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+ - Google Offers a Cool Million Bucks For a Better Inverter

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "With the Little Box Challenge, Google (and IEEE, and a few other sponsors like Cree and Rohm) is offering a $1 million prize to the team which can "design and build a kW-scale inverter with the highest power density (at least 50 Watts per cubic inch)." Going from cooler-sized to tablet sized, they say, would make whole lot of things better, and the prize is reserved for the best performing entrant.

"Our testing philosophy is to not look inside the box. You provide us with a box that has 5 wires coming out of it: two DC inputs, two AC outputs and grounding connection and we only monitor what goes into and comes out of those wires, along with the temperature of the outside of your box, over the course of 100 hours of testing. The inverter will be operating in an islanded more—that is, not tied or synced to an external grid. The loads will be dynamically changing throughout the course of the testing, similar to what you may expect to see in a residential setting." he application must be filled out in English, but any serious applicants can sign up, "regardless of approach suggested or team background, will be successful in registering." Registration runs though September.

#power #google #invertor #contest #ieee #technology"

+ - Firefox 31 Released->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Mozilla has released version 31 of its Firefox web browser for desktops and Android devices. According to the release notes, major new features include malware blocking for file downloads, automatic handling of PDF and OGG files if no other software is available to do so, and a new certificate verification library. Smaller features include a new search field on the new tab page, better support for parental controls, and partial implementation of the OpenType MATH table. Mozilla also took the opportunity to note the launch of a new game, Dungeon Defenders Eternity, which will run at near-native speeds on the web using asm.js, WebGL, and Web Audio. "We’re pleased to see more developers using asm.js to distribute and now monetize their plug-in free games on the Web as it strengthens support for Mozilla’s vision of a high performance, plugin-free Web.""
Link to Original Source

+ - UK to use Open Document Format for government documents->

Submitted by sfcrazy
sfcrazy (1542989) writes "UK has decided to use ‘open standards’ for sharing and viewing government documents. The announcement was made by the Minister for the Cabinet Office, Francis Maude. One of the primary objectives of this move is to create a level playing field for suppliers of all sizes. The move must put some pressure on Google to offer full support for ODF in Chrome, Android and Google Docs."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:what environments allow USB boot? (Score 1) 125

by mspohr (#47508897) Attached to: Exodus Intelligence Details Zero-Day Vulnerabilities In Tails OS

I've used TAILS to do banking when I'm traveling and only have access to dodgy WiFi or hotel computers. I've found that it will boot and run on most any computer... sometimes you need to call up the boot menu and select the USB drive, other times "it just works".
It boots and runs from the USB stick and doesn't use the computers mass storage at all. It performs a wipe of the RAM on exit. It encrypts everything, uses HTTPS and TOR; has a minimal secure browser and a more full featured insecure browser. OpenPGP for email and documents.
However, it probably has some vulnerabilities. For instance, a hardware keylogger on the machine... however, they have a randomized on-screen keyboard to use to get around this.
That said, this "security" company which sent out this press release seems like your typical collection of greedy entitled bastards who aim to benefit financially from their FUD.

Comment: Re:How many employees does Slashdot need? (Score 4, Insightful) 271

by mspohr (#47483681) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Many Employees Does Microsoft Really Need?

I am not a business expert but agree that MS probably has a lot of dead wood and poorly managed employees.
Mass layoffs are one way to deal with this problem and this is what most companies do periodically.
However, it seems to me that it is a sign of a poorly managed company if they need to do mass layoffs. A well managed company would be continuously evaluating employees and their work and making adjustments to personnel requirements every month. It seems supremely stupid for a company to suddenly wake up one day and discover that it has an extra xx thousands of employees.
If a company is continuously adjusting personnel, it is also much easier on the employees since there are more opportunities to move employees to more appropriate jobs, re-train them for new tasks, or, failing that, provide comprehensive out-placement service. This would define a company which values human resources.
Unfortunately, these MS employees are likely to be unceremoniously dumped with minimal chance of re-employment.

Comment: Re:Missing information (Score 2) 31

by mspohr (#47475541) Attached to: Pushdo Trojan Infects 11,000 Systems In 24 Hours

We always assume Windows (to the point where most articles don't even mention it) and that is true again in this case.
It is useful to know which versions of Windows:
Systems affected:

The Pushdo trojan malware affects the following systems:

        Windows 2003
        Windows XP
        Windows 2000
        Windows NT
        Windows 98
        Windows 95

This login session: $13.76, but for you $11.88.