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Comment Re:I couldn't possibly read that tiny little type. (Score 1) 232

Let's just forget for a second that you can fit all of a dozen words on the screen at one time.

Maybe you should try?

I have just read The Count of Monte Cristo, and am reading Wuthering Heights on my iPhone, and it's great. Not because the screen is fantastic, but because I can read it anywhere, as my book is with me all the time.

I used to hardly ready at all because I didn't set aside the time. Now I can read bits here and there, waiting for meetings, trains etc.

(I used to do all this on a B&W Palm V, so this is a vast improvement!)


Methane On Mars May Indicate Living Planet 200

Riding with Robots writes "NASA is announcing today that the definitive detection of methane in the Martian atmosphere means the planet is still alive, at least geologically, and perhaps even biologically. 'Methane is quickly destroyed in the Martian atmosphere in a variety of ways, so our discovery of substantial plumes of methane in the northern hemisphere of Mars indicates some ongoing process is releasing the gas,' said one agency scientist. The gas was detected with observations made over over several Martian years with NASA telescopes at Mauna Kea, Hawaii. Both biological and geological processes could explain the methane."

Comment Re:The march towards Linux (Score 3, Interesting) 366

AIX still has significant advantages over Linux for us. A lot (all?) of the stuff that is new in AIX has come from the AS/400 390 mainframe stuff, and the hardware for AIX line is now the same as that for the AS/400 line (or whatever they're all called this week).

For our business, AIX is still rock solid, has excellent support (as you'd expect for the cost) and can dynamically switch resources between virtual systems. The CPU allocation is wonderful. It can automatically assign spare CPU to any system that needs it, giving preference to production systems.

The virtual networking and hardware self-monitoring is also far superior to what little I've seen in the Windows area.

While I can't comment on other systems, AIX has given us a lot of flexibility and reliability that the Intel team here (mostly Windows) don't get in their virtual server environment.

Of course all this is changing, and the smaller systems are getting the bigger system stuff.

So the real question is not "how ready is Linux to AIX?" but rather "can Linux do what I want now?" because all the mainframe technology is filtering down to be accessible to consumer grade stuff.


NASA Plans Probe to the Sun 352

FudRucker writes "For more than 400 years, astronomers have studied the sun from afar. Now NASA has decided to go there. 'We are going to visit a living, breathing star for the first time,' says program scientist Lika Guhathakurta of NASA Headquarters. 'This is an unexplored region of the solar system and the possibilities for discovery are off the charts.'"

Microsoft Should Acquire SAP, Not Yahoo 188

Reservoir Hill writes "Randall Stross has an insightful article in the NY Times that says that if Microsoft thinks this is the right time to try a major acquisition on a scale it has never tried before, it should pursue not Yahoo but SAP, another major player in business software, thus merging Microsoft's strength with that of another. This is more likely to produce a happy outcome than yoking two ailing businesses, Yahoo's and Microsoft's own online offerings, and hoping for a miracle. Stross points to Oracle as a company whose acquisition strategy has picked up key products and customers while avoiding venturing too far from its core business, or overpaying. Stross recommends that Microsoft acquire SAP and leave it alone as an autonomous division — which would avoid a culture-clash integration fiasco. Besides, large enterprise customers are arguably the best customers a software company can have. A few dozen well-paying Fortune 500 customers may actually be more valuable than tens of millions of Web e-mail 'customers' who pay nothing for the service and whose attention is not highly valued by online advertisers."

Antarctic Expedition To Track Down Extreme Living Creatures 69

WirePosted tips us to a story about a group of scientists who are heading to Antarctica to study organisms that thrive in climates too extreme for most other life forms. The team will be visiting a lake that has a pH "like strong Clorox," the sediments of which "produce more methane than any other natural body of water on our planet." The scientists hope to learn about the potential for life in other unforgiving climates, such as those on Mars or the various ice-covered moons in the Solar System. Expedition leader Richard Hoover was quoted saying, "This will help us decide where to search for life on other planets and how to recognize alien life if we actually find it." We've previously discussed Antarctic microbes as they related to conditions on Mars.

Submission + - Teen takes on donor's immune system

Leibel writes: The Australian ABC News is reporting that a 15-year-old Australian liver transplant patient has defied modern medicine by taking on her donor's immune system. Demi-Lee Brennan had a liver transplant. Nine months later, doctors at Sydney's Westmead Children's Hospital were amazed to find the teenager's blood group had changed to the donor's blood type. They were even more surprised when they found the girl's immune system had almost totally been replaced by that of the donor, meaning she no longer had to take anti-rejection drugs.

PS Editors. I can't find a suitable topic for this in the list. Sorry!

Scientists Deliver 'God' Via A Helmet 1020

prostoalex writes "Scientific American is reporting on scientific work done to map the euphoric religious feelings within the brain. As a result, it's now quite possible to experience 'proximity to God' via a special helmet: 'In a series of studies conducted over the past several decades, Persinger and his team have trained their device on the temporal lobes of hundreds of people. In doing so, the researchers induced in most of them the experience of a sensed presence — a feeling that someone (or a spirit) is in the room when no one, in fact, is — or of a profound state of cosmic bliss that reveals a universal truth. During the three-minute bursts of stimulation, the affected subjects translated this perception of the divine into their own cultural and religious language — terming it God, Buddha, a benevolent presence or the wonder of the universe.""

The Mainframe Still Lives! 372

coondoggie passed us a NetworkWorld blog post about the incredible rock-em-sock-em mainframe. Knocked frequently in recent years, the site notes that IBM's workhorse continues to do important work in a number of enterprise environments. "While there are some out there who'd like to see its demise, a true threat to the Big Iron has never really amounted to much. Even today, the proponents of commodity boxes offering less expensive x86/x64 or RISC technologies say the mainframe is doomed. But the facts say otherwise. For example, IBM recently said the mainframe has achieved three consecutive quarters of growth, marked by new customers choosing the platform for the first time and existing customers adding new workloads, such as Linux and Java applications."

New Continuous Support System 75

An anonymous reader writes "eWeek is reporting on a new continuous open-source support system that helps to keep tabs on your mission-critical applications by providing constant diagnostic monitoring. The system is designed to match specific 'signatures' from your applications to a database of over 200,000 possible 'problem' signatures and alert the user for correction or analysis. From the article: 'SourceLabs' Continuous Support System features what Sebastian calls "adaptive diagnostic probes" that are fully integrated and configured for customer environments. The probes identify production issues and begin to gather diagnostic information to help get to the root of the problem, he said. Indeed, the probes can be configured so that as soon as a problem occurs, the SourceLabs support team extracts system information to find and resolve the problem. And the system includes a database of more than 200,000 signatures of problems that might occur.'"

"Consider a spherical bear, in simple harmonic motion..." -- Professor in the UCB physics department