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Comment: Summary != Article (Score 1) 523

by palpatine (#36543180) Attached to: Tesla Will Discontinue the Roadster

Was this summary written by an oil company executive? Or was this a contest to see how different the summary can be from the actual article? I RTFA'd this news story yesterday was glad that the Roadster has achieved its purpose -- now Tesla Motors can focus on its Model S, not to mention the Mercedes A-Class E-Cell, Smart EV, and Toyota Rav4 EV 2nd gen. I think the 10s could be the decade of the electric car.

Image

Australian Visitors Must Declare Illegal Porn To Customs Officers 361

Posted by samzenpus
from the don't-blunder-down-under dept.
Australian Justice Minister Brendan O'Connor has advised visitors to take a better safe than sorry policy when it comes to their porn stashes, and declare all porn that they think might be illegal with customs officers. From the article: "The government said it changed the wording on passenger arrival cards after becoming aware of confusion among travellers about what pornography to declare. 'People have a right to privacy and while some pornography is legal and does not need to be disclosed, all travellers should be aware that certain types of pornography are illegal and must be declared to customs,' Mr O'Connor said."
Image

Darth Vader Robs Long Island Bank 190

Posted by samzenpus
from the I-find-our-lack-of-funds-disturbing dept.
Apparently the destruction of the second Death Star has stretched the Galactic Empire's coffers so thin that Lord Vader himself is robbing banks. From the article: "Impotent Rebel Alliance security forces tell Newsday (paywall) that Vader marched into a Chase bank in Setauket around 11:30 a.m. today. Brandishing a completely unnecessary handgun — as he had the power to choke the oxygen out every teller's throat — the fallen Jedi demanded cash."
Robotics

Willow Garage Robot Fetches Beer, Engineers Rejoice 114

Posted by samzenpus
from the the-perfect-robot dept.
kkleiner writes "Willow Garage has pulled off the ultimate engineering feat: teaching a PR2 robot to fetch you a beer from the fridge. Not only can the PR2 select the correct brew from the fridge, it can deliver, and even open the beer as needed. That's right, all the humans have to do is drink and relax. Prepare yourself for some major robot-envy as you check out the PR2 delivering much-needed refreshment in the video."
The Internet

Over a Third of the Internet Is Pornographic 247

Posted by samzenpus
from the filthy-web dept.
Th'Inquisitor writes "Pornography makes up 37% of the total number of web pages online, according to a new study published by Optenet, a SaaS provider. According to the report, which looked at a representative sample of around four million extracted URLs, adult content on the Internet increased by 17% in the first quarter of 2010, as compared to the same period in 2009."
Intel

The Big Technical Mistakes of History 244

Posted by kdawson
from the seemed-like-a-good-idea-at-the-time dept.
An anonymous reader tips a PC Authority review of some of the biggest technical goofs of all time. "As any computer programmer will tell you, some of the most confusing and complex issues can stem from the simplest of errors. This article looking back at history's big technical mistakes includes some interesting trivia, such as NASA's failure to convert measurements to metric, resulting in the Mars Climate Orbiter being torn apart by the Martian atmosphere. Then there is the infamous Intel Pentium floating point fiasco, which cost the company $450m in direct costs, a battering on the world's stock exchanges, and a huge black mark on its reputation. Also on the list is Iridium, the global satellite phone network that promised to make phones work anywhere on the planet, but required 77 satellites to be launched into space."

Comment: Re:Bread and circuses (Score 1) 391

by palpatine (#31258770) Attached to: Google Italy Execs Convicted Over YouTube Bullying Video

Or, at the very least, disable all uploading ability on YouTube or posting ability on Blogger or any other user-contributed Google sites from Italian users, citing this case and the unwillingness of Google to accept any more user submissions from Italian users until the case is resolved. I think that would be totally fair and completely within Google's rights.

Comment: Re:Doesn't bode well (Score 1) 283

by palpatine (#31121968) Attached to: Emmerich Plans <em>Foundation</em> As a 3D Epic

That being said, regardless of what technology is used to create the setting for a film adaptation of Foundation, it would have to be considerably ground-breaking and not your average "sci-fi" look. This because Foundation is set tens of thousands of years in the future and life would need to be fundamentally different. Throughout Asimov's Robots-Empire-Foundation timeline stories are hints that the human race has evolved somewhat since then, like when the protagonist of "Pebble in the Sky" ends up in the future and they're surprised to see where he has hair growing and that he has extra teeth.

Emmerich is just about the worst candidate (Michael Bay aside) for making a good film adaptation of Foundation, if one is even possible at all.

Science

Why Time Flies By As You Get Older 252

Posted by kdawson
from the like-a-banana dept.
Ant notes a piece up on WBUR Boston addressing theories to explain the universal human experience that time seems to pass faster as you get older. Here's the 9-minute audio (MP3). Several explanations are tried out: that brains lay down more information for novel experiences; that the "clock" for nerve impulses in aging brains runs slower; and that each interval of time represents a diminishing fraction of life as we age.
Math

Man Uses Drake Equation To Explain Girlfriend Woes 538

Posted by samzenpus
from the less-math-more-social-science dept.
artemis67 writes "A man studying in London has taken a mathematical equation that predicts the possibility of alien life in the universe to explain why he can't find a girlfriend. Peter Backus, a native of Seattle and PhD candidate and Teaching Fellow in the Department of Economics at the University of Warwick, near London, in his paper, 'Why I don't have a girlfriend: An application of the Drake Equation to love in the UK,' used math to estimate the number of potential girlfriends in the UK. In describing the paper on the university Web site he wrote 'the results are not encouraging. The probability of finding love in the UK is only about 100 times better than the probability of finding intelligent life in our galaxy.'"

Apple Orders 10 Million Tablets? 221

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the pricepoint-better-be-right dept.
Arvisp writes "According to a blog post by former Google China president Kai-Fu Lee, Apple plans to produce nearly 10 million tablets in the still-unannounced product's first year. If Lee's blog post is to be believed, Apple plans to sell nearly twice as many tablets as it did iPhones in the product's first year."

Air pollution is really making us pay through the nose.

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