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+ - Bletchley Park's bitter dispute over its future

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Tensions are high at Bletchley Park between the new management who want a 21st century instalment and the volunteers who want to show the whole story (and get dismissed for doing so). This report is from the BBC, "The groundbreaking intelligence work carried out at Bletchley Park during the second world war was credited with bringing forward the end of the conflict. In 2011 the site was awarded a £4.6m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). But Bletchley is currently in the throes of a bitter dispute, between owners who want to create a brand new visitors centre, and volunteers who have been working on the site for years.""
Apple

+ - Will Apple kill its third-party store network?->

Submitted by
daria42
daria42 writes "Industry observers have long eyed Apple's expansion of its own retail stores as an important move which could see it eventually decide to cease third-party distribution of its products alone and become the sole avenue through which consumers can buy its products. But how far away is that move? Very close, according to Australian consumer electronics entrepreneur Ruslan Kogan, who has built his own business purely on the internet retail model. It seems likely the company will make the move on a country by country basis as it rolls out its own stores."
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Robotics

+ - Prospero: Robot Swarm Farmer->

Submitted by
Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward writes "A forum post on TrossenRobotics.com shows what's called a an Autonomous Micro Planter (AMP), a small, six-legged robot named Prospero, that's capable of drilling seed holes and depositing seeds in them. The forum post includes two YouTube videos and several photos. The author of the post, David Dorhout, describes this category of machine as the first of four steps, saying The other three steps involve autonomous robots that tend the crops, harvest them, and finally one robot that can plant, tend, and harvest--autonomously transitioning from one phase to another. Prospero was designed for a contest sponsored by SchmartBoard and placed first in the Parallax MCU segment (there were also TI and MicroChip MCU segments). The forum post links to a PDF which explains the project in detail, including source code."
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+ - GlassFish 3.1 Overview->

Submitted by
nazrul
nazrul writes "GlassFish 3.1 shipped today! It brings together the benefits of GlassFish v3 and GlassFish v2.x with lots of net new features. It is based on world’s first implementation of Java EE 6 with an OSGi based flexible, lightweight, extensible platform. It requires a small memory footprint. It is fully featured with production-ready features such as clustering and high availability, provides optimized runtime performance and ready for enterprise deployments."
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Games

+ - Asus' Kinect-like system for PCs coming in May->

Submitted by
angry tapir
angry tapir writes "Asus will soon offer a motion sensing device that looks and works like the Xbox Kinect. The Wavi Xtion system has two parts: a media streaming device and the sensor. The streaming device extends the PC's desktop to a television alongside which the sensor is located and maintains a channel back to the PC for data from the sensor."
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Security

+ - Infected Androids Run Up Big Texting Bills

Submitted by
Hugh Pickens writes
Hugh Pickens writes writes "Computerworld reports that a rogue Android app is hijacking smartphones and running up big texting bills to premium rate numbers before the owner knows it. Chinese hackers grabbed a copy of Steamy Windows, a free program, added a backdoor Trojan horse to the app's code, then placed the reworked app on unsanctioned third-party "app stores" where unsuspecting or careless Android smartphones find it, download it and install it. "This one stands out," says Vikram Thakur, a principle security response manager at Symantec. "It's pretty comprehensive in what it's doing." The app also has a built-in filter that blocks incoming texts from the user's carrier, a trick it uses to keep victims in the dark about the invisible texting. "It monitors inbound SMS texts, and blocks alerts telling you that you've already exceeded your quota," says Thakur adding that smartphone owners won't be aware of the charges they've racked up texting premium services until they receive their next statement. "If you're hell-bent on using [unauthorized app stores], look at the permissions the app requests when it installs. A [rogue] app will request more permissions than the legitimate version.""
Businesses

+ - Intel completes McAfee acquisition-> 2

Submitted by
angry tapir
angry tapir writes "Intel has completed its US$7.68 billion acquisition of security vendor McAfee, the chip maker has announced. The all-cash deal makes Intel a security industry powerhouse, giving it a broad range of consumer and enterprise security products. Intel had been working to get the deal approved by U.S. and European Union regulators since it was announced last August. The European Commission, in particular, had expressed concerns that Intel would give McAfee special treatment when it came to its processors and chipsets, locking other security vendors out of the technology."
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Iphone

+ - Antennagate 2: Consumer Reports Flunks iPhone->

Submitted by RedEaredSlider
RedEaredSlider (1855926) writes "Consumer reports says it isn't your imagination: the antenna problems that dogged the iPhone when it was on AT&T's CDMA network seem to be plaguing the Verizon version also. This is in stark contrast to some early reviews which seemed to show that the issues of holding your phone had been resolved."
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Security

+ - Paypal Accounts compromised?->

Submitted by cpaluc
cpaluc (559921) writes "I received an odd spam message today. It was odd because, unlike most spam, it included my real name. I searched the address that the message was inviting me to visit and within the first 10 results was a forum discussion involving other people who had received the same message, also with their own real names. It may be too early to draw any conclusions yet, but the common element appears to be everyone's Paypal accounts. If Paypal is indeed the source, then it has some serious explaining to do."
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Wireless Networking

+ - Visualizing WiFi with light painting->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "This is awesome:

"This project explores the invisible terrain of WiFi networks in urban spaces by light painting signal strength in long-exposure photographs.

A four-metre long measuring rod with 80 points of light reveals cross-sections through WiFi networks using a photographic technique called light-painting.""

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Space

+ - Why Faster-than-Light Travel is Impossible-> 1

Submitted by
rsk
rsk writes "reddit user purpsicle27 asked "Why exactly can nothing go faster than the speed of light?" and got a slew of excellent replies. One reply in particular, by user "RobotRollCall" (RRC), was a favorite thanks to its simplification of an inherently complex matter and easy to understand examples.

According to other reddit folk, RRC has been notoriously tight-lipped about his real identity but continually drops excellent written comments into the community from time to time. reddit user mazsa suggested that RRC is actually popular science author Brian Greene, author of the The Fabric of the Cosmos. I don't know if that is true, but the reviews from his existing books seem to suggest that the easy-to-understand style is a very Greene trait."

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+ - Tolkien Estate Says No Historical Fiction For JRR->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Apparently the estate of JRR Tolkien isn't just over protective of his works, but of himself as well. It's in a bit of a legal spat with the author of a fictional work that includes JRR Tolkien as a character, and in part discusses his works. The estate is claiming that this infringes on Tokien's publicity rights, but if that's the case, would it make almost all "historical fiction" illegal?"
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Oracle

+ - Netbeans 7 without JUnit, legally speaking->

Submitted by
JR0cket
JR0cket writes "Trying out the latest Netbeans 7 beta 2 release, you quickly see the gentle influence of the Oracle lawyers have had on the Netbeans development team. JUnit testing framework is no longer distributed with Netbeans 7 onwards.

All is not lost though as the first time you run Netbeans 7 you are immediately prompted as to whether you want to install the JUnit testing framework into Netbeans, via the Netbeans plugin for JUnit. As JUnit is pretty much standard for all Java development these days, it seems a strange thing to ask, but when legal concerns get in the way of common sense I guess these things happen. You can still install the Netbeans plug-in later on if you choose not to do it straight away, or if you are not connected to the Internet and therefore cannot connect to the Netbeans "app store" for plugins.

As has been previously reported by NetBeans Platform Architect Jaroslav Tulach, Oracle lawyers are concerned by the overly constrictive conditions of the Common Public Licence used by JUnit and have caused a hold-up on the Netbeans 7 release. This CPL license could be interpreted to mean that if Oracle ever sues a contributor to JUnit for patent infringement, then all patent licenses granted to Oracle by that contributor could be revoked. So the license certainly seems restrictive if you are in the litigation business.

According to Kent Beck, if the CPL license is a big enough problem to get lawyers involved, then its an important enough reason to buy a commercial licence. Unless Oracle wants to pay for a commercial license, pay to get JUnit re-licensed or forget about suing anyone contributing to JUnit, then I guess the Netbeans team will have to keep their work-around.

At least it seems that Netbeans 7 is back on track now and fingers crossed that Oracle decides it will not sue anyone who contributes to JUnit."

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The meta-Turing test counts a thing as intelligent if it seeks to devise and apply Turing tests to objects of its own creation. -- Lew Mammel, Jr.

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