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The Courts

RIAA Expert Witness Called "Borderline Incompetent" 170

Posted by kdawson
from the tell-us-what-you-really-think dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Prof. Johan Pouwelse of Delft University — one of the world's foremost experts on the science of P2P file sharing and the very same Prof. Pouwelse who stopped the RIAA's Netherlands counterpart in its tracks back in 2005 — has submitted an expert witness report characterizing the work of the RIAA's expert, Dr. Doug Jacobson, as 'borderline incompetence.' The report (PDF), filed in UMG v. Lindor, pointed out, among other things, that the steps needed to be taken in a copyright infringement investigation were not taken, that Jacobson's work lacked 'in-depth analysis' and 'proper scientific scrutiny,' that Jacobson's reports were 'factually erroneous,' and that they were contradicted by his own deposition testimony. This is the first expert witness report of which we are aware since the Free Software Foundation announced that it would be coming to the aid of RIAA defendants."
Biotech

Corn Genome Sequenced 64

Posted by kdawson
from the what-fuels-these-morsels-be dept.
dooling writes "Later this week, the completion of the maize genome draft sequence will be announced. Maize has a large genome (slightly smaller than human) that is highly repetitive (about 80%). These facts made a whole-genome shotgun approach to sequencing infeasible. Therefore, a BAC-by-BAC approach was taken, similar to what was done for the Human Genome Project. Further work on the maize genome will focus on the parts of the genome that have genes, thereby avoiding the highly-repetitive regions of the genome (even though the maize genome is slightly smaller than human, it is thought to have about twice as many genes). You can read my take here."
Science

Fish Can Count to Four 103

Posted by samzenpus
from the incredible-mr.-limpet dept.
Khemist writes "Fish can count, according to scientists, who have found that North American mosquito fish have the ability to count up to four. Previously it was known that fish could tell big shoals from small ones, but researchers have now found that they have a limited ability to count how many other fish are nearby. This means that they have similar counting abilities to those observed in apes, monkeys and dolphins and humans with very limited mathematical ability."
Software

Open US GPS Data? 327

Posted by samzenpus
from the directions-want-to-be-free dept.
tobiasly writes "I read an article today about a map error on the popular Garmin GPS devices which often leads to truckers in a particular town becoming trapped. From my own experience, every electronic map I've ever seen (Google, Mapquest, my Mio GPS) has the layout of my neighborhood completely and frustratingly wrong. A quick search turned up only one open-source mapping project, but it's for New Zealand only. Why are there no comparable projects in the U.S. or elsewhere? Obviously such a project would need a good peer-review/moderation/trust system but I'd gladly put in the time necessary to drive around town with my GPS in "tracking" mode, then upload, tag, and verify my local data. Has anyone with more technical knowledge in maps and auto-routing looked more into this? Are there technical limitations to such a project? Should the government subsidize a project to create open, free, up-to-date electronic maps? Surely there is a public benefit available from such a project."

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