Steve writes "Google just made a bold move in the HTML5 video tag battle: even though H.264 is widely used and WebM is not, the search giant has announced it will drop support for the former in Chrome. The company has not done so yet, but it has promised it will in the next couple of months. Google wants to give content publishers and developers using the HTML5 video tag an opportunity to make any necessary changes to their websites."
An anonymous reader writes "It appears that Ubisoft's controversial DRM scheme launched last year that required players to have a permanent connection to the Internet has been patched to no longer stop the game when connectivity drops, though an Internet connection is still required when starting the game."
Lanxon writes "An architecture and design firm called Choi+Shine has submitted a design for the Icelandic High-Voltage Electrical Pylon International Design Competition which proposes giant human-shaped pylons carrying electricity cables across the country's landscape, reports Wired. The enormous figures would only require slight alterations to existing pylon designs, says the firm, which was awarded an Honorable mention for its design by the competition's judging board. It also won an award from the Boston Society of Architects Unbuilt Architecture competition."
Try Ctrl-k instead of Ctrl-l Tab, it's easier...
The Large Binocular Telescope consists of two 8.4-meter mirrors which function in tandem to provide resolution greater than that of the Hubble Telescope. The LBT's first "binocular" images were captured recently, marking the end to a long and laborious construction process. We previously discussed the LBT when images were captured from the first mirror to be installed. Quoting: "The LBT ... will combine light to produce the image sharpness equivalent to a single 22.8-meter (75-foot) telescope. 'To have a fully functioning binocular telescope is not only a time for celebration here at LBT, but also for the entire astronomy community,' UA Steward Observatory Director, Regents' Professor and LBT Corp. President Peter A. Strittmatter said. 'The images that this telescope will produce will be like none seen before. The power and clarity of this machine is in a class of its own. It will provide unmatched ability to peer into history, seeing the birth of the universe.'"
Hugh Pickens writes "Astronauts are the ultimate Type A personalities but that can backfire during a long stay in space so NASA is taking applications for a new crop of astronauts whose main duties are to conduct experiments, keep the station running and stay in their crewmates' good graces. For that, NASA needs an affable, tolerant guy or gal who is more researcher than jet jockey. 'You need to be more of a people person' to serve on the station, says astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, who has flown on the space shuttle and commanded the station. 'You can't just be steely-eyed, no matter how competent.' Coping skills are crucial on a station mission, which lasts three to six months, compared with 11 to 15 days for a shuttle mission. 'Anybody can get along with anybody for a couple of weeks,' says psychiatry professor Nick Kanas who studies astronaut behavior. After a month or two, 'being with somebody for that long starts to wear on you. The jokes get stale. You have to learn new ways of interacting.'"
I hereby rename this company Microshoo!
jammag writes "If the marriage of Microsoft and Yahoo were to be consummated, GNU/Linux would be hindered, argues Roy Schestowitz. Yahoo's funding of open source initiatives would dry up. Yahoo, which acquired Zimbra, would lose its love for the open source competitor of Microsoft Outlook. The list goes on..."
anastasd writes "Reuters is reporting that Yahoo might consider a business alliance with Google as a way to top a $44.6 billion takeover proposal by Microsoft. 'Yahoo management is considering revisiting talks it held with Google several months ago on an alliance as an alternative to Microsoft's bid, that source said. At $31 a share, Yahoo believes the bid undervalues the company, two sources said. A second source close to Yahoo said it had received a procession of preliminary contacts by media, technology, telephone and financial companies. But the source said they were unaware whether any alternative bid was in the offing.'"
Ponca City, We Love You writes "There will be a program on applied physics and real time strategy that you might want to watch on television today. Conservation of momentum during elastic and inelastic collisions is one aspect on which to focus as players tackle their opponents. It is of critical importance that the Patriots bring down New York's huge and powerful running back, 6-foot-4, 265-pound Brandon Jacobs. An average-size NFL defensive back's mass combined with his speed — on average, 4.56 seconds for the 40-yard dash — can produce up to 1600 pounds of tackling force. A tackle with half a ton of force may sound like a crippling blow, but the body can handle twice that amount because the player's equipment spreads out the incoming energy, lessening its severity." Nanotech specialists from Cornell have developed their own take on the "physics" of the Super Bowl by creating the world's smallest trophy, which will be awarded today to a contestant who best explains an aspect of football physics. Just some food for thought while you watch the game on your brand new HD television, though you'd better not be watching it in a church.
Not Comcastic writes "Two weeks after officially opening proceedings on Comcast's BitTorrent throttling, angry users are bombarding the FCC with comments critical of the cable provider's practices. 'On numerous occasions, my access to legal BitTorrent files was cut off by Comcast,' a systems administrator based in Indianapolis wrote to the FCC shortly after the proceeding began. 'During this period, I managed to troubleshoot all other possible causes of this issue, and it was my conclusion (speaking as a competent IT administrator) that this could only be occurring due to direct action at the ISP (Comcast) level.' Another commenter writes 'I have experienced this throttling of bandwidth in sharing open-source software, e.g. Knoppix and Open Office. Also I see considerable differences in speed ftp sessions vs. html. They are obviously limiting speed in ftp as well.'"
Iddo Genuth writes "German scientists recently showed what many of us suspected but could not prove — some people just don't learn. The German researchers have found a genetic factor that affects our ability to learn from our errors. The scientists demonstrated that men carrying the A1 mutation are less successful at learning to avoid mistakes than men who do not carry this genetic mutation. This finding has the potential to improve our understanding of the causes of addictive and compulsive behaviors."
An anonymous reader writes "Google has revealed a new project aimed at the scientific community. Called Palimpsest, the site research.google.com will play host to 'terabytes of open-source scientific datasets'. It was originally previewed for scientists last August . 'Building on the company's acquisition of the data visualization technology, Trendalyzer, from the oft-lauded, TED presenting Gapminder team, Google will also be offering algorithms for the examination and probing of the information. The new site will have YouTube-style annotating and commenting features.'"
Stony Stevenson writes "Vista is proving far less popular than XP did with new PC buyers during the earlier OS's first year on the market. This conclusion follows from statements by Bill Gates at this week's Consumer Electronics Show. Gates boasted that Microsoft has sold more than 100 million copies of Windows Vista since the OS launched last January. Based on Gates's statement, Windows Vista was aboard just 39% of the PC's that shipped in 2007. And Vista, in terms of units shipped, only outperformed first-year sales of XP by 10%, according to Gates's numbers, while PC shipments have doubled in the years since XP's release."
Via Buttonmashing, news of early work on a homebrew project to port Blizzard's StarCraft to the Nintendo DS. "Since no official plans were ever announced from Blizzard, two French homebrew developers have taken it upon themselves to create a port of the popular PC game, StarCraft, for the Nintendo DS, calling it StarLite. Because they've only been working for three weeks, the game is a bit limited right now and still needs a lot of work."