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Cellphones

Smart Phones Could Know Their Users By How They Walk 96

Posted by timothy
from the just-for-the-ministry-of-silly-walks dept.
mirgens writes "Technology Review has a short article on new work on gait analysis with the accelerometers built into many smart phones. The work was done at the Norwegian Information Security Laboratory ('Nislab'). The need for more security on mobile devices is increasing with new functionalities and features made available. To improve device security, Nislab proposed gait recognition as a protection mechanism — in other words, if somebody else walks away with your phone, it locks up. While previous work on gait recognition used video sources, for instance to identify people in airports or secure buildings, the Nislab researchers collected the gait data using a Google G1 phone containing the AK8976A embedded accelerometer." What if you're running from a mugger and want to dial 911?
Biotech

Genetically Altering Trees To Sequester More Carbon 279

Posted by Soulskill
from the increasing-the-world's-suv-capacity dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Forests of genetically altered trees and other plants could sequester several billion tons of carbon from the atmosphere each year and so help ameliorate global warming, according to estimates published in the October issue of BioScience. The study, by researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, outlines a variety of strategies (PDF) for augmenting the processes that plants use to sequester carbon dioxide from the air and convert it into long-lived forms of carbon, first in vegetation and ultimately in soil."
Transportation

Almost-Satnav For Cycling 119

Posted by timothy
from the putting-you-in-the-saddle-since-2010 dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A couple of guys (us) in Cambridge have written a cycle routing system, CycleStreets.net, based on open data, and have now released it as a free iPhone app. It's been done on a shoestring, in spare time. There's an API and some disruptive tech in the form of a photo submission screen where street problems can be submitted directly. Because it's open data, you don't have to wait 6 months for the routing to be fixed if there's a bug. Android and .mobi versions are in the works, with the apps being done on GitHub."
The Almighty Buck

US Banks That Offer Transaction History? 359

Posted by timothy
from the cron-job-perhaps? dept.
wirelessdreamer writes "I use a bank in the US that will only allow me to download transaction history in CSV for the previous three months. I have a hard time remembering to pull my transaction history down every three months, and would gladly jump ship to another bank if there is one that lets me download, say three years' worth of transaction history as one of the standard services. Then I can import my data into MySQL and run some reports on it, which is all I'm looking for." What banks out there do the best job at providing users with simple, downloadable data?
Government

NSA Chief Wants Internet Partitioned For Government, 'Critical' Industries 258

Posted by timothy
from the little-cubbies-for-everything dept.
GovTechGuy writes "NSA chief Keith Alexander, also the head of the US Cyber Command, told reporters that he would like to see the creation of a secure zone on the Internet for government and critical private sector industries such as utility companies and the financial sector. Alexander has repeatedly emphasized the dramatic nature of the cyber threat facing American networks and his comments were a further sign that the Pentagon does not think the war against foreign hackers can be won. Alexander denied the military has any role in safeguarding civilian networks currently, but didn't rule out the option in the future."
Classic Games (Games)

GOG.com Not Really Gone 276

Posted by samzenpus
from the stepped-out-for-a-minute dept.
gspr writes "On Sunday, Slashdot and many others reported that DRM-free games site GOG.com was shutting down. Now the site is back, revealing that it was all a hoax. According to the site: 'Now it's time we put an end to all the speculations once and for all. It's true that we decided that we couldn't keep GOG.com the way it was so we won't. As you probably know by now, GOG.com is entering its new era with an end of the two-years beta stage and we're launching a brand new GOG.com with new, huge releases.' So it was all an advertising stunt."
Businesses

Study Shows Testosterone is Bad For High-Stakes Decisions 213

Posted by samzenpus
from the grunt-and-sniff dept.
itwbennett writes "According to a study by researchers at the University of British Columbia's Sauder School of Business, young CEOs with higher levels of testosterone in their system are 'more likely to initiate, scrap or resist mergers and acquisitions' — even when it's not in their best interest. 'We find a strong association between male CEOs being young and their withdrawal rate of initiated mergers and acquisition,' says Prof. Levi, whose research relies on the established correlation between relative youth and increased levels of testosterone. 'For instance, young CEOs, who have higher levels of testosterone, tend to reject offers even when this is against their interest.'"
Businesses

Foxconn's Founder Opens Up About Making iPhones 384

Posted by Soulskill
from the piece-of-the-apple-pie dept.
eldavojohn writes "Bloomberg Businessweek has an article of interest resulting from a three-hour interview with Foxconn founder Terry Gou (single page), whose company manufactures 137,000 iPhones a day. The article profiles Gou's rise to Foxconn but also offers some interesting tidbits you might not know. On why he is not opening factories in the United States, Gou frankly states, 'If I can automate in the US and ship to China, cost-wise it can still be competitive. But I worry America has too many lawyers. I don't want to spend time having people sue me every day.' If you're interested in how a modern day Henry Ford thinks, you can read the rest about the man steering the ship of the world's largest producer of electronics components and China's largest exporter. This unprecedented transparency was part of an agreement Gou made with his customers during his delayed response to an increasing number of Foxconn suicides."
It's funny.  Laugh.

Monty Python 40 Years Old Today! 298

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the nobody-expects-the-spanish-inquisition dept.
cheros was one of several readers to note that today, Oct 5, in 1969 was the very first airing of Monty Python. Although not every sketch has aged particularly well, you'd be hard pressed to find a more influential and funny show. Heck, look at the Icon we use here to indicate humorous stories! Who among us can't claim to have viewed the Holy Grail at least somewhere in the double digits.
Transportation

Sahimo Hydrogen Vehicle Gets Over 1,300 mpg 453

Posted by kdawson
from the see-it-to-believe-it dept.
Mike writes "Students from Turkey's Sakarya University have unveiled a remarkable attempt at creating Europe's most fuel-efficient vehicle. Dubbed the Sahimo, their pint-sized hydrogen car is cable of eking out an incredible 568 km on 1 liter of fuel (about 1,336 miles per gallon). An aerodynamic carbon-fiber construction keeps the vehicle's weight down to less than 110 kg (243 lbs), and the designers hope to push the Sahimo's performance even further to a full 1,000 km per 1 liter of fuel before participating in the Global Green Challenge in October."
Books

Amazon Wants Patent For Inserting Ads Into Books 219

Posted by Soulskill
from the it-was-the-best-of-times,-it-was-comcastic dept.
theodp writes "Three Amazon inventors set out to correct what they felt was a real problem: that 'out-of-print or rare books ... typically do not include advertisements ... the content is fixed and, therefore, has not been adapted to modern marketing.' Their solution is spelled out in newly-disclosed Amazon patent applications for On-Demand Generating E-Book Content with Advertising and Incorporating Advertising in On-Demand Generated Content. From the patent apps, here's what the future of reading may look like: 'For instance, if a restaurant is described on page 12, [then the advertising page], either on page 11 or page 13, may include advertisements about restaurants, wine, food, etc., which are related to restaurants and dining.' So, what would a delightfully-tacky-yet-unrefined Hooters ad do for your Hemingway experience?"
Medicine

Staying In Shape vs. a Busy IT Job Schedule? 865

Posted by timothy
from the no-not-the-regular-hacker's-diet dept.
tnok85 writes "I started a new job ~7 months ago at a very large company working a 12-hour night shift (7PM-7AM) in a fairly high volume NOC. Our responsibilities extend during the night to basically cover everything but the most complex situations regarding UNIX/Windows/Linux/App administration, at which point we'll reach out to the on-calls. I live 1.5 hours away as well, so it turns into 4-5 15 hour days a week of sitting still — throw in almost an hour to get ready to leave, and a bit of time after I get home to unwind and I'm out of time to work out. Unfortunately I'm pretty sure I have a very slow metabolism, ever since I was a pre-teen I would gain weight fairly quickly if I didn't actively work out, regardless of how much or what I eat. (Barring starving myself, I suppose...) So, how does somebody who works a minimum of 60 hours over 4 days, often adding another 12 another day, and sometimes working 7-10 days straight like this, stay in shape? I can't hold a workout schedule, (which every person I've talked to in my history says is necessary to stay in shape) and I can't 'wake up early' or 'work out before bed' because I need sleep. Any thoughts/opinions/suggestions?"
Games

Study Finds Gamers Prefer Control, Competence Over Violence 219

Posted by Soulskill
from the making-pixels-bleed dept.
Science News reports on a new study which found that the violence in video games was not a significant contributing factor to players' enjoyment. Instead, the feelings of control and competence the games engendered were closely linked to how fun the players found it. Quoting: "... the researchers extensively modified a popular first-person shooter video game called Half-Life 2 to have less gore. Half the people in a group of 36 male and 65 female college students were instructed to dispatch adversaries as the original game intended, 'in a thoroughly bloody manner,' says Ryan. The other half was instructed to tag enemies with a marker. 'Instead of exploding in blood and dismemberment, they floated gently into the air and went back to base,' Ryan describes. An extensive survey of the two groups showed that the exclusion of violence didn't diminish players' enjoyment of the game."

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