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+ - Davos 2015: Less innovation, more regulation, more unrest. Run away!

Submitted by Freshly Exhumed
Freshly Exhumed (105597) writes "Growing income inequality was one of the top four issues at the 2015 World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Switzerland, ranking alongside European adoption of quantitative easing and geopolitical concerns. Felix Salmon, senior editor at Fusion, said there was a consensus that global inequality is getting worse, fueling overriding pessimism at the gathering. The result, he said, could be that the next big revolution will be in regulation rather than innovation. With growing inequality and the civil unrest from Ferguson and the Occupy protests fresh in people’s mind, the world’s super rich are already preparing for the consequences. At a packed session, former hedge fund director Robert Johnson revealed that worried hedge fund managers were already planning their escapes. “I know hedge fund managers all over the world who are buying airstrips and farms in places like New Zealand because they think they need a getaway,” he said. Looking at studies like NASA's HANDY and by KPMG, the UK Government Office of Science, and others, Dr Nafeez Ahmed, executive director of the Institute for Policy Research & Development, warns that the convergence of food, water and energy crises could create a 'perfect storm' within about fifteen years."

+ - Authors alarmed as Oxford Junior Dictionary drops nature words 1

Submitted by Freshly Exhumed
Freshly Exhumed (105597) writes "Margaret Atwood, Andrew Motion, and Michael Morpurgo are among 28 authors criticizing Oxford University Press's decision to scrap a number of words associated with nature from its junior dictionary. In an open letter (PDF) released on Monday, the acclaimed writers said they are 'profoundly alarmed' and urged the publisher to reinstate words cut since 2007 in the next edition of the Oxford Junior Dictionary. Amongst words to be dropped are acorn, blackberries, and minnows."

+ - Michael Mann: Swifboating comes to science-> 1

Submitted by Lasrick
Lasrick (2629253) writes "Michael Mann writes about the ad hominem attacks on scientists, especially climate scientists, that have become much more frequent over the last few decades. Mann should know: his work as a postdoc on the famed "hockey stick" graph led him to be vilified by Fox News and in the Wall Street Journal. Wealthy interests such as the Scaife Foundation and Koch Industries pressured Penn State University to fire him (they didn't). Right-wing elected officials attempted to have Mann's personal records and emails (and those of other climate scientists) subpoenaed and tried to have the "hockey stick" discredited in the media, despite the fact that the National Academy of Sciences reaffirmed the work, and that subsequent reports of the IPCC and the most recent peerreviewed research corroborates it. Even worse, Mann and his family were targets of death threats. Despite (or perhaps because of) the well-funded and ubiquitous attacks, Mann believes that flat-out climate change denialism is losing favor with the public, and he lays out how and why scientists should engage and not retreat to their labs to conduct research far from the public eye. 'We scientists must hold ourselves to a higher standard than the deniers-for-hire. We must be honest as we convey the threat posed by climate change to the public. But we must also be effective. The stakes are simply too great for us to fail to communicate the risks of inaction. The good news is that scientists have truth on their side, and truth will ultimately win out.'"
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+ - Canadian Government Steps in to Stop Misleading Infringement Notices->

Submitted by Dangerous_Minds
Dangerous_Minds (1869682) writes "Recently, misleading notices were spotted being sent out by Rightscorp. Michael Geist posted the letter which, among other things, cites US laws, the Canadians could be on the hook for $150,000 (does not actually exist in the recent copyright reforms now in force) and that payments should be made directly to the company. Apparently, the Canadian government was not amused and has announced that they will be speaking with rightsholders and ISPs to address the concerns that were raised. The government says, "These notices are misleading and companies cannot use them to demand money from Canadians""
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+ - Asterix Creator Comes Out of Retirement to Pay Tribute to 'Charlie'

Submitted by jones_supa
jones_supa (887896) writes "Albert Uderzo, the 87-year-old creator of the well-loved French comic series Asterix, has come out of retirement to do two new drawings showing solidarity with the victims of the Charlie Hebdo attack this week. The most powerful image shows Asterix punching an assailant high in to the air, while angrily exclaiming "Moi aussi je suis un Charlie", meaning: "I’m Charlie too". Worried Uderzo comments the strike to Le Figaro: "How can anyone do something so appalling? How can people claiming to be human beings murder people they have never met but have said something wrong so from that moment, must be killed? This is insanity!""

+ - Physicist Builds Supercomputer From Old PlayStations-> 1

Submitted by drkim
drkim (1559875) writes "A home-made PlayStation 3 supercomputer is 3,000 times more powerful than any desktop processor, and is being used to study black holes.

Guarav Khanna, a black hole physicist at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth in the US, has managed to build a powerful and extremely cheap supercomputer using old PlayStation 3s (PS3s), and he’s used it to publish several papers on black holes.

His research focusses on finding gravitational waves, which are curvatures in space-time that ripple out from a violent astrophysical event, such as two black holes colliding. They were first predicted by Einstein’s theory of general relativity, but no one has been able to observe them."

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+ - Anonymous declares war over Charlie Hebdo attack-> 2

Submitted by mpicpp
mpicpp (3454017) writes "Anonymous declared war on Islamic extremists Friday and promised to take revenge for the attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Hedbo.
In a video posted on YouTube, the group of hackers said they would track down websites and social media networks linked to terrorists, and take them down.

"We, Anonymous around the world, have decided to declare war on you the terrorists," it said.

The video is described as a message for "al Qaeda, the Islamic State and other terrorists," and promises to avenge the killing of 12 people in Wednesday's attack.
"We intend to take revenge in their name, we are going to survey your activities on the net, we are going to shut down your accounts on all social networks," Anonymous said."

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