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Comment: total war (Score 1) 212

by skydude_20 (#40083023) Attached to: The Price of Military Tech Assistance In Movies
in Hollywood we get to enjoy the perceived benefits of total war, where we throw every weapon possible at the enemy without regard for making a lasting peace. i'm sure if razed Afghanistan with every weapon in our arsenal, we would have 'won' years ago, though people might be upset with the crater we left behind.
Medicine

The Brain's Secret For Sleeping Like a Log 259

Posted by Soulskill
from the light-exercise-and-a-fifth-of-rum dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Why can some people sleep through anything? According to this article in Wired Science, some lucky people have an extra helping of a certain kind of brain static that essentially blocks out noise and other stimuli. These 'sleep spindles' can be detected via EEG, and show up as brief bursts of high-frequency brain waves; some people naturally produce more than others. The researchers say these spindles are produced by the thalamus, the brain region that acts as a waystation for sensory information. If the thalamus is busy producing sleep spindles, sensory information can't make it through the thalamus to the cortex, the perceptive part of the brain."
The Internet

Is Google Planning To Fibre Britain? 184

Posted by timothy
from the you're-fibred! dept.
Barence writes with this excerpt from PC Pro: "Google has emerged as a surprise contender to invest in Britain's fibre broadband network. The search giant yesterday announced plans to build a gigabit fibre broadband network in the US. The test network will see Google deliver fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) connections to up to half a million US homes. The move raises the possibility that Google is behind the Conservative Party's ambitious plans to deliver nationwide 100Mbits/sec connections by 2017. Parliamentary sources have told PC Pro that the Tories' plans were based on foreign investment in the UK broadband network."
Image

"Tube Map" Created For the Milky Way 142 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the non-stop-service-to-the-Perseus-Arm dept.
astroengine writes "Assuming you had an interstellar spaceship, how would you navigate around the galaxy? For starters, you'd probably need a map. But there's billions of stars out there — how complex would that map need to be? Actually, Samuel Arbesman, a research fellow from Harvard, has come up with a fun solution. He created the 'Milky Way Transit Authority (MWTA),' a simple transit system in the style of the iconic London Underground 'Tube Map.' (Travel Tip: Don't spend too much time loitering around the station at Carina, there's some demolition work underway.)"

Comment: problems with complexity (Score 4, Interesting) 1146

by skydude_20 (#29973576) Attached to: Toyotas Suddenly Accelerate; Owners Up In Arms
F-22 raptor - 1.7 million lines of code
F-35 joint strike fighter - 5.7 million
Boeing 787 - 6.5 million
Premium class automobile - ~ 100 million

IEEE Spectrum: "How hard should it be to stop a runaway luxury car?" http://spectrum.ieee.org/blog/computing/it/riskfactor/how-hard-should-it-be-to-stop-a-runaway-car

IEEE Spectrum: "This car runs on code" http://www.spectrum.ieee.org/green-tech/advanced-cars/this-car-runs-on-code
Idle

Neanderthals "Had Sex" With Modern Man 536

Posted by samzenpus
from the strange-bedfellows dept.
According to Professor Svante Paabo, director of genetics at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Neanderthals and modern humans had sex across the species barrier. The professor has been using DNA retrieved from fossils to piece together the entire Neanderthal genome, and plans on publishing his findings soon. He recently told a conference that he was sure the two species had had sex, but still had questions as to how "productive" the relations had been. "What I'm really interested in is, did we have children back then and did those children contribute to our variation today?" he said. "I'm sure that they had sex, but did it give offspring that contributed to us? We will be able to answer quite rigorously with the new [Neanderthal genome] sequence." What remains a mystery is what Paleolithic brewery provided the catalyst for these stone age hook-ups.
Government

Internet Probably Couldn't Handle a Flu Pandemic 341

Posted by kdawson
from the opposing-fingers-pointing dept.
Several readers including mikael and gclef noted a report from the General Accountability Office suggesting that it should be Homeland Security's job to make sure the nation's business can flow during a pandemic. In particular, if H1N1 sends workers and schoolchildren home in large numbers, GAO thinks it might be a good idea for ISPs to prioritize traffic (favoring commerce over games, say), to reduce network speeds, and possibly to shut down high-traffic Web sites. DHS retorts that not only isn't it their job to control the Internet in this way, but the GAO is naive to believe it's even possible: "An expectation of unlimited Internet access during a pandemic is not realistic." "[DHS] does not even have a plan to start work on the issue, the General Accountability Office said. But the Homeland Security Department accused the GAO of having unrealistic expectations of how the Internet could be managed if millions began to telework from home at the same time as bored or sick schoolchildren were playing online, sucking up valuable bandwidth. Experts have for years pointed to the potential problem of Internet access during a severe pandemic, which would be a unique kind of emergency. It would be global, affecting many areas at once, and would last for weeks or months... Many companies and government offices hope to keep operations going as much as possible with teleworking using the Internet. Among the many problems posed by this idea, however, is the issue of bandwidth..."

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