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Comment It depends on why you are estimating (Score 1) 483

If you're trying to estimate the size of project for budgeting purposes, then function-point counting is a useful method. Over time you can learn how an organization performs and your estimates will become more accurate. If you're trying to estimate for the purposes of visibility then don't—you're better of using one of the agile development methodologies.

Comment String theory has been essentially replaced (Score 2, Interesting) 243

by M-theory. My understanding is that there are 5 different versions of 10-dimensional string theory that can be generalized to 11-dimensional M-brane theory. Not sure about the inflation thing though, I just wanted to throw in the fact that you are talking about an old theory.

Submission + - US Government Confirms Illegal wiretapping Program->

uctechdude writes: National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell pulled the curtain back on previously classified details of government surveillance and of a secretive court whose recent rulings created new hurdles for the Bush administration as it tries to prevent terrorism.

Among the disclosures:
McConnell confirmed for the first time that the private sector assisted with President Bush's warrantless surveillance program. AT&T, Verizon and other telecommunications companies are being sued for their cooperation. "Now if you play out the suits at the value they're claimed, it would bankrupt these companies," McConnell said, arguing that they deserve immunity for their help.

Link to Original Source

Feed Science Daily: Astronomers Get First Look At Uranus's Rings As They Swing Edge-on To Earth->

An edge-on view of Uranus' rings, possible only once every 42 years, shows that the dust distribution has changed significantly since Voyager 2 took photos in 1986. Keck and Hubble observations show the inner rings more clearly as the bright outer rings dim, and may discover new moons that shepherd the ring debris.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Life on Mars uses hydrogen peroxide as anti-freeze

mrraven writes: "According to an article on CNN a new interpretation of 30 year old data by Joop Houtkooper of the University of Giessen of from Mars Viking lander data indicates a possibility that Martian soil may be .1 percent of biological origin:

"Houtkooper believes their presence would account for unexplained rises in oxygen and carbon dioxide when NASA's Viking landers incubated Martian soil. He bases his calculation of the biomass of Martian soil on the assumption that these gases were produced during the breakdown of organic material." Article at: .life.reut/index.html?iref=mpstoryview"

Flock, the Web 2.0 Browser? 263

escay writes "Cardinal, the Beta 1 version of Firefox-based browser Flock, was released Tuesday with many polished features. Some of the features include drag-and-drop photo uploading for Flickr and Photobucket, an in-built RSS aggregator, direct blogging tool, and shared favorites/bookmarks. In step with Web 2.0 philosophy, Flock provides a rich user-centric experience, making it easier to bring information to the user and vice versa. It is available for Linux/Mac/Windows, and you can download it here. (And for those of you trying to get Flash working in Firefox on an AMD64 Linux machine, try this and be pleasantly surprised!)"

1 Mole = 25 Cagey Bees