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Comment: Re:Link to PNAS article (Score 1) 114

why is it that Slashdot always reports on new scientific discoveries with a link to a lay press summary or a press release, and never gives us the useful link to the actual papers with the real words by actual scientists? Aaaargh.

Because the "actual papers" are behind paywalls...

Comment: SNOBOL (Score 1) 387

by Joe_NoOne (#47865105) Attached to: Unpopular Programming Languages That Are Still Lucrative

Anyone remember SNOBOL (StriNg Oriented and symBOlic Language)? My Dad was a systems analyst and worked a lot with COBOL and SNOBOL. I used to go in to work with him on the weekends when he'd pickup the output from his batch jobs (no real-time processing back then) and often I'd just play with the card-punch machine. We'd take the "chads" from the machine's bin and put it in a bag and take it home to use as hamster shavings...

+ - Nasa approves 'impossible' space engine design that apparently violates the laws-> 4

Submitted by sirlark
sirlark (1676276) writes "In a quiet announcement that has sent shockwaves through the scientific world, Nasa has cautiously given its seal of approval to a new type of “impossible” engine that could revolutionize space travel.

In a paper published by the agency’s experimental Eagleworks Laboratories, Nasa engineers confirmed that they had produced tiny amounts of thrust from an engine without propellant – an apparent violation of the conservation of momentum; the law of physics that states that every action must have an equal and opposite reaction."

Link to Original Source

+ - NASA Successfully Tests The 'Impossible' Microwave Thruster-> 1

Submitted by Joe_NoOne
Joe_NoOne (48818) writes "NASA has achieved a breakthrough in space propulsion technology, albeit at a small experimental level. Researchers at the space agency have successfully tested the microwave thrusters that can work without any propellant. It was considered impossible because the propulsion system violates the law of conservation of momentum.

NASA said the electric propulsion device generated a force that is not attributable to any classical electromagnetic phenomena. The amount of thrust generated was only 30-50 MicroNewtons (mN), even less than the weight of an iPhone. But the fact that the system generated even a small amount of thrust without any onboard source of fuel clearly violates the law of conservation of momentum"

Link to Original Source

+ - The Indian boy who had a 'world record' 232 teeth->

Submitted by Joe_NoOne
Joe_NoOne (48818) writes "When the 17-year-old got to Mumbai’s JJ Hospital, the family learned the boy’s growth wasn’t cancer. It was a tumor — but a very peculiar, rarely-seen one. Gavai had been suffering from a condition called composite odontoma, which can foster a slow-growth tumor inside the jaw capable of birthing additional teeth-like structures. In Gavai’s case, he had a lot of them. There were at least 232 in his jaw, doctors say, calling it a “world record.”"
Link to Original Source

+ - The Amish Are Getting Fracked->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Old school meets business school: "The Amish interpretation of the Christian bible prohibits the use of the courts: Except in rare circumstances, the Amish do not sue. This has created a unique problem in the region. Home to the largest Amish community in the world, Eastern Ohio sits squarely on top of the Utica and Marcellus Shale formations, which contain billions in oil and gas recoverable through advances in hydraulic fracturing technology, or fracking.. ... When it comes to the oil and gas industry, this means that any agreement an Amish farmer makes with a company is, for the farmer, practically unenforceable. A rare case in which the plaintiffs were Amish suggests that Ohio’s oil and gas companies know this and have been willing to take advantage. ""
Link to Original Source

+ - Film crew to dig up Atari landfill site, maybe score 3.5 million copies of E.T.->

Submitted by Joe_NoOne
Joe_NoOne (48818) writes "A documentary crew has received approval to dig up the New Mexico desert site where Atari supposedly buried millions of unsold pieces of Atari 2600 software and hardware. The crew hopes to finally confirm or refute one of gaming's most enduring urban legends.This year marks what will be the 30 year anniversary of the assumed September 1983 burial, which came during the height of the great video game crash. That sudden market reversal supposedly left Atari with millions of unsold and unsalable cartridges and systems, which were dumped in an Alamogordo landfill and later covered in concrete."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Sad confession of a Unix Admin (Score 1) 448

by Joe_NoOne (#40790803) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: the Best Linux Setup To Transition Windows Users?

For background - I'm a hard-core Unix Administrator (professionally) for the last 15 years (supporting SGI Irix, HP-UX, Solaris, RedHat, VMWare, etc...) who's mantra is "GUI's are for lazy people" and approach tasks from the concept of "what can you do when the system is down and you're using a VT term".

However, as much as I hate to say it, each time I try switching my home systems to Linux there is always something seemingly simple (in Windows) that after days/weeks researching I can never get working, so I go back to windows. Wi-FI? Forget it. Winamp replacements to listen to streaming audio? Forget it. Gnome3 desktop on dual monitors to work right? Forget it. Yes, I've tried lots of different distros, but I always eventually find SOMETHING that I can do easily on Windows that I can't do with Linux (and lets not even talk about games).

I can't even imagine trying to explain to a novice about device drivers and how to find, install, and make sure they work. Oh, you are trying to get your WiFi/Sound/Video card working? No, you have to search by the chips it uses, not the brand name. How do you find that? Depends on the distro which tools you can use. How do you add new software? Well, check your dependcies ("What are those???"), make sure those and their respective dependencies are installed ("How? Depends on your distro what tools it has...") and then install the app you want. Oh, it requires a kernel patch to work?

  Gimme the damn Windows install disk.....


+ - Dennis Ritchie, C Programmer And Unix Co-Creator, ->

Submitted by Joe_NoOne
Joe_NoOne (48818) writes "Dennis Ritchie is being remembered today as a pioneering computer scientist, the "father of [the] C programming language," co-creator of the Unix operating system and "a 'titan' of the [computer] industry whose influence was largely unknown."
Ritchie, 70, has died. The news was confirmed this morning by Alcatel-Lucent, which owns the Bell Labs where Ritchie worked from 1967 until his retirement in 2007."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Wheee.... (Score 1) 169

by Joe_NoOne (#37252914) Attached to: US Gov't Lobbied EU To Approve Oracle-Sun Merger

Yea, and us old-hat Solaris Admins are left to mire in the bog that is now Oracle/Sun post-merger with many of our clients sick of their new [lack of] support so much so that we now have to port entire data centers over to RedHat and realize that all those years of Solaris experience on our resume will soon mean nothing... Thanks USA/Oracle!!!!

If it's worth hacking on well, it's worth hacking on for money.