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+ - Tiny glass pyramids used to create self-cooling solar cells->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Solar panels need to be placed in direct sunlight in order to function, but that means they get hot, become less efficient, and age quickly. For every 1 degree Celsius the temperature increases, solar cell efficiency decreases by 0.5%. So at a typical peak temperature of 55 degrees a 30% efficient solar panel is only converting around 21% of the solar energy.

What we need is passive cooling, and a team at Standford Uni has solved the problem using tiny glass pyramids to manipulate the properties of light."

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+ - Robots Are Set to Conduct National Security Clearance Interviews

Submitted by meghan elizabeth
meghan elizabeth (3689911) writes "Advancing a career in the US government might soon require an interview with a computer-generated head here who wants to know about that time you took ketamine.

A recent study by psychologists at the National Center for Credibility Assessment, published in the journal Computers and Human Behavior, asserts that not only would a computer-generated interviewer be less “time consuming, labor intensive, and costly to the Federal Government,” people are actually more likely to admit things to the robot."

+ - Insurance Claims Reveal Hidden Electronic Damage From Geomagnetic Storms

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "On 13 March 1989, a powerful geomagnetic storm severely disrupted the Hydro-Québec high-voltage grid triggering numerous circuit breakers and blacking out much of eastern Canada and the north eastern US. Since then, Earth has been hit by numerous solar maelstroms although without such large-scale disruption. But the smaller-scale effect of these storms on low voltage transmissions line, and the equipment connected to them, has been unknown. Until now. Researchers from the Lockheed Martin Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory have analysed insurance claims for damage to industrial electrical equipment between 2000 and 2010 and found a clear correlation with geomagnetic activity. They say that the number of claims increases by up to 20 per cent on the days of highest geomagnetic activity. On this basis, they calculate that the economic impact of geomagnetic damage must amount to several billion dollars per year. That raises the question of the impact these storms are having on household electronic equipment, such as computers, smartphones and tablets, and whether domestic insurance claims might throw some light on the issue. So if your iPhone has ever been fried in mysterious circumstances, the culprit may have been the Sun."

+ - Tractor Beam Created Using Water Waves

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "The idea that light waves can push a physical object is far from new. But a much more recent idea is that a laser beam can also pull objects like a tractor beam. Now a team of Australian physicists has used a similar idea to create a tractor beam with water waves that pulls floating objects rather than pushes them. Their technique is to use an elongated block vibrating on the surface of water to create a train of regular plane waves. When the amplitude of these waves is small, they gradually push the surface of the water along, creating a flow that pushes floating objects with it. However, when the amplitude increases, the waves become non-linear and begin to interact with each other in a complex way. This sets up a flow of water on the surface in the opposite direction to the movement of the waves. The result is that floating objects--ping pong balls in the experiment--are pulled towards the vibrating block, like a tractor beam."

+ - Secure Coding, Reverse-Engineering Malicious Code, and Incident Management ->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "This blog post highlights the latest work of SEI technologists in secure coding, CERT Resilience Management Model, malicious-code reverse engineering, systems engineering, and incident management. This post includes a listing of each report, author(s), and links where the published reports can be accessed on the SEI website."
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+ - After the Sun (Microsystems) Sets, the Real Stories Come Out->

Submitted by Tekla Perry
Tekla Perry (3034735) writes "Former Sun executives and employees gathered in Mountain View, Calif., in May, and out came the "real" stories. Andy Bechtolsheim reports that Steve Jobs wasn't the only one who set out to copy the Xerox Parc Alto; John Gage wonders why so many smart engineers couldn't figure out that it would have been better to buy tables instead of kneepads for the folks doing computer assembly; Vinod Khosla recalls the plan to "rip-off Sun technology;" and more."
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+ - George R R Martin Reveals His Secret Weapon for Writing GOT- Wordstar

Submitted by Hugh Pickens DOT Com
Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes "Ryan Reed writes that when most Game of Thrones fans imagine George R.R. Martin writing his epic fantasy novels, they probably picture the author working on a futuristic desktop (or possibly carving his words onto massive stones like the Ten Commandments). But the truth is that Martin works on an outdated DOS machine using Eighties word processor WordStar 4.0, as he revealed during an interview on Conan. "I actually like it," says Martin. "It does everything I want a word processing program to do, and it doesn't do anything else. I don't want any help. I hate some of these modern systems where you type a lower case letter and it becomes a capital letter. I don't want a capital. If I wanted a capital, I would have typed a capital. I know how to work the shift key." “I actually have two computers," Martin continued. “I have a computer I browse the Internet with and I get my email on, and I do my taxes on. And then I have my writing computer, which is a DOS machine, not connected to the Internet.""

+ - Your Old CD Collection is Dying

Submitted by Hugh Pickens DOT Com
Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes "Adrienne LaFrance reports at the Atlantic that for people of a certain age, if you've tried listening to any of the old CDs lately from your carefully assembled collection from the 1980's or 1990's you may have noticed that many of them won't play won't play. "While most of the studio-manufactured albums I bought still play, there's really no telling how much longer they will. My once-treasured CD collection—so carefully assembled over the course of about a decade beginning in 1994—isn't just aging; it's dying. And so is yours." Fenella France, chief of preservation research and testing at the Library of Congress is trying to figure out how CDs age so that we can better understand how to save them. But it's a tricky business, in large part because manufacturers have changed their processes over the years and even CDs made by the same company in the same year and wrapped in identical packaging might have totally different lifespans. "We're trying to predict, in terms of collections, which of the types of CDs are the discs most at risk," says France. "The problem is, different manufacturers have different formulations so it's quite complex in trying to figure out what exactly is happening because they've changed the formulation along the way and it's proprietary information." There are all kinds of forces that accelerate CD aging in real time. Eventually, many discs show signs of edge rot, which happens as oxygen seeps through a disc's layers. Some CDs begin a deterioration process called bronzing, which is corrosion that worsens with exposure to various pollutants. The lasers in devices used to burn or even play a CD can also affect its longevity. "The ubiquity of a once dominant media is again receding. Like most of the technology we leave behind, CDs are are being forgotten slowly," concludes LaFrance. "We stop using old formats little by little. They stop working. We stop replacing them. And, before long, they're gone.""

Comment: Re:Translation: Where is the consumer solution? (Score 1) 250

by anybody_out_there (#46449395) Attached to: Sony & Panasonic Next-Gen Optical Discs Moving Forward

I can't find any data on MSRP now, but back in the day it seems to me that there were storage choices that were not so cost-prohibitive for consumers.

Not so cost-prohibitive? "Back in the day", I remember a particular consumer 20MB (not a typo) HDD went for about $1500. A tape backup system was similarly priced (from memory).

I shudder to think what an educational institution paid for the massive *5MB* networked drive hooked up to the old Apple IIs. Ya know, back in the day.

Now get off of my lawn! :-)

+ - ABC Kills Next-Day Streaming For Non-Subscribers->

Submitted by jfruh
jfruh (300774) writes "ABC shows are available for free to anybody with antenna on the day and time they're first broadcast. But if you want them at any other time, it's getting harder to see them unless you pay someone. The network had previously made free ad-supported streamed versions of its shows available on its website the day after they aired, but now they're shifting that back to a week. Next-day streaming is still available if you have a cable or Hulu Plus subscription, showing the extent to which "broadcast" networks are dependent on subscriber fees."
Link to Original Source

+ - Inside the massive 2014 Winter Olympics WiFi network->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Engineers are putting the final touches on a network capable of handling up to 54Tbps of traffic when the Winter Olympics opens on Feb. 7 in the Russian city of Sochi. The two locations where the Olympics will take place — the Olympic village in Sochi and a tight cluster of Alpine venues in the nearby Krasnaya Polyana Mountains — are completely new construction, so this project represents a greenfield environment for Avaya, the company heading up the project. In addition to investing in a telecom infrastructure, Russia is spending billions of dollars to upgrade Sochi’s electric power grid, its transportation system and even its sewage treatment facilities."
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+ - Next-Gen Windshield Wipers to be Based on Jet Fighter 'Forcefield' Tech

Submitted by cartechboy
cartechboy (2660665) writes "It looks like the old-school windshield wiper is about to be replaced by new technology — but not until 2015. British car-maker McLaren is apparently developing a new window cleaning system that is modeled from fighter jet tech. The company isn't revealing exactly how it will work, but the idea comes from the chief designer simply asking a military source why you don't see wipers on jets as they land. Experts expect McClaren to use constantly active, high-frequency sound waves outside the range of human hearing that will effectively create a force field across a car's windshield to repel water, ice insects and other debris. Similar sound waves are used by dentists to remove plaque from teeth. Windshield wipers were originally invented by Mary Anderson, who received a patent in 1903. She envisioned the design after seeing drivers open the windows of their cars in order to see out of them in the rain, solving the problem with a simple swinging arm device with a rubber blade."

+ - Google Autocomplete Ruins Man's Life -> 1

Submitted by DavidGilbert99
DavidGilbert99 (2607235) writes "Google's autocomplete function turned a mild-mannered man into a terror suspect and four years of sustained harassment by various US government investigators, according to a lawsuit filed today. Jeffery Kantor says that Google's autocomplete changed ""How do I build a radio controlled airplane?" to "How do I build a radio controlled bomb?" triggering a sequence of events which saw him lose his job. He is seeking $58million in damages."
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