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Measuring the Speed of Light With Valentine's Day Chocolate Screenshot-sm 126

Cytotoxic writes "What to do with all of those leftover Valentine's Day chocolates? — a common problem for the Slashdot crowd. The folks over at Wired magazine have an answer for you in a nice article showing how to measure the speed of light with a microwave and some chocolate. A simple yet surprisingly accurate method that can be used to introduce the scientific method to children and others in need of a scientific education."

Aussie Attorney General Says Gamers Are Scarier Than Biker Gangs 409

Sasayaki writes "South Australian Attorney-General Michael Atkinson claims, in an interview with Good Game, that gamers were more of a threat to his family than biker gangs. This is the man who has been the biggest opponent to Australia receiving an R18+ rating for video games and who has the power to veto any such law introducing it."

A History of Media Technology Scares 119

jamesswift writes "Vaughan Bell at Slate has written an interesting article on the centuries old phenomenon of hysterical suspicion surrounding new media and the technologies that enable them. 'A respected Swiss scientist, Conrad Gessner, might have been the first to raise the alarm about the effects of information overload. In a landmark book, he described how the modern world overwhelmed people with data and that this overabundance was both "confusing and harmful" to the mind. The media now echo his concerns with reports on the unprecedented risks of living in an "always on" digital environment. It's worth noting that Gessner, for his part, never once used e-mail and was completely ignorant about computers. That's not because he was a technophobe but because he died in 1565.' The best line comes near then end: 'The writer Douglas Adams observed how technology that existed when we were born seems normal, anything that is developed before we turn 35 is exciting, and whatever comes after that is treated with suspicion.'"

Silicon Valley's Island of Misfit Tech 134

harrymcc writes "For more than 20 years, Sunnyvale's cavernous, aptly-named Weird Stuff Warehouse has sold an amazing array of salvage and surplus computer products. It's like a tech museum where everything's for sale at bargain-basement prices — from shrinkwrapped Atari 1040ST software to used BetaMAX tapes to 1GB hard drives to mysterious printed circuit boards to Selectric typewriters. I paid a visit to this legendary geek temple and snapped photos of some of the fascinating stuff I came across."

Bark Beetles Hate Rush Limbaugh and Heavy Metal Screenshot-sm 220

Aryabhata writes "According to scientists, climate change and human activity have allowed bark beetle populations to soar. They decided to fight the beetles by using the 'nastiest, most offensive sounds' that they could think of. These sounds included recordings of Guns & Roses, Queen, Rush Limbaugh and manipulated versions of the insects' own sounds. The research project titled 'Beetle Mania' has concluded that acoustic stress can disrupt their feeding and even cause the beetles to kill each other."

Subversive Groups Must Now Register In South Carolina Screenshot-sm 849

Hugh Pickens writes "The Raw Story reports that terrorists who want to overthrow the United States government must now register with South Carolina's Secretary of State and declare their intentions — or face a $25,000 fine and up to 10 years in prison. The 'Subversive Activities Registration Act' passed last year in South Carolina and now officially on the books states that 'every member of a subversive organization, or an organization subject to foreign control, every foreign agent and every person who advocates, teaches, advises or practices the duty, necessity or propriety of controlling, conducting, seizing or overthrowing the government of the United States ... shall register with the Secretary of State.'"

Linux Foundation Announces 2010 "We're Linux" Video Contest 460

prourl writes "The Linux Foundation (LF), the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux, today announced the 2010 'We're Linux' video contest. The contest seeks to find the best user-generated videos that demonstrate what Linux means to those who use it and inspire others to try it." Sadly, the winner will almost certainly be edited in Final Cut Pro on a Mac ;)

"You can't get very far in this world without your dossier being there first." -- Arthur Miller