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Wireless Networking

Number of Cellphones Now Equal To Half the Human Species 233

netbuzz writes "A major milestone was reached today, according to communications industry analysts: there are now some 3.3 billion mobile phone accounts worldwide. Of course, it doesn't really mean half the world's population has a cell phone, since users in 59 countries average more than one per person. '"The mobile industry has constantly outperformed even the most optimistic forecasts for subscriber growth," Mark Newman, head of research at Informa said in a statement. "For children growing up today the issue is not whether they will get a mobile phone, it's a question of when," Newman said. In recent years the industry has seen surging growth in outskirts of China and India, helped by constantly falling phone and call prices, with cellphone vendors already eyeing inroads into Africa's countryside to keep up the growth.'"

What NASA Won't Tell You About Air Safety 411

rabble writes "According to a report out of Washington, NASA wants to avoid telling you about how unsafe you are when you fly. According to the article, when an $8.5M safety study of about 24,000 pilots indicated an alarming number of near collisions and runway incidents, NASA refused to release the results. The article quotes one congressman as saying 'There is a faint odor about it all.' A friend of mine who is a general aviation pilot responded to the article by saying 'It's scary but no surprise to those of us who fly.'"

Journal Journal: Jet-fuel powered lightbulb changer 4

I just finished listening to a podcast from Quirks & Quarks about a new prosthetic limb. It seems this limb will actually use jet fuel as a primary power source. This is meant to give it the power it needs to function as a regular limb without too much extra weight. During an interesting discussion on using jet fuel for tasks requiring dexter

Submission Self-Sufficient Lunar Habitat Designed 2

An anonymous reader writes: Cosmos Magazine reports on a design for a lunar habitat that is 90 to 95 percent self-sufficient. The proposed habitat uses a closed-loop life support system that recycles and regenerates air, water and food, reducing the need for costly supply trips. The north pole of the moon is chosen as a location for its access to sunlight and useful resources. About 11 astronauts could live and work in the habitat for 2 to 3 years. The project would also help the environment on Earth with recycling and other sustainable practices.

Submission Physics Nobel Prize 2007

whizzter writes: The prize was awarded for the discovery of the Giant Magnetoresistive Effect, Peter Grünberg of the Jülich Research Centre and Albert Fert of the University of Paris-Sud that lead the research will receive the prize. During the presentation the Nobel committe stressed how the research had helped decreasing harddrive sizes. The discovery was also the birth of the spintronics field. More information on the prize can be found at the Nobel site.

Submission UK Government rejects copyright term extension-> 1

e6003 writes: "The UK Government has responded to a report from the House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee which (inter alia) had backed the extension of phonographic performance copyright from its present 50 years. The Government response [PDF document] notes (in response to paragraph 28 on page 15 of the PDF) that the Gowers Report considered the call for a term extension on economic and moral grounds but rejected all the arguments in favour of term extension, as did an EU Commission report. The Response concludes, "Taking account of the findings of these reports, which carefully considered the impact on the economy as a whole, and without further substantive evidence to the contrary, it does not seem appropriate for the Government to press the [European] Commission for action at this stage." Pleasingly, the Response also notes "The Government will undertake a public consultation this Autumn about making an exception to copyright legislation to allow format-shifting for private use." It's technically an infringement of copyright in the UK to rip CDs to your iPod and even the music industry has agreed something needs to be done about this."
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Submission Intel open-sources multicore programming toolkit-> 1

Doctor Memory writes: Intel has recently open-sourced their previously closed-source TBB 2.0 (Thread Building Blocks) C++ library. The library provides parallel algorithm templates for "task-based parallelism", emphasizing logical tasks instead of physical threads. The web site ( hosts an FAQ, a forum link, and a download page to get the latest version of the source. Licensed under GPLv2, Intel will continue to sell a commercial version of the library which will include engineering support. There's a more in-depth overview over at Ars Technica.
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Submission MySpace finds 29,000 sex offenders among users

StonyandCher writes: MySpace has identified more than 29,000 registered sex offenders among those registered to use its site — more than four times what the company said in May it had found from an investigation, according to North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper.

"[The 29,000] includes just the predators who signed up using their real names and not the ones who failed to register or used fake names," Cooper said in the statement. Cooper is one of eight state attorneys general who asked MySpace in May to turn over the names of users who are registered sex offenders.

In May, MySpace reluctantly revealed it had uncovered 7000 sex offenders.

Submission Dell Asking ATI for Better Linux Drivers->

Open Source IT writes: "According to a presentation at Ubuntu Live 2007, Dell is working on getting better ATI drivers for Linux for use in its Linux offerings. While it is not known whether the end product will end up as open source, with big businesses like Google and Dell now behind the push for better Linux graphics drivers, hopefully ATI will make the smart business decision and give customers what they want."
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The Internet

Submission Democrats prepare for YouTube debate->

Raver32 writes: "Campaigning by Democratic candidates was limited to brief photo opportunities Monday as their focus shifted to preparing for the first presidential debate in which the questions are posed by members of public via Internet videos. The two-hour debate, which begins at 7 p.m. EDT, is sponsored by YouTube, Google and CNN and is the first presidential debate of the 2008 race sanctioned by the Democratic National Committee. CNN editors will select questions from personal videos delivered to YouTube, where some of the submitted videos were already posted."
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United States

Submission Military turns to translating machines in Iraq->

Cecilia Clay writes: "The military is now turning to real-time two-way translating machines that to help soldiers in Iraq communicate with civilians. NIST ran a series of laboratory and outdoor evaluation tests on prototype systems with English-speaking US Marines and Iraqi Arabic speakers at its Gaithersburg campus and found that the systems have improved somewhat."
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How many surrealists does it take to screw in a lightbulb? One to hold the giraffe and one to fill the bathtub with brightly colored power tools.