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Science

Short Circuit In LHC Could Delay Restart By Weeks 57 57

hypnosec writes: On March 21 CERN detected an intermittent short circuit to ground in one of the LHC's magnet circuits. Repairs could delay the restart by anywhere between a few days and several weeks. CERN revealed that the short circuit affected one of LHC's powerful electromagnets, thereby delaying preparations in sector 4-5 of the machine. They confirmed that seven of the machine's eight sectors have been successfully commissioned to 6.5 TeV per beam, but they won't be circulating a beam in the LHC this week. Though the short circuit issue is well understood, resolving it will take time, since it's in a cold section of the machine and repairs may therefore require warming and re-cooling.
Medicine

Lost Sense of Smell Is a Strong Predictor of Death Within 5 Years 139 139

HughPickens.com writes: Mo Costandi reports at The Guardian that a new study shows losing one's sense of smell strongly predicts death within five years, suggesting that smell may serve as a bellwether for the overall state of the body, or as a marker for exposure to environmental toxins. "Olfactory dysfunction was an independent risk factor for death, stronger than several common causes of death, such as heart failure, lung disease and cancer," the researchers concluded, "indicating that this evolutionarily ancient special sense may signal a key mechanism that affects human longevity." In the study, researchers tested a group of volunteers for their ability to correctly identify various scents. Five years later, they retested as many of the volunteers as they could find.

During the five-year gap between the two tests, 430 of the original participants (or 12.5% of the total number) had died. Of these, 39% who had failed the first smell test died before the second test, compared to 19% of those who had moderate smell loss on the first test, and just 10% of those with a healthy sense of smell. Despite taking issues such as age, nutrition, smoking habits, poverty and overall health into account, researchers found those with the poorest sense of smell were still at greatest risk. The tip of the olfactory nerve, which contains the smell receptors, is the only part of the human nervous system that is continuously regenerated by stem cells. The production of new smell cells declines with age, and this is associated with a gradual reduction in our ability to detect and discriminate odors. Loss of smell may indicate that the body is entering a state of disrepair, and is no longer capable of repairing itself.

Comment: Re:rsnapshot (Score 1) 304 304

It takes about 20 hours for the machine to rebuild the whole array, this is with WD/Seagate "green" (ie ~5400rpm) drives. Sadly you can't enable TLER on these newer ones. I was planning on growing the raid 6 to 15 drives.. but I may end up making another 10 drive array instead and retiring the raid 5.

Comment: rsnapshot (Score 5, Informative) 304 304

rsnapshot seems to work pretty well for incremental rsync'd backups for me. It uses symlinks to maintain the older snapshots, to save on total filesystem usage. It can do rsync over ssh for backing up remote servers/pushing local vital data to a safe remote location.

Local backup server uses Linux software RAID for good measure (5x1TB RAID 5 + 10x2TB RAID 6).

Comment: Re:I use mythtv (Score 1) 355 355

You should check out the Norco cases. They're 4U rackmount units with 24 hot-swap HDD bays, designed to fit regular ATX motherboards. Very cheap for what you get (also include a ton of fans). The build quality is not spectacular, but for a home system where you're not doing a whole lot of swapping they're great.

^^ This. Having hotswap also makes a big difference when you start having lots of drives. I'm still using a Norco RPC-4020 from about 3 years ago, 20x hotswap bays.. with the backplane mounted (8cm) fans running at 5V. Makes it acceptably quiet.. a lot of the server grade hardware will be set to tornado mode by default, as who cares about noise in a datacentre.

Comment: Re:Wait, what? (Score 1) 1521 1521

Likewise, discovering Geeks in Space was a nice period, that I have some fond memories from. Even now occasionally something amusing will pop into my head randomly from one of those shows.

Maybe they'll have more time to work on some new episodes now. ;)

Cheers for all the amusement over the last X years!

A fail-safe circuit will destroy others. -- Klipstein

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