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+ - Casio F-91W Wristwatch Identifies You as Al-Qaida->

Submitted by rrayst
rrayst (857205) writes "According to the wikileaked Matrix of Threat Indicators for Enemy Combatants, owning a Casio F-91W may indicate "membership and participation in or support to hostilities against US and Coalition forces". "The possession of [the watch] and the silver-color version of this model, the A159W, is an indicator of al-Qaida training in the manufacture of improvised explosive devices (IEDs)." It is "a sign of al-Qaida", used "to make bombs", given to "students at [...] bomb-making training courses in Afghanistan"."
Link to Original Source

+ - International Olympiad in Informatics live->

Submitted by rrayst
rrayst (857205) writes "The first competition day of the IOI, an algorithmic programming competition for high school students, has just started, running for 5 hours. Each country (84 participating this year according to the homepage) is allowed to send 4 stundents. This year for the first time, there is an inofficial online TV broadcast and the scoreboard is publicly visible. The tasks and also a game alongside are also said to be publicly available soon during the competition on the contest's page."
Link to Original Source
The Military

China Shoots Down Another Satellite 221

Posted by Soulskill
from the time-to-hide-the-goldeneye-in-a-lagrange-point dept.
An anonymous reader writes "It was reported this weekend that China shot down another of its satellites in January this year. 'The website of Hong Kong-based Phoenix TV said the anti-satellite missile test, if confirmed, is likely related to the missile interception test, which occurred at the peak of a dispute between Beijing and Washington on a massive US arms sales deal to Taiwan. During the interception test, US agencies spotted two missiles launched from two locations from the Chinese mainland, colliding outside the atmosphere, a Pentagon spokesperson said.' I guess ballistic trajectories that intersect with orbital ones don't count as 'weapons in space.'"
The Internet

The Hell Known As Internet Screening Services 557

Posted by Soulskill
from the men-who-stare-at-goatse dept.
circletimessquare writes "Do you think your job is bad? Some websites outsource their moderation to firms where every work day, all work day, workers do nothing but sift through depravity after depravity. '"You have 20-year-old kids who get hired to do content review, and who get excited because they think they are going to see adult porn," said Hemanshu Nigam, the former chief security officer at MySpace. "They have no idea that some of the despicable and illegal images they will see can haunt them for the rest of their lives."' Some places only do year-long contracts, and have counseling services and staff psychologists, because of the psychological issues caused by this kind of work. One psychologist 'reached some unsettling conclusions in her interviews with content moderators. She said they were likely to become depressed or angry, have trouble forming relationships and suffer from decreased sexual appetites. Small percentages said they had reacted to unpleasant images by vomiting or crying. "The images interfere with their thinking processes. It messes up the way you react to your partner," Ms. Laperal said. "If you work with garbage, you will get dirty."'"
Mars

When On the Moon and Mars, Move Underground 294

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the habitat-for-humanity dept.
astroengine writes "Recent observations of the lunar and martian surface are turning up multiple discoveries of 'skylights' — collapsed roofs of hollow rilles or lava tubes. These holes into ready-made underground bunkers could provide ideal shelter for future manned bases on the two worlds. Firstly, they would provide shelter from the barrage of micrometeorites, solar x-rays and deep space cosmic rays. Secondly, they'd help protect our burgeoning colonists from the extreme swings in surface temperature (on the moon, temperatures vary by 500 degrees F, but inside these lava tubes, the environment remains at a fairly constant -35 degrees). Thirdly, the sci-fi notion of underground space cities could become a reality."
Patents

FreeType Project Cheers TrueType Patent Expiration 203

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the just-wait-it-out-i-guess dept.
FlorianMueller writes "The FreeType project celebrates the expiration of Apple's TrueType bytecode patents. The open source font rendering engine now has the bytecode technology enabled by default. The relevant code existed for some time, but the project felt forced to disable it and advise everyone not to use it due to patent encumbrance. The 20-year maximum of validity of software patents is long, but sometimes the stuff that becomes available is still useful. The Unisys GIF patent was an example. And anything open-sourced 20 years ago would also be patent-free by now (except for the code that has since been added)."
Sci-Fi

Matt Smith Leaving Doctor Who Already? 423

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the well-that's-not-so-great dept.
bowman9991 sent in a disappointing rumor saying "Ironically Matt Smith, the youngest Doctor Who ever, apparently wants to retire early. An unconfirmed report suggests Smith would like to try his hand at Hollywood films after the end of his second season as the Doctor. Smith is currently filming this year's Doctor Who Christmas special with Karen Gillan, who plays his companion Amy Pond, and opera star Katherine Jenkins. After the Christmas special he goes straight into production on a new Doctor Who series set to air next year." I've tremendously enjoyed the Smith/Gillan combo, personally.
Image

Live a Month At the Museum of Science and Industry 70

Posted by samzenpus
from the be-careful-of-the-monkey dept.
theodp writes "Even usually snarky Gawker loves the idea of living in a science museum for a month. Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry is 'looking for someone to take on a once-in-a-lifetime assignment: spend a Month at the Museum, to live and breathe science 24/7 for 30 days. From October 20 to November 18, 2010, this person's mission will be to experience all the fun and education that fits in this historic 14-acre building, living here full-time and reporting your findings to the outside world.' Oh, and if you're The Chosen One, you'll also walk away with $10,000, a package of tech gadgets, and an honorary lifetime membership to MSI. Visit the Month at the Museum site for details and to apply — the deadline is August 11th."
Censorship

Massachusetts Bids To Restrict Internet Indecency 214

Posted by kdawson
from the tired-old-road dept.
Remember the Communications Decency Act? Enacted 1996, found unconstitutional 1997. Or its successor attempt to reduce discourse on the Internet to what is suitable for 8-year-olds, the Child Online Protection Act? Invalidated 2003. Seven state laws attempting to restrict Internet content on grounds of decency have been struck down. Despite all this, Massachusetts has now added a couple of paragraphs to its (traditionally bricks-and-mortar) indecency law that applies a "harmful to minors" test to Internet content. The ACLU of Massachusetts and others have brought suit to block the law, which went into effect on July 11. Coincidentally, today a US appeals court tossed out the FCC's indecency policy.
Music

RIAA Accounting — How Labels Avoid Paying Musicians 495

Posted by kdawson
from the hypocrisy-part-deux dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Last week, we discussed Techdirt's tale of 'Hollywood Accounting,' which showed how movies like Harry Potter still officially 'lose' money with some simple accounting tricks. This week Techdirt is taking on RIAA accounting and demonstrating why most musicians — even multi-platinum recording stars — may never see a dime from their album sales. 'They make you a "loan" and then take the first 63% of any dollar you make, get to automatically increase the size of the "loan" by simply adding in all sorts of crazy expenses (did the exec bring in pizza at the recording session? that gets added on), and then tries to get the loan repaid out of what meager pittance they've left for you. Oh, and after all of that, the record label still owns the copyrights.' The average musician on a major record deal 'gets' about $23 per $1,000 made... and that $23 still never gets paid because it has to go to 'recouping' the loan... even though the label is taking $630 out of that $1,000, and not counting it towards the advance. Remember all this the next time a record label says they're trying to protect musicians' revenue."
News

Nerds Still More Likely To Get Bullied 480

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the also-sky-still-blue dept.
trashbird1240 writes "Reports on a recent meta-analysis of bullies and victims found that bullies and victims have similar personality traits, but that bullies tend to do poorly in school, as opposed to those who get bullied. Both bullies and victims are poor social problem solvers, but they resort to different tactics to handle their social ineptitude. To me this represents a huge leap forward in understanding nerd psychology."
NASA

NASA Adds $5M Prizes For Robots, Solar Spacecraft 17

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the harvesting-the-day-star dept.
coondoggie writes "NASA today significantly expanded its Centennial Challenges program to include $5 million worth of new competitions to develop robots, small satellites, and solar powered spacecraft. One of the new competitions is the Sample Return Robot Challenge. Its purpose is to demonstrate a robot that can locate and retrieve geologic samples from wide and varied terrain without human control. This challenge has a prize purse of $1.5 million. The objectives are to encourage innovations in automatic navigation and robotic manipulator technologies."

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