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Technology

Nanotech Makes Steel 10x Stronger 106 106

An anonymous reader writes: A new metal-making process currently in testing at oil fields uses nano-scale plating to make metals like steel as much as ten times stronger than they would be without it. "[The process] uses an advanced form of electroplating, a process already used to make the chrome plating you might see on the engine and exhaust pipes of a motorcycle. Electroplating involves immersing a metal part in a chemical bath containing various metal ions, and then applying an electrical current to cause those ions to form a metal coating. The company uses a bath that contains more than one kind of metal ion and controls how ions are deposited by varying the electrical current. By changing the current at precise moments, it can create a layered structure, with each layer being several nanometers thick and of different composition. The final coating can be up to a centimeter thick and can greatly change the properties of the original material."
Oracle

Oregon Sues Oracle For "Abysmal" Healthcare Website 212 212

SpzToid (869795) writes The state of Oregon sued Oracle America Inc. and six of its top executives Friday, accusing the software giant of fraud for failing to deliver a working website for the Affordable Care Act program. The 126-page lawsuit claims Oracle has committed fraud, lies, and "a pattern of activity that has cost the State and Cover Oregon hundreds of millions of dollars". "Not only were Oracle's claims lies, Oracle's work was abysmal", the lawsuit said. Oregon paid Oracle about $240.3 million for a system that never worked, the suit said. "Today's lawsuit clearly explains how egregiously Oracle has disserved Oregonians and our state agencies", said Oregon Atty. Gen. Ellen Rosenblum in a written statement. "Over the course of our investigation, it became abundantly clear that Oracle repeatedly lied and defrauded the state. Through this legal action, we intend to make our state whole and make sure taxpayers aren't left holding the bag."

Oregon's suit alleges that Oracle, the largest tech contractor working on the website, falsely convinced officials to buy "hundreds of millions of dollars of Oracle products and services that failed to perform as promised." It is seeking $200 million in damages. Oracle issued a statement saying the suit "is a desperate attempt to deflect blame from Cover Oregon and the governor for their failures to manage a complex IT project. The complaint is a fictional account of the Oregon Healthcare Project."
Science

Lab Rats Given "Sixth Sense" 78 78

puddingebola writes "Researchers have given lab rats the ability to sense infrared light through a brain implant. From the article, 'They taught the rats to choose the active light source by poking their noses into a port to receive a sip of water as a reward. They then implanted the microelectrodes, each about a tenth the diameter of a human hair, into the animals' brains. These electrodes were attached to the infrared detectors. The scientists then returned the animals to the test chamber. At first, the rats scratched at their faces, indicating that they were interpreting the lights as touch. But after a month, the animals learned to associate the signal in their brains with the infrared source.'"

Comment: Re:KDE4 Graphics (Score 2, Informative) 334 334

Will there be full hardware-acceleration of the graphical effects, like Compiz provides,

Yes. There already is, in fact. Aaron Seigo has prepared a screencast which will be linked with this week's Commit Digest. Among other things, it shows the true transparency of Plasma applets and the panel. Also, you can check out these old (non-Plasma related) kwin_composite videos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4WBLlc6xCQ4

or will KDE 4 continue to have ugly faux transparency?

Eavesdropping on IRC, I get the feeling that aseigo hates this hack more than you do ;)

Space

Russia Plans Its Own Moon Base 208 208

Socguy writes "After being rebuffed by NASA, Russia now plans to build its own moon base by as early as 2027. The nation now plans to send a manned mission to the moon by 2025 and establish a permanent base shortly thereafter. 'According to our estimates, we will be ready for a manned flight to the moon in 2025,' Roskosmos chief Anatoly Perminov told state news agency RIA Novosti. A station that could be inhabited could be built there between 2027 and 2032, he said. While Russia will be refurbishing existing spacecraft, the U.S. is taking a different approach after the space station is finished and plans to scrap the space shuttle program in favour of a new kind of spaceship to be called Orion."
User Journal

Journal: Apple's side of the NBC pissing match

Apple, Inc. issued a press release with their side of the iTunes/NBC disagreement.

In short: iTunes will not sell any episodes for this season (they could sell new episodes through the end of the year). Additionally, NBC wanted $4.99 per episode, rather than the current $1.99. That's more than twice as expensive as buying a season on DVD.

Macrovision Responds to Steve Jobs on DRM 221 221

An anonymous reader writes "Macrovision Corporation, best known for its long history of DRM implementations, (everything from VCRs to software copy protection), has responded to Steve Jobs open letter regarding DRM. With ample experience and despite the obvious vested interests, it's great to hear their point of view. In the letter they acknowledge the 'difficult challenges' of implementing DRM that is truly 'interoperable and open'. At the same time they also feel that DRM 'will increase electronic distribution', if implemented properly, because 'DRM increases not decreases consumer value', such as by enabling people to rent content at a lower price than ownership, and lowering risks for content producers. While I'm impressed they responded, I can't say I'm impressed by lofty goals that might not be reached for years. The reality is, current DRM implementations often leave users with the bad end of the deal. What do you think? Should people give DRM manufacturers more time to overcome the challenges and get it right?"
GNOME

Godwin's Law Invoked in Linus/Gnome Spat 828 828

lisah writes "The flame wars between Linus Torvalds and the GNOME community continue to burn. Responding to Torvalds' recent claim that GNOME 'seems to be developed by interface Nazis' and that its developers believe their 'users are idiots,' a member of the Linux Foundation's Desktop Architects mailing list suggested that Torvalds use GNOME for a month before making such pronouncements. Torvalds, never one to back down from a challenge, simply turned around and submitted patches to GNOME and then told the list, '...let's see what happens to my patches. I guarantee you that they actually improve the code.' After lobbing that over the fence, Torvalds concluded his comments by saying, 'Now the question is, will people take the patches, or will they keep their heads up their arses and claim that configurability is bad, even when it makes things more logical, and code more readable.'" Linux.com and Slashdot are both owned by OSTG.

The price one pays for pursuing any profession, or calling, is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side. -- James Baldwin

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