An anonymous reader writes: Jean Ichbiah, the chief architect of the Ada programming language, has died (http://www.adaic.org/news/ichbiah.html). Although Ada is not widely used today outside of DoD, the language introduced a generation of programmers to practical language constructs for what had until then been esoteric features such as overloading, exception handling, and multi-tasking.
Emmy King writes "
Anytime you attempt to wake Vista up from Hibernation or "Deep Sleep" (S3-induced sleep mode), it dies. It's either a BSOD, or a driver error, or a broken network, no DWM, lack of sound... the list goes on, and on. So much for an operating system to "power" the future! (No pun intended!) That's with properly-signed drivers and no buggy software on multiple PCs..."One thing we just can't wrap our mind about is the terrible, broken, and completely pitiful support for waking Vista up from a Deep Sleep or hibernation.
laughingcoyote writes "The RIAA has asked the panel of federal government Copyright Royalty Judges to lower royalties paid to publishers and songwriters. They're specifically after digital recordings, and uses like cell phone ringtones. They say that the rates (which were placed in 1981) don't apply the same way to new technologies." From the article: "According to The Hollywood Reporter, the RIAA maintains that in the modern period when piracy began devastating the record industry profits to publishers from sales of ringtones and other 'innovative services' grew dramatically. Record industry executives believe this to be cause to advocate reducing the royalties paid to the artists who wrote the original music."
ectotherm writes to tell us that a new study at the University of Missouri-Columbia claims to provide compelling evidence that a single meteor impact was the cause of animal extinction 65 million years ago. From the article: "MacLeod and his co-investigators studied sediment recovered from the Demerara Rise in the Atlantic Ocean northeast of South America, about 4,500 km (approximately 2,800 miles) from the impact site on the Yucatan Peninsula. Sites closer to and farther from the impact site have been studied, but few intermediary sites such as this have been explored."
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "To those who might think that I might be exaggerating when I describe the RIAA's litigation campaign as a 'reign of terror', how's this one: in UMG v. Lindor, the RIAA not only subpoenaed the computer of Ms. Lindor's son, who lives 4 miles away, but had their lawyer telephone the son's employer. See page 2, footnote 1." From Ray's comments: "You have a multi-billion dollar cartel suing unemployed people, disabled people, housewives, single mothers, home healthcare aids, all kinds of people who have no resources whatsoever to withstand these litigations. And due to the adversary system of justice the RIAA will be successful in rewriting copyright law, if the world at large, and the technological community in particular, don't fight back and help these people fighting these fights."
GNious writes "Bioware has a thread about porting the upcoming game Dragon Age to Apple Mac OS X and/or Linux. Debate include such topics as porting houses, physics engines and the value of the market, with an enormous amount of requests for such games as Neverwinter Nights 2. With the potential for selling upwards of 1000 copies (counting individual requests) of a game at possibly $50 each, is the decision to exclude a platform and the associated revenue the correct one, or are the petitioners the ones that have gotten it wrong to think that their ca 1-5% marketshare matters?" I think the unfortunante reality is that in today's gaming market, you find that fewer people are willing to take a chance on the sales for these smaller markets -- too hard to predict revenue, and too hard to (some would say) to do the porting.
Trebonius asks: "I have just received two job offers in the same day. The first was for a job coding in Perl on Linux/UNIX platforms, for a small but very cool company around 120 miles from where I live. They play Half-Life together in the off-hours and the people I've talked to there seem very happy with the job and work environment there. I'd be making smallish web systems, and I'd basically have total control over the projects on which I work. They offered me 20% more than I make now. The second offer I received is for a huge nationwide company opening an IT office a couple blocks from where I currently work. They're an all-Microsoft shop — VB, C#, .NET, SQL200*, etc. I'd be a very small cog in a very large machine. They offered me 66% more than I'm making now. Benefits are essentially identical between the companies, so that's not a big factor. I'll also give the Perl company a chance to make me another offer, but what should the threshold be? How do you folks balance the desire for a fun job with the need to pay off debt?"
A number of readers wrote in about a U.S. federal investigation into the Venezulean ownership of Sequoia Voting Systems, which makes voting machines used in 17 states and the District of Columbia. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States wonders whether the anti-U.S. government of Hugo Chávez could be trying to influence the U.S. midterm elections. From the article: "Government officials familiar with the Smartmatic inquiry said they doubted that even if the Chávez government was some kind of secret partner in the company, it would try to influence elections in the United States. But some of them speculated that the purchase of Sequoia could help Smartmatic sell its products in Latin America and other developing countries, where safeguards against fraud are weaker."
Marc wrote in with a Torrentfreak story which opens: "The 23 year old Grant Stanley has been sentenced to five months in prison, followed by five months of home detention, and a $3000 fine for his role in the private BitTorrent tracker Elitetorrents. This ruling is the first BitTorrent related conviction in the US. Stanley pleaded guilty earlier this year to 'conspiracy to commit copyright infringement' and 'criminal copyright infringement.' He is one of the three defendants in the Elitetorrents operation better known as 'Operation D-Elite.'"
Master_of_Tumbleweeds writes "20th Century and Universal Pictures, the two studios that agreed to co-finance the film adaptation of Microsoft's Halo video game, have abruptly pulled out of the project. This leaves executive producers Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh without financing or distribution. A ballooning budget (rumored to have been closing in on the $200 Mil mark) and apparent lack of confidence in rookie feature film director Neill Blomkamp are being named the major culprits for Fox and Universal's decision."
Vicissidude writes "A team of American and British researchers has made a cloak of invisibility. In their experiment the scientists used microwaves to try and detect a copper cylinder. Like light and radar waves, microwaves bounce off objects making them visible and creating a shadow, though it has to be detected with instruments. If you can hide something from microwaves, you can hide it from radar and visible light. In effect the device, made of metamaterials — engineered mixtures of metal and circuit board materials, which could include ceramic, Teflon or fiber composite materials — channels the microwaves around the object being hidden. When water flows around a rock, co-author David R. Smith explained, the water recombines after it passes the rock and people looking at the water downstream would never know it had passed a rock. The first working cloak was in only two dimensions and did cast a small shadow, Smith acknowledged. The next step is to go for three dimensions and to eliminate any shadow."
phantomlord writes "The FDA is currently set to allow beef and milk from cloned animals onto the market. Further, the products will likely not be branded as such and there is no way to know if we're currently consuming products from cloned animals." From the article: "Farmers and companies that have been growing cloned barnyard animals from single cells in anticipation of a lucrative market say cloning will bring consumers a level of consistency and quality impossible to attain with conventional breeding, making perfectly marbled beef and reliably lean and tasty pork the norm on grocery shelves. But groups opposed to the new technology, including a coalition of powerful food companies concerned that the public will reject Dolly-the-Lamb chops and clonal cream in their coffee, have not given up."
SkyFire360 writes "A team of ECoG (ElectroCorticography) researchers from Washington University in St. Louis successfully wired a young man's brain up to a computer and began reading the neurological firings in his brain. After analyzing the action potentials created when a neuron fires, they were able to get two-dimensional control of a cursor. Taking the research one step further, they decided to connect an old Atari 2600 to the signal processing computer to see if the young man could control the videogame system."
ScentCone writes "North Korea says that it has conducted its first nuclear weapons test and 'brought happiness to its people.' Japan and China earlier issued an unusual joint statement saying that such a test would be 'unacceptable.' As of 11:10PM EST, the USGS says that it has not detected any unusual seismic activity on the Korean peninsula in the last 48 hours." From the article: "The North said last week it would conduct a test, sparking regional concern and frantic diplomatic efforts aimed at dissuading Pyongyang from such a move. North Korea has long claimed to have nuclear weapons, but had never before performed a known test to prove its arsenal. The nuclear test was conducted at 10:36 a.m. (0136 GMT) in Hwaderi near Kilju city, Yonhap reported, citing defense officials." Update: 10/09 05:50 GMT by J : The U.S. Geological Survey reports a 4.2 magnitude quake; South Korean news is reporting a 3.58 magnitude event; the White House apparently confirms a nuclear test.