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+ - Nerd website found to make viewer's eyes bleed

Submitted by grommit
grommit (97148) writes "http://slashdot.org/ is a website that is testing out a new "Beta" web design specifically crafted to make the viewer's eyes bleed. Editor samzenpus is quoted as saying, "We were hoping for at least a 70% eye bleed rate (EBR) but when we found out that we're actually generating 95% EBR, we were ecstatic. We are proud to break new ground in unreadable web design!""

+ - Ask Slashdot: Opinion of slashdot beta? 9

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "What are your thoughts about slashdot beta? Post your complaints here so that I don't have to see them elsewhere. Additionally, if the beta is so bad that you don't want to stay, what other news website do you recommend?"
First Person Shooters (Games)

Open Source FPS Game Alien Arena 2009 Released 142

Posted by Soulskill
from the new-bells-new-whistles dept.
Alienkillerrace writes "The open sourced, freeware FPS game Alien Arena 2009 has been released (Windows and Linux). The improvements to the game engine are very significant, and have surely raised the bar for free games of this genre. All surfaces in the game are now rendered using GLSL, not only improving the visual quality, but the performance as well. Interesting new effects like post-process distortions using GLSL have been implemented, as well as light volumes, better per-pixel lighting (reminiscent of UT3), and shaded water. Equally notable is that the sound system has been completely rewritten using OpenAL, allowing for effects such as Doppler, and adding Ogg Vorbis support. The game is free to play and available for download on its official website. It has a stats system and a built-in IRC client in its front-end game browser."

Comment: Re:Calling this "liquid wood" (Score 5, Informative) 226

by slarabee (#26860327) Attached to: "Liquid Wood" a Contender To Replace Plastic

My reading of this vaguely written sentence is that lignin is currently being burned. If instead used as a petroleum replacement in plastic-like materials it would not be burned -- at least not until it hits the post consumer trash incinerator.

Is lignin extracted from wood in any other industries besides paper production? Would the paper industry be able to supply enough lignin to replace even a fraction of the plastic currently being produced? Even if it did, sounds like that would simply shift the burning from lignin in the wood fiber to petroleum products.

At the paper mill where I recently worked, the lignin was not burned just for the pleasure of it. The quicky skipping a couple dozen steps process is as follows... The lignin is extracted from the wood pulp by a cocktaail of sodium family chemicals casually referred to as liquor. When loaded with nice potential energy filled lignin, the liquor is referred to as black liquor. The black liquor is piped to the recovery boilers where the lignin burns out leaving nice clean white liquor and a lot of high pressure steam. The white liquor is in closed loop system and goes back to pick up more lignin. The high pressure steam is used on the actual paper machines and drives turbines to provide nearly one hundred percent of the electrical power needed by the entire mill.

Remove the lignin by another process so that it can be used to make 'liquid wood'. Now where will the mill get its high pressure steam? Burning petroleum products just like it does now when there is an upset condition in the supply of black liquor. Lots of natural gas. Lots.

Patents

+ - Should a startup protect "IP"?

Submitted by
SonOfLilit
SonOfLilit writes "I'm an 18 year old student thinking about forming a startup around software ideas.

Now, I'm online enough to know all the talk pro- and con- patents and especially those involving software.

I've also read claims that patents are important to software startups and claims that patents are insignificant to software startups and claims that although they are significant, anything that doesn't work without them isn't good enough.

My current view is that patents are essential in the current patent-based market, but my web conscience is bugging me.

What do you think, /.? Should a software startup apply for patents on it's ideas?

PS. I'm not referring to patents like 'triply linked list', more to patents like 'software application to increase your investment profits by saving the Africans from aids'."
Microsoft

+ - Bill Gates Predicted Vista 20 Years Ago

Submitted by bobdole2k
bobdole2k (1079797) writes "The Computer Science Club at the University of Waterloo has recently uncovered a recording of a talk Bill Gates gave in 1989. In the talk, Gates makes reference to many features that are in, or were planned for, Vista. He talks about advanced piracy protection involving a 'network', as well as a relational file system, which WinFS was planned to be. The talk is available for download from the Waterloo CSC"
Google

+ - Google: "we're not doing a mobile phone"

Submitted by thefickler
thefickler (1030556) writes "It looks like we won't be phoning home with a Google mobile anytime real soon. A top Google executive has denied outright that the company is developing a mobile phone.

Last week the rumor mills were working overtime after a Google official speaking in Spain said that the company was investigating offering a mobile phone and British phone analyst, Richard Windsor, claimed that during CeBIT Google staff confirmed that a Google mobile phone was being developed.

However, it seems that the Google mobile phone rumor has finally been nipped in the bud.

"We're not doing a mobile phone, I'd like to find something that is broader, rather than do yet another mobile device," said Alan Eustace, senior vice president of engineering and research."
Science

Some Dinosaurs Made Underground Dens 124

Posted by kdawson
from the dig-it dept.
anthemaniac writes "Scientists have long puzzled over how some dinosaurs and other creatures survived the asteroid impact that supposedly caused the KT mass extinction 65 million years ago and wiped out all the big dinosaurs. One idea has been that smaller animals, including mammals, could have endured the fallout, the big chill, the subsequent volcanoes, and whatever else by burrowing. Now scientists have come up with the first evidence of burrowing dinosaurs. They speculate that underground dens might explain how some dinosaurs got through long, dark winters at high latitudes, too."
Space

+ - NASA Engineers Work on New Spacesuits

Submitted by NotCoward
NotCoward (666) writes "In labs at Johnson Space Center, away from the buzz about NASA's new spaceship and its new missions to the moon and Mars, a group of engineers are plodding away at another piece of the puzzle: spacesuits. Astronaut apparel has evolved over the decades from Mercury's aluminum foil-looking outfits to the bulky, 275-pound whites now used on jaunts outside the space station. While it's too early in the process to know how the new suits will look, the space agency is hoping to make new suits both high-tech and low-maintenance."
Operating Systems

+ - Linux Consultants need Business Sense.

Submitted by
David Koran
David Koran writes "I have been a Linux consultant for over 9 years now. I think it is one of the greatest developments of our time. However, as most will agree, it is not the easiest thing to sell to the CFO, CEO, and VP of any company. The Linux consultants in the world would love to design and administer Linux and not deal with marketing or selling the concept. But we still have to eat, keep the lights on and pay taxes. Many consultants are mystified by the fact that not everyone wants Linux running in their company.

The problem I see, and why Microsoft dominates the OS market, is the connection Linux makes to business. Business is about making money, no doubt about it. Microsoft is about making it easy for businesses to complete those tasks to make money. We as consultants, have to put ourselves in the shoes of the executive or decision makers, that we are trying to sell the concept.

Lets say I am an executive of a 100 employee insurance company. You pop into the door and tell me I should put Linux servers and workstations. Most likely I will show some interest because technology does interest many people who are unfamiliar with it. But I am waiting for that "perceived value", I am the CFO of a major company and I need to find out how this will reduce my expenses and generate more cash flow. I don't want to hear it is more "stable" or "immune" to viruses and hackers. But if you notice my company is using spreadsheets to gather client information, my sales team is collaborating on paper, and you offer a solution to stop all the wasted time, I will start listening. Remember if I am going to the grocery store I could care less what car I am driving , a Ford, Dodge or Toyota, it makes no difference as long as I get the task done. I want to turn the key and go. Of course if you find a shorter way to the grocery store, or even better yet, find a way to bring the grocery store to me, I'm interested!!

Microsoft learned that just selling an OS is not the future, selling the solution is. Want to see an example, go to Google and enter "Linux and Business". Most of the search results are "Taking the Linux Plunge" or "Which distro of Linux is best for your company", Who Cares!! As an executive I could careless which one you use, or your hate for Bill Gates. I am interested in what it will do for my business. I know a guy who complains he can not get a job working with Linux based company or find any clients to contract with, but he spends his time spray painting Ubunto devils on his laptop and spends all night trying to connect his blue tooth phone to Linux. He needs to learn business management, get some corporate experience then come back to Linux.

Linux consultants need to understand business. Linux needs more business development of open source financial, retail, government, and industrial solutions, and be aware of the opportunities like the new Open Document Format standard, what a great place for Linux to take a shot at, especially now that some states will not accept Microsoft file formats. Get the right information together, so they can make a better business decision, thats the name of the game."
Biotech

Single Gene Gives Mice Three-Color Vision 184

Posted by kdawson
from the colors-you-can't-see dept.
maynard writes "A study in the peer-reviewed journal Science shows that mice transgenetically altered with a single human gene are then able to see in full tri-color vision. Mice without this alteration are normally colorblind. The scientists speculate that mammalian brains even from animals that have never evolved color vision are flexible enough to interpret new color-sense information with just the simple addition of new photoreceptors. Such a result is also indicated by a dominant X chromosome mutation that allows for quad-color vision in some women." A sidebar in the article includes a nice illustration of what two-color vs. three-color mice might perceive.

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