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+ - New Study Says Governments Should Ditch Reliance on Biofuels

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "The NYT reports on a new study from a prominent environmental think tank that concludes that turning plant matter into liquid fuel or electricity is so inefficient that the approach is unlikely ever to supply a substantial fraction of global energy demand and that continuing to pursue this strategy is likely to use up vast tracts of fertile land that could be devoted to helping feed the world’s growing population. “I would say that many of the claims for biofuels have been dramatically exaggerated,” says Andrew Steer, president of the World Resources Institute, a global research organization based in Washington that is publishing the report. “There are other, more effective routes to get to a low-carbon world.” The report follows several years of rising concern among scientists about biofuel policies in the United States and Europe, and is the strongest call yet by the World Resources Institute, known for nonpartisan analysis of environmental issues, to urge governments to reconsider those policies.

Timothy D. Searchinger says that recent science has challenged some of the assumptions underpinning many of the pro-biofuel policies that have often failed to consider the opportunity cost of using land to produce plants for biofuel. According to Searchinger if forests or grasses were grown instead of biofuels, that would pull carbon dioxide out of the air, storing it in tree trunks and soils and offsetting emissions more effectively than biofuels would do. What is more, as costs for wind and solar power have plummeted over the past decade, and the new report points out that for a given amount of land, solar panels are at least 50 times more efficient than biofuels at capturing the energy of sunlight in a useful form. “It’s true that our first-generation biofuels have not lived up to their promise,” says Jason Hill said. “We’ve found they do not offer the environmental benefits they were purported to have, and they have a substantial negative impact on the food system.”"

+ - Microsoft Launches Outlook For Android And iOS 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Microsoft today launched Outlook for Android and iOS. The former is available (in preview) for download now on Google Play and the latter will arrive on Apple's App Store later today. The pitch is simple: Outlook will let you manage your work and personal email on your phone and tablet as efficiently as you do on your computer. The app also offers calendar features, attachment integration (with OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, and iCloud), along with customizable swipes and actions so you can tailor it to how you specifically use email."

+ - LibreOffice 4.4 is more than just a pretty face->

Submitted by sfcrazy
sfcrazy (1542989) writes "LibreOffice (aka LO) is among the best and the most used free (of cost) and open source office suites. The just-announced, brand new version 4.4 boasts some new features and a much needed design overhaul. With the 4.4 release, it looks like the developers have cleaned up the code enough to deal with the design of the product. The new LibreOffice not only shows a sleeker toolbar, it has also added a side panel; similar to the one found of IBM Lotus Notes which also inspired Calligra Suite by the KDE community."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Without their permission (Score 5, Interesting) 98

by RandomFactor (#48377975) Attached to: Carmakers Promise Not To Abuse Drivers' Privacy

customer ... Information ... wont be ... all kinds of stuff ... without their permission.

I'm told I gave permission for things that I in no way gave permission for (consciously) far to often to buy that one.

They'll just add permissions to the shrink wrap license on your smart ignition key (or your XM radio, live maps, emergency service, or some other needed/desirable function). Pesky 'privacy' problem solved!

Comment: Re:I know! (Score 1) 545

by RandomFactor (#47925929) Attached to: What To Expect With Windows 9
I have Windows and Mint also. (Primarily windows, though that's a practicality thing for me, not a preference.) - Windows doesn't stay running months on end unless you don't patch. That's not an indictment of Windows, it is just the reality of maintaining a system well in that environment. - Why do people assume that if they don't experience a problem that the person that does is simply wrong/crazy/imagining/stupid. - If you don't run Windows routinely and keep it updated (which sounds like the case in the GP), then when you do boot it, EVERYTHING wants to update* and your experience is horrible until it all completes. Also not an indictment of Windows, just reality. * (unless you convince yourself that you can do it better and smarter than various manufacturers and lock down all automatic updates, which I posit is a bad idea generally for non corporate systems...and particularly those where someone boots into the OS out of protest once in a blue moon...)

Counting in octal is just like counting in decimal--if you don't use your thumbs. -- Tom Lehrer

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