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+ - Europen Court Overturns UK DNA Database

Submitted by gerbalblaste
gerbalblaste (882682) writes "The European Court of Human Rights has spoken with a strong and clear voice — retaining indefinitely the DNA and fingerprint records of unconvicted suspects is unlawful. The court said the UK was the only one of the 47 members of the Council of Europe to permit the "systematic and indefinite" retention of DNA samples and profiles from people who have been acquitted, though within the UK the arrangements apply only to suspects in England, Wales and Northern Ireland."

Company Announces $30,000 Prize For Solving iPhone Game 85

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the genuine-philanthropy-or-pr-stunt dept.
dlpasco writes "Puzzllotto. The game, styled after titles such as Myst and Zork, will be available in the iPhone App Store later this week for $4.99. 10% of the sales revenue from the game will go to the Madagascar Fauna Group. At this point, only US citizens may participate in the contest but it has been stated that UL wishes to make future events world wide. 'Even though Puzzllotto represents a significant investment of engineering and legal resources, the company refuses to apply for patents on any invention. Instead, the company hopes to share its investment with other developers through its fundware.info site, while the company's ten employees hope Puzzllotto will raise enough money to capitalize bigger dreams.'" This could also be seen as a test for greed, since the prize money will only start at $1,000 and will grow by $1,000 each day for 30 days, at which point, if no one has solved it, the entire pot will be donated to charity.
Space

First Image of a Planet Orbiting a Sun-Like Star 131

Posted by kdawson
from the cold-jupiter dept.
Several readers including houbou and DigitumDei sent links to what may be the first-ever image of a planet orbiting a sun-like star (research paper). The giant planet, the mass of 8 Jupiters, orbits its star at 330 AU, or 11 times the distance to Neptune's orbit. If the imaged object does turn out to be a planet — and it's not certain it is — then theories of planet formation may have to be adjusted. "The bulk of the material from which planets might form is significantly closer to the parent star... The outermost parts of such disks wouldn't contain enough material to assemble a Jupiter-mass planet at the distance from the star... at which the Toronto team found the faint object."
Image

Slashdot's Disagree Mail 188 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the I-want-back-in dept.
Since we covered people who wanted out of Slashdot last week, I thought we'd look at some people who wanted back in. These users found that living without Slashdot was a lot harder than they thought. Maybe you've just been married and are finding out your wife is less interesting than Slashdot or maybe you were bad and want to make amends. These people found out it's hard to make it without your favorite website. Keep reading to find out what they'll do to get back.
America Online

AOL In Talks With Microsoft to Merge Online Divisions, Says WSJ 143

Posted by timothy
from the aol-needs-some-friends-at-smart-tech dept.
Ian Lamont writes "Microsoft executives are reportedly meeting with their AOL counterparts to discuss combining the two companies' online divisions. No one from either side is willing to comment, nor has the structure of the supposed deal been worked out. The original unconfirmed report comes from the Wall Street Journal (password-protected). A few months ago there was talk about AOL teaming up with Yahoo, but that never materialized." The free excerpt at the WSJ link above seems to say about as much as this Bloomberg wire report which refers to it, and the above-linked story at The Standard; this Reuters story indicates that AOL is still courting or being courted by Yahoo!, too.
Space

Astronomers Say Dying Sun Will Engulf Earth 343

Posted by kdawson
from the fire-next-time dept.
iamlucky13 writes "A minor academic debate among astronomers is the final fate of the earth. As the sun ages and enters the red giant stage of its life, it will heat up, making the earth inhospitable. It will also expand, driven by helium fusion so that its outer layers reach past the earth's current orbit. Previously it had been believed that the sun would lose enough mass to allow earth to escape to a more distant orbit, lifeless but intact. However, new calculations, which take into account tidal forces and drag from mass shed by the sun, suggest that the earth will have sufficiently slowed in that time to be dragged down to its utter destruction in 7.6 billion years. "

Sneak Peek at Windows Server 2008 295

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the still-fighting-the-fight dept.
stinkymountain writes to tell us that NetworkWorld got their hands on Microsoft's latest addition to the server OS market and had a chance to poke around inside Windows Server 2008. It seems that the new release is a vast improvement over older versions in both security and performance but still lacking in several key areas. "There's even a minimalist installation called Windows Server Core that can run various server roles (such as DNS, DHCP, Active Directory components) but not applications (like SQL Server or IIS dynamic pages). It's otherwise a scripted host system for headless operations. There's no GUI front end to a Windows Server Core box, but it is managed by a command line interface (CLI), scripts, remotely via System Manager or other management applications that support Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI), or by Remote Terminal Services. It's also a potential resource-slimmed substrate for Hyper-V and virtualization architectures."
Cellphones

iPhones Produced in China Smuggled Right Back in 159

Posted by samzenpus
from the the-iphone-cycle dept.
Ponca City, We Love You writes "Factories in China produce iPhones that are exported to the United States and Europe and then smuggled right back in helping explain why Apple says it sold about 3.7 million iPhones last year while only 2.3 million are actually registered in the United States and Europe. For Apple, the booming overseas market for iPhones is a sign of its marketing prowess but also a blow to Apple's business model, costing the company as much as $1 billion over the next three years, according to some analysts. Since negotiations between Apple and China Mobile, the world's biggest mobile-phone service operator with more than 350 million subscribers, broke down last month, the official release of the iPhone in China has been stalled producing a thriving gray market. Copycat models are another possible threat to Apple in China. Not long after the iPhone was released, research and development teams in China were taking it apart, trying to copy or steal the design and software for use in iPhone knockoffs, or iClones and some people who have used the clones say they are sophisticated and have many functions that mimic the iPhone. "A lot of people here want to get an iPhone," says Shanghai lawyer Conlyn Chan."
Government

Best Super Tuesday Candidate for Technology? 549

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the something-to-talk-about dept.
Petey_Alchemist writes "With Super Tuesday coming up and the political field somewhat winnowed down, the process of picking the nominees for the next American President is well underway. At the same time, the Internet is bustling through a period of legal questions like Copyright infringement, net neutrality, wireless spectrum, content filtering, broadband deployment. All of these are just a few of the host of issues that the next President will be pressured to weigh in on during his or her tenure. Who do you think would be the best (or worst) candidate on Internet issues?"
News

Geologists Claim Earth May Be Softer Around The Middle Than Previously Thought 98

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the creamy-nougat-center dept.
A new geological study is suggesting that what we know about the lower mantle of the Earth may have to be reevaluated. Since we are unable to actually sample the Earth at those depths, scientists rely on the use of seismic waves to study the lower reaches of the Earth. This new study suggests that material in the lower mantle has unusual characteristics that make sound move more slowly, suggesting a softer makeup than previously thought. "What's most important for seismology is the acoustic properties--the propagation of sound. We determined the elasticity of ferropericlase through the pressure-induced high-spin to low-spin transition. We did this by measuring the velocity of acoustic waves propagating in different directions in a single crystal of the material and found that over an extended pressure range (from about 395,000 to 590,000 atmospheres) the material became 'softer'--that is, the waves slowed down more than expected from previous work. Thus, at high temperature corresponding distributions will become very broad, which will result in a wide range of depth having subtly anomalous properties that perhaps extend through most of the lower mantle."
Education

Pope Cancels Speech After Scientists Protest 1507

Posted by Zonk
from the probably-could-have-used-a-bit-of-forethought-there dept.
Reservoir Hill writes "Pope Benedict XVI canceled a speech at Rome's La Sapienza university in the face of protests led by scientists opposed to a high-profile visit to a secular setting by the head of the Catholic Church. Sixty-seven professors and researchers of the university's physics department joined in the call for the pope to stay away protesting the planned visit recalled a 1990 speech in which the pope, then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, seemed to justify the Inquisition's verdict against Galileo in 1633. In the speech, Ratzinger quoted an Austrian philosopher who said the ruling was 'rational and just' and concluded with the remark: 'The faith does not grow from resentment and the rejection of rationality, but from its fundamental affirmation, and from being rooted in a still greater form of reason.' The protest against the visit was spearheaded by physicist Marcello Cini who wrote the rector complaining of an 'incredible violation" of the university's autonomy. Cini said of Benedict's cancellation: 'By canceling, he is playing the victim, which is very intelligent. It will be a pretext for accusing us of refusing dialogue.'"
Businesses

Could the RIAA Just Disappear? 114

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the don't-hold-your-breath dept.
BlueMerle writes "Ars Technica is running a story about how EMI is disappointed with RIAA and ultimately they (RIAA) may disappear. 'Is the RIAA as we know it about to disappear? As rumors continue to swirl that EMI will pull its funding from music trade groups like the RIAA and IFPI, an IFPI spokesman tells Ars that the group is in the middle of a major internal review of its operations.'" I wouldn't bet the farm just yet.

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