arlanTLDR writes "The Seattle PI is running a story about how the MP3 format is the sign of a musical apocalypse. Apparently, many top music producers are 'howling' over the fact that files in a compressed format contain 'less than 10 percent of the original music on the CDs.' Is this just sensationalist FUD, or is there something to the assertion that listening to an MP3 is like hearing music 'through a screen door?'" The article mentions that the iPod and its cheap earbuds bear some of the responsibility for rendering this degradation in sound quality less objectionable.
knoll99 writes "Scientists unveiled the discovery Wednesday of a baby mammoth found in the permafrost of north-west Siberia. The remains of the six-month-old female mammoth were discovered in a remarkable state of preservation on the Yamal peninsula of Russia in May, a Reuters report said. The specimen is believed to be the best of its kind to date."
opencity writes "The Washington Post reports on the two Diebold source disks that were anonymously sent to a Maryland election official this past week. Further investigation has lead individuals involved to believe the disks came from a security check demanded by the Maryland legislature sometime in 2003." From the article: "Critics of electronic voting said the most recent incident in Maryland casts doubt on Lamone's claim that Maryland has the nation's most secure voting system. "There now may be numerous copies of the Diebold software floating around in unauthorized hands," said Linda Schade, co-founder of TrueVoteMD, which has pressed for a system that provides a verifiable paper record of each vote."
gnat writes "The subheading of the CNN article says it all: 'Four largest record companies defeated in behind-the-scenes battle to charge different prices for songs; downloads still 99 cents'. This comes the same day as France backed down on the posturing over demanding iPod interoperability." From the France article: "Apple, which did not return repeated phone calls, and other DRM holders doing business in France, are likely elated. While the law must still be voted on, the alterations in the legislation signify willingness by some in the French government to honor the rights of companies that don't wish to share their technology with competitors. Senate debate on the bill begins Thursday."
rcbutcher writes to tell us the Sydney Morning Herald is reporting that Google has just acquired the rights to a brand new text search algorithm invented by a University of NSW student. From the article: "Orion works as an add-on to existing search engines to improve the relevance of search and won praise from Microsoft founder Bill Gates last year. [...] Orion finds pages where the content is about a topic strongly related to the key word. It then returns a section of the page, and lists other topics related to the key word so the user can pick the most relevant."
prostoalex writes "Digital Video Guru is running a comparison of 10 digital video sharing sites - EyeSpot Beta, Google Video Beta, Grouper Beta, Jumpcut Beta, OurMedia, Revver Beta, VideoEgg, Vimeo, vSocial and YouTube. Currently, based on traffic, YouTube is the leader of the pack (more heavily visited MSN Video does not support user-uploaded videos), but Digital Video Guru blog awards Vimeo for fastest uploads, JumpCut for editing, and YouTube for community features."
ZedNaught writes "The BBC is reporting that 'astronomers have discovered that the planet Uranus has a blue ring - only the second found in the Solar System. Like the blue ring of Saturn, it probably owes its existence to an accompanying small moon.' According to the April issue of Science, the blue ring is one of two new outer rings recently discovered around Uranus using the infrared Keck adaptive optics system. The rings are blue and red like Saturn's E and G rings. The blue ring around Saturn hosts the moon Enceladus while the Uranus ring contains the moon Mab."