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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 41 declined, 6 accepted (47 total, 12.77% accepted)

Books

+ - What to do with old CompSci/Engr Textbooks? 1

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "I'm cleaning out the house in preparation for a newborn, and I've come across boxes of old (mid 90s) college engineering/compsci text books. Most used books stores won't take them and I'm hoping to avoid having to put them in the recycle bin. I'm not a developer so EE or programing books are useless to me and shipping books to a Books for Africa depot is too expensive. Anybody within the /. crowd have some ideas?"
Data Storage

+ - Sony Announces the End of the Floppy Disk->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "Although selling almost 12million of the computer accessories, Sony has announced that it will nolonger be manufacturing the floppy disk. The decision is the final nail in the coffin for floppies, which since they were first developed in 1971 have helped consumers store documents, pictures and data on an easy to use format. Floppy disks will continue in popular culture thanks to them being used to illustrate the "save" icon in most computer programmes. How long will it be before a company decides to use a picture of a USB stick instead?"
Link to Original Source

+ - Toyota Adds External Speakers to Warn Pedestrians->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "When I was a kid, playing with my matchbox cars, I used to say "VROOOM VROOOM..." to pretend my toy cars had big engines in them. Well it seems that Toyota has decided to do the same thing with the Prius by optionally installing, in Japan, external speakers to alert pedestrians of oncoming Prius'."
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NASA

+ - Era ends for The Blue Cube->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "Before a color guard and the wife of a hero, they said goodbye Wednesday to a famous artifact of space and the Cold War — Onizuka station (aka Sunnyvale's "Blue Cube,") — named for pioneering Asian-American astronaut Ellison Onizuka, who was killed in the 1986 Challenger crash. The windowless blue box that housed secret operations for four decades. In its first 25 years, the people at the center did critical work as a global antenna for military and civil satellites. In many ways, it is a monument to technology long since supplanted. The Cube was built to house big mainframe computers, which demanded temperatures in the 60s. Even now, the rules of classification forbid the Cube's veterans from talking about most of what they did, but they can tell a few fond stories of how they did it."
Link to Original Source

+ - Ant Tribes, Chinese struggle to find jobs.->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "Liu Jun sleeps in a room so small (180sq ft), he shares a bed with two other men. It's all the scrawny computer engineering graduate can afford in Tangjialing, China (a city on the edge of Beijing). It's so expensive that the average white-collar professional can't afford to buy a home. "Unlike slums in South America or Southeast Asia, these villages are populated with educated young people as opposed to laborers or street peddlers," says Lian Si, who teaches at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing. Liu is one of millions of engineers struggling to find a job to pay the bills in which there are more graduates than jobs. These are the ant tribes.""
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Space

+ - Space Junk Getting Worse->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "According to Space.com the amount of 'space junk' is getting worse. tracking information supplied by the U.S. military, as well as confirming German radar data, showed that a spent upper stage from a Chinese rocket and the European Space Agency's (ESA) huge Envisat Earth remote-sensing spacecraft would speed by each other at a nail-biting distance of roughly 160 feet (50 meters).

ESA's Envisat tips the scales at 8 tons, with China's discarded rocket body weighing some 3.8 tons. A couple of tweaks of maneuvering propellant were used to nudge the large ESA spacecraft to a more comfortable miss distance.

But what if the two objects had tangled?"

Link to Original Source

+ - Inmate loses privilege to play Dungeons & Drag->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "A man serving life in prison for first-degree intentional homicide lost his legal battle Monday to play Dungeons & Dragons behind bars. The inmate was told by prison officials that he could not keep the materials because Dungeons & Dragons "promotes fantasy role playing, competitive hostility, violence, addictive escape behaviors, and possible gambling," according to the ruling. The prison later developed a more comprehensive policy against all types of fantasy games, the court said. The appeals court said the prison's policy was reasonable and did not violate Singer's rights."
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+ - UK bans fraudulant "Bomb Detector" cards->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "Following an investigation by the BBC's Newsnight programme which found that one type of detector made by a British company cannot work. "These are the cheapest bit of electronics that you can get that look vaguely electronic and are sufficiently flat to fit inside a card," said Dr Kuhn a scientist at Cambridge University's Computer Laboratory. These appear nothing more than a laminated card with a few wires inside, a modern day dowsing rod. Turns out that Iraq paid up to $40,000(UK) for each card."
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HP

+ - HP uses 3rd party to sell printers in Iran->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "The prevalence of American-made goods in Iran has led US officials to crack down on the cottage industry of smugglers in nearby Dubai who purchase everything from iPhones to Bratz dolls to sell in Iran. HP printers have become a top seller here, despite a comprehensive 1995 embargo that prohibits the California-based company from sending its products to Iran. Despite the crackdown on US companies who sell their products in Iran, some American firms whose products are sold through third-party distributors like Redington Gulf have so far avoided scrutiny. http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2008/12/29/hp_uses_third_party_to_sell_printers_in_iran/"
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Privacy

+ - Google Drops from Top 20 Most Trusted Companies-> 1

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "Google Inc. fell out of the top 20 of an annual survey ranking of companies most trusted on privacy by consumers. American Express was ranked No. 1 and eBay Inc. at No. 2 in the fifth annual survey ranking by information security research company Ponemon Institute and TRUSTe.

While the financial services sector slipped amid industry-wide woes, the technology sector showed marked improvement as eBay Apple, Yahoo, Microsoft, and HP all bettered previous rankings. Also of note, Facebook moved into the top 20 for the first time, signifying an increased trust in social networking as a mainstream communications tool. Full list is here:
http://truste.org/about/press_release/12_15_08.php"

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Cellphones

+ - longer fingernails and iPhone don't mix->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes ""Since the iPhone's touchscreen only responds to electrical charges emitted by your bare fingertips, women with long nails are left out in the cold. The claims is that Apple was being misogynistic because it did not include a stylus for women and didn't consider womens' fingers and nails when designing the phone." http://tech.yahoo.com/blogs/hughes/29052"
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The Courts

+ - Teens forced to apologize for prank on youtube->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "After a group of teens filmed themselves throwing a 32oz drink at a woman working at a fast food restaurant http://www.floridatoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080609/NEWS01/806090325, the judge then ordered the teens to apologize for their actions on youtube. Police and prosecutors point to the increasing nationwide problem of young people who film violent or lewd acts and cruel pranks and post them online in a bid for fame. This is just one example.

Apology Video: http://youtube.com/watch?v=3njSrIa2PVU

The beating of a 12-year-old Brevard, Florida girl was posted last year on the photo- and video-sharing site Photobucket.com. This spring, Polk County officials said six girls and two boys filmed the beating of a cheerleader so they could post it online."

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Security

+ - Website defacement cause physical damage-> 1

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "In a rare example of an attack apparently motivated by malice rather than money, hackers recently bombarded the Epilepsy Foundation's Web site with hundreds of pictures and links to pages with rapidly flashing images. The attack happened when hackers exploited a security hole in the foundation's publishing software that allowed them to quickly make numerous posts and overwhelm the site's support forums. Within the hackers' posts were small flashing pictures and links — masquerading as helpful — to pages that exploded with kaleidoscopic images pulsating with different colors. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080507/ap_on_hi_te/techbit_epilepsy_foundation_hacked"
Link to Original Source
IBM

+ - IBM Ships fastest CPU on earth.->

Submitted by HockeyPuck
HockeyPuck (141947) writes "The 5-billion-instructions-per second Power6 processor from IBM would beat such rivals as the 3.73 gigahertz Pentium Extreme and the 2.4 gigahertz UltraSparc T2 from Sun. "Hold your index finger out in front of your face," Meyerson said in a telephone interview from IBM headquarters in New York. In less time than it would take a beam of light to travel from your knuckle to your fingertip, the new IBM chip would complete one task and start looking for the next, he said. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/04/09/BUBI10258F.DTL"
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