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Submission + - US physicists fight to save neutrino experiment (

ananyo writes: The future of a pioneering project to study the lightest matter particles known was thrown into jeopardy last week (, when officials at the US Department of Energy (DOE) announced that they were reluctant to fund the Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment ( in its current form. The experiment's leaders will meet this week at Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois, to discuss ways to allay the agency's concerns.
The LBNE would use more than 30,000 tonnes of liquid argon housed 1,480 metres underground in the Homestake Mine near Lead, South Dakota, to detect a beam of neutrinos or antineutrinos sent from Fermilab, 1,300 kilometres away. The experiment would measure the rates at which neutrinos and antineutrinos oscillate between their three different types, or flavours, and so test a hypothesized asymmetry between matter and antimatter ( Detecting asymmetry could explain why there is so much more matter than antimatter in our Universe.
At a cost of between US$1.2 billion and $1.5 billion, the LBNE was expected to come online in 2022–24, and to have a construction budget peaking at roughly $200 million per year. But that is now considered too great a slice of the DOE’s annual high-energy physics budget, which was cut by $6 million to $757 million in US President Barack Obama’s 2013 budget request (


Submission + - James Cameron's Solo Dive to Deepest Spot on Earth (pics) (

An anonymous reader writes: ames Cameron, director of epic films like Avatar, Titanic, The Terminator 1 and 2 and Aliens, happens to have a bit of a love affair with the ocean. So much so that he decided to make a solo dive to plume its deepest depths.

Driving his own custom submarine called the ‘DEEPSEA CHALLENGER’, Cameron descended 35,756 feet, or 6.77 miles, to the deepest discovered spot on the bottom of the ocean, known as the ‘Challenger Deep.” His dive was part of ‘DEEPSEA CHALLENGE’ (they love their capitals in oceanography, apparently), an ocean exploration initiative by National Geographic, Rolex and Cameron. His dive makes him the first person to ever make the dive solo and only the second to ever make a manned dive.


Submission + - Ask Slashdot: How to Get Better Developers out of less-than Average Ones (

An anonymous reader writes: I've asked this before in other places, and I'm now turning to you guys to see what sort of advice you can offer.
Some background: I'm a project manager at an offshore company. I don't get to choose the people I work with (can't hire or fire people). We are using all sorts of methodologies (agile, scrum, waterfall, RUP, you-name-it). We are holding both weekly and milestone meetings in which we are trying to learn what went wrong/right. So,this is not a question of motivation (my employer is paying them more than fair, they get full employment benefits, etc ), nor one of simply teaching them new skills. This is more about addressing a problem within the mind-set of the average developer.
I've worked with a lot of people both good and bad during the years. There were a few of them exceptional, but most of them were less-than average. Most of the times I'm usually confronted with guys that are getting stuck way to often, guys that are skipping solutions as they are not careful enough to see past their own coding mistakes and guys that are simply drifting away from the tasks to wherever their day-dream takes them.
I was wondering if (and how) can they be determined to properly pay attention to their work, to be able to determine solutions and to unstuck themselves without me having to check on their work 24/7.
I would really love to worry myself that I'm intervening in their work too much, that I'm always giving them the solution without letting them think. But at this point, I can't see this happening

Some ways I've been suggested to try so far are:
1. Make them read “Addison Wesley – Pragmatic Programmer”
  and "Clean Code: A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship" – hold periodic meetings for each chapter and discuss what they have learned so far.
2. Hold some sort of "Quick&Great Code of the Week competition", using a new/unknown language for implementation – given that this would be a new language for everyone, this should give me/us an idea over who is missing what.
3. Get the rest of the management team to analyze "a great TED talk about motivation by Dan Pink" and see if we find anything that works for further motivating them.

So, I'm now wondering: is there anything else? would this approach work?

"All the people are so happy now, their heads are caving in. I'm glad they are a snowman with protective rubber skin" -- They Might Be Giants