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Comment Re:It's gonna be a while. (Score 1) 297 297

People aren't going to run washing machines at 2AM in the summertime to avoid a $0.50 fee and get smelly clothes since nobody will be around to flip the laundry into the dryer.

You lack imagination... Imagine a price difference of $10 and imagine you can buy a washing-drying machine, that can do both washing AND drying... See, that was easy.

Government

Submission + - Flu Pandemic may lead to websites being blocked->

mikael writes: While corporations and businesses have been advised on how to allow employees to work remotely from home, there is still some uncertainty on how ISP's would be able to handle the extra flow of traffic. The Department of Homeland Security is suggesting that ISP's be prepared to block popular websites in order to prioritize bandwidth for commercial use.
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Programming

Submission + - Apple Adds Lambda With Closures To C/C++->

Karoly Lorentey writes: "A surprising new feature in the latest Mac OS X release is a brand new, nonstandard extension to the venerable C language. Blocks are basically first-class anonymous functions with full support for closures. The extension comes complete with brand new type and expression syntax, a new storage class, and even limited support for type inference. At runtime, Blocks use reference counting to free stale closures. The new Snow Leopard GCC has support for blocks in C++ and (obviously) Objective C programs as well. Documentation is somewhat limited, but the original announcement thread on the CLang development list is illuminating.

The feature is trumpeted as a tool for easy parallelization of C/C++/Objective C programs, but obviously anonymous functions and closures are useful for far more. Is this the beginning of a renaissance of nonstandard, vendor-specific C language extensions?"

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Space

Submission + - Galaxies grow by 'Cannibalism'.

Smivs writes: "Scientists studying Andromeda have discovered that galaxies grow by eating each other. An international team of scientists mapping Andromeda discovered stars that they said were "remnants of dwarf galaxies". The astronomers report their findings in the journal Nature. This consumption of stars has been suggested previously, but the team's ultra-deep survey has provided detailed images to show that it took place. This shows the "hierarchical model" of galaxy formation in action. The model predicts that large galaxies should be surrounded by relics of smaller galaxies they have consumed."
Patents

Submission + - Google Patents its Home Page

theodp writes: "A week after new USPTO Director David Kappos pooh-poohed the idea that a lower patent allowance rate equals higher quality, Google was granted a patent on its Home Page. Subject to how the design patent is enforced, Google now owns the idea of having a giant search box in the middle of the page, with two big buttons underneath and several small links nearby. And you doubted Google's commitment to patent reform, didn't you?"
Earth

Submission + - Tokamak fusion experiment facing financial trouble-> 1 1

fiannaFailMan writes: An international plan to build a nuclear fusion reactor is being threatened by rising costs, delays and technical challenges.

Emails leaked to the BBC indicate that construction costs for the experimental fusion project called Iter have more than doubled. Some scientists also believe that the technical hurdles to fusion have become more difficult to overcome and that the development of fusion as a commercial power source is still at least 100 years away. At a meeting in Japan on Wednesday, members of the governing Iter council will review the plans and may agree to scale back the project.

Iter will be a Tokamak device, a successor to the Joint European Torus (JET) in England. Meanwhile, an experiment in fusion by laser doesn't seem to be running into the same high profile funding problems just yet.
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