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Comment: Re:Finally the End (Score 1) 553

by murderlegendre (#24809803) Attached to: Hans Reiser Gets Sentence of 15-To-Life

Congratulations on completely overlooking the obvious positive outcome:

  • Civil society has one fewer sociopathic murderer living within its ranks.

And in case you weren't aware, the first killing is always the hardest one - it tends to get easier after that first big hurdle.

That's one more down, god knows how many more to go. Guess we'll just have to keep chipping away at it..

Math

44 Conjectures of Stephen Wolfram Disproved 158

Posted by kdawson
from the new-kind-of-error dept.
Richard Pritches writes in to let us know that MIT errata expert Evangelos Georgiadis has disproved 44 conjectures set by Dr. Stephen Wolfram (founder of Mathematica) in A New Kind of Science. The paper was published in the latest issue of the Journal of Cellular Automata and can be read in PDF form at Prof Edwin Clark's collection of reviews of Wolfram's ANKS. "The formulas provided by Wolfram for these [44] rules are not minimal. Moreover for 8 of these cannot be minimal even by simple inspection since minimal formula sizes for 3-input Boolean functions over this basis never exceeds 5."
Science

Radiation Not As Hazardous As Once Believed 570

Posted by kdawson
from the since-my-fallout-with-you dept.
HeavensBlade23 sends in an article from the German site Spiegel Online about mounting evidence that nuclear radiation may not be as deadly as has been widely believed. The article cites studies by German, US, and Japanese researchers concluding, for example, that fewer than 800 deaths are attributable to the after-effects of radiation in over 86,500 survivors of the Hiroshima bombing. Other surprisingly low death rates are reported in studies of Chernobyl and of a secret Siberian town called Mayak, devoted to producing plutonium, that was abandoned after a nuclear accident in 1957.
Biotech

Adult Brains More Flexible Than Previously Thought 123

Posted by Zonk
from the you-must-unlearn-what-you-have-learned dept.
stemceller passed us a link to the official site for Johns Hopkins, which is reporting on some research into cognition. Generally, doctors have understood our best learning to be done at a young age, when the brain has a 'robust flexibility'. As we get older, our brain cells become 'hard-wired' along certain paths and don't move much - if at all. Or, at least, that was the understanding. Research headed by the hospital's Dr. Linden has taken advantage of 'two-photon microscopy', a new technique, to get a new picture inside a mouse's head. "They examined neurons that extend fibers (called axons) to send signals to a brain region called the cerebellum, which helps coordinate movements and sensory information. Like a growing tree, these axons have a primary trunk that runs upward and several smaller branches that sprout out to the sides. But while the main trunk was firmly connected to other target neurons in the cerebellum, stationary as adult axons are generally thought to be, 'the side branches swayed like kite tails in the wind,' says Linden. Over the course of a few hours, individual side branches would elongate, retract and morph in a highly dynamic fashion. These side branches also failed to make conventional connections, or synapses, with adjacent neurons. Furthermore, when a drug was given that produced strong electrical currents in the axons, the motion of the side branches stalled.'"
Republicans

Misuse of Scientific Data By the White House 577

Posted by kdawson
from the drag-it-out-'til-2008 dept.
Science data nerds writes "The White House is consistently and persistently claiming that the US is doing better than Europe in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This is false — their claim is purely based on carefully selecting the only subset of the data that supports this conclusion. When all the data are used, it is plain that European emissions have declined substantially and US emissions have grown substantially. The article, and this linked analysis, debunk the White House claims."
Media

How the Camera Phone Changed the World 212

Posted by Zonk
from the peeping-phone dept.
theodp writes "Ten years after the amazing Philippe Kahn married a cell phone and a digital camera to capture the birth of daughter Sophie, Slate takes a look at the impact of the camera phone, the gadget that perverts, vigilantes, and celebrity stalkers can all agree on. 'With this kind of device,' Kahn told Wired, 'you're going to see the best and the worst of things.'"
Hardware Hacking

Open Source Car on the Horizon 214

Posted by Zonk
from the will-it-burn-penguins-for-fuel dept.
PreacherTom writes "So here's a question: can open-source practices and approaches be applied to make hardware, to create tangible and physical objects, including complex ones? Markus Merz believes they can. The young German is the founder of the OScar project, whose goal is to develop and build a car according to open-source principles. Merz and his team aren't going for a super-accessorized SUV — they're aiming at designing a simple and functionally smart car. The OScar is not the only open-source hardware project out there: others include Zero Prestige, which designs kites and kite-powered vehicles, and Open Prosthetics, which offers free exchange of designs for prosthetic devices."

YouTube Stays Relevant Despite Pulled Content 279

Posted by Zonk
from the tube-is-all-things-to-all-people dept.
Gray writes "École Secondaire Mont-Bleu has banned all personal electronic devices and suspended two 13-year-old girls after one uploaded to YouTube a camera phone video of their teacher yelling at the other. After the video was posted on the popular internet video site, the teacher was so embarrassed that he stayed home from work, where he remains on stress leave. The teachers' union is now trying to get all personal electronic devices banned from all schools in Western Quebec." Meanwhile, via the PVRBlog comes word that YouTube has helped raise CBS' ratings by some 7-9%. From that article: "CBS has uploaded more than 300 clips that have a total of 29.2 million views on YouTube, averaging 857,000 views per day, since the service launched on October 18. CBS has three of the top 25 most viewed videos this month (Nov.1-17), including clips from CBS's Tuesday night hit drama 'NCIS,' 'Late Show with David Letterman,' 'The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson' and 'The Early Show.' The CBS Brand Channel is also one of the most subscribed channels of all time with more than 20,000 users subscribing to CBS programming on YouTube since the channel launch last month."

North Korea Says It Has Conducted Nuclear Test 1623

Posted by Zonk
from the troubling dept.
ScentCone writes "North Korea says that it has conducted its first nuclear weapons test and 'brought happiness to its people.' Japan and China earlier issued an unusual joint statement saying that such a test would be 'unacceptable.' As of 11:10PM EST, the USGS says that it has not detected any unusual seismic activity on the Korean peninsula in the last 48 hours." From the article: "The North said last week it would conduct a test, sparking regional concern and frantic diplomatic efforts aimed at dissuading Pyongyang from such a move. North Korea has long claimed to have nuclear weapons, but had never before performed a known test to prove its arsenal. The nuclear test was conducted at 10:36 a.m. (0136 GMT) in Hwaderi near Kilju city, Yonhap reported, citing defense officials." Update: 10/09 05:50 GMT by J : The U.S. Geological Survey reports a 4.2 magnitude quake; South Korean news is reporting a 3.58 magnitude event; the White House apparently confirms a nuclear test.

Voting Machines Wreak Havoc in Maryland Elections 463

Posted by kdawson
from the diebold-and-human-error dept.
An anonymous reader writes, "Voting machines are wreaking havoc in Maryland elections today. From the article: 'Election Day in Montgomery County and parts of Prince George's opened in chaos and frustration this morning, as a series of problems and missteps left thousands of citizens unable to vote or forced to cast provisional ballots... Montgomery County's Board of Elections held an emergency meeting and agreed to petition the Circuit Court to extend voting times until 9 p.m.' It's simply shameful."

Weird Al Says 'Don't Download This Song' 353

Posted by Zonk
from the really-he-would-like-you-to-though dept.
Kazzahdrane writes "Known geek and comedy singer/songwriter Weird Al Yankovic has released the first song from his new album 'Straight Outta Lynwood' for free on his MySpace page. The track is entitled 'Don't Download This Song' and tells of the dangers of illegally downloading music from filesharing sites." His MySpace page is most excellent. "Hi. Al here. No, really, it's Al. Seriously. What, you don't believe me? Go ahead, check weirdal.com. Hit the MySpace link. See if it brings you right back to this page. Go ahead. I'll wait. See? It's really me. I should point out... this means that conversely, all those other people on MySpace who are claiming to be me or implying that they are me... are definitely NOT me. I'm sure they're very nice people... they're just not 'Weird Al' Yankovic. I assure you."

SCO Lawyers Ambush IBM Witness 199

Posted by Zonk
from the what-is-this-case-about-again dept.
Mr. E. writes "In a sneaky legal maneuver, SCO's lawyers managed to ambush an IBM witness into having to give a no-holds-barred deposition in front of an unrelated court in another state. After SCO was limited in what they could depose Mr. Otis Wilson about by the Utah court, the company blindsided IBM with last-second subpoenas before a North Carolina court. IBM's lawyer was on vacation at the time, didn't give prior notice to big blue, and now they've won the right to ask him anything they want. They've asked him about whether he has a criminal record, about ex-wives, etc. and they have four hours in which to do so. According to PJ of Groklaw, 'I'd say [Magistrate Judge Brooke Wells] has thrown poor Mr. Wilson to the wolves in North Carolina and told him it's his own fault.' SCO, of course, is fishing for something — anything — they can use to stave off IBM's Motion for Summary Judgement which is fast approaching, and if they can somehow trip up Mr. Wilson, they might be able to do just that. However, there was at least one line of cold comfort in Magistrate Well's order '[T]he court wishes to note that its decision should not be viewed as any type of invitation to reopen the discovery process.'"

"I got everybody to pay up front...then I blew up their planet." "Now why didn't I think of that?" -- Post Bros. Comics

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