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Technology

Evanescent Lasers to Speed Up Data Transmission 82

Posted by samzenpus
from the greased-lightning dept.
Roland Piquepaille writes "Researchers at UC Santa Barbara (UCSB) have built the world's first mode-locked silicon evanescent laser. But what is an 'evanescent' laser? It is a step toward 'combining lasers and other key optical components with the existing electronic capabilities in silicon.' In other words, this research work will provide a way to integrate optical and electronic functions on a single chip. As these evanescent lasers can produce stable short pulses of laser light, they will be useful for many optical applications, such as high-speed data transmission or highly accurate optical clocks."
Communications

Skype Blames Microsoft Patch Tuesday for Outage 286

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the ddos-ing-yourself dept.
brajesh writes to tell us that Skype has blamed its outage over the last week on Microsoft's Patch Tuesday. Apparently the huge numbers of computers rebooting (and the resulting flood of login requests) revealed a problem with the network allocation algorithm resulting in a couple days of downtime. Skype further stressed that there was no malicious activity and user security was never in any danger.
Microsoft

+ - Microsoft struggling to gain endorsement for OOXML->

Submitted by Tri
Tri (60119) writes "The Open Source Industry of Australia (OSIA) has formally contacted Standards Australia, requesting that Microsoft's Office Open XML (OOXML) format not be endorsed by the body as an ISO standard.

  "Quite apart from the technical problems with OOXML, the main problem from OSIA's point of view is a substantive one — the 'standard' is designed so that it can only be implemented by a single vendor", said Brendan Scott, Director of Open Source Industry Australia. "So, while in theory a third party could create an independent implementation, in practice it is very unlikely", he said."

Link to Original Source
Announcements

+ - Possible Design Flaw Identified in Bridge Collapse->

Submitted by
Pcol
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."
Link to Original Source
Sun Microsystems

+ - Sun's CEO talks about its open source strategy-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "In a wide-ranging interview, C|Net talks in depth with Jonathan Schwartz, CEO of Sun Microsystems, about the company's open source strategy. Schwartz indicates that despite (or, rather, because of) open sourcing all of its software, software revenues actually increased in 2006 by 13%. In his words, in order to have sales, Sun (and other vendors) must first have adoption. Open source is an efficient, effective way to drive adoption, and therefore is Sun's strategic differentiator against Microsoft, IBM, and other global competitors. Schwartz also shares his top advice for executives at both open source and proprietary companies, where he learned the power of developers in driving sales, and whether he views Red Hat as a competitor."
Link to Original Source
Google

+ - Google mistakes own blog for spam, deletes it->

Submitted by
narramissic
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."
Link to Original Source

Imaging Breakthrough "Sees" Lung Disease 114

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the good-vibrations dept.
Roland Piquepaille writes "According to BusinessWeek, an Israeli startup, aptly named Deep Breeze, has developed a high-tech replacement for the 200-year-old stethoscope. This noninvasive device can draw, in seconds, an image of your lungs by listening to its vibrations. The Vibration Response Imaging (VRI) system could already be used in Israel, Europe and South Korea. Last month, the US Food and Drug Administration approved its introduction in the US. But don't expect to see one of these systems used by your local physician anytime soon. This VRI system will carry a price tag of over $40K."
Role Playing (Games)

+ - New Sci-Fi MMOG from Brazil looks promising...->

Submitted by MadMax79
MadMax79 (666) writes "It seems Brazilian start-up Hoplon (http://www.hoplon.com/) has been hard at work for the last 3 or so years creating a futuristic space-age MMOG which now looks very promising. The company has recently been featured in a Brazilian business magazine, and has the support of IBM. Apparently, a beta version of the game is available for those interested in testing. I have to say the graphics look very impressive... Check it out at http://en.taikodom.com/ ..."
Link to Original Source
Space

+ - Die-hard Pluto Fans Have New Cause Fro Despair->

Submitted by HaHaHa7129
HaHaHa7129 (215922) writes "AstronomyReport.com tells us that new data shows that the dwarf planet Eris is 27 percent more massive than Pluto, thereby strengthening the decree last year that there are eight planets in the solar system and a growing list of dwarf planets. The new results, obtained with Hubble Space Telescope and Keck Observatory data, indicate that the density of the material making up Eris is about two grams per cubic centimeter. This means that Eris very likely is made up of ice and rock, and thus is very similar in composition to Pluto. Past results from the Hubble Space Telescope had already allowed planetary scientists to determine that its diameter is 2,400 kilometers, also larger than Pluto's."
Link to Original Source

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