thecarchik writes with this quote from AllCarsElectric: "We all know that battery packs are the weakest link in electric vehicles. Not only are they heavy and expensive, but they take a long time to recharge and on average can only provide around 100 miles per charge. A German-based company has changed all that with a new vehicle capable of driving up to 375 miles at moderate highway speeds. ... It doesn't end there. The company responsible for the battery pack, DBM Energy, claims a battery pack efficiency of 97 percent and a recharge time of around 6 minutes when charged from a direct current source. Unlike the small Daihatsu which was heavily modified by a team in Japan earlier this year that achieved a massive 623 miles on a charge at around 27 mph, the Audi A2 modified by DBM Energy was able to achieve its 375 miles range at an average speed of 55 mph."
An anonymous reader wrote with a story saying "Move over, touchpad screens: New research funded in part by the National Institutes of Health shows that it is possible to manipulate complex visual images on a computer screen using only the mind. The study, published in Nature, found that when research subjects had their brains connected to a computer displaying two merged images, they could force the computer to display one of the images and discard the other. The signals transmitted from each subject's brain to the computer were derived from just a handful of brain cells."
Kethinov writes "The sci-fi TV series Caprica, a prequel spinoff from Battlestar Galactica, was just canceled by the Syfy channel. In response to the cancellation and the recent theme of many similar good sci-fi shows getting canceled over the last few years, I've written an editorial arguing that Caprica's cancellation reflects the decreasing sustainability of the cable TV business model. A better, more modern business model could have saved Caprica from cancellation. If this model is adopted in the future, it could save many other similar niche genre shows from the same fate down the road." Another perspective here might be that a boring, ponderous show got yoinked because nobody watched it. Just sayin'.
tekgoblin writes "Zynga, the creators of the popular hit Facebook game FarmVille, should be happy today as the company's worth has passed that of EA (Electronic Arts)."
shmG writes "China has replaced the United States as the maker of the world's fastest supercomputer. A Chinese research center has made the world's faster super computer — named as Tianhe-1A, which was released at a national conference on high-performance computers (HPC) in China. Made at a cost of over $88 million, Tianhe-1A is theoretically able to do more than 1 quadrillion calculations per second (one petaflop) at peak speed. Tianhe-1A 's peak performance reaches 1.206 petaflops, and it runs at 563.1 teraflops (1,000 teraflops is equal to one petaflop) on the Linpack benchmark."
"When the Sun shines upon Earth, 2 - major Time points are created on opposite sides of Earth - known as Midday and Midnight. Where the 2 major Time forces join, synergy creates 2 new minor Time points we recognize as Sunup and Sundown." Hate to say it but Gene Ray is sounding less and less bat-shyte as science learns more.
blacklabelsk8er writes "Sun has just announced plans to acquire German software maker innotek today. The GPL'd software package is well regarded and recently released an OpenSolaris version of the program just yesterday. Sun seems to be on a serious acquisition fest since consuming mySQL last month. The Register has the full info. What is Sun up to here?"
Link to Original Source
Link to Original Source
The Secret to Raising Smart Kids writes "A new study by Dafna Lemish from the Department of Communication at Tel Aviv University has found that there is an enormous gap between what parents think their children are doing online and what is really happening. 'The data tell us that parents don't know what their kids are doing,' says Lemish. The study found that 30% of children between the ages of 9 and 18 delete the search history from their browsers in an attempt to protect their privacy from their parents, that 73% of the children reported giving out personal information online while the parents of the same children believed that only 4% of their children did so, and that 36% of the children admitted to meeting with a stranger they had met online while fewer than 9% of the parents knew that their children had been engaging in such risky behavior. Lemish advises that parents should give their children the tools to be literate Internet users and most importantly, to talk to their children. 'The child needs similar tools that teach them to be [wary] of dangers in the park, the mall or wherever. The same rules in the real world apply online as well.'"
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Lest there be anyone left who believes the RIAA's propaganda that its litigation campaign is intended to benefit the 'creators' of the music, Hollywood Reporter reports that the RIAA is asking the Copyright Royalty Board to lower songwriter royalties on song file downloads, from the present rate of 9 cents per song — about 13% of the wholesale price — down to 8% of wholesale. Meanwhile, the big digital music companies, such as Apple, want the royalty rate lowered even more, to something like 4% of wholesale. So any representations by any of these companies that they are concerned for the 'creators' of the music must henceforth be taken with a boxcar-load of salt."
The Association for Computing Machinery has announced the 2008 Turing Award Winners. Edmund M. Clarke, Allen Emerson, and Joseph Sifakis received the award for their work on an automated method for finding design errors in computer hardware and software. "Model Checking is a type of "formal verification" that analyzes the logic underlying a design, much as a mathematician uses a proof to determine that a theorem is correct. Far from hit or miss, Model Checking considers every possible state of a hardware or software design and determines if it is consistent with the designer's specifications. Clarke and Emerson originated the idea of Model Checking at Harvard in 1981. They developed a theoretical technique for determining whether an abstract model of a hardware or software design satisfies a formal specification, given as a formula in Temporal Logic, a notation for describing possible sequences of events. Moreover, when the system fails the specification, it could identify a counterexample to show the source of the problem. Numerous model checking systems have been implemented, such as Spin at Bell Labs."
Reverend Ninja writes "According to the Windows Vista team blog, Windows Vista SP1 has been released to manufacturing. It appears we'll have to wait until mid-March to play with it though, as the team cites that they want everyone to have a 'great install experience'. 'Service Pack 1 brings new improvements that are based on feedback we heard from our customers. It further improves the reliability and performance of Windows Vista. The information we collect thanks to tools like the Customer Experience Improvement Program, Online Crash Analysis, and Windows Error Reporting help us learn about where and when customers are having issues with Windows Vista and the applications that run on it. Since these issues have a direct impact on our customers' experiences, we've invested time and energy to make this better. While Windows Vista Service Pack 1 is an important milestone, we will continue to invest in the continuous improvement process.'"
jadavis writes "The release of the long-awaited PostgreSQL version 8.3 has been announced. The new feature list includes HOT, which dramatically improves performance for databases with high update activity; asynchronous commit; built-in full text search; large database features such as synchronized scans and reduced storage overhead; built-in SQL/XML support; spread checkpoints; and many more (too many major new features to list here). See the release notes for full details."
It's a big year for tabletop gamers. In just a few months the first books for the Fourth Edition of Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) will be released by publisher Wizards of the Coast (WotC). The last major update to the game rules was released in 1999, and sparked interest in D&D not seen since the early 80s. To attempt to answer some of the biggest questions about this newest edition, WotC has learned from mistakes made in 99', and is previewing their game updates with a pair of softcover books. Called "Races and Classes" and "Worlds and Monsters", the two titles cover everything from character creation to the new default world's pantheon. More importantly, it includes a large amount of commentary from the designers about why things are going to be as they are. In short: they're must-haves for hardcore D&D fans. Read on for my impressions of these highly entertaining (and vastly overpriced) chapbooks.
jammag writes "If the marriage of Microsoft and Yahoo were to be consummated, GNU/Linux would be hindered, argues Roy Schestowitz. Yahoo's funding of open source initiatives would dry up. Yahoo, which acquired Zimbra, would lose its love for the open source competitor of Microsoft Outlook. The list goes on..."
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "p2pnet.net has put together a fascinating retrospective on the RIAA's war against college students, commenced February 28, 2007. The campaign is described as one to 'force "consumers" to buy what they're told to buy — corporate "content," as the Big 4 call their formulaic outpourings.' In a scathing indictment not only of the major record labels, but of those schools, administrators, and educators who have yet to take a stand against it, Jon Newton reviews a number of landmark moments in the 11-month old 'reign of terror'. They include the announcement of the bizarre 'early settlement' sale, the sudden withdrawal of a case in which a 17 year old Texas high school student had been subpoenaed while in class during school hours to attend a deposition the very next day during his taking of a standardized test, the call by Harvard law professors for the university to fight back when and if attacked, and the differing reactions by other schools."