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GNUStep

Sony Adopts Objective-C and GNUstep Frameworks 345

Posted by samzenpus
from the new-way-of-doing-things dept.
EMB Numbers writes "Sony has revealed that the new SNAP development environment for 'consumer electronics' is based on Objective-C and the open source GNUstep implementation of Apple's Openstep spec. While Apple has continued to update their specification in the form of Cocoa and Mac OS X, GNUstep has preserved the original standard. Anyone familiar with Cocoa Touch and iOS will feel right at home developing for Sony. There may even be some source code compatibility between the platforms. The world continues to chase apple — probably for the better."
Businesses

Google, Apple and Others Accused of 'No Poaching' Deal 276

Posted by Soulskill
from the stories-that-don't-involve-deer-and-the-king's-land dept.
lightbox32 writes "According to the Wall Street Journal, several of the US's largest technology companies, which include Google, Apple, Intel, Adobe, Intuit and Pixar Animation, are in the final stages of negotiations with the Justice Department to avoid a court battle over whether they colluded to hold down wages by agreeing not to poach each other's employees. 'The Justice Department would have to convince a court not just that such accords existed, but that workers had suffered significant harm as a result. The companies may not want to take a chance in court. If the government wins, it could open the floodgates for private claimants, even a class action by employees. A settlement would allow the Justice Department to halt the practice, without the companies having to admit to any legal violations.'"
Cellphones

Google Adds Licensing Server DRM To Android Market 184

Posted by Soulskill
from the do-androids-dream-of-electric-rights dept.
eldavojohn writes "According to AfterDawn, Google has given app makers the option to use a license server as DRM to ensure the user has paid for an app before they can download it. Reportedly, the Market app will communicate with a Google license server using RSA encryption. It is important to note this is only available for non-free apps (built with SDK 1.5 and later), and it was instituted to provide a better solution to the old and widely criticized copy protection scheme that was susceptible to Android app piracy (like sideloading). For better or for worse, Android's Marketplace appears to now have an optional, phone-home form of DRM." Following news of the new licensing service, Hexage Ltd, makers of a popular Android game called Radiant, released the data they had collected on piracy of Radiant over a 10-month period beginning last October. A series of charts shows total users, paid users and the piracy rate, by region.
Security

Adobe Putting PDF Reader In a Sandbox 225

Posted by kdawson
from the and-stay-there dept.
Captain Eloquence writes "The next major version of Adobe's PDF Reader will feature new sandboxing technology aimed at curbing a surge in malicious hacker attacks. The initial sandbox implementation will isolate all 'write' calls on Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows Server 2008, and Windows Server 2003. Adobe security chief Brad Arkin believes this will mitigate the risk of exploits seeking to install malware on the user's computer or otherwise change the computer's file system or registry. In a future dot-release, the company plans to extend the sandbox to include read-only activities to protect against attackers seeking to read sensitive information from the user's computer."
Image

Given Truth, the Misinformed Believe Lies More 961

Posted by samzenpus
from the don't-let-the-truth-get-in-your-way dept.
SharpFang writes "In a series of studies in 2005 and 2006, researchers at the University of Michigan found that misinformed people, particularly political partisans, rarely changed their minds when exposed to corrected facts in news stories. In fact, they often became even more strongly set in their beliefs. Facts, they found, were not curing misinformation. Like an underpowered antibiotic, facts could actually make misinformation even stronger."
The Military

A Look Back At Bombing the Van Allen Belts 237

Posted by Soulskill
from the shiny-and-fallout-y dept.
An anonymous reader points out a recent story at NPR describing one of the greatest lightshows in history — a US hydrogen bomb test 250 miles above the Pacific Ocean in 1962. The mission came about after James Van Allen confirmed the existence of radiation belts around the earth that now bear his name. As it turns out, the same day Van Allen announced his findings at a press conference, he "agreed with the military to get involved with a project to set off atomic bombs in the magnetosphere to see if they could disrupt it." According to NPR, "The plan was to send rockets hundreds of miles up, higher than the Earth's atmosphere, and then detonate nuclear weapons to see: a) If a bomb's radiation would make it harder to see what was up there (like incoming Russian missiles!); b) If an explosion would do any damage to objects nearby; c) If the Van Allen belts would move a blast down the bands to an earthly target (Moscow! for example); and — most peculiar — d) if a man-made explosion might 'alter' the natural shape of the belts." The article is accompanied by a podcast and a video with recently declassified views of the test. They also explain how the different colors of light in the sky were produced.
The Internet

BBC To Create Internet Protocol TV Standard 128

Posted by Soulskill
from the five-years-too-late dept.
Robadob sends word that the BBC has been granted approval for Project Canvas, "a partnership between the BBC, ITV, BT, Five, Channel 4, and TalkTalk to develop a so-called Internet Protocol Television standard." The approval came with several interesting requirements: "Project Canvas must always remain free-to-air but users 'may be charged for additional pay services that third parties might choose to provide via the Canvas platform, for example video on demand services, as well as the broadband subscription fees.' Access to Project Canvas must not be 'bundled with other products or services' and 'listing on the electronic program guide will be awarded in a fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory manner." In addition, a preliminary draft of the tech specs for the project must be published within 20 working days, in order to allow broadcasters and manufacturers of set-top boxes to adopt the new standards. Significantly, "Other broadcasters and content providers must have access to the platform."
Medicine

Bionic Cat Gets World's First Implant Paws 225

Posted by kdawson
from the ten-lives dept.
Several readers send in the news of Oscar, the first bionic cat, whose hind paws got cut off in a harvester accident. In a world's-first operation, a neurosurgeon has now given him exoprosthetic paws that are implanted directly into his leg bones. The BBC artlcle has a video captured just after the operation, and PopSci has an apparently later one in which Oscar is walking and running almost completely normally.
Math

Deformable Liquid Mirrors For Adaptive Optics 196

Posted by timothy
from the mirror-mirror-on-the-magnet dept.
eldavojohn writes "Want to make a great concave mirror for your telescope? Put a drop of mercury in a bowl and spin the bowl. The mercury will spread out to a concave reflective surface smoother than anything we can make with plain old glass right now. The key problem in this situation is that the bowl will always have to point straight up. MIT's Technology Review is analyzing a team's success in combating problems with bringing liquid mirrors into the practical applications of astronomy. To fight the gravity requirement, the team used a ferromagnetic liquid coated with a metal-like film and very strong magnetic fields to distort the surface of that liquid as they needed. But this introduces new non-linear problems of control when trying to sync up several of these mirrors similar to how traditional glass telescopes use multiple hexagonal mirrors mounted on actuators. The team has fought past so many of these problems plaguing liquid mirrors that they produced a proof of concept liquid mirror just five centimeters across with 91 actuators cycling at one kilohertz and the ability to linearize the response of the liquid. And with that, liquid mirrors take a giant leap closer to practicality."
Bug

Microsoft Warns of Windows 7 Graphics Flaw 262

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the leaky-pipes-make-for-wet-basements dept.
Barence writes "A flaw with the graphics driver in Windows 7 could compromise the stability and security of PCs, Microsoft has warned. The vulnerability lies in the Windows Canonical Display Driver (cdd.dll) for the 64-bit versions of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. Microsoft claims that the flaw could lead to machines rebooting or even allow a hacker to remotely execute code, although it claims either eventuality is improbable. Concerned users are being advised to disable Windows Aero until Microsoft can issue a fix."
Communications

RCN P2P Settlement Is Not Even a Slap On the Wrist 100

Posted by kdawson
from the briar-patch dept.
Ars covers the settlement of the RCN P2P throttling class-action lawsuit, which lets the company walk away without admitting guilt, without paying affected users, and without any meaningful restraint on their network management practices. "[The] settlement is due to be finalized on June 4. ... The case has largely flown under the radar. Yesterday, a notice ... was issued that alerted RCN customers to the settlement, and one Ars reader was aghast at the terms. Those terms provide nothing for users affected by RCN's practices. Instead, they require the cable company to change its network management practices. These changes are in two parts. ... These cessation periods would be retroactive. ... A moment's math will tell you that, when the settlement is finally approved, one cessation period will already have ended and the other will be ending soon. Once both cessation periods are over, RCN is allowed to implement whatever throttling regime it wants. Given that a federal court has just removed the FCC's authority to regulate network management, RCN appears to have carte blanche to single out BitTorrent and other P2P traffic for special throttling attention after November 1, 2010."

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