Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Submission + - Dormant Virus Wakes Up In Some Patients With Lou Gehrig's Disease (

MTorrice writes: Our chromosomes hold a partial record of prehistoric viral infections: About 8% of our genomes come from DNA that viruses incorporated into the cells of our ancestors. Over many millennia, these viral genes have accumulated mutations rendering them mostly dormant.

But one of these viruses can reawaken in some patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a progressive muscle wasting disease commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. A new study demonstrates that this so-called endogenous retrovirus can damage neurons, possibly contributing to the neurodegeneration seen in the disease.

The findings raise the possibility that antiretroviral drugs, similar to those used to treat HIV, could slow the progression of ALS in some patients.

Comment Door Sensors (Score 5, Interesting) 323

One of the things I found very interesting about the video release is the idea that they put sensors in the falcon wing doors that would alter the rate and angle the two pivot points used to open the doors. I had wondered how they were going to prevent what would have probably ended up being expensive damage if the available opening space around the car was either too low or too close. You have to hand it to Tesla, they really do think about how things should work before they rush in and execute. If they put the same kind of design effort into the Model C, they are going to knock it out of the park.

Comment Don't Musk. Invest in Musk (Score 4, Interesting) 842

"I would Musk and try to save the world, but that just exposes me to the same type of a$#@%&*s that made me sell minecraft again."

You don't have to try to be Musk. If you don't feel the need to get into that or be that sort of creative, at least you can recognize the people who do/are. Call him. You don't need to buy public shares when you have that kind of money. You invest in other people who are trying to change the world.

Keep some for yourself and enjoy your life while knowing that your money is helping to change the world. Don't like what Musk is doing? He's just an example. Fine something you believe in and invest.

I would blow it on something I found ridiculously cool. Like hardened, high-speed em-drive interstellar probes or something. But to each his own.

Comment Fueling Stations Have Electricity Right? (Score 1) 904

All of this speculation that "gas stations" will start closing is complete BS. They will just put in charging stations so they still have the traffic that gets people to buy higher margin items like snacks. And the last time I checked every fueling station has electricity. Demands change. Businesses change to adapt.

Submission + - US Navy Tests 3D-Printing Custom Drones On Its Ships (

itwbennett writes: Researchers at the Naval Postgraduate School are testing the use of 3D printers on ships to produce custom drones outfitted for specialized missions. The idea, said Alan Jaeger, a faculty research associate at the school, is that ships could set sail with kits of the core electronics parts, since they are common to most drones, but have the bodies designed according to specific requirements for each mission. A prototype drone was designed by engineers on shore based on requirements of the sailors at sea, and the 3D design file was emailed to the USS Essex over a satellite link. Flight tests revealed some of the potential problems, most of which were associated with operating the drone rather than the printing itself, Jaeger said. 'Even with a small amount of wind, something this small will get buffeted around,' he said. They also had to figure out the logistics of launching a drone from a ship, getting it back, how it integrated with other flight operations, and interference from other radio sources like radar.

Comment Too Far Away (Score 4, Interesting) 134

It is 1400 light years away. It may be a good candidate for life, but we will never know. Even if we point SETI-type radio telescopes at it and monitor it for signals, they will have spent 1400 years getting to us and there is no guarantee that whatever civilization was there is still there. Chances of a "conversation" are nil.

If we detect life-emitting organic compounds on it, it also won't matter. We'd never be able to verify their veracity because we cannot get there.

Interesting discovery, but I can't muster up much excitement about this one.

Comment I'd Like the Old Internet Back Please (Score 4, Insightful) 127

I don't care what happens to websites that rely on advertising revenue to stay alive. I preferred the "web" when the content was provided by enthusiasts, not corporate clowns. And yes, that definitely includes this web site.

I don't feel even the slightest bit of shame for blocking ads. You use technology against me. I'll use it against you.

Comment Re:OMG (Score 1) 84

If you are caught trading with Cuba in goods that are the product of an American company (HP, Dell, Ford, etc etc), even if you are not located in the US the parent company is (were) subject to stiff fines and your license to sell said products would almost certainly be revoked. So, for example, if a Canadian-based reseller made the mistake of selling an HP computer to a Cuban company, that reseller may find their HP reseller status revoked. Big risk.

This is American reach you see. That is why it hurts so much.

Comment I certainly Hope So (Score 1) 294

I sure hope we create the species that is above us. We're terrible at traveling through space (susceptible to radiation, decaying bodies, reliance on organic-based food, etc). At least something from this Earth should populate the galaxy. Magical wormholes and warp drives are not going to save us before we ultimately become self-defeating.

Comment Re:What is the point? (Score 1) 340

"Do not look at laser with remaining good eye."

You are either Brian (the guy who created the sign), the laser scanner guy we wrote the sign for (at Corel) who's name I can't remember, or your sig is an incredible coincidence. If you're the guy, I really should tell you the rest of the story -- It's hilarious.

Mirrors should reflect a little before throwing back images. -- Jean Cocteau