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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

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+ - XLR-One: Meet the 3D-printed robot that talks, tutors your child and DJs parties->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "A graphic designer and florist has created a customised 3D-printed personal robot companion that has a huge range of abilities — from entertaining users by talking and dancing, to being a party DJ or a home security patrol guard — but without a hefty price tag.

The XLR-One Personal Robot Companion is 30in tall and moves using a wheeled base. It has a Wi-Fi camera for an eye, and it looks and talks a lot like Short Circuit's Johnny Five.

The robot's brain is the ez-bv4 Wi-Fi controller, which contains ARM Cortex-M3 & Microchip PIC32 and offers 200MHz of processing power, and the robot comes equipped with EZ-Robot Revolution, an easy-to-use robotics platform."

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+ - I Know This: Indie hidden object game lets you hack Jurassic Park's Unix system->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "A developer has designed an indie game based on the "I know this!" scene in Jurassic Park, a family film favourite from 1993 where cloned dinosaurs ran rampant on Islar Nublar, a fictional islet near Costa Rica.

Running on Windows, Mac and Linux, the object of the game is to find a file within 30 seconds and users can navigate a 3D landscape where their cursor searches the file manager system to locate a file."

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+ - Someone's auctioning Silk Road 2.0 user details, source code on black market->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "An individual alleging to be the lead programmer for the now-defunct Silk Road 2.0 has announced that he wants to anonymously auction off all the user account details and the source code from the website to the highest bidder on a new underground marketplace called "Darkleaks", where people can get hackers to reveal sensitive data through crowdfunding."
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+ - US: Cornell University students invent insect-based tofu made from mealworms->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "A group of students from Cornell University in the US are trying to revolutionise sustainable food by inventing a tofu made from mealworms that could help to feed the world's booming population, expected to hit nine billion people by 2050.

C-fu is a protein product is made from 100% crushed mealworms and contains 13% protein, 23% fat, iron, omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids."

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+ - Affordable holographic video displays are possible using surface acoustic waves->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Researchers from Brigham Young University (BYU) and MIT believe they have figured out a way to make holographic video displays become larger and more affordable, which could pave the way for 3D video holograms like in Star Wars.

A special type of crystal called lithium niobate (LiNbO3) boasts excellent optical properties and beneath the surface of the crystal, microscopic channels, or "waveguides", are created to confine light passing through.

The researchers discovered that by depositing a metal electrode on to each waveguide, it was possible to produce surface acoustic waves that divide the colour frequencies in such a way, a new type of colour display is possible."

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+ - Crohn's, sickle cell anaemia evolved to protect Neanderthals from deadly disease->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Sufferers of psoriasis, Crohn's disease or sickle cell anaemia, which are hereditary conditions, might be interested to know these ancient diseases evolved in order to protect our ancestors from even worse medical conditions.

The scientists say the DNA deletions occurred in a common ancestor of humans, Neanderthals and Denisovans about a million or so years ago, in order to make humans in certain parts of the world deliberately susceptible to various health conditions.

Sickle cell anaemia is a serious blood disorder that causes red blood cells to take on a curved, crescent-like shape, which leads to anaemia (a problem) but also protects against malaria, a deadly infectious disease, by keeping parasites out of cells (an advantage)."

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+ - Missing link to 80-year-old physics theory explains Earth's magnetic field->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Scientists from the Carnegie Institution for Science and Rutgers University have found a missing link that proves the original 1930s metal physics theory that thermal convection can drive magnetic-field generation is correct.

Recently, new studies have challenged the 80-year-old theory about thermal convection causing the Earth's magnetic field.

New calculations state that the resistivity of the molten metal at the Earth's core would be too low, thus generating a thermal conductivity that is too high.

If the thermal conductivity is too high, the liquid would not be able to rise, and thus thermal convection would not be possible, and therefore couldn't be the cause of the Earth's magnetic field."

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+ - Graphene: Reversible method of magnetic doping paves way for semiconductor use->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "A team of physicists at University of California, Riverside have discovered how to induce magnetism in graphene in a way that still preserves the material's electronic properties, which paves the way for graphene to be used as a semiconductor.

The researchers grew a sheet of yttrium iron garnet using laser molecular beam epitaxy in a laboratory. Magnetic substances like iron are known to disrupt graphene's electrical conduction properties, but yttrium iron garnet works well as it is an electric insulator.

When a graphene sheet was placed on top of an atomically smooth sheet of yttrium iron garnet, the graphene borrowed the magnetic properties from the yttrium iron garnet and became magnetised without the need for doping."

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+ - Painkiller discovered in coffee that is stronger than morphine and lasts longer->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Scientists at the University of Brasilia (UnB) and Brazilian agriculture research company Embrapa have accidentally discovered a new painkiller by accident while researching something completely different.

The researchers from the two organisations were collaborating to how to improve the quality of coffee grains by combining coffee genes in new ways.

They analysed the coffee's genome sequence and discovered corresponding proteins that shared properties with those in humans.

The researchers "identified previously unknown fragments of protein — peptides — in coffee that have an effect similar to morphine, in other words they have an analgesic and sedative activity," Embrapa said."

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+ - 30 Chinese tombs, 28 chariots and 98 horses dating back 2,800 years found->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Archaeologists from Peking University have discovered a group of 30 tombs, 28 chariots and 49 pairs of horse skeletons dating back 2,800 years in Zaoyang city, Hubei Province in China.

The tombs are believed to belong to high-ranking Chinese nobility and date back to the Spring and Autumn Period in Chinese history (770-476BC). Also discovered are some of the earliest music instruments ever found in China.

All the tombs have been found on the same piece of land, with a separate "mass grave" of at least 28 wooden chariots buried together on their sides in a pit that measures 33m long by 4m wide."

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+ - Invisible 3D holograms that can be seen and felt created using ultrasound->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Computer scientists at the University of Bristol have developed invisible 3D object holograms in mid-air that can be felt and seen using ultrasound, which could one day be used to help surgeons "feel a disease" in a CT scan.

The UltraHaptics technology works by pulsing high-frequency sound waves from tiny speakers that exert pressure on a person's hand to create the feel of haptic holograms, i.e. an object that can be touched by applying forces, vibrations or motions to the user.

The system also makes use of a Leap Motion sensor that can track the position of a person's hand in order to decide where in the air to create the object.

In order to be able to actually see the objects, the researchers projected the sound waves onto a thin layer of oil, and the depressions of the shapes and how the shapes move can clearly be seen on the surface."

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+ - Researchers Discover an 'Off Switch' For Pain in the Brain-> 1

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Scientists working together from several international universities have discovered that it is possible to block a pathway in the brain of animals suffering from neuropathic pain, which could have a huge impact on improving pain relief in humans.

So far, the most successful ways to treat chronic pain from a pharmacological point of view are to create drugs that that interact or interfere with various channels in the brain to decrease pain, including adrenergic, opioid and calcium receptors.

However, there is another way – a chemical stimulator called adenosine that binds to brain receptors to trigger a biological response.

Adenosine has shown potential for killing pain in humans, but so far, no one has managed to harness this pain pathway successfully without causing a myriad of side effects.

Led by Dr Daniela Salvemini of SLU, the researchers discovered that by activating the A3 adenosine receptor in the rodents' brains and spinal cords, the receptor was able to prevent or reverse pain from nerve damage (the cause of chronic pain)."

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+ - Zano: A Clever Smartphone-Controlled Nano Drone as Small as Your Hand->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Wales-based aerospace and defence technology firm Torquing Group has developed an incredibly intelligent, autonomous flying helicopter nano drone that is surprisingly so small it can fit into the palm of your hand.

Zano is a quadcopter nano drone now on Kickstarter that measures just 6.5cm x 6.5cm. It can be controlled by a smartphone app to hover in the air from a great height to take selfies and capture HD videos, for example if the user wants to capture himself performing extreme sports like diving from a cliff or skiing down a mountain.

"The intelligence is in the firmware – we're able to get all the sonar, biometric sensors, infrared camera, GPS to operate in seamless cohesion using data-fusing algorithms," Torquing Group's head of marketing Reece Crowther told IBTimes UK.

"Everyone else in the world hasn't been able to streamline their data-fusing algorithms. They're not thinking about it correctly."

Although Zano hasn't yet been launched, Torquing Group says it has already had huge interest from intelligence agencies like the FBI, CIA and MI6, and has been invited to present its drone technology to the Pentagon and the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD)."

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+ - Bitcoin Anonymity: There's a Way For Hackers To Find Out Your IP Address->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Computer scientists at from the University of Luxembourg have demonstrated that it is possible to figure out the IP address and therefore the identity of individuals who pay for transactions anonymously online using bitcoins.

Virtual currency has come into vogue this year, particularly as it can be used to anonymously pay for potentially illegal items, and numerous underground markets have sprung up selling drugs and firearms through the Tor Anonymity network (known as the dark web or deep web).

Unfortunately, the researchers say Tor is not really able to protect a bitcoin user's identity from a would-be hacker, as the bitcoin's built-in denial of service (DoS) protection can be exploited.

The authors say: "We figured out that very short messages may cause a day IP ban, which can be used to separate a given node or the entire network from anonymity services such as proxy servers or Tor. If the Bitcoin community wishes to use Tor, this part of the protocol must be reconsidered.""

Link to Original Source

+ - Kim Dotcom: I Regret Not Taking Threat of Copyright Law and MPAA More Seriously->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Kim Dotcom has spoken out about his long battle over copyright with the US government and his regrets about the events that have led to his arrest ahead of his bail breach hearing on Thursday that could see him return to jail in New Zealand.

"Would I have done things differently? Of course. My biggest regret is I didn't take the threat of the copyright law and the MPAA seriously enough," Dotcom said via live video link from his mansion in Auckland, New Zealand at the Unbound Digital conference in London on Tuesday.

"I thought that due to court decisions we were monitoring from our competitors like RapidShare who did exactly what we did and were winning in civil court proceedings, and YouTube was winning against Viacom – our sense was that we were protected by the DMCA law.

"We never for a minute thought that anyone would bring any criminal actions against us. We had in-house legal counsel, we had three outside firms working for us who reviewed our sites, and not once had any of them mentioned any form of legal risk, so I wish I had known that there was a risk.""

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