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Submission + - Physics Buzz: Nobel prize ( writes: The official Nobel Prize YouTube Channel ( continues its “Ask a Nobel Laureate” series, which gives viewers worldwide the unique opportunity to put their questions to a Nobel Laureate. The latest Laureate ready to answer your question is Albert Fert, awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics 2007 for his discovery of Giant Magnetoresistance, which forms the basis of the memory storage system found in your computer and mp3 players. Deadline of questions is March 19, 2010.

Submission + - New 'Horava Gravity Theory' Decouples Spacetime (

eldavojohn writes: Petr Horava, a physicist at the University of California in Berkeley, has a new theory about gravity and spacetime. A high energies, it actually snips any ties between space and time (as opposed to the Theory of General Relativity at low energies that binds them together). It is picking up steam and gaining popularity with physicists because it fits a lot of observed models better than Einstein's or Newtonian solutions. It better predicts the movement of the planets and has a potential to create the illusion of dark matter--something we've been trying to decipher for a long time.

Submission + - Has sci-fi run out of steam? ( 1

Barence writes: Science fiction has long inspired real-world technology, but have the authors of sci-fi stories finally run out of steam? PC Pro has traced the history of sci-fi's influence on real-world technology, from Jules Verne to Snow Crash, but suggests that writers have run out of ideas when it comes to inspiring tomorrow's products. "Since Snow Crash, no novel has had quite the same impact on the computing world, and you might argue that sci-fi and hi-tech are drifting further apart," PC Pro claims. Author Charles Stross tells the magazine that he began writing a sci-fi novel in 2005 and "made some predictions, thinking that in ten years they’d either be laughable or they’d have come true. The weird bit? Most of them came true already, by 2009!”

Submission + - NSA Claims Role in Windows 7 Security (

eldavojohn writes: Testifying before congress, the NSA information assurance director said, "Working in partnership with Microsoft and elements of the Department of Defense, NSA leveraged our unique expertise and operational knowledge of system threats and vulnerabilities to enhance Microsoft's operating system security guide without constraining the user to perform their everyday tasks, whether those tasks are being performed in the public or private sector. All this was done in coordination with the product release, not months or years later during the product lifecycle. This will improve the adoption of security advice, as it can be implemented during installation and then later managed through the emerging SCAP standards." With this slight nod toward partnering with the most popular operating system developer, you can imagine the privacy people going nuts over the NSA involvement with the next operating system. Backdoor installment or just the NSA saving itself a bunch of time getting Windows 7 up to standards for their use ahead of time? Will Linux or OSX receive such royal treatment?
The Gimp

Submission + - GIMP dropped from Ubuntu 10.04 ( 2

kai_hiwatari writes: It seems like the Ubuntu developers consider GIMP to be too powerful for a normal desktop user. So they are removing it from the upcoming Ubuntu 10.04. This actually feels like a good reason as most people uses GIMP as a "Paint"-like software.

Submission + - Mac laptops less reliable than major PC notebooks

wiedzmin writes: Apple's line of laptops ranked fourth behind ASUS, Sony and Toshiba in a multi-year reliability survey of nine notebook makers, with an average 3-year failure rate of 17.4%. According to a study of 30,000 portable computers published today by SquareTrade, company that provides after-sale warranties, Apple finished in the middle of the pack with ASUS (15.6% failure rate) and HP (25.6%) taking the first and last places respectively.

Submission + - MinWin's influence on Windows 7 (

likuidkewl writes: Ars takes a look at the Microsoft MinWin team's contirbution to Windows 7 and possible upcoming kernel versions. There is really not anything new in this article that we haven't seen before, no details on the new "modular" kernel, but a look at what might be and where this slimmed down version of Microsoft's kernel might go in the future. They hint at the mobile market, but provide little to back it up. They also discuss the Server Core line of Microsoft products, great idea bad implementation as usual.

"Six years ago, Microsoft assembled a team and set out how to not make things worse with Vista, as one executive put it. Today, we find them still very much in the middle of this long project to bring an end to the long-standing, well-earned reputation of Windows being a large, bloated, inflexible operating system."

I see the MinWin kernel as the only saving grace for Microsoft in the future, the current kernel is a mess. I just hope articles like these strike a cord with the Linux Kernel developers and remind them that bigger is not always better.


Submission + - Microsoft Borrows GPL Code for Windows 7 Utility (

Goatbert writes: "Rafael Rivera over at has found evidence that Microsoft has potentially stolen code from an open source/GPL'd project (ImageMaster for a utility made available on the Microsoft Store to allow download customers to copy the Windows 7 setup files to a DVD or USB Flash Drive. If Rivera's evidence holds up, this could be some serious egg in the face for Microsoft at a time when they're getting mostly good press from the tech media."

Schwarzenegger Flips Off Lawmakers 5

An anonymous reader writes "Here is something for idle to chew on. California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is ticked off. He’s tired of signing bills that don’t address the pet causes he deems important. So when another unworthy bill crossed his desk recently for signing — addressing funding issues for the Port of San Francisco — the guv vetoed it and sent lawmakers a little note saying why. Only the note said a little more than lawmakers were expecting. A shortcut to the letter supposedly sent by the Govenator can be found here. If you are still stumped, this should clear it up. I have to admit, I never expected him to be this clever."

We all agree on the necessity of compromise. We just can't agree on when it's necessary to compromise. -- Larry Wall