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Comment: Re:dongle (Score 1) 635

by laddhebert (#39111705) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Copy Protection Advice For ~$10k Software?
What if the software runs in a compute farm? Would you put a dongle on every compute node? How would that work on a remote cloud? Dongles are probably Ok for a workstation, but wouldn't scale in a larger environment. 10k isn't exactly breaking the bank in terms of software licensing. I'd look at other options, ie, licensing and legal agreements, which include the option to audit.
Earth

New Air Conditioner Process Cuts Energy Use 50-90% 445

Posted by kdawson
from the tortured-backronym dept.
necro81 writes "The US National Renewable Energy Laboratory has announced that it has developed a new method for air conditioning that reduces energy use by 50-90%. The DEVap system (Desiccant-Enhanced eVaporative air conditioner) cools air using evaporative cooling, which is not new, but combines the process with a liquid dessicant for pulling the water vapor out of the cooled air stream. The liquid dessicant, a very strong aqueous solution of lithium chloride or sodium chloride, is separated from the air stream by a permeable hydrophobic membrane. Heat is later used to evaporate water vapor back out — heat that can come from a variety of sources such as solar or natural gas. The dessicants are, compared to typical refrigerants like HCFCs, relatively benign on the environment."
Novell

De Icaza Regrets Novell/Microsoft Pact 264

Posted by Soulskill
from the win-some-lose-some dept.
Ian Lamont writes "Novell Vice President and GNOME architect Miguel de Icaza sounded off at a MIX 08 panel on a number of topics. First, he claimed that he was 'not happy' with Novell's cross-patent licensing agreement with Microsoft, saying that if he had his way, the company would have stayed with the open-source community. He also said that neither Windows nor Linux are relevant in the long term, thanks to Web 2.0 business models: 'They might be fantastic products ... but Google has shown itself to be a cash cow. There is a feature beyond selling corporate [software] and patents ... it's going to be owning end users.' He also tangled with Mike Schroepfer, a Mozilla engineering executive, about extending patent protection for Moonlight to third parties. However, de Icaza did say that Novell has 'done the best it could to balance open-source interests with patent indemnification.' We discussed the beginnings of the deal between Microsoft and Novell back in 2006."
Space

NASA Running Out of Plutonium 264

Posted by Soulskill
from the so-am-i dept.
PRB_Ohio takes us to Space.com for a story about NASA's plutonium shortage, and how it may affect future missions to the far reaches of the solar system. The U.S. hasn't produced plutonium since 1988, instead preferring to purchase it from Russia. We discussed the U.S. government's plans to resume production in 2005, but those plans ended up being shelved. If NASA is unable to find an additional source, it could limit missions that take spacecraft too far from the Sun. Quoting: "Alan Stern, NASA associate administrator for science, ... said he believed the United States had sufficient plutonium-238 on hand or on order to fuel next year's Mars Science Lab, an outer planets flagship mission targeted for 2017 and a Discovery-class mission slated to fly a couple years earlier to test a more efficient radioisotope power system NASA and the Energy Department have in development. To help ensure there is enough plutonium-238 for those missions, NASA notified scientists in January that its next New Frontiers solicitation, due out in June, will seek only missions that do not require a nuclear power source."
Space

The Universe Is 13.73 Billion Years Old 755

Posted by kdawson
from the so-happy-birthday-already dept.
CaptainCarrot writes "Phil Plait, aka The Bad Astronomer has summarized for his readers the new results released by NASA from the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP), which has been surveying the 3K microwave radiation left over from the Big Bang. Some of the most interesting results: The age of the universe is now known to unprecedented accuracy: 13.73 billion years old, +/- 120 million. Spacetime is flat to within a 2% error margin. And ordinary matter and energy account for only 4.62% of the universe's total. Plait's comment on the age result: 'Some people might say it doesn't look a day over 6000 years. They're wrong.'"
Privacy

The Myth of the "Transparent Society" 200

Posted by kdawson
from the you-first dept.
palegray.net recommends a piece by Bruce Schneier up at Wired. Schneier addresses the central fallacy of the "transparent society" idea promoted by David Brin, and also takes on the flawed arguments that attempt to justify increased government monitoring of citizens. From the article: "If I disclose information to you, your power with respect to me increases. One way to address this power imbalance is for you to similarly disclose information to me. We both have less privacy, but the balance of power is maintained. But this mechanism fails utterly if you and I have different power levels to begin with."
Google

Google Pulls Map Images At Pentagon's Request 217

Posted by kdawson
from the limits-to-openness dept.
Stony Stevenson alerts us to a little mixup in which a Google Street View crew requested and was granted access to a US military base. Images from inside the base (which was not identified in press reports) showed up online, and the Pentagon requested that they be pulled. Google complied within 24 hours. The military has now issued a blanket order to deny such photography requests in the future; for its part Google says the filming crew should never have asked.

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