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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

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+ - Why Amnesty International uses Booktype 2.0 for report publishing->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Human rights NGO Amnesty International, a movement of more than seven million people, released its Annual Report for 2014-15 at the end of February. This 500+ page print book is published simultaneously in English, French, Spanish, and Arabic, and translated into 12 other languages by local teams. It is composed of 160 detailed chapters written by regional experts on the human rights situation in most of the countries of the world.

Richard Swingler, Global Production Services Manager at Amnesty's International Secretariat in London, knew that conventional publishing workflows weren't scaling to meet the challenges of a world in which a diverse range of reading and interchange formats are required. This factor is combined with the constant requirement of ensuring that Amnesty's reports are accurate, consistent, and up-to-date. Over the northern hemisphere's winter of 2014-15, the authors and translators had to work to a condensed timetable while producing new output formats, including XML for Adobe InDesign and XHTML for the Amnesty International websites.

Swingler led the search for a tool that would handle a structured, XML-based workflow with as much automation as possible while remaining easy to use for book contributors."

Link to Original Source

+ - Researchers identify 'tipping point' between quantum and classical worlds->

Submitted by wjcofkc
wjcofkc (964165) writes "If we are ever to fully harness the power of light for use in optical devices, it is necessary to understand photons — the fundamental unit of light. Achieving such understanding, however, is easier said than done. That's because the physical behavior of photons — similar to electrons and other sub-atomic particles — is characterized not by classical physics, but by quantum mechanics.

Now, in a study published in Physical Review Letters, scientists from Bar-Ilan University have observed the point at which classical and quantum behavior converge. Using a fiber-based nonlinear process, the researchers were able to observe how, and under what conditions, "classical" physical behavior emerges from the quantum world."

Link to Original Source

+ - The Software Legacy of the Planck Mission->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The Planck mission to survey the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) has not only advanced our understanding of the Universe, it also created advanced software systems for data analysis. Three interrelated software packages, which were developed at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics (MPA) specifically for the Planck mission, are now publicly available for use in other projects: the basic Planck simulation package to generate mock observations with Planck and other CMB experiments, the “ProC” workflow engine to define and execute scientific data analysis workflows, and the data management component “DMC” to store and organize the results of complex data processes."
Link to Original Source

+ - Ask Slashdot: Building a Home Media Center/Small Server in a Crawlspace 4

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "I've decided it's time for me to build a separate machine specifically for use as a Media Center/Small Home Server.
My wife and I haven't had cable TV in years, instead relying entirely on Netflix, other streaming sites, and hard copies we've bought over the years. Having just finished ripping our entire media collection (CDs, DVDs, and even our Vinyls and VHS with the help of a capture card and some sweet digital voodoo) to a couple HDDs, I'm feeling froggy. Up until now we've been using WDTV Live, and it's been pretty snazzy, but I want to upgrade to a dedicated media machine instead of piggybacking off of my office computer. It'll be a Windows based machine utilizing Plex, and it's going in the crawlspace of the house.

The crawlspace in question is unfinished, but I do have a dry concrete slab down there where I can put/mount/assemble something. Cooling won't be an issue obviously, and I am keeping a close eye on hardware specs with regards to moisture. It is still a crawlspace though...

My Question(s) being:
* What would be a good setup to to house the hardware? Priorities being to safeguard against moisture, vermin, and dirt.
          — Modified PC Tower?
          — Rack?
          — Build an enclosure?
          — Something I haven't considered?

Please assume I'm stubborn and absolutely dead-set on putting it in the crawlspace to avoid the discussion devolving into the "best" place to put a media machine. Any advice or ideas are very much appreciated, Thank you /."

+ - LaTeX is Dead

Submitted by Jace Harker
Jace Harker (814866) writes "For decades, LaTeX was the tool of choice for writing scientific articles. But LaTeX's strength and weakness is its focus on the "page" as a unit of content. In today's web-centric world, is LaTeX still useful? Or will it be replaced by other, better writing systems?"

+ - New Zealander Creates the World's Smallest Working Drill, Just 17 x 7.5 x 13mm

Submitted by ErnieKey
ErnieKey (3766427) writes "A man from New Zealand, named Lance Abernethy has created what he believes is the world's smallest working cordless drill. Measuring just 17mm tall, 7.5mm wide, and 13mm long, it holds a 0.5mm twist drill and can drill through soft objects. He created it from scratch using a 3D printer and a hearing aid battery."

+ - Authorea, Collaborative Web Editor for Academics, runs on Pi

Submitted by Jace Harker
Jace Harker (814866) writes "When I was in grad school, I wished there was a better way to write papers. Who wants to email Word files back and forth, merge LaTeX changes, or manually format (and re-format) references?

Enter NY-based startup Authorea. It's a web-based freemium collaborative LaTeX and Markdown editor with handy features like one-click reference search and import, realtime author chat, and over 80 journal and publisher styles you can export to LaTeX, Word, or PDF. It also supports data-publishing features like live embedded iPython Notebooks.

For more awesome, in honor of Pi Day, one of the dev team showed he can get the entire site and test suite up and running on a Raspberry Pi 2!

(Full disclosure: I work at Authorea and think it's pretty cool.)"

+ - US Wind Power Is Expected to Double in the Next 5 Years

Submitted by merbs
merbs (2708203) writes "The US Department of Energy anticipates that the amount of electricity generated by wind power to more than double over the next five years. Right now, wind provides the nation with about 4.5 percent of its power. But an in-depth DOE report released today forecasts that number will rise to 10 percent by 2020—then 20 percent by 2030, and 35 percent by 2050."

+ - Time to migrate to GitHub as Google Code closes->

Submitted by Mark Wilson
Mark Wilson (3799011) writes "After nine years, Google Code is closing down. Starting today, it is no longer possible to create new projects, and over the course of the coming ten months, the service will be mothballed. Google Code was Google's attempt to help the open source community by offering somewhere to host projects, but the growth of the likes of GitHub and Bitbucket has taken its toll and Google Code has filled up with spam and abuse.

Competition in the world of project hosting has become fierce, and Google feels it's time to pass on the baton rather than fighting for attention. Google has itself moved many of its own open source projects to GitHub. Don't panic if you’re not quite ready to jump ship — there's still a little time to play with."

Link to Original Source

+ - Google is closing Google Code->

Submitted by Kohenkatz
Kohenkatz (1166461) writes "Citing increasing spam and abuse, as well as the rise of Github and Bitbucket, Google has announced the closure of Google Code. Effective today, Google Code is no longer accepting new projects, and it will become read-only in August. After that, tarballs of all project data will be available until June 2016. To help project owners migrate, Google has added an "Export to Github" button to every project."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Stem cell therapy (Score 3, Insightful) 552

by Jace Harker (#47074729) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Communication With Locked-in Syndrome Patient?

In addition to technical solutions, you might want to investigate stem cell therapy to regrow or heal nerves in the spinal column. The technology is still in the early stages but has been show to improve motor and sensory function in some cases. Here's a recent review article from PloS that might be a starting point for you.

Comment: What about subscription journals? (Score 2) 114

by Jace Harker (#45327157) Attached to: Hoax-Proofing the Open Access Journals

This paper has already been extensively critiqued. To me the biggest problem is that he didn't include any subscription journals.

Many intentionally flawed or nonsense papers have been submitted -- and published! -- to reputable journals in the past.

This latest demonstration by Bohannan just shows that the peer review system needs improvement. It does not show whether Open Access journals are better or worse than subscription journals in terms of quality and reliability of content.

Comment: Why not make/license Apple/Android magazine apps? (Score 2) 298

I'm not a huge advocate of DRM or anything, but it seems like you should aim at the Apple/Android tablet market. Build or license a magazine app for content delivery. It'll let you control how much access your users get to the content -- can they save a copy? email it to someone? etc. -- while making it really convenient for your users to get the content delivered regularly and with minimum effort. I suppose you could try to do this on the desktop, but the mobile device world seems tailor-made to your needs, assuming your target audience usually owns mobile devices.

If a thing's worth having, it's worth cheating for. -- W.C. Fields

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