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Google

+ - Google ditches algorithm for human autocompleters->

Submitted by
jbrodkin
jbrodkin writes "Google is ditching its sophisticated autocompletion algorithms for a team of humans who can type 32,000 words per minute — and they're hiring more. Sitting in front of his computer, one Google autocompleter says "This is my console. Letters come in up here from users — anonymized of course — and I try to make a prediction as to what they're searching for and I type it as quickly as I can. This year Google is going to hire more people than ever before and people think you need to be some Ph.D, computer science, techno-mathmagician, but that's not always the case. Sometimes we just need people who can type really fast. And who are also psychic.""
Link to Original Source

+ - Students Create Thought-Controlled Prosthetic Arm->

Submitted by Zothecula
Zothecula (1870348) writes "Two undergraduate students from Toronto's Ryerson University have created a prosthetic arm that is controlled by its wearer's brain signals, and powered by compressed air. Not only is the Artificial Muscle-Operated (AMO) Arm said to offer a greater range of movement than traditional prostheses, but it also doesn't require the amputee to undergo invasive surgery, is easy to learn to use, and it is relatively inexpensive to make."
Link to Original Source
Japan

+ - Re-criticality at Fukushima plant->

Submitted by
mdsolar
mdsolar writes "Nature is describing some just published work on possible re-criticality at the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Evidence includes post shutdown neutron bursts and the presence of chlorine-38 possibly produced by neutron activation of chlorine-37 in sea salt in emergency cooling water."
Link to Original Source
The Internet

Judge Thinks Linking To Copyrighted Material Should Be Illegal 390

Posted by Soulskill
from the don't-you-point-at-me dept.
An article at TechCrunch discusses a blog post from Richard Posner, a US Court of Appeals judge, about the struggling newspaper industry. Posner explains why he thinks the newspapers will continue to struggle, and then comes to a rather unusual conclusion: "Expanding copyright law to bar online access to copyrighted materials without the copyright holder's consent, or to bar linking to or paraphrasing copyrighted materials without the copyright holder's consent, might be necessary to keep free riding on content financed by online newspapers from so impairing the incentive to create costly news-gathering operations that news services like Reuters and the Associated Press would become the only professional, nongovernmental sources of news and opinion."
Microsoft

Microsoft Ordered To Pay $388 Million In Patent Case 233

Posted by samzenpus
from the pay-up dept.
jeffmeden writes "BusinessWeek reports today that Microsoft suffered a loss in federal court Monday. The judge rendering the verdict ordered Microsoft to pay $388 Million in damages for violating a patent held by Uniloc, a California maker of software that prevents people from illegally installing software on multiple computers. Uniloc claims Microsoft's Windows XP and some Office programs infringe on a related patent they hold. It's hard to take sides on this one, but one thing is certain: should the verdict hold up, it will be heavily ironic if the extra copies of XP and Office sold due to crafty copy protection end up not being worth $388 million."
Google

Chrome EULA Reserves the Right To Filter Your Web 171

Posted by timothy
from the here's-some-birdseed-for-you dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Recently, I decided to try out Google Chrome. With my usual mistrust of Google, I decided to carefully read the EULA before installing the software. I paused when I stumbled upon this section: '7.3 Google reserves the right (but shall have no obligation) to pre-screen, review, flag, filter, modify, refuse or remove any or all Content from any Service. For some of the Services, Google may provide tools to filter out explicit sexual content. These tools include the SafeSearch preference settings (see google.com/help/customize.html#safe). In addition, there are commercially available services and software to limit access to material that you may find objectionable.' Does this mean that Google reserves the right to filter my web browsing experience in Chrome (without my consent to boot)? Is this a carry-over from the EULAs of Google's other services (gmail, blogger etc), or is this something more significant? One would think that after the previous EULA affair with Chrome, Google would try to sound a little less draconian." Update: 04/05 21:14 GMT by T : Google's Gabriel Stricker alerted me to an informative followup: "We saw your Slashdot post and published the following clarification on the Google Chrome blog."
The Courts

RIAA Threatens Harvard Law Prof With Sanctions 333

Posted by timothy
from the those-lucky-artists-sure-have-a-zealous-benefactor dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Unhappy with Harvard Law Professor Charles Nesson's motion to compel the deposition of the RIAA's head 'Enforcer', Matthew J. Oppenheim, in SONY BMG Music v. Tenenbaum, the RIAA threatened the good professor with sanctions (PDF) if he declined to withdraw his motion. Then the next day they filed papers opposing the motion, and indeed asked the Court to award monetary sanctions under Rule 37 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure."
Graphics

Twilight of the GPU — an Interview With Tim Sweeney 286

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the steady-march-of-progress dept.
cecom writes to share that Tim Sweeney, co-founder of Epic Games and the main brain behind the Unreal engine, recently sat down at NVIDIA's NVISION con to share his thoughts on the rise and (what he says is) the impending fall of the GPU: "...a fall that he maintains will also sound the death knell for graphics APIs like Microsoft's DirectX and the venerable, SGI-authored OpenGL. Game engine writers will, Sweeney explains, be faced with a C compiler, a blank text editor, and a stifling array of possibilities for bending a new generation of general-purpose, data-parallel hardware toward the task of putting pixels on a screen."
Medicine

Towards an Exercise Pill 362

Posted by kdawson
from the if-they-can-send-a-man-to-the-moon dept.
aztektum among many other readers sent us news that medical researchers have developed two drugs that can build muscle tone in mice without exercise. While such an advance may inspire dreams of a "couch potato pill," the article mostly talks about other medical uses, should the drugs prove safe and effective in humans. The doctor in charge of the research is working with sports authorities to develop a test to detect the drugs in athletes. "Researchers at the Salk Institute in San Diego reported that they had found two drugs that did wonders for the athletic endurance of couch potato mice. One drug, known as Aicar, increased the mice's endurance on a treadmill by 44 percent after just four weeks of treatment. A second drug, GW1516, supercharged the mice to a 75 percent increase in endurance but had to be combined with exercise to have any effect. 'It's a little bit like a free lunch without the calories,' said Dr. Ronald M. Evans, leader of the Salk group."
GNU is Not Unix

Enforcing the GPL On Software Companies? 480

Posted by kdawson
from the four-words-software-freedom-law-center dept.
Piranhaa"I currently use an IPTV box that runs software by Minerva Networks. When you ssh into the box, you are greeted with a BusyBox v1.00 (ash) shell. It's clearly running a flavor of Linux (uname -apm outputs: Linux minerva_10_0_3_99 2.4.30-tango2-2.7.144.0 #29 Wed Mar 16 16:16:16 CET 2005 mips unknown). However, when you look at their Web site there is no publicly available source code. Since the GPL in both BusyBox and the Linux kernel require that anyone using and distributing the binaries of this software make source available to everyone, what would one do in order to enforce this? I've personally emailed Minerva and left voicemails with no reply."

Comment: Probably not economical (Score 1) 487

by arnie_sama (#23790699) Attached to: What To Do With a Hundred Hard Drives?
For a while I've been thinking about something similar on a personal scale.
Take a mainboard like this one (Via NAS 7800-15LST):
http://www.via.com.tw/en/products/mainboards/motherboards.jsp?motherboard_id=610
It's got 12 SATA connectors and two times GBit ethernet. Of course you'd need PATA to SATA connectors on each hard drive, at around 10 dollar each.
So, at around 1000 dollars already, as someone pointed out earlier, it's probably more economical to just buy a big new fast HD with lower power draw.
You'd still need at least 8 of these boards and probably some casing, PSUs and cables which makes the bill more likely above 2000 dollars.
Regarding the power draw... I think that shouldn't be too bad if used for backup, since the disks can be kept spun down most of the time.
While not economical for a business, for home use it might be a different situation. Especially if, like me, you don't have any real backup at all.
Put the mainboard with all your old HDs in your cellar, run ZFS on it, and voila, no worries about dying hard disks.
Only problem is you can't buy the mainboard as an end user. Oh well. Just wipe and donate them already ;-)

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