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Comment: now now now... (Score 0, Offtopic) 132

by racecarj (#31965608) Attached to: Re-Purposing the Netherlands' Dike System For Power Generation
let's be serious, if we're talking about power generation it all depends on the types of dykes being used. and there are trade offs... while butch dykes certainly generate more power, girly ones are more pleasing overall. i think the dutch should go with a combination of the latter combined with nuclear power.
Communications

CMU Video Conference System Gets 3D From Cheap Webcams 94

Posted by timothy
from the little-bit-disorienting dept.
Hesham writes "Carnegie Mellon University's HCI Institute just released details on their "why-didn't-I-think-of-that-style" 3D video conferencing application. Considering how stale development has been in this field, this research seems like a nice solid step towards immersive telepresence. I was really disappointed with the "state-of-the-art" systems demoed at CES this year — they are all still just a flat, square, video stream. Hardly anything new. What is really cool about this project, is that researchers avoided building custom hardware no one is going to ever buy, and explored what could be done with just the generic webcams everyone already has. The result is a software-only solution, meaning all the big players (AIM, Skype, MSN, etc.) can release this as a simple software update. 'Enable 3D' checkbox anyone? YouTube video here. Behind the scenes, it relies on a clever illusory trick (motion parallax) and head-tracking (a la Johnny Lee's Wiimote stuff — same lab, HCII). It was just presented at IEEE International Symposium on Multimedia in December."
Security

Walmart Photo Keychain Comes Preloaded With Malware 224

Posted by timothy
from the caveat-maxima-emptor dept.
Blowit writes "With the Christmas holidays just past and opening up your electronic presents may get you all excited, but not for a selected lot of people who got the Mercury 1.5" Digital Photo Frame from Walmart (or other stores). My father-in-law attached the device to his computer and his Trend Micro Anti-virus screamed that a virus is on the device. I scanned the one I have and AVAST did not find any virus ... So I went to Virscan.org to see which vendors found what, and the results are here and here." Update: 12/29 05:44 GMT by T : The joy is even more widespread; MojoKid points out that some larger digital photo frames have been delivered similarly infected this year, specifically Samsung's SPF-85H 8-inch digital photo frame, sold through Amazon among other vendors, which arrived with "W32.Sality.AE worm on the installation disc for Samsung Frame Manager XP Version 1.08, which is needed for using the SPF-85H as a USB monitor." Though Amazon was honest enough to issue an alert, that alert offers no reason to think that only Amazon's stock was affected.
Censorship

Technical Specs Released For Aussie Net Filtering 231

Posted by timothy
from the for-a-limited-time-only dept.
smallkathryn writes "Technical specifications have just been released for the Australian net filtering trial. The trial, which aims to prove that ISP-level filtering is a viable way to stop 'unwanted content' from reaching users, will go live on 24 December. The trial will involve ISPs choosing a commercially available hardware filter from an internet content filter (ICF) vendor, adding it to their networks, then loading the blacklist of unwanted sites. Still no indication of how peer-to-peer information will be addressed."
Medicine

Brains Work Best At Age of 39 267

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the sounds-like-a-good-last-day-to-me dept.
Scientists at the University of California Los Angeles are reporting that while some people may think "life begins at 40," all it seems to do is slow down. According to recent research, at age 39 our brain reaches its peak speed, and it's all downhill after that. "The loss of a fatty skin that coats the nerve cells, called neurons, during middle age causes the slowdown, experts say. The coating acts as insulation, similar to the plastic covering on an electrical cable, and allows for fast bursts of signals around the body and brain. When the sheath deteriorates, signals passing along the neurons in the brain slow down. This means reaction times in the body are slower too."

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