Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

+ - Australian physicists build reversible tractor beam->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Physicists at Australian National University have developed a tiny tractor beam that improves in several ways upon previous attempts. First, it operates on scales which, while still tiny, are higher than in earlier experiments. The beam can move particles up to 200 microns in diameter, and it can do so over a distance of 20 cm. "Unlike previous techniques, which used photon momentum to impart motion, the ANU tractor beam relies on the energy of the laser heating up the particles and the air around them. The ANU team demonstrated the effect on gold-coated hollow glass particles. The particles are trapped in the dark center of the beam. Energy from the laser hits the particle and travels across its surface, where it is absorbed creating hotspots on the surface. Air particles colliding with the hotspots heat up and shoot away from the surface, which causes the particle to recoil, in the opposite direction. To manipulate the particle, the team move the position of the hotspot by carefully controlling the polarization of the laser beam."
Link to Original Source

+ - Dr.Who to teach kids to code ->

Submitted by DCFC
DCFC (933633) writes "The BBC is releasing a game to help ten 8-11 year olds get into coding. Based on Dr.Who, it alternates between standard platform game and programming puzzles that introduce the ideas of sequence, loops, if..then, variables and a touch of event driven programming...and you get to program a Dalek to make him more powerful, apparently the BBC thinks upgrading psychopathic racist death machines is a good idea."
Link to Original Source

+ - A Look At Orion's Launch Abort System->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "With the construction of Orion, NASA's new manned spacecraft, comes the creation of a new Launch Abort System — the part of the vehicle that will get future astronauts back to Earth safely if there's a problem at launch. The Planetary Society's Jason Davis describes it: "When Orion reaches the apex of its abort flight, it is allowed to make its 180-degree flip. The capsule of astronauts, who have already realized they will not go to space today, experience a brief moment of weightlessness before the capsule starts falling back to Earth, heat shield down. The jettison motor fires, pulling the LAS away from Orion. ... Orion, meanwhile, sheds its Forward Bay Cover, a ring at the top of the capsule protecting the parachutes. Two drogue chutes deploy, stabilizing the wobbling capsule. The drogues pull out Orion's three main chutes, no doubt eliciting a sigh of relief from the spacecraft's occupants.""
Link to Original Source
Blackberry

Rumor: Lenovo In Talks To Buy BlackBerry 42

Posted by Soulskill
from the business-segments dept.
BarbaraHudson writes: The CBC, the Financial Post, and The Toronto Sun are all reporting a possible sale of BlackBerry to Lenovo. From the Sun: "BlackBerry shares rose more than 3% on Monday after a news website said Chinese computer maker Lenovo Group might offer to buy the Canadian technology company. Rumors of a Lenovo bid for BlackBerry have swirled many times over the last two years. Senior Lenovo executives at different times have indicated an interest in BlackBerry as a means to strengthen their own handset business. The speculation reached a crescendo in the fall of 2013, when BlackBerry was exploring strategic alternatives. Sources familiar with the situation however, told Reuters last year that the Canadian government had strongly hinted to BlackBerry that any sale to Lenovo would not win the necessary regulatory approvals due to security concerns. Analysts also have said any sale to Lenovo would face regulatory obstacles, but they have suggested that a sale of just BlackBerry's handset business and not its core network infrastructure might just pass muster with regulators."

+ - Blackberry reported to be in talks with Lenovo

Submitted by BarbaraHudson
BarbaraHudson (3785311) writes "The CBC, the Financial Post, and The Toronto Sun are all reporting a possible sale of Blackberry to Lenovo. From the Sun:

BlackBerry shares rose more than 3% on Monday after a news website said Chinese computer maker Lenovo Group might offer to buy the Canadian technology company.

Rumours of a Lenovo bid for BlackBerry have swirled many times over the last two years. Senior Lenovo executives at different times have indicated an interest in BlackBerry as a means to strengthen their own handset business.

The speculation reached a crescendo in the fall of 2013, when BlackBerry was exploring strategic alternatives.

Sources familiar with the situation however, told Reuters last year that the Canadian government had strongly hinted to BlackBerry that any sale to Lenovo would not win the necessary regulatory approvals due to security concerns.

Analysts also have said any sale to Lenovo would face regulatory obstacles, but they have suggested that a sale of just BlackBerry's handset business and not its core network infrastructure might just pass muster with regulators.

"

+ - China is staging a nationwide attack on iCloud and Microsoft accounts ->

Submitted by DemonOnIce
DemonOnIce (3876631) writes "According to The Verge and original report from Great Fire , China is conducting a big scale attack on iCloud and Microsoft accounts using Great Firewall. Chinese users may be facing an unpleasant surprise, they directed to a dummy site designed like an Apple login page, and same thing happened with Microsoft accounts."
Link to Original Source

+ - Facebook 'Safety Check' lets friends know you're OK after a major disaster 1

Submitted by rtoz
rtoz (2530056) writes "Facebook has launched a new Tool which is named as "Safety Check".

The Facebook Safety Check tool will notify your friends so that they know you're OK after a major disaster.

In times of disaster or crisis, people turn to Facebook to check on loved ones and get updates.

During a major disaster, Safety Check will help you:

        Let friends and family know you’re safe
        Check on others in the affected area
        Mark your friends as safe

When the tool is activated after a natural disaster and if you’re in the affected area, you’ll receive a Facebook notification asking if you’re safe.

Facebook will determine your location by looking at the city you have listed in your profile, your last location if you’ve opted in to the Nearby Friends product, and the city where you are using the internet.

If you’re safe, you can select “I’m Safe” and a notification and News Feed story will be generated with your update. Your friends can also mark you as safe."

+ - The Physics of why Cold Fusion isn't real

Submitted by StartsWithABang
StartsWithABang (3485481) writes "If you can reach the fabled "breakeven point" of nuclear fusion, you’ll have opened up an entire new source of clean, reliable, safe, renewable and abundant energy. You will change the world. At present, fusion is one of those things we can make happen through a variety of methods, but — unless you’re the Sun — we don’t have a way to ignite and sustain that reaction without needing to input more energy than we can extract in a usable fashion from the fusion that occurs. One alternative approach to the norm is, rather than try and up the energy released in a sustained, hot fusion reaction, to instead lower the energy inputted, and try to make fusion happen under “cold” conditions. If you listen in the right (wrong?) places, you'll hear periodic reports that cold fusion is happening, even though those reports have always crumbled under scrutiny. Here's why, most likely, they always will."

+ - South Korean ID system to be rebuilt from scratch after massive leaks

Submitted by AmiMoJo
AmiMoJo (196126) writes "South Korea's national identity card system may need a complete overhaul following huge data thefts dating back to 2004. The government is considering issuing new ID numbers to every citizen aged over 17, costing billions of dollars. The ID numbers and personal details of an estimated 80% of the country's 50 million people have been stolen from banks and other targets. Some 20 million people, including the president Park Geun-hye, have been victims of a data theft. Citizens are unable to change their credentials, which are used in many different sectors, making them an attractive target for hackers."

+ - Fusion and Fission/LFTR: Let's do both, smartly 1

Submitted by TheRealHocusLocus
TheRealHocusLocus (2319802) writes "Preppers have a saying, "two is one and one is none" which might also apply to 24x7 base load energy sources that could sustain us beyond the age of fossil fuel. I too was happy to see Skunkworks' Feb 2013 announcement and the recent hello again, still making progress reminder — I was moved by the reaction on Slashdot: a ground swell of "Finally!" and "We're saved!" Do you think fusion is 'the' solution, and yields 'no' radioactive waste?

All nuclear reactors will generate waste via activation as the materials of which they are constructed erode and become unstable under high neutron flux. I'm not pointing this out because I think it's a big deal — a few fusion advocates disingenuously tend to sell the process as if it were '100% clean'. I think that a low volume of non-recyclable waste from fusion reactors that is walk-away safe in ~100 years is doable. Let's do it. And likewise, the best comparable waste profile for fission is a two-fluid LFTR, a low volume of waste that is walk-away safe in ~300 years. Let's do it.

Why pursue both, with at least the same level of urgency? Because both could carry us indefinitely. Because LFTR is a sure thing. It is less complicated in theory and practice. It is closer to market. Yes those are my opinions, but I've been looking into this for awhile. There is plenty of cross-over, LFTR's materials challenges and heat engine interface — and the necessity for waste management — are the same as they will be for commercial scale fusion reactors. To get up to speed please see the 2006 fusion lecture by Dr. Robert Bussard on the Wiffle ball 6 plasma containment, likely the precursor to the Skunkworks approach. And see Thorium Remix 2011 which presents the case for LFTR. Four hours well spent. Saving humanity is worth having at least two eggs in the basket."

+ - Lead Mir Developer: "Mir More Relevant Than Wayland In Two Years"

Submitted by M-Saunders
M-Saunders (706738) writes "Canonical courted plenty of controversy with it announced Mir, its home-grown display server. But why did the company choose to go it alone, and not collaborate with the Wayland project? Linux Voice has an interview with Thomas Voss, Mir's lead developer. Voss explains how Mir came into being, what it offers, and why he believes it will outlast Wayland."

+ - Python-LMDB in a high-performance environment

Submitted by lkcl
lkcl (517947) writes "In an open letter to the core developers behind OpenLDAP (Howard Chu) and Python-LMDB (David Wilson) is a story of a successful creation of a high-performance task scheduling engine written (perplexingly) in python. With only partial optimisation allowing tasks to be executed in parallel at a phenomenal rate of 240,000 per second, the choice to use Python-LMDB for the per-task database store based on its benchmarks as well as its well-researched design criteria turned out to be the right decision. Part of the success was also due to earlier architectural advice gratefully received here on slashdot. What is puzzling though is that LMDB on wikipedia is being constantly deleted, despite its "notability" by way of being used in a seriously-long list of prominent software libre projects, which has been, in part, motivated by the Oracle-driven BerkeleyDB license change. It would appear that the original complaint about notability came from an Oracle employee as well..."

+ - How Curved Spacetime Can Be Created In A Quantum Optics Lab

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "One way to explore the link between quantum mechanics and general relativity is to study the physics that occurs on a small scale in highly curved spacetimes. However, these conditions only occur in the most extreme environments such as at the edge of black holes or in the instants after the Big Bang. But now one physicist has described how it is possible to create curved spacetime in an ordinary quantum optics lab. The idea is based on optical lattices which form when a pair of lasers interfere to create an eggbox-like interference pattern. When ultracold atoms are dropped into the lattice, they become trapped like ping pong balls in an eggbox. This optical trapping technique is common in labs all over the world. However, the ultracold atoms do not stay at a fixed location in the lattice because they can tunnel from one location to another. This tunnelling is a form of movement through the lattice and can be controlled by changing the laser parameters to make tunneling easier or more difficult. Now one physicists has shown that on a large scale, the tunneling motion of atoms through the lattice is mathematically equivalent to the motion of atoms in a quantum field in a flat spacetime. And that means it is possible to create a formal analogue of a curved spacetime by changing the laser parameters across the lattice. Varying the laser parameters over time even simulates the behaviour of gravitational waves. Creating this kind of curved spacetime in the lab won't reveal any new physics but it will allow researchers to study the behaviour of existing laws under these conditions for the first time. That's not been possible even in theory because the equations that describe these behaviours are so complex that they can only be solved in the simplest circumstances."

+ - Debian talks about systemd begins once again->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "A couple of months ago the TC of Debian decided for systemd. This is now subject for discussion once again and Ian Jackson has stated that he wants a general resolution, so every developer within the Debian project can decide. After a short time the required amount of supportes has been reached and the discussion can start once again."
Link to Original Source

Heuristics are bug ridden by definition. If they didn't have bugs, then they'd be algorithms.

Working...