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Transportation

Efficiency? Think Racing Cars, Not Hybrids 1320

Posted by timothy
from the more-fun-that-way-too dept.
Gordonjcp writes "A renowned racing car designer has said that car manufacturers should be looking at making cars lighter to improve efficiency, rather than adding complex drive trains. In this article on the BBC News website, Professor Gordon Murray explains that a weight saving of 10% in a normal car would make more difference than switching to a hybrid engine and motor combination. Could this be the next nail in the SUV's coffin?"
Displays

HP Introduces First-Ever 30-bit, 1 Billion Color Display 236

Posted by timothy
from the so-many-little-dots dept.
justechn writes "I recently had the opportunity to see, first hand, HP's new 30-bit, 1 billion color LCD display. I have to say I am impressed. Not only is the HP Dreamcolor LP2480zx capable of displaying so much more than standard LCDs, but it considered a Color Critical display. This means if you work with videos or photos you can be guaranteed that what you see is what it is supposed to look like. With 6 built-in color spaces (NTSC, SMPTE, sRGB, Rec. 709, Adobe RGB and DCI), you can easily switch to the one that best suits your applications and process. At $3,499, it is too expensive to be a consumer level LCD, but compared to other Color Critical displays (which can cost as much as $15,000 and $25,000) this is a real bargain. This display was a joint venture between HP and DreamWorks animation. When I talked to the executives of DreamWorks, they were very excited about this display because it solved a huge problem for them."
Cellphones

Apple Cracks Down On iPhone Unlockers 565

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the but-i-want-to-break-things dept.
An anonymous reader writes "It looks like Apple and its wireless operator partners have finally figured out a way of cracking down on iPhone unlockers by making it a requirement to sign up for a contract before you can get your hands one. "It's obvious why this has happened though. This method means you're tied into a contract, or you're paying O2 and Apple a massive wad of cash for the privilege of owning a 3G iPhone. We're disappointed about this decision, but it does make business sense." Both ATT in the US and O2 in the UK are implementing the new activation system on July 11th, when the iPhone 3G goes on sale."
Programming

Open Source Killing Commercial Developer Tools 742

Posted by kdawson
from the evolving-ecosystem dept.
jexrand recommends an interview with John De Goes in which he argues: "The tools market is dead. Open source killed it." The software developer turned president of N-BRAIN explains the effect that open source has had on the developer tools market, and how this forced the company to release the personal edition of UNA free of charge. According to De Goes, selling a source-code editor, even a very good one, is all but impossible in the post-open source era, especially given that, "Some developers would rather quit their job than be forced to use a new editor or IDE." N-BRAIN's decision is but one in a string of similar announcements from tools companies announcing the free release of their previously commercial development tools.
Space

Study Hints At Time Before Big Bang 408

Posted by kdawson
from the other-side-of-the-looking-glass dept.
canadian_right informs us that scientists from Caltech have found hints of a time before the Big Bang while studying the cosmic microwave background. Not only does the study hint at something pre-existing our universe, the researchers also postulate that everything we see was created as a bubble pinched off from a previously existing universe. This conjecture turns out to shed light on the mystery of the arrow of time. Quoting the BBC's account: "Their model suggests that new universes could be created spontaneously from apparently empty space. From inside the parent universe, the event would be surprisingly unspectacular. Describing the team's work at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) in St Louis, Missouri, co-author Professor Sean Carroll explained that 'a universe could form inside this room and we'd never know.'"
Transportation

The SUV Is Dethroned 1234

Posted by kdawson
from the four-dollar-stake-through-the-engine dept.
Wired's Autopia blog documents what we all knew was coming: rising gas prices have killed off the SUV. Auto industry watchers had predicted that the gas guzzlers in the "light truck" category would lose the ascendancy by 2010; no one expected their reign to end in a month, in the spring of 2008. Toyota, GM, Ford, and now Nissan have announced they will scale back truck and SUV production and ramp up that of smaller passenger cars. Of course there will always be a market for this class of vehicle, but its days on the top of the sales charts are done. "'All of our previous assumptions on the full-size pickup truck segment are off the table,' Bob Carter, Toyota division sales chief said last week during a conference call with reporters. Translation — we have no idea how low they'll go."

Do you suffer painful illumination? -- Isaac Newton, "Optics"

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