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Submission + - China Wants to Buy Facebook (

An anonymous reader writes: On Thursday, Business Insider reported that China is trying to buy “a huge chunk” of Facebook.

According to the business news website, Beijing approached a fund that buys stock from former Facebook employees to see if it could assemble a stake large enough “to matter.” Moreover, Citibank is rumored to be trying to acquire as much as $1.2 billion of stock for two sovereign wealth funds, one from the Middle East and the other Chinese. Business Insider reports a third source, from a “very influential” Silicon Valley investment bank, confirms that Citi is representing China.


Submission + - The A-Z of Programming Languages: Shakespeare (

angry tapir writes: "Computerworld Australia recently caught up with the Swedish creators of the Shakespeare programming language. Jon Aslund and Karl Wiberg, took the time to give us the low-down on what motivated them to create an esoteric and poetic programming language in the space of almost one night."

Submission + - A Solar-Powered 3D Printer Prints Glass from Sand (

Tx-0 writes: From the article:
Industrial designer and tinkerer Markus Kayser spent the better part of a year building and experimenting with two fantastic devices that harness the sun’s power in some of the world’s harshest climates. The first he calls a Sun Cutter, a low-tech light cutter that uses a large ball lens to focus the sun’s rays onto a surface that’s moved by a cam-guided system. As the surface moves under the magnified light it cuts 2D components like a laser. The project was tested for the first time in August 2010 in the Egyptian desert and Kayser used thin plywood to create the parts for a few pairs of pretty sweet shades. But he didn’t stop there. Next, Kayser began to examine the process of 3D printing. Merging two of the deserts most abundant resources, nearly unlimited quantities of sand and sun, he created the Solar Sinter, a device that melts sand to create 3D objects out of glass.

Submission + - Casey Anthony Trial: Did Computer Forensic CSI Lie

Telexer writes: If you were a prosecuting attorney in a death penalty murder case, it would be pretty damning evidence to say the defendant "visited a Chloroform Web site 84 times". And that's exactly what state's computer expert witnesses testified to in the Casey Anthony Trial. There was just one problem — it wasn't true. And Florida Orange County Sheriff's Office (OCSO) Computer Forensic CSIs knew it wasn't true. It was more like one or two visits.

So I have to ask: How did this testimony get into a death penalty case? Was this the case of rogue CSIs who took it upon themselves to misreport evidence? Or did the CSIs tell the State Attorney's Office (SAO) that they had inconsistent reports from different software? And did the SAO then decide they'd go with the higher number, 'because it supports the case much better'.

Here's what we know. OCSO CSI officer Sandra Osborne found a deleted Firefox history file on the Anthony family desktop computer. She turned it over to CSI supervisor Sergeant Stenger for analysis. Sgt. Stenger ran it through a standard CSI tool, 'Net Analysis'. But the resulting report had a problem with date/time stamps because time switched from Daylight Savings to Standard time during the search period. Sgt. Stenger then obtained a copy of a new program called CacheBack (SiQuest Corp.) which could handle the date problem. However, whereas 'Net Analysis' reported only a couple visits to the Chloroform Web site, CacheBack reported 84 visits. Sgt. Stenger even contacted the developer of CacheBack to see if the counting error could be fixed for his official report. This all happened months or years before the trial started. The 84 visits was later determine to be associated with an adjacent search record for a MySpace page.

But a funny thing happened on the way to trial. The CacheBack developer, John Bradley, owner of SiQuest Corporation, became an expert witness in Computer Forensics for the state. He testified (at great length) under oath that there were "84 visits to the Chloroform Web site". Even as late as Friday (6/24/2011), SAO prosecutor Jeff Ashton was grilling Cindy Anthony (the defendant's mother) asking if she had visited the Chloroform Web site 84 times. Then came the Defense bombshell. CSI Sgt. Stenger was called back to the stand and asked if knew the "84 visits" was wrong and whether he had contacted the CacheBack developer about fixing his software. A crest fallen Sgt. Stenger answered yes to both questions. CSI officer Osborne was also called to testify on Friday but was very evasive saying she knew nothing about the Firefox history and she only passed it to Sgt. Stenger. A Tweet from the courthouse rumored that CSI Osborne was accompanied to the courthouse on Friday by her personal lawyer.

So what did the State Attorney's Office know and when did they know it? Judges like to quip to defense attorneys that "This is Court Of Law. Not a Court Of Justice." However, this case leaves one wondering, is the Orange County Courthouse can even a classified as a 'Court Of Law'.

In related news, the trial was abruptly stopped minutes after it began today — Recessed until Monday morning. The judge said only he had an important legal matter to attend to. Trial watchers are abuzz with speculation about what was important enough to send witnesses and the jury home for the day.

Submission + - Electromagnetic Pulse Gun To Help In Police Chases ( 4

adeelarshad82 writes: In an attempt to put an end to dangerous police high speed chases, scientists at Eureka Aerospace have developed an electromagnetic pulse gun called the High Power Electromagnetic System, or HPEMS. It develops a high-intensity directed pulse of electricity designed to disable a car's microprocessor system, shutting down all of its systems. Right now the prototype seen in a video fills an entire lab, but they have plans to shrink its size to hand-held proportions. Some form of this is already featured in OnStar-equipped vehicles though the electromagnetic signal used to disable the vehicle is beamed via satellite, and doesn't cripple the in-car computer, but rather puts it into a mode that allows police to easily catch and then stop the fleeing criminal.

"People should have access to the data which you have about them. There should be a process for them to challenge any inaccuracies." -- Arthur Miller