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+ - Porcupines Can Be Fearsome Killers->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "With needle-sharp quills, some longer than the average human forearm, porcupines sport one of nature’s most frightening defenses against predators. But a new study shows they can be fearsome killers as well. Researchers in Italy have found that the rodents can slay dogs, foxes, and even badgers. They identified four defenses that the animals employed, in order of increasing aggression: quill erection, tail rattling, stamping and growling, and backwards or sideways attacks. The porcupines never used the latter two in one-on-one encounters, but rather as last resorts when an individual was outnumbered, or if multiple porcupines were present and more likely to inflict serious damage. In one such case, two porcupines ran backwards, forcing a dog into their den, where they fatally impaled it with their quills. Other porcupines killed four other predators, two badgers and two foxes, over the study period; such deaths have never been previously recorded in scientific literature, the team reports."
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Security

+ - Dutch e-voting manufacturer blackmailed government

Submitted by vvpt
vvpt (1077009) writes "After the Dutch group 'We don't trust voting computers' showed how easy the Nedap voting computers can be manipulated the company is under heavy fire. An independent commission is investigating how the future of Dutch voting should look like (the outcome is expected by October but everyone knows it is going to be very different from now). Nedap knows they are toast unless they can lure the government into buying their stock. So company executive Jan Groenendaal told a Dutch minister: Buy my company or we will withdraw all our services for the next elections. Not an empty threat: 99% of all votes are cast on their equipment. Dutch elections are impossible without the help of Nedap. The blackmail is now revealed by 'We don't trust voting computers' after obtaining letters and e-mails between the government and Groenendaal through a successful FOIA request."
Biotech

+ - Coke and Pepsi Cook Your Liver?

Submitted by beartenor1
beartenor1 (737149) writes "Science Daily is reporting that a team from the University of Barcelona (UB) has recently published a study in the journal Hepatology which provides clues to the molecular mechanism through which the fructose in beverages may alter lipid energy metabolism and cause fatty liver and metabolic syndrome. Is it time to ban high-fructose corn syrup?"
Wireless Networking

+ - Rice bill would make R.I. first state to go WIFI

Submitted by
roscoetoon
roscoetoon writes "http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/News/pr1.asp?prid=389 1

"(public) access to the Internet, particularly broadband internet access, has become a necessity in today's world," said Representative Rice (D-Dist. 72, Portsmouth, Middletown, Newport),"The ultimate goal of this legislation is to make Rhode Island the first state to utilize a complete Wi-Fi network. The Electronic Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Act would open the door to a very promising and exciting opportunity for our state, and through this measure, I hope that Rhode Island will become a national leader in information technology.", but, it still seems a ways off,"the innovation center must issue a public report on its study by July 1, 2008"."
Input Devices

+ - Play video games with your brain, eyes and muscles

Submitted by jmke
jmke (776334) writes "At Cebit there was a device being demoed at the OCZ Booth which tracks movement of your eyes, monitors brain waves and picks up facial muscle movements, it uses these recorded signals to link them to input commands on the computer, allowing you to play Tetris or even a first person shooter like UT2004. Here is a live demo and more technical details on how this works. Will this technology change the way you interact with your PC?"
Quake

+ - Open RT project Ray-tracing algorithms available

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Ray-tracing is a technique that allowed Peter Jackson to make special effects look convincing in the Lord of the Rings. Now, Daniel Pohl, has used the new algorithms [develped by Professor Philipp Slusallek and co-workers from the University of Saarland] to produce ray-traced versions of the Quake 3 and 4 video games. "It gives much higher image quality in shadows and reflections," said Mr Pohl. "You can even do reflections on reflections on reflections." This is something that would be impossible with traditional rendering techniques. The algorithms are being made available to anyone to use via the Open RT project. Graphics in computer games are typically rendered via a technique known as rasterisation which involves drawing all the elements of a scene using polygons. The scientists have shown that their series of ray-tracing algorithms can run on a high-end PC graphics card."

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