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Submission + - Possible Design Flaw Identified in Bridge Collapse (

Pcol writes: "The New York Times is reporting that investigators of the bridge that collapsed in Minneapolis last week have found what may be a design flaw in the gusset plates that connect girders and raises the possibility that the bridge was structurally deficient from the day it opened. Although officials said they were still working to confirm the design flaw, in making their suspicion public, they were signaling that they considered it a potentially crucial discovery. Federal authorities said there was added stress on the gusset plates from the weight of construction equipment and nearly 100 tons of gravel on the bridge, where maintenance work was proceeding when the collapse occurred. A construction crew had removed part of the deck with 45-pound jackhammers, in preparation for replacing the two-inch top layer, and that may have also altered the stresses on the bridge, some experts said. If the engineers who designed the bridge in 1964 miscalculated the loads and used metal parts that were too weak for the job, it would recast the national debate that has emerged, about whether enough attention has been paid to maintenance."

Submission + - Google mistakes own blog for spam, deletes it (

narramissic writes: "Oops! They did it again. Google mistakenly identified its own Custom Search Blog as a spam site and handed over the url to the general public, as they typically do when blogs are disabled. Google's process when it identifies a site as spam is to notify the blog owners to give them a chance to clear up any misunderstandings. However, that didn't work out in this case."

Submission + - UCLA Probe Finds Taser Incident Out Of Policy (

Bandor Mia writes: Last November, it was reported that UCLA cops Tasered a student, who forgot to bring his ID, at the UCLA library. While an internal probe by UCLAPD cleared the officers of any wrongdoing, an outside probe by Police Assessment Resource Center has found that the police actions on Mostafa Tabatabainejad were indeed out of UCLA policy. The probe was conducted at the behest of acting UCLA Chancellor Norman Abrams.

From the report:
"In light of UCLAPD's general use of force policy and its specific policies on pain compliance techniques, Officer 2's three applications of the Taser, taken together, were out of policy. Officer 2 did not take advantage of other options and opportunities reasonably available to de-escalate the situation without the use of the Taser. Reasonable campus police officers, upon assessing the circumstances, likely would have embraced different choices and options that appear likely to have been more consistent both with UCLAPD policy and general best law enforcement practices."


Submission + - Virtualization, Vista security issues at Black Hat

BobB writes: Can rootkit malware that hides by mimicking a software-based virtual machine ever be detected? That was the topic of debate as security researchers presented their latest findings to packed audiences at the Black Hat Conference in Las Vegas. Vista security questions also swirled at the event. -hat-virtual-machine-rootkit-detection.html
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Man burns opponent's house for calling him "ne (

prostoalex writes: "The Globe and Mail is reporting on a feud between two members of a picture-sharing site that motivated one of the opponents to drive down to Texas from Virginia, meanwhile taking photos of his trip and sharing them on aforementioned picture-sharing site, to burn the victim's house down: "Investigators say Tavares boiled over when Anderson called him a nerd and posted a digitally altered photo making Tavares look like a skinny boy in high-water pants, holding a gun and a laptop under a "Revenge of the Nerds" sign. Tavares obtained Anderson's real name and hometown from Anderson's Web page about his Museum of Horrors Haunted House. Tavares took leave from his post as a weapons systems operator at the AEGIS Training and Readiness Center in Dahlgren, Va., and started driving. Investigators say he told them he planned to point a shotgun at Anderson and shoot his computer.""

Submission + - Lawyers shafted by windows on NY bar examination

An anonymous reader writes: Over 5000 aspiring lawyers who took the New York bar examination on laptops using windows, word and a software from a company called SecureExam ended up with lost essays and computer problems. The New York Board of Bar Examiners released a statement and the company responsible released a second statement. Possibilities at this point might entail a software company being held liable for licensed software under a EULA for the first time. Bar examinations in Georgia reportedly had problems as well. It seems the software created a single file with all the answers and either discarded the file rather than upload it or mixed parts of the essays together.

Submission + - O'Reilly's $1,000,000 Trademark Problem

theodp writes: "Tim O'Reilly repeatedly bashed the blogosphere last summer over the Web 2.0 trademark debacle. It was "shocking how much ignorance was on display — of the facts of the case, of trademark law, of the existence of trademarks," wrote Tim. Harsh words, especially since court records show that O'Reilly Media was also accused of trademark ignorance at the time, finding itself on the receiving end of a lawsuit after publishing a book entitled The Art of Project Management, a previously trademarked term, giving rise to a $1,000,000 legal claim that seems like it could have been avoided with a little of the fact checking espoused by 'I-do-believe-in-trademark' Tim. But all's well that ends well. Unlike Tom Raftery, O'Reilly was able to call on a New York Super Lawyer for help, and the lawsuit was quietly dismissed earlier this year, allowing the title of Scott Berkun's tome to remain unchanged, with no one the wiser. Tim would later issue his Blogger's Code of Conduct, which called for enforcing civility on trademark infringers."

Submission + - Harry Potter and a Goblin's Take on Copyright (

DevanJedi writes: "Here's a passage from page 517 of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows : (Ron's brother Bill is warning Harry against trusting a goblin Griphook.) "You don't understand, Harry, nobody could understand unless they have lived with goblins. To a goblin, the rightful and true master of any object is the maker, not the purchaser. All goblin-made objects are, in goblin eyes, rightfully theirs. [...] They have, however, great difficulty with the idea of goblin-made objects passing from wizard to wizard. [...] They consider our habit of keeping goblin-made objects, passing them from wizard to wizard without further payment, little more than theft." These goblins sound like our friendly neighborhood MPAA/RIAA lawyers!"
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Voracious Jumbo Squid Invade California (

starglider29a writes: "Jumbo squid that can grow up to 7 feet long and weigh more than 110 pounds are invading central California waters and preying on local anchovy, hake and other commercial fish populations, according to a study published Tuesday.

"Having a new, voracious predator set up shop here in California may be yet another thing for fishermen to compete with," said the study's co-author, Stanford University researcher Louis Zeidberg. "That said, if a squid saw a human they would jet the other way."

The jumbo squid used to be found only in the Pacific Ocean's warmest stretches near the equator. In the last 16 years, it has expanded its territory throughout California waters, and squid have even been found in the icy waters off Alaska, Zeidberg said.

starglider29a says: This would be YA 'look, climate change' article, were it not for the fact that the Squid Expert is named Zeidberg! ROFLCAKES!"


Submission + - Ideas for Software Freedom Day

linuxbz writes: "Over 140 teams from all over the world will be participating in Software Freedom Day, 15 September 2007 (and it's not too late to join them if you hurry). But the question is this: What can these teams add to their plans to promote free and open source software on that day?"

Let's organize this thing and take all the fun out of it.