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Programming

+ - Real world Rails: Caching in Rails

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: For some, Rails is hyper productive and for others Ruby is a toy. One camp says its well marketed and the other camp tells us Ruby is over hyped. Like many newer technologies, Rails also has a reputation as unproven with limited scalability. Unlike the C and Java languages, Ruby is interpreted, with all of the inherent performance handicaps. This article explores the Ruby caching strategies that are available to you to increase performance.
Real Time Strategy (Games)

+ - Starcraft 2 Officially announced by Blizzard

Submitted by
unity100
unity100 writes: "Blizzard has just officially announced Starcraft 2. From the faq on their site, the game will have the 3 initial races, with some units from Starcraft gone, some new units added. They promise good deal of cinematics, and excellent balance between 3 races again. Storyline will continue where Broow War has left off. Blizzard also promises to preserve qualities that made Starcraft a lasting classic. Read more here : http://www.starcraft2.com/"
Security

+ - Europe and Russia leaders in confrontation

Submitted by Ptolomeu
Ptolomeu writes: Germany's President Angela Merkel and European Comission President confronted Vladimir Putin with acusations like lack of democracy and Human Rights in Russia. He responded in a statement: "Both Russia and the EU are interested in the development of relations with each other, and they will develop whether we like it or not" obvioulsy referring to the fact that Europe relies on many of the natural resources it imports from Russia. BBC reports the leaders met at a summit, where the tension was so palpable it became obvious the relations weren't so tense since the Cold War ended.
Wireless Networking

+ - Indian railway stations to get Wi-Max

Submitted by ghoul
ghoul writes: According to this article Indian Railways has started the process of equipping railway stations with Wi-Max facilities. These will provide wireless access to within 5-6 km radius of railway stations as compared to the current 100-200 m radius of Wifi. I wonder why Google is using Wifi for San Francisco when WiMax is now available. This is another example of leapfrogging of technology. India never managed to roll out a complete copper landline system but ramped up mobile access so fast that there are now more mobiles than landline. Hence now there is phone connectivity and they have saved the cost of all that copper and fiber. Similarly they will save money on not having rolled out Wifi and going to WiMax directly. Also given that India has the largest network of railway stations in the world most villages do fall 5-6 km within the radius of a railway station so when this rollout is completed the entire country should have wireless access. Drawbacks — its not free and it wont work on moving trains
Security

+ - Symantec false positive cripples thousands of Chin

Submitted by
Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward writes: "From Computerworld: A signature update to Symantec's anti-virus software crippled thousands of Chinese PCs Friday when the security software took two critical Windows .dll files for malware. According to numerous blog entries from Chinese computer users, a virus signature database seeded yesterday mistook two system files of a Chinese edition of Windows XP SP2 as a Trojan horse which Symantec dubs "Backdoor.Haxdoor." The anti-virus software — Norton AntiVirus, for example, or the anti-virus component of the Norton 360 or Norton Internet Security suites — then quarantined the netapi32.dll and lsasrv.dll files."
Novell

+ - Novell coupons kill some Microsoft patent claims

Submitted by
christian.einfeldt
christian.einfeldt writes: "Todd Bishop tells us that Novell might have pulled the legal trick of the century on Microsoft. Pamela Jones summarizes the story as only she can:

'Eben Moglen is saying that the SUSE vouchers Microsoft is distributing have no expiration date! I didn't know this. It's huge. This is, according to Moglen's remarks, another defense to any patent infringement claim by Microsoft, and it may well bring that campaign to a screeching halt. Here's why. Someone, Moglen says, is bound to turn a voucher it got from Microsoft in after GPLv3 goes into effect and GPLv3 code is being distributed, and at that moment Microsoft comes under its terms. And that should mean the end of Microsoft's ability to successfully sue anybody over its alleged patents allegedly in Linux'

One wonders what price Microsoft might pay for redeeming those vouchers after the first SuSE Linux code ships under the GPL3."
PC Games (Games)

+ - Intel Viiv vs. AMD LIVE!

Submitted by
Searching4Sasquatch
Searching4Sasquatch writes: "Hot Hardware has tested two nearly identical HP systems in an effort to determine the best solution between Intel's Viiv and AMD's LIVE! campaigns. Priced around $999, these general purpose systems are tested straight out of the box with no tweaking or refinement to illustrate how "Joe Consumer" would fare in using one of these platforms. Although neither solution was perfect, there was a clearly superior option and it is not the platform you're probably thinking of."
Microsoft

+ - Microsoft ordered to pay 1.5 Billion

Submitted by
Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward writes: "CNN has it all; Microsoft ordered to pay 1.5 Billion dollars in patent infringement case. (http://money.cnn.com/2007/02/22/technology/micros oft_alcatel/index.htm?eref=rss_topstories) From the article; "NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — A federal jury said Thursday that software maker Microsoft Corp. infringed audio patents held by Alcatel-Lucent and should pay $1.52 billion in damages. Tom Burt, Microsoft corporate vice president and deputy general counsel, said the verdict was unsupported by law or facts. TECHNOLOGY "Today's outcome is disappointing for us and for the hundreds of other companies who have licensed MP3 technology. "We will seek relief from the trial court, and if necessary appeal," Burt said. ""
Robotics

Fish-like Sensors for Underwater Robots 57

Posted by Zonk
from the fishies-are-fun dept.
Roland Piquepaille writes "Today, both submarine and surface ships use sonar for navigation. But sonar and other vision systems face various limitations. So why not imitating fish? For millions of years, fish have relied on 'a row of specialized sensory organs along the sides of their bodies, called the lateral line' to avoid predators or to find preys. So engineers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) have decided to build an artificial lateral line for submarines and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). The first tests have been successful, and we can now envision a day where AUVs could detect and track moving underwater targets or avoid collisions with moving or stationary objects."
Security

Chinese Hack Attacks on DoD Networks Coordinated 295

Posted by Zonk
from the man-your-battlestations dept.
An anonymous reader writes " The Naval Network Warfare Command says that Chinese hackers are relentlessly targeting Defense Department networks with cyber attacks. The 'volume, proficiency and sophistication' of the attacks supports the theory that the attacks are government supported. The motives of the attacks emanating from China include technology theft, intelligence gathering, exfiltration, research on DOD operations and the creation of dormant presences in DOD network for future action. Onlookers warn that current US defenses against these attacks are 'dysfunctional', and that more aggressive measures should be taken to ensure government network safety."

Nanotech Battery Claims to Solve Electric Car Woes 320

Posted by Zonk
from the down-with-woes dept.
rbgrn writes "A123 Systems claims to have invented a Lithium Ion battery that not only can discharge at very high rates of current but can be recharged very quickly without damage to the cells or overheating. From their website: 'A unique feature of A123Systems' M1 cells is their ability to charge to high capacity in 5 minutes or less. That's a significant improvement over traditional Li Ion, which typically requires more than 90 minutes to reach a similar level of charge.' Using this technology, General Motors has announced a plug-in hybrid SUV and Venture Vehicles is developing a fully electric 3 wheel vehicle. Politics aside, the main technological hurdle to mass adoption of electric cars has been a fuel station replacement when driving distances beyond a single charge worth of range. Will we finally be seeing high current recharge stations in the next decade?"
Television

+ - Co-Inventor of the TV Remote Dies

Submitted by poorting
poorting writes: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/O/OBIT_REMOTE _CONTROL?SITE=WIRE&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Co-Inventor of the TV Remote Dies

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Hit the mute button for a moment of silence: The co-inventor of the TV remote, Robert Adler, has died. Adler, who won an Emmy Award along with fellow engineer Eugene Polley for the device that made the couch potato possible, died Thursday of heart failure at a Boise nursing home at 93, Zenith Electronics Corp. said Friday.

In his six-decade career with Zenith, Adler was a prolific inventor, earning more than 180 U.S. patents. He was best known for his 1956 Zenith Space Command remote control, which helped make TV a truly sedentary pastime.

In a May 2004 interview with The Associated Press, Adler recalled being among two dozen engineers at Zenith given the mission to find a new way for television viewers to change channels without getting out of their chairs or tripping over a cable.

But he downplayed his role when asked if he felt his invention helped raise a new generation of couch potatoes.

"People ask me all the time — 'Don't you feel guilty for it?' And I say that's ridiculous," he said. "It seems reasonable and rational to control the TV from where you normally sit and watch television."

Various sources have credited either Polley, another Zenith engineer, or Adler as the inventor of the device. Polley created the "Flashmatic," a wireless remote introduced in 1955 that operated on photo cells. Adler introduced ultrasonics, or high-frequency sound, to make the device more efficient in 1956.

Zenith credits them as co-inventors, and the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences awarded both Adler and Polley an Emmy in 1997 for the landmark invention.

"He was part of a project that changed the world," Polley said from his home in Lombard, Ill.

Adler joined Zenith's research division in 1941 after earning a doctorate in physics from the University of Vienna. He retired as research vice president in 1979, and served as a technical consultant until 1999, when Zenith merged with LG Electronics Inc.

During World War II, Adler specialized in military communications equipment. He later helped develop sensitive amplifiers for ultra high frequency signals used by radio astronomers and by the U.S. Air Force for long-range missile detection.

Adler also was considered a pioneer in SAW technology, or surface acoustic waves, in color television sets and touch screens. The technology has also been used in cellular telephones.

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published his most recent patent application, for advances in touch screen technology, on Feb. 1.

His wife, Ingrid, said Adler wouldn't have chosen the remote control as his favorite invention. In fact, he didn't even watch much television.

"He was more of a reader," she said. "He was a man who would dream in the night and wake up and say, 'I just solved a problem.' He was always thinking science."

Adler wished he had been recognized for more of his broad-ranging applications that were useful in the war and in space and were building blocks of other technology, she said, "but then the remote control changed the life of every man."

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