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Mars

Evidence Of Glaciers On Mars Suggests Recent Climate Activity 101

Posted by Soulskill
from the redhouse-effect-in-action dept.
Last year, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured high-resolution images of the Red Planet which showed many mesas, valleys, and rock debris which appeared to be (geologically speaking) recent formations. A team of scientists from Brown University analyzed the photographs and found evidence that the terrain was carved by large glaciers much more recently than they thought possible. Climate activity on Mars was thought to have quieted over 3 billion years ago, but these glaciers would have been around within the last 10-100 million years. "The finding could have implications for the life-on-Mars argument by strengthening the case for liquid water. Ice can melt two ways: by temperature or by pressure. As currently understood, the Martian climate is dominated by sublimation, the process by which solid substances are transformed directly to vapor. But ice packs can exert such strong pressure at the base to produce liquid water, which makes the thickness of past glaciers on its surface so intriguing."
Sci-Fi

DARPA Working On Arthur C. Clarke Weapon Idea 453

Posted by Soulskill
from the good-times-with-molten-metal dept.
holy_calamity writes "DARPA is working on a weapon which is similar to one first described by Arthur C. Clarke in his 1955 novel Earthlight — firing jets of molten metal using strong electromagnetic fields. The Magneto Hydrodynamic Explosive Munition (MAHEM) will function on a smaller scale than Clarke's fictional blaster. DARPA's write-up says it could be 'packaged into a missile, projectile or other platform and delivered close to target for final engagement and kill.' Clarke is also widely credited with suggesting geostationary communications satellites — what other ideas of his will come to pass?"
Patents

+ - New Lightbulb 50% Efficient...Never Burns Out.-> 1

Submitted by
hankmt
hankmt writes "Ceravision has just been awarded a patent for a new kind of light. The system is four times more efficient than Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs and it contains now hazardous materials. It basically works by using a microwave emitter to create a high intensity electric field inside a chamber filled with gas. The gas quickly converts to plasma, an the plasma releases more than 50% of it's energy as light.

The device uses components that are all already in mass production, so it could be available relatively quickly. The high directionality of the light makes it perfect for rear projection screens and medical applications, but it could be entering the mass consumer market as a "edison-type" bulb in the next five years."

Link to Original Source

Lenovo laying off 1,400 employees, looking overseas->

From feed by engfeed

Filed under: Desktops, Laptops

Tough news on the Lenovo front, as the "world's third ranking PC manufacturer" is looking to axe 1,400 of its US-based employees -- and fast. Reportedly, the firm has decided to lay off a good chunk of its American-based work force "within the next 30 to 60 days" as it turns around and creates around 750 new positions in Brazil, China, India and Slovakia. The company stressed that its return to profitability last year was greatly assisted by the laying off of upwards of 1,000 employees, and insinuates that the latest cost-cutting measures are just attempts to "make the organization more efficient by reducing expenses." The cuts also include a whopping 20-percent of the work force at Lenovo's Research Triangle Park (RTP) location and around five-percent overall, but should net some $100 million in savings for the new fiscal year. Sadly, it just seems to get more cutthroat every year in the corporate arena, regardless of accomplishments.

[Via TWW]

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BOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD A new documentary series. Be part of the transformation as it happens in real-time

Office Depot Featured Gadget: Xbox 360 Platinum System Packs the power to bring games to life!


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Media

Wal-Mart Begins Massive Push For HD DVD 338

Posted by kdawson
from the 200-bucks-by-Christmas dept.
Several readers sent us word of Wal-Mart's ordering 2 million HD DVD players from China. Hans V wrote, "My kids work at Wal-Mart and the manager there has been talking about this. HD-DVD's are selling like mad there so I hear." Another reader sent us a few links in Chinese and summarized them this way: "The first batches of these blue-laser HD DVD players are to land sometime in 2007, with complete fulfillment of the order [from Fuh Yuan] in 2008. The deal could be worth up to $300 million US, which translates to $150 per player. If so, by the time Christmas 2007 rolls around, Wal-Mart could be selling these for less than $200 retail, although some speculate that the initial manufacturer suggested retail pricing might be in the ballpark of $299. Currently the cheapest high-definition player is a Toshiba HD DVD with an MSRP of $399." By comparison Blu-Ray players, manufactured in Japan, are not expected to drop below $1000 until next year. The International Herald Tribune writes about the risk Toshiba is taking by bringing in Chinese manufacturers to trump Sony in the format war.
Power

+ - Earth Day: 10 First Steps To Lighter Living

Submitted by
kitzilla
kitzilla writes "Earth Day is Sunday — are you doing anything earthy? Here's a list [via Lifehacker] of ten easy things you can do to lighten your environmental "footstep." Nothing particularly complicated here, but a good review: from unplugging chargers and equipment in standby mode to buying locally grown food. Check of one or two of these, and grab some good Earth Day karma."
Quickies

+ - Atlantis destroyed by a tsunami ?

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Research on the Greek island of Crete suggests that one of Europe's earliest civilisation [Alantis], which flourished until about 3,500 years ago, was destroyed by a giant tsunami. From the article: "The ancient Minoans were building palaces, paved streets and sewers, while most Europeans were still living in primitive huts. But around 1500BC the people who spawned the myths of the Minotaur and the Labyrinth abruptly disappeared. Now the mystery of their cataclysmic end may finally have been solved. A group of scientists have uncovered new evidence that the island of Crete was hit by a massive tsunami at the same time that Minoan culture disappeared. "The geo-archaeological deposits contain a number of distinct tsunami signatures," says Dutch-born geologist Professor Hendrik Bruins of the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. "Minoan building material, pottery and cups along with food residue such as isolated animal bones were mixed up with rounded beach pebbles and sea shells and microscopic marine fauna. "The latter can only have been scooped up from the sea-bed by one mechanism — a powerful tsunami, dumping all these materials together in a destructive swoop," says Professor Bruins. The deposits are up to seven metres above sea level, well above the normal reach of storm waves. "An event of ferocious force hit the coast of Crete and this wasn't just a Mediterranean storm," says Professor Bruins. The wave would have been as powerful as the one that devastated the coastlines of Thailand and Sri Lanka on Boxing day 2004 leading to the loss of over 250,000 lives. But if this evidence is so clear why has it not been discovered before now? Tsunami expert Costas Synolakis, from the University of Southern California, says that the study of ancient tsunamis is in its infancy and people have not, until now, really known what to look for."
OS X

+ - Mac OS X Update 10.4.9 Released

Submitted by Parry
Parry (687708) writes "Ok, it's going to be a busy afternoon updating to 10.4.9 — Software update just popped up with the 10.4.9 Update listed. It's a 163Mb download over 10.4.8 and includes general operating system fixes, as well as specific fixes or compatibility updates for the following applications and technologies:
— RAW camera support
— Handling of large or malformed images that could cause crashes
— Image capture performance
— Mouse scrolling and keyboard shortcuts
— Font handling
— Playback quality, and bookmarks in DVD Player
— USB video conferencing cameras for use with iChat
— Bluetooth devices
— Browsing AFP servers
— Apple USB Modem
— Windows-created digital certificates
— Open and Print dialogs in applications that use Rosetta on Intel-based Macs
— Time zone and daylight saving for 2006 and 2007
— Security updates
All in all it does sound like a good number of improvements made it to this (perhaps final) update. http://www.info.apple.com/kbnum/n304821 has more information."
The Almighty Buck

+ - Dept. of Energy wants zero dollars for geothermal

Submitted by
LotsOfPhil
LotsOfPhil writes "The Department of Energy is requesting $0 for research into geothermal energy. From 2001-2006, the average funding was $26 million. This year it is $5 million.

The Bush administration wants to eliminate federal support for geothermal power just as many U.S. states are looking to cut greenhouse gas emissions and raise renewable power output.
The move has angered scientists who say there is enough hot water underground to meet all U.S. electricity needs without greenhouse gas emissions.
"
Power

+ - 5 Best Environmental Tech Inventions of 2007

Submitted by
kitzilla
kitzilla writes "Nanotech batteries. LED lighting. Super-efficient MOCVD solar panel technology. It may seem early to be compiling a retrospective of this year's best environmental tech inventions, but 2007 is shaping up as a watershed for eco-tech. Practical wave-generated power, anyone? With social and political attention turning toward the environment, there's finally market-driven pressure to move sustainability solutions out of the lab and into people's homes and driveways. Here's a quick look at the immediate future."

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