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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 15 declined, 9 accepted (24 total, 37.50% accepted)

News

+ - Amateur Radio Gets Secondary MF Allocation at WRC-12 1

Submitted by dtmos
dtmos (447842) writes "The ARRL is reporting that "delegates attending the 2012 World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-12) in Geneva have approved a new 7-kilohertz-wide secondary allocation between 472-479 kHz for the Amateur Radio Service." This band, below the AM broadcast band, will retain its primary ship-to-shore and radionavigation beacon allocation. Due to the unique propagation characteristics of this part of the spectrum, an allocation has long been desired by the amateur radio community. Much as moonbounce and meteor scatter have produced their own amateur digital communication protocols (OSS under the Gnu GPL, of course), I expect the unique channel impairments of this band will lead to the development of dedicated digital communication schemes (beyond QRSS)."
Science

+ - Coronal Mass Ejection hits Earth->

Submitted by dtmos
dtmos (447842) writes "Spaceweather reports "A coronal mass ejection (CME) hit Earth on Oct. 24th at approximately 1800 UT (2:00 pm EDT). The impact strongly compressed Earth's magnetic field, directly exposing geosynchronous satellites to solar wind plasma, and sparked an intense geomagnetic storm. As night fell over North America, auroras spilled across the Canadian border into the contiguous United States." Aurora were seen as far south as Baileyton, Alabama."
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Games

+ - Sports Bars Changing Channels to Video Gamers->

Submitted by dtmos
dtmos (447842) writes "This summer, 'Starcraft II' has become the newest barroom spectator sport. Fans organize so-called Barcraft events, taking over pubs and bistros from Honolulu to Florida and switching big-screen TV sets to Internet broadcasts of professional game matches.

As they root for their on-screen superstars, "Starcraft" enthusiasts can sow confusion among regular patrons ... But for sports-bar owners, "Starcraft" viewers represent a key new source of revenue from a demographic—self-described geeks—they hadn't attracted before."

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+ - DARPA Hypersonic Vehicle Splash Down Confirmed->

Submitted by dtmos
dtmos (447842) writes "The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has announced that its Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2 (HTV-2) flight on Thursday, 11 August, "experienced a flight anomaly post perigee and into the vehicle’s climb. The anomaly prompted the vehicle’s autonomous flight safety system to use the craft’s aerodynamic systems to make a controlled descent and splash down into the ocean."

“According to a preliminary review of the data collected prior to the anomaly encountered by the HTV-2 during its second test flight,” said DARPA Director Regina Dugan, “HTV-2 demonstrated stable aerodynamically controlled Mach 20 hypersonic flight for approximately three minutes. It appears that the engineering changes put into place following the vehicle’s first flight test in April 2010 were effective. We do not yet know the cause of the anomaly for Flight 2.”"

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News

+ - IEEEXtreme 24 Hour Programming Challenge Announced->

Submitted by dtmos
dtmos (447842) writes "IEEEXtreme is a global challenge in which teams of student members, supported by an IEEE Student Branch, advised and proctored by an IEEE Member, compete in a 24-hour time span against each other to solve a set of programming problems. IEEEXtreme 4.0 will take place on Saturday 23 October, 2010. Not a student? The IEEE is looking for proctors."
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Security

+ - Factorization of a 768-bit RSA modulus->

Submitted by dtmos
dtmos (447842) writes "The 768-bit, 232-digit number RSA-768 has been factored. From the introduction:

The number RSA-768 was taken from the now obsolete RSA Challenge list as a representative 768-bit RSA modulus. This result is a record for factoring general integers. Factoring a 1024-bit RSA modulus would be about a thousand times harder, and a 768-bit RSA modulus is several thousands times harder to factor than a 512-bit one. Because the first factorization of a 512-bit RSA modulus was reported only a decade ago it is not unreasonable to expect that 1024-bit RSA moduli can be factored well within the next decade by an academic effort such as ours . . . . Thus, it would be prudent to phase out usage of 1024-bit RSA within the next three to four years.

"

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Patents

+ - USPTO Asking For Ideas to Enhance Patent Quality->

Submitted by dtmos
dtmos (447842) writes "Tired of seeing poor-quality patents issue? Have a great way to solve the problem? Well, here's your chance to be part of the solution. The USPTO has issued a Request for Comments on Enhancement in the Quality of Patents [pdf], seeking public comment on ways to improve "the process for obtaining the best prior art, preparation of the initial application, and examination and prosecution of the application." Comments should be sent to patent_quality_comments@uspto.gov by February 8, 2010."
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