardware drivers for devices that everyone had long since taken for granted — the floppy driver or keyboard, for example.

Like a fool, I asked for people to implement the "Uniform Driver Interface" hawked by SCO after only a perfunctory look at their specifications. Worse yet, I pledged to implement it myself.

When I read the specs, I resolved to try and invent a more practical approach to portable drivers with which people could really work. EDI is the result of that attempt, and if you read the OSNews comments (Sourceforge likes to CHOMP, CHOMP, CHOMP on tarballs) you can download C headers and documentation in HTML and LATEX for my "standard". It has no backers and can only win support, implementation or use by its merits, which you shall no doubt find utterly lacking.

Torvalds posted to the Minix mailing list. I post to OSNews and Slashdot. Oh, how far we have fallen."
The Internet

+ - Internet Only 1% Porn

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "In what surely comes as a complete and utter surprise to everyone on Slashdot, a new calculation shows that only one percent of web pages contain pornography.
While the calculations were performed using data forced from Google's and Microsoft's search indices by the government, they will help the American Civil Liberties Union to keep enforcement of the Children's Online Protection Act of 1998 banned. A loss for business privacy has become a victory for free speech, even though netizens lose a beloved old proverb."
Editorial

+ - Revised letter to Congressman/Senator

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "Dear ,
        I feel appalled that the "Electronic Modernization Surveillance Act", known by most people for legalizing the NSA's tyrannical spying program, has made it out of committee. In a free America, that would not have happened.

        This repugnant and fascist bill will not aid in securing America, its people or its liberties. Instead, it merely enables the government to obtain warrants it uses for Orwellian fishing expeditions which, under just law not maimed to win political games, they could never justify. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act courts can already grant warrants, even retroactively, to wiretap foreign nationals, and normal courts grant warrants to wiretap American citizens suspected of crimes. In a free America, government searches for perpetrators of crimes already committed using evidence, instead of lying in wait for an easy case against an unfortunate citizen.

        But the Bushivik regime has not sought warrants. Instead, they spy on Americans without justification of law or morality, and now try to retroactively legalize their transgressions. They have no real concern for safety from crime, terrorism or any other scourge - else they would emulate the good example of nations like Israel that deal with such issues constantly and well. In a free America, the government protects the liberties of the people instead of trying to become Thought Police draped in a flag and holding a cross.

        The only way for you to win my money or my vote in the future is to struggle for the return of civil liberties in general, and vote this bill down in specific. This bill not only removes the need for real Probable Cause to issue a warrant - a legal standard written into the Fourth Amendment - but it allows the executive branch to monitor any man's, woman's or child's communications for 90 days with no warrant whatsoever, as long as they call that 90 day period "after a terrorist attack". In a free America, we do not tolerate the destruction of our liberties, especially those we enshrined in the Bill of Rights.

Election time draws ever nearer. Vote this bill down, or I will vote you down, and you will never see one cent from my wallet in donations. In a free America, officials who vote away civil liberties don't keep their offices.

Vote "no" on the Electronic Modernization Surveillance Act, and vote "yes" to restoring the Bill of Rights,"
Privacy

+ - The Electronic Modernization Surveillance Act Suck

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "Dear Representative [Name],
I, personally, feel appalled to learn that the "Electronic Modernization Surveillance Act", known among common folk for legalizing the NSA's vile and tyrannical spying program, has made it out of commitee.

This repugnant and fascist bill will only allow the government to obtain warrants for cheap fishing expeditions which, under just law not maimed to win political games, they could never justify. The FISA courts could already grant warrants for wiretapping on foreigners and normal federal courts could grant them to tap everyday Americans suspected of crimes. But the Bushivik Regime has not sought warrants. Instead, they illegally spy on Americans with no justification, and now try to retroactively legalize their transgressions. They simply want to spy on American citizens; they want to become Thought Police draped in an American flag and holding a cross.

I [have/have not] voted for you in the past, [but/and] I assure you the only way to win my vote or my money in the future is to vote this bill down. This bill not only removes the need for real Probable Cause to issue a warrant - a legal standard written into the Fourth Amendment - but it allows the government to monitor any man's, woman's or child's communications for 90 days with no warrant whatsoever, as long as they can call that 90 day period "after a terrorist attack". True Americans will not tolerate the destruction of our liberties, especially those we enshrined in the Bill of Rights. Vote this bill down, or I will vote you down.

In a truly free country I could threaten more seriously.

Vote NO on the Electronic Modernization Surveillance Act,
[Constituent's Name here]"
Operating Systems

+ - Recent EDI headers and documentation

Submitted by
Eli Gottlieb
Eli Gottlieb writes "I've got new headers and documentation up for EDI, the Extensible Driver Interface. Its aim is to be a uniform, kernel-portable API for programming device drivers. Everyone who reads this, please take a look and maybe even contact me to help! I can be reached by my email address, or in #edi on WyldRyde IRC network.

The EDI framework wraps kernel and driver functionality in "classes", which can actually be written in any language capable of ecompiling functions to machine code. A standard set of classes exist for the kernel to supply to the driver, drivers will (RSN) be able to implement one of a standard set of classes representing driver types, and either kernel or driver can expose any other class they like. This means that non-standard functionality can be added or required of any kernel or driver as long as standard functionality is exposed, freeing OS and driver developers to code what they damn well want to.

Note that this is a pure API, it doesn't care what kind of environment drivers run in. It only cares that the correct function calls are accessible, so it can be used under a micro- or macro- kernel.

A better overview of EDI itself is available in the documentation part of the tarball. Happy hacking!

[edit]The new version of EDI communicates via classes and includes an example driver.[/edit]"

In seeking the unattainable, simplicity only gets in the way. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982

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