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Space

+ - Volunteer to be a Space Pioneer for ESA experiment->

Submitted by
number6x
number6x writes "The European Space Agency (ESA) is looking for volunteers for a simulated trip to Mars. The simulation will put a crew of six in isolation for 17 months. The crew will be made up of 4 Russians and 2 Europeans. In all the ESA will need 12 volunteers for back up purposes.

Seventeen months was chosen to simulate the time needed for the journey to Mars and back, as well as a 30 period spent doing experiments on the red planet."

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Printer

+ - Inkjet cartridges lie about being empty->

Submitted by Artemis
Artemis (14122) writes "Epson has released a report they commissioned on "empty" inkjet cartridges. The interesting part? The cartridge and the printer disagree on when it is actually out of ink! The study looked into the efficiency of both single and multi-ink cartridges. The cartridges were measured before and after use and were considered empty when the printed reported they were empty. The Kodak EasyShare 5300 ranked worst in the study, indicating it was out of ink where it was still actually 64% full! These results are horrible, but even the best inkjet printers left an average of 20% of the ink in their cartridges when they were reported empty."
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Unix

+ - PC-BSD "24-hour test drive"->

Submitted by Tyler Too
Tyler Too (909326) writes "Ars Technica has a '24-hour test drive' of PC-BSD, a FreeBSD-based distribution designed to appeal to Windows converts. The overview covers installation, configuration, and usage. 'Just about everything you need to make a useful FreeBSD development system is there. The ports system is quite powerful and has inspired entire Linux distributions (see Gentoo), but it is often faster just to grab a compiled package. If the package you are looking for is not in the PC-BSD PBI repository, then you have the option of using regular FreeBSD packages or ports to fill the holes.'"
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PC Games (Games)

+ - The Adventures of Darwin for PS2 ships->

Submitted by
SupraStan
SupraStan writes "D3Publisher of America (D3PA) sends word today that The Adventures of Darwin is shipping to retail stores across North America exclusively for the PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system from Sony at an SRP of $19.95. "Just as Darwin does in the game, the PlayStation 2 market is evolving — it's now ready to accommodate more games like The Adventures of Darwin that appeal to family-friendly audiences," said Sam Guilloud, brand manager, D3PA. "With such a large and loyal install base of over 38 million in the US (Source NPD), this is the perfect time in the PlayStation 2's life cycle to release such a unique title." More information: http://www.mygamer.com/index.php?platform=homepage &publisher=&developer=&game=&page=globalnews&mode= viewnews&id=2427"
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Programming

+ - Progress on next-generation Python

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes "A couple of years ago, Guido Van Rossum undertook a major overhaul of the Python language called Python 3000. Despite the fact that Python is older than languages like Java and Javascript, Guido's initial design decisions have held up remarkably well over the years. Nevertheless, it was inevitable that after 15 years, a language designer would like to redo some things. Guido says: "The idea was that Python 3000 would be the first Python release to give up backwards compatibility in favor of making it the best language going forward." Now Guido says that Python 3000 is on-track (modulo a 2 month schedule slip). Will this release prepare Python for competition with Perl 6 and Ruby 2? Does it matter?"
XBox (Games)

+ - Xbox 360's Identity Crisis->

Submitted by
NP
NP writes "Upon inserting my copy of Forza Motorsport 2 into my Xbox 360 a most unusual thing happened. My Xbox 360 displayed a screen telling me that if I wanted to play the game it would have to be inserted into... an Xbox 360 console! I tried holding a mirror up to the Xbox and demanding that it take a look, but it refuses to do so."
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Networking

+ - Controversy threatens 100G Ethernet work->

Submitted by
coondoggie
coondoggie writes "A debate within the IEEE threatens to stall work on a 100Gbps Ethernet standard and the very existence of the working group defining it. Participants in the Higher Speed Study Group (HSSG) within the IEEE are divided on whether to include 40G Ethernet as part of their charter or stay the course with 100G. Proponents for 40G argue that it is a necessary, simple and cost-effective step that has broad market potential; opponents say it will unnecessarily bog down progress on 100G which, they claim, also has broad market potential addressing different applications — aggregation and long-haul vs. server interconnect. Seven months ago, HSSG's focus seemed like a done deal. But in January, 40G proponents became more vocal. Now, the integrity of HSSG itself is threatened by the row. The group's future hinges on a meeting next month in San Francisco where HSSG leaders will attempt to build consensus among members on the 40G/100G issue. http://www.networkworld.com/news/2007/061407-100g- standards-work.html"
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Slashdot.org

+ - 10 More Reasons why HD Formats Have Already Failed

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The author of this article makes a striking case for the reasons why Blu-Ray and HD DVD formats have failed to penetrate the mainstream marketplace. "I believe that both HD DVD and Blu-ray will fail to become successful, mainstream replacement formats for DVD and will instead remain as niche products while eventually fading into obscurity." One wonders how either camp can convince Joe 6 pack of the benefits of upgrading from a perfectly good DVD player to the next gen player that offers better performance to only a discerning eye that possesses quality components? "Sony is launching a new marketing campaign called "The Format War is Over." With this kind of ridiculous marketing (as if merely saying it makes it true) is there any reason media and editors around the Internet are calling Blu-ray's bluff?" How can either camp expect to survive with such obvious smear tactics and preying on consumer ignorance? This to me almost feels like a Presidential debate."
Privacy

+ - Japan standing firm on child porn purveyor rights->

Submitted by
fima59
fima59 writes "Japan Diet members seem to be holding firm in the face of U.S. government demands to make possession of child pornography a crime in Japan. According to the U.S. Japan's current Law for Punishing Acts Related to Child Prostitution and Child Pornography, and for Protecting Children possession of child pornography for the purpose of selling or supplying it crimes, without criminalizing possession for personal use. http://japundit.com/archives/2007/06/11/6246/#comm ent-397172"
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Intel

+ - Intel V8 Octa-Core System, Full Performance Tests

Submitted by MojoKid
MojoKid (1002251) writes "In the April time frame, details of Intel's dual-socket 8-core system dubbed "V8" became available but only preliminary performance numbers were shown. The platform consists of quad-core Xeon processors in an Intel 5000X chipset-based motherboard, along with FBDIMM (Fully Buffered DIMM) serial memory. This follow-on article goes into significantly more detail on the platform and showcases many more performance metrics on a Windows Vista 64-bit installation. The POV-Ray and Cinebench 95 benchmark numbers alone are something to smile about."
Microsoft

+ - SRC (French CBC) network offers ActiveX-only Media->

Submitted by
toogreen
toogreen writes "Many French-Canadians from Quebec have been upset for more than a week over Radio-Canada's latest upgrade of its multimedia web interface (Still BETA), which delivers their TV content on the web. Formerly based on WMV technology, the old site used to also offer .ogg format, and although focused towards Windows, it was still working on all platforms. On Mac through Flip4Mac, and on Linux using a few plugins and firefox add-ons.

Just for the reference to those outside Canada, Radio-Canada is the French speaking equivalent of the CBC network. It's government sponsored, therefore financed with people's tax. As such, people see it as a public service network and they expect it to offer its media in an open, non-discriminating manner.

The problem with the so-called "upgrade", which was advertised on TV, lies mostly in terms of openness and accessibility. The site is now unavailable to Firefox users, as it requires the use of ActiveX! Obviously this means no access whatsoever for Linux users, and concerned Windows users are just as upset as they do not want to activate ActiveX, for security reasons. On the Mac, it's "supposed" to work through Flip4Mac, although I was unable to get an image with the sound when I tried.

The funny thing is that after analyse of the website, It seems obvious that ActiveX is not REALLY necessary for most of the site to function normally. The new interface relies mostly on Flash and Windows Media Player to function, and It's not so hard to find other ways to access the content by bypassing scripts and using MPlayer with medias urls. From what I've seen and heard so far, the ActiveX code is only used to check Windows Media Player's version and interact with it (correct me if I'm wrong). So then why redirect Firefox users on Linux to the page about ActiveX when they could read the same normal content with the help of a plugin? On the Mac, users are not bothered with any ActiveX message but are rather invited to download Flip4Mac (which is distributed by Microsoft... hmm)

No need to mention that rumours are now sprouting on Quebec's blogs about possible involvment/agreement of Microsoft with the SRC. It does indeed look rather suspicious, as the ONLY way right now to access the multimedia content in a normal way is to go through a Microsoft product, be it ActiveX, Flip4Mac, or Windows Media Player. All this for now over a week while It could be easily fixed by modifying a javascript to redirect Linux users to the main site, with a message to recommend an alternative add-on (like MediaPlayerConnectivity), for example.

The site in question is available at the following url:
http://www.radio-canada.ca/audio-video/"

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Networking

+ - US falls to 24th place for broadband penetration->

Submitted by
amigoro
amigoro writes "US fell to 24th place in terms of broadband penetration with 53%. South Korea led the pack with 90% having highs peed connections.

The US remains the largest broadband country in the world with more than 60.4 million subscribers in the quarter with 2.9 million new broadband additions but China is fast catching up and has cut the gap to the US from 5.8 million at the end of 2006 to 4.1 million at end of March 2007."

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Microsoft

+ - Bill Gates, in 1987, forecasts 2007

Submitted by sec-minded
sec-minded (1097733) writes "Interesting article on Bill Gates forecasting 20 years into the future from 1987: Following the story assessing Bill Gates' record as a prognosticator, I received several e-mails pointing me to more predictions made by the Microsoft chairman in the past. The best tip came from Aaron Hicks, a reader who remembered seeing a January 1987 issue of Omni magazine in which Gates and 13 others — including MCI's William McGowan, counterculture guru Timothy Leary, the Talking Heads' David Byrne, and columnist George Will — predicted the future. http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/microsoft/archi ves/116108.asp?source=rss"

The world is not octal despite DEC.

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