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Submission + - Hubble To Use the Moon To View Transit of Venus (

astroengine writes: "On June 5 or 6 this year — the exact time and date depends on where you are in the world — Venus will be visible as a small black circle crossing the disk of the sun. Usually, the Hubble Space Telescope would have no business observing this event — the sun is too close for its optics. But plans are afoot for Hubble to observe the reflected sunlight bouncing off the lunar surface during the transit. As the sunlight will pass through the Venusian atmosphere, the transit will provide invaluable spectroscopic data about Venus' atmospheric composition. This, in turn, will help astronomers in characterizing the atmospheres of planets orbiting other stars."

Submission + - World of StarCraft Reborn As Starcraft Universe (

An anonymous reader writes: The group of modders that got impatient with Blizzard and decided to create World of StarCraft are still at it. The project has simply been reborn under the name StarCraft Universe (SCU). The focus is still the same: recreating multiplayer raid battle experiences similar to World of Warcraft. SCU will be released as a series of Starcraft II custom maps and published officially on

The project, which does not yet have an official release date, had to be renamed because Activision Blizzard sent a cease and desist notice to YouTube to remove the pre-alpha trailer showing off the mod. Blizzard's intention was not to stop the project itself, but to protect their trademarks. The company insisted that it wants to see the continued development of the mod and even extended an offer to the developer to visit the Blizzard campus and meet with the StarCraft II development team. The original creator, Ryan Winzen, is now back from his tour and is once again working on using StarCraft II's powerful map editor to develop the newly renamed StarCraft Universe.


Submission + - Complex life found under 600 feet of Antarctic ice (

Chroniton writes: NASA ice scientists have found a shrimp-like creature and a possible jellyfish "frolicking" beneath 600 feet of solid Antarctic ice, where only microbes were expected to live. The odds of finding two complex lifeforms after drilling an only 8-inch-wide hole suggests there may be much more. And if such life is possible beneath Earth's oceans, why not elsewhere like Europa?

Submission + - SPAM: Golden ratio discovered in a quantum world

FiReaNGeL writes: "Scientist have for the first time observed a nanoscale symmetry hidden in solid state matter. By artificially introducing more quantum uncertainty the researchers observed that the chain of atoms of cobalt niobate acts like a nanoscale guitar string. The first two notes show a perfect relationship with each other. Their frequencies (pitch) are in the ratio of 1.618, which is the golden ratio famous from art and architecture. The observed resonant states in cobalt niobate are a dramatic laboratory illustration of the way in which mathematical theories developed for particle physics may find application in nanoscale science and ultimately in future technology."
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Browser addon to make searching easier (

oziumjinx writes: My name is Vin Turk and I am one of the creators of KwiClick, a browser addon that enhances the way you interact with content from services like Google, Twitter, YouTube, and more. I was hoping you could take it for a spin and let me know what you think.

Here's some info links:
Quick demo video (1:40) —

Firefox addon download page —

Our website —

Please let me know if you'd like me to submit our info in another manner.


Submission + - What other innovation has the MPAA stifled? 2

headkase writes: I'd like to preface this with the fact that I have a working prototype that performs well. What has the MPAA prevented in their quest to control how citizens interact with their entertainment media? Right now my setup consists of a "video jukebox". It is composed of a PC networked with an Xbox 360 which is connected to an HDTV via HDMI. Two pieces of software work together to provide the primary functionality. They are "Fair Use Wizard 2" and "Tversity". This is Windows-centric but the organization applies to all systems. Fair Use Wizard 2 is used to rip my DVD collection to the PC. The MPAA is preventing innovation at this point because they have successfully lobbied to categorize the act known as "ripping" a DVD an offense under legislation called the Digital Millennium Copyright Act or DMCA. Fortunately I don't live in a Nation that subscribes to this particular idiocy. So, from there. TVersity then handles streaming the video over my home network with the origin of the media being a general purpose PC and the destination after decoding on the Xbox 360 is the HDTV. Tversity not only streams but will transcode on-the-fly if needed to greatly mitigate the formatting issues that could arise. The organization of PC, 360, and Network defines this "video jukebox" as a concrete example of innovation that the MPAA has retarded.

Please add your own examples ideally using no more than two words in combination to describe the purpose of the device.
The Internet

Submission + - Is HTTPTorrent the next-gen for web browsing? ( 2

DeFender1031 writes: We're all aware of BitTorrent and how it works. This proposal suggests that some of the concepts of BitTorrent can be applied to run-of-the-mill web browsing to lighten server load and distribute downloads to browsers which have already cached the same site. While it's not an official RFC, the idea certainly has promise, and if implemented, could help speed up download times, but more importantly, it could help small (or even large) websites save bandwidth, and as we all know, bandwidth is money.
The Internet

Submission + - Postmortem on a Dead Newspaper

An anonymous reader writes: Techdirt points out a great postmortem of the Rocky Mountain News, a newspaper that ended up shutting down because they couldn't adapt to a world beyond print. While long, the talk (in both video and print) is incredibly candid coming from someone who lived through it and shares at least some portion of the blame. "It seems like pretty much everything was based on looking backwards, not forward. There was little effort to figure out how to better enable a community, or any recognition that the community of people who read the paper were the organizations true main asset. [â¦] The same game is playing out not just in newspapers, but in a number of other businesses as well. Like the Rocky Mountain News, those businesses are looking backwards and defining themselves on the wrong terms, while newer startups don't have such legacy issues to deal with."
The Matrix

Submission + - Entanglement Could Be A Deterministic Phenomenon (

KentuckyFC writes: "Nobel prize-winning physicist Gerard 't Hooft has joined the likes of computer scientists Stephen Wolfram and Ed Fredkin in claiming that the universe can be accurately modelled by cellular automata. The novel aspect of 't Hooft's model is that it allows quantum mechanics and, in particular, the spooky action at a distance known as entanglement to be deterministic. The idea that quantum mechanics is fundamentally deterministic is known as hidden variable theory but has been widely discounted by physicists because numerous experiments have shown its predictions to be wrong. But 't Hooft says his cellular automaton model is a new class of hidden variable theory that falls outside the remit of previous tests. However, he readily admits that the new model has serious shortcomings saying it lacks some of the basic symmetries that our universe enjoys, such as rotational symmetry. However, 't Hooft adds that he is working on modifications that will make the model more realistic (abstract)."
Role Playing (Games)

Submission + - Unusual physics engine game ported to Linux (

christian.einfeldt writes: "Halloween has come early for Linux-loving gamers in the form of the scary Penumbra game trilogy, which has just recently been ported natively to GNU-Linux by the manufacturer, Frictional Games. The Penumbra games, named Overture, Black Plague, and Requiem, respectively, are first person survival horror and physics puzzle games which challenge the player to survive in a mine in Greenland which has been taken over by a monstrous infection/demon/cthulhu-esque thing. The graphics, sounds, and plot are all admirable in a scary sort of way. The protagonist is an ordinary human with no particular powers at all, who fumbles around in the dark mine fighting zombified dogs or fleeing from infected humans. But the game is remarkable for its physics engine — rather than just bump and acquire, the player must use the mouse to physically turn knobs and open doors; and the player can grab and throw pretty much anything in the environment. The physics engine drives objects to fly and fall exactly as one would expect. The porting of a game with such a deft physics engine natively to Linux might be one of the most noteworthy events for GNU-Linux gamers since the 'World of Goo' Linux port."

Submission + - Camara Goes on Offense Against the RIAA

whisper_jeff writes: Ars has an excellent write up outlining how Kiwi Camara (Jammie Thomas(-Rasset)'s new lawyer) is taking a page from the "The Best Defense is a Good Offense" book and going on the attack against the RIAA. Not content to just defend his client, he is laying siege against the RIAA's entire campaign and beginning the work of dismantling it from the bottom up, starting with questioning whether they actually do own the copyrights that were allegedly infringed. And, if you're thinking this is good for everyone who's been harrassed by the RIAA, you'd be right — Camara, along with Harvard Law professor, Charles Nesson, plan to file a class action suit seeking to force the RIAA to return all the (ill-gotten) money they've earned from their litigation campaign. To paraphrase NewYorkCountyLawyer, could this be a sign of the end?

"Today's robots are very primitive, capable of understanding only a few simple instructions such as 'go left', 'go right', and 'build car'." --John Sladek