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Comment: Re:Never heard of them (Score 3, Interesting) 65

Obviously this was posted by someone from the "Other" makerspace in town. Physically we have much more than 20 people, there are several hundred working directly with The Geek Group on a daily basis. Anyone can become a member - just visit the website and sign up it's free. If you want to work on projects at the lab, it's $40/month. The Geek Group is much more than a physical building, it's a community. It's geeks online and at the multiple facilities around the globe. It's crowd sourced engineering and science. It's a place to learn and teach technology. The Geek Group isn't just a makerspace, it's an entire community of folks trying to learn and teach technology. The fire here at the lab is a huge blow to what we've been working so hard on for so long. To sit on your armchair soapbox and dismiss it as you do and post as an anonymous coward speaks volumes as to the type of person you are. I'm sorry you hold so much contempt for such a great place. If you had any kind of soul, you would come out and help out with the rest of community. The Geek Group will get the mess cleaned up and get back open to the public. In the meantime, come volunteer at the greatest hackerspace around and show what your made of. Slewfoot

Comment: Could be something incredibly simple (Score 5, Interesting) 136

by slewfo0t (#38102206) Attached to: Feds Investigating Water Utility Pump Failure As Possible Cyberattack
As a controls engineer, I program these type of systems all the time. A simple incorrect setting for when the pumps turn on and off (Lead,Lag) could cause this type of problem. It could literally be a new operator that fat fingered a parameter in the SCADA system. To hack these systems requires specific knowledge of exactly what kind of control architecture is in place at the facility and then having the appropriate software to gain access to the control system. Not that this type of hack cannot be done, but it does require specific knowledge. This really sounds like operator error to me.

+ - Scientists Postulate Extinct Hominid with 150 IQ 6

Submitted by
Hugh Pickens
Hugh Pickens writes "Neuroscientists Gary Lynch and Richard Granger have an interesting article in Discover Magazine about the Boskops, an extinct hominid that had big eyes, child-like faces, and forebrains roughly 50% larger than modern man indicating they may have had an average intelligence of around 150, making them geniuses among Homo sapiens. The combination of a large cranium and immature face would look decidedly unusual to modern eyes, but not entirely unfamiliar. Such faces peer out from the covers of countless science fiction books and are often attached to “alien abductors” in movies. "Back there in the past, ten thousand years ago. The man of the future, with the big brain, the small teeth. He lived in Africa," wrote naturalist Loren Eiseley. "His brain was bigger than your brain” The history of evolutionary studies has been dogged by the almost irresistible idea that evolution leads to greater complexity, to animals that are more advanced than their predecessor, yet the existence of the Boskops argues otherwise — that humans with big brains, and perhaps great intelligence, occupied a substantial piece of southern Africa in the not very distant past, and that they eventually gave way to smaller-brained, possibly less advanced Homo sapiens—that is, ourselves. "With 30 percent larger brains than ours now, we can readily calculate that a population with a mean brain size of 1,750 cc would be expected to have an average IQ of 149," write Lynch and Granger. But why did they go extinct? "Maybe all that thoughtfulness was of no particular survival value in 10,000 BC. Lacking the external hard drive of a literate society, the Boskops were unable to exploit the vast potential locked up in their expanded cortex," write Lynch and Granger. "They were born just a few millennia too soon.""

+ - The End of Free OTA TV?-> 1

Submitted by Caldeso
Caldeso (912961) writes "The San Fernando Valley Business Journal is predicting (free registration required) that Comcast's purchase of NBC spells the end of free-as-in-beer over the air broadcasts from ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox. Currently, the networks are allowed free broadcast rights by the FCC in exchange for showing the daily news, but Rupert Murdoch is one of many who believe that the recent drop in advertising revenues means that quality reporting will no longer be affordable for the networks, eventually costing them broadcast rights."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Yawn.... (Score 3, Informative) 260

by slewfo0t (#30246418) Attached to: NRC Relicensing Old "Zombie" Nuclear Plants
Ahh, I see the eco-nuts are in full force with this post... Putting on tin-foil hat...

Nuclear power - PLEASE put one of these in my back yard!

Mercury - Here are some mercury FACTS from the department of energy...

Drilling for oil - So while the rest of the world goes out and drills for oil, going so far as to cross drill under US soil, the United States should take a back seat and watch these resources be taken and used against us. Gee, I certainly hope the countries that are actually drilling for oil don't stop sending it to us. I'd hate to see what that would do to our economy.

+ - Gizmo acquired by Google->

Submitted by slewfo0t
slewfo0t (679988) writes "While checking my Gizmo account today I came across a nifty redirect that brought me to Google's website and informed me that Gizmo has now been acquired by Google. I know that google voice has recently integrated Gizmo with their Google Voice service, but had no idea that Gizmo was being acquired by Google. Looks like free phone calls for all!"
Link to Original Source

+ - Russia Recalls Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2->

Submitted by
eldavojohn writes "You may recall much ado over some questionable footage in the latest Call of Duty game. Well, that footage has led to a recall of Modern Warfare 2 in Russia. Seems the Russian government was none too happy about the portrayal of Russia in the game and decided to yank it from stores. Infinity Ward has responded with a patch that removes the "No Russian" mission (the content in question) from the storyline. Before you overly criticize the Russian government, there may be some truth to the claim that the game's story line overly demonizes Russians as just terrorists as the Russian site alleges. Is cultural sensitivity becoming an overly played card in the gaming world? Not too long ago, Wolfenstein was recalled in Germany for containing Nazi symbols."
Link to Original Source

+ - Is an Apple 1 really worth $50,000?

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Another Apple 1 computer has gone on sale on eBay, with a starting bid of $50,000. Considering that an Apple 1 just sold earlier this month for $18,000, is this seller crazy? True, this auction includes a couple extras that make it really nice. It has the original box, with a return address that is Steve Job's parents house and the original bill of sale. The best part is a letter signed by Steve Jobs in 1976 explaining to the buyer how to connect a keyboard and CRT, hoping to avoid a return. As is his legend, Jobs seems to have turned that return around, because the letter also tells the buyer when Apple dealer applications would be mailed. So, is an Apple 1 — even a really good one — worth what this guy is asking?"

Comment: 70 Volt Systems (Score 2, Interesting) 438

by slewfo0t (#30032850) Attached to: Simple, Cost-Effective, Multiroom Audio?
Running multi-room audio can be challenging. Some things to consider... a typical amplifier will only work at 8 or 4 ohms per channel. This means you can only run 1 or 2 speakers on each channel before you run into trouble and put too much load on your amplifier. That being said, consider a 70v amplifier and speakers. A 70v system allows you to run multiple speakers from one amplifier and select the speaker wattage at the speaker. you still need to do the math to make sure you don't go over the amplifiers rating, but this is how restaurants and grocery stores do it. Since the feed signal is always at 70v, the speakers can be run in series. The speakers have a small transformer on them to select the wattage for each one. You can also get a volume control that does the same thing. One thing to note, Audio quality can suffer with a 70v system, but the trade off is long speaker runs in series and wattage selectable speakers. TOA makes a good 70v amplifier as does Peavey. Here is a site to get you started...

Command Lines and the Future of Firefox 360

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the wouldn't-that-be-nice dept.
Barence writes "Mozilla has revealed how it plans to integrate plain text commands directly into future versions of Firefox. Dubbed Taskfox, the move sees Mozilla's Ubiquity project become part of the browser itself, allowing users to type commands directly into the address bar. You can, for example, type 'map cleveland street london' to bring up a Google Map of that location, or 'amazon-search the great gatsby' to find that book on Amazon, without visiting the website directly. 'The basic idea behind Taskfox is simple: take the time-saving ideas behind Ubiquity, and put them into Firefox,' the Taskfox wiki claims. 'That means allowing users to quickly access information and perform tasks that would normally take several steps to complete.'"
PlayStation (Games)

+ - Un-Brick your PSP!->

Submitted by
slewfo0t writes "I looks like the guys over at N00bz have found a way to un-brick your PSP with little more than a battery with modded firmware and a memory card! No more having to send your PSP to Sony so they can rip you off! SCORE for the homebrew crowd!!! From the article, "The fine folks at N00bz have crafted yet another ingenious work of homebrew. This time, it's a program that can recover lost, "bricked" PSP systems from the void — an unbricker called "Pandora's Battery." According to N00bz, "It's the culmination of years of behind-the-scenes research and development by some of the top names in PSP hacking, under the name of the Prometheus project."" Here's the article"
Link to Original Source

Counting in octal is just like counting in decimal--if you don't use your thumbs. -- Tom Lehrer