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User Journal

Journal Journal: Who owns your online profile

Writing for PC World, Katherine Noyes reports that companies are monitoring their employees online profiles at LinkedIn and Facebook. If I understood the report correctly, the monitoring software has the power to block user changes to their profiles. As a self-employed person I am not immediately affected, but am certainly not ethusiastic. I don't think that this will


Submission + - Heterogeneous Computing:Past, Present, and Future (

An anonymous reader writes: Intel's architect, Aater Suleman, gives a brief overview of what heterogeneous computing really means to industry and academia. While hetero is not a new concept, latest developments in technology have introduced brand new challenges and opportunities. The article discusses them in depth. Apparently, there are two types of hetero systems that work very differently and companies are exploring them both going into to the future.

Submission + - New Imaging Technique Explains Unconsciousness (

smitty777 writes: A new imaging technique called fEITER (for functional Electrical Impedance Tomography by Evoked Response) attempts to explain the process of slipping into unconsciousness. The fEITER is a portable device that creates 3D imagery based on evoked potentials measured hundreds of times a second.

The interesting finding from these studies is that unconsciousness appears to result from a buildup of inhibitor neurons. From the article: “Our findings suggest that unconsciousness may be the increase of inhibitory assemblies across the brain’s cortex. These findings lend support to Greenfield’s hypothesis of neural assemblies forming consciousness.”


Submission + - cheap swarm robot (

An anonymous reader writes: hey're fairly simple little robots about the size of a quarter that can move around on vibrating legs, blink their lights, and communicate with each other. On an individual basis, this isn't particularly impressive, but Kilobots aren't designed to be used on an individual basis. Costing a mere $14 each and buildable in about five minutes, you don't just get yourself one single Kilobot. Or ten. Or a hundred. They're designed to swarm in the thousands,

Submission + - Enterprise applications with Javascript (

An anonymous reader writes: I have followed the discussions about the .NET plattform in windows 8, the problems with Oracle, Java and Google and recently — I read the article Are Java and .NET becoming legacy platforms?. I use Java and CSharp and I am very confused about the strategic plan of Microsoft and Oracle. Should we really program business applications with HTML5 and JavaScript? This must be a joke or a bad dream! Maybe — the hidden winner is c++. Do you want to program stable and secure applications with JS?

Submission + - Military Drone attacks are not "hostile" (

sanzibar writes: Not satisfied with the legal conclusion of the DOJ, the Obama administration finds other in-house lawyers willing to declare a bomb dropped from a drone is not "hostile".

The strange conclusion has big implications in determining the Presidents compliance with the law. If drone strikes are in fact hostile and he continues his Libyan campaign past Sunday, he may very well be breaking the law.

Submission + - First exploit on quantum cryptography confirmed (

Vadim Makarov writes: "The Physics World reports researchers demonstrating a full eavesdropper on a quantum key distribution link. Unlike conventional exploits for security vulnerabilities that are often just a piece of software, spying on quantum cryptography required a box full of optics and mixed-signal electronics. Details are published in Nature Communications, and as a free preprint. The vulnerability was known before, but this is the first actual working exploit with secret-key recording confirmed. Patching this loophole is in progress.

Disclaimer: I am one of the researchers who worked on this."


Dead Space Wants To Scare You 195

Kotaku recently ran a story questioning whether the survival-horror genre still exists, and how Dead Space may or may not fit into it. With reviews for the game starting to come in, Ars Technica reports that the game is, indeed, both scary and good. Gamespy wrote up a Dead Space survival guide, and Gamasutra has a lengthy interview with the game's senior producer. In the production of the game, the developers studied things like car wrecks and war scenes to increase the level of realism. They also want the game's sounds to terrify players, including appropriately timed silence. The launch trailer is also available, though it does contain spoilers.

CERN Releases Analysis of LHC Incident 149

sash writes "From the fresh press release: 'Investigations at CERN following a large helium leak into sector 3-4 of the Large Hadron Collider tunnel have confirmed that cause of the incident was a faulty electrical connection between two of the accelerator's magnets. This resulted in mechanical damage and release of helium from the magnet cold mass into the tunnel. Proper safety procedures were in force, the safety systems performed as expected, and no one was put at risk. Sufficient spare components are in hand to ensure that the LHC is able to restart in 2009, and measures to prevent a similar incident in the future are being put in place.'"

Defining Progression Within Games 55

GameSetWatch is running a piece discussing some of the ways in which gameplay can progress from simple to complex. The author talks about how acquiring items, new abilities, or just increasing the player's overall effectiveness can make it difficult for game designers to keep their content balanced and interesting. Quoting: "What do I mean by progression? There are at least two distinct types of progression in computer games, which I'll label player progression, and character progression (narrative progression is arguably a third). Player progression is the increasing aptitude of the player in mastering the game: whether through learning and understanding the technical rules of the game (surface play) or the implications of those rules (deep play). ... Character progression is the unlocking of additional rules of play, or altering the existing rules, by choices or actions within the game."

Paul Krugman Awarded Nobel Prize For Economics 425

zogger writes in his journal, "The guy who put together the concept of geographical location combined with cheap transportation leading to 'like trades with like' and the rise of superindustrial trading blocs has won the Nobel economics science prize. He's a bigtime critic of a lot of this administration's policies, and is unabashedly an FDR-economy styled fella. Here is his blog at the NYTimes." Reader yoyoq adds that Krugman's career choice was inspired by reading Asimov's Foundation series at a young age.
The Internet

Submission + - Major problems withSprintlink backbone in chicago

An anonymous reader writes: It seems that sprint's backbone in Chicago has been causing havoc for ISPs all over the region today, with packet loss currently at 50%-80% and average ping times at 1700ms. We noticed a problem with this backbone last week, for a short time with pings taking over 2000ms. We awoke this morning to an internet connection that was able to open Google and CNN but little else. A quick trace route and call to our ISP confirmed our thoughts that sprint's Chicago backone was having major issues. The problems seemed to be correcting themselves this afternoon, as packet loss what down and ping times were closer to noral. However again this evening packet loss has sky rocketed and service over the backbone is again degraded. Below is an portion of the output from mtr for anyone in doubt of where the issue lies.

3. 0.0% 11.2 11.5 10.6 13.7 1.0
4. 66.7% 1761. 1692. 1624. 1761. 96.9
5. 66.7% 2705. 2592. 2478. 2705. 160.5
6. 83.3% 2752. 2752. 2752. 2752. 0.0
Emulation (Games)

Submission + - State of the Homebrew Scene 2007

Croakyvoice writes: DCEmu have posted an article detailing the Homebrew scenes of all the consoles released at this time, it discusses the future of each console and what should be expected once consoles like the Wii, Xbox 360 and PS3 are fully open to amateur coders.

All power corrupts, but we need electricity.