Last year we ran the story of Yves Rossy and his DIY jetwings. Yves spent $190,000 and countless hours building a set of jet-powered wings which he used to cross the English Channel. Rossy's next goal is to cross the Strait of Gibraltar, from Tangier in Morocco and Tarifa on the southwestern tip of Spain. From the article: "Using a four-cylinder jet pack and carbon fibre wings spanning over 8ft, he will jump out of a plane at 6,500 ft and cruise at 130 mph until he reaches the Spanish coast, when he will parachute to earth." Update 18:57 GMT: mytrip writes: "Yves Rossy took off from Tangiers but five minutes into an expected 15-minute flight he was obliged to ditch into the wind-swept waters."
Frequent Slashdot contributor Bennett Haselton writes "A simple experiment shows that it's easy to find the IP addresses used by the UltraSurf anti-censorship program, and block traffic to all of those IP addresses, effectively stopping UltraSurf from working. But this is not a fault of UltraSurf; rather, it demonstrates that an anti-censorship software program can be successful even if it's relatively trivial to block it." Read on for Bennett's analysis.
mlingojones writes "TorrentFreak breaks the news of The Pirate Bay's acquisition by Warner Bros: 'After years of hostility, lawsuits, police raids and heated invective between the two groups, the Pirate Bay has today announced they have settled their differences with US media conglomerate Warner Bros. The largest BitTorrent tracker has sold out to Hollywood and the two have agreed a deal.'"
JCWDenton writes "The Met Police got a short sharp rap over the knuckles yesterday, as the Office of the Information Commissioner questioned what looks very much like a blanket policy to force CCTV onto public houses in certain parts of London. The story begins with a letter to the Guardian last week, from Nick Gibson. He is currently renovating Islington pub The Drapers Arms, after its previous owners allowed it to go insolvent and then disappeared. In his letter, he argues that if he had merely taken over an existing licence, the police could not have imposed any additional conditions. However, because this was now a new licence, the police were able to make specific requests, including one particular request in respect of installing CCTV."
Dark Neuron writes "My institution has thousands of computers, and is looking at starting an IT policy to encrypt everything, all hard drives, including desktops, laptops, external hard drives, USB flash drives, etc. I am looking at an open source product for Windows, Mac, UNIX, as well as portable hard drives, but I am concerned about overhead and speed penalties. Does anyone have experience and/or advice with encrypting every single device in a similar situation?"
brink2012 writes "Planum Boreum, Mars' north polar cap contains water ice 'of a very high degree of purity,' according to an international study. Using radar data from the SHARAD (SHAllow RADar) instrument on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), French researchers say the data point to 95 percent purity in the polar ice cap. The north polar cap is a dome of layered, icy materials, similar to the large ice caps in Greenland and Antarctica, consisting of layered deposits, with mostly ice and a small amount of dust. Combined, the north and south polar ice caps are believed to hold the equivalent of two to three million cubic kilometers (0.47-0.72 million cu. miles) of ice, making it roughly 100 times more than the total volume of North America's Great Lakes, which is 22,684 cu. kms (5,439 miles). The study was done by researchers at France's National Institute of Sciences of the Universe (Insu), using the Italian built SHARAD radar sounder on the US built MRO. SHARAD looks for liquid or frozen water in the first few hundreds of feet (up to 1 kilometer) of Mars' crust by using subsurface sounding. It can detect liquid water and profile ice. Mars southern polar cap was once thought to be carbon dioxide ice, but ESA's Mars Express confirmed that it is composed of a mixture of water and carbon dioxide. The study on Mars north polar cap appears in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, published by the American Geophysical Union."
KentuckyFC writes "A team at IBM has built the first high quality graphene transistors and clocked them running at 26 GHz . That doesn't quite knock silicon off its perch. The fastest silicon transistors are an order of magnitude faster than that but the record is held by indium phosphide transistors which have topped 1000 GHz. But it's not bad for a new kid on the block. It took silicon 40 years to get this far. By contrast, the first graphene transistor was built only last year. IBM says 'the work represents a significant step towards the realization of graphene-based electronics.' (Abstract)."
licorna writes "The 3.0 version of Python (also known as Python3k and Python3000) just got released few hours ago. It's the first ever intentionally backwards-incompatible Python release."
Buckbeak writes "I like to carry my Linux systems around with me, on USB flash drives. Typically, SanDisk Cruzers or Kingston HyperX. I encrypt the root partition and boot off the USB stick. Sometimes, the performance leaves something to be desired. I want to be able to do an 'apt-get upgrade' or 'yum update' while surfing but the experience is sometimes painful. What can I do to maximize the performance of Linux while running off of a slow medium? I've turned on 'noatime' in the mount options and I don't use a swap partition. Is there any way to minimize drive I/O or batch it up more? Is there any easy way to run in memory and write everything out when I shut down? I've tried both EXT2 and EXT3 and it doesn't seem to make much difference. Any other suggestions?"
Barence writes "Mobile broadband speeds could hit a blistering 42Mb/sec as early as next year, according to Ericsson's chief technology officer. The idea seems far-fetched given that even the fastest dongles currently hover at around 7.2Mb/sec, but the technology to smash that barrier is thought to be just around the corner. One of the methods is very similar to the MIMO technology already used in draft-N wireless routers, but Ericsson believes a combination of factors may even squeeze that figure to 80Mb/sec in the longer term."
JTRipper writes "Monty Python seems to have done the right thing. Instead of issuing take down notices of their videos on YouTube, they are doing it better themselves with their own YouTube channel. They are putting all their clips (including snips from their movies) up in a decent resolution, with the only caveat being a link to buying the movies and TV episodes from Amazon."
biohack writes "An article in the New York Times provides interesting insight into online communities of people who believe that they are subjected to mind control. 'Type "mind control" or "gang stalking" into Google, and Web sites appear that describe cases of persecution, both psychological and physical, related with the same minute details — red and white cars following victims, vandalism of their homes, snickering by those around them.' According to Dr. Vaughan Bell, a British psychologist who has researched the effect of the Internet on mental illness, '[the] extent of the community [...] poses a paradox to the traditional way delusion is defined under the diagnostic guidelines of the American Psychiatric Association, which says that if a belief is held by a person's "culture or subculture," it is not a delusion. The exception accounts for rituals of religious faith, for example.'"
An anonymous reader writes "The economic crisis will ultimately eliminate open source projects and the 'Web 2.0 free economy,' says Andrew Keen, author of The Cult of the Amateur. Along with the economic downturn and record job loss, he says, we will see the elimination of projects including Wikipedia, CNN's iReport, and much of the blogosphere. Instead of users offering their services 'for free,' he says, we're about to see a 'sharp cultural shift in our attitude toward the economic value of our labor' and a rise of online media businesses that reward their contributors with cash. Companies that will survive, he says, include Hulu, iTunes, and Mahalo. 'The hungry and cold unemployed masses aren't going to continue giving away their intellectual labor on the Internet in the speculative hope that they might get some "back end" revenue,' says Keen."
KlaymenDK writes "Over the last decade or so, I have strived to maintain my privacy. I have uninstalled Windows, told my friends 'sorry' when they wanted me to join Facebook, had a fight with my brother when he wanted to move the family email hosting to Gmail, and generally held back on my personal information online. But since, amongst all of my friends, I am the only one doing this, it may well be that my battle is lost already. Worse, I'm really putting myself out of the loop, and it is starting to look like self-flagellation. Indeed, it is a common occurrence that my wife or friends will strike up a conversation based on something from their Facebook 'wall' (whatever that is). Becoming ever more unconnected with my friends, live or online, is ultimately harming my social relations. I am seriously considering throwing in the towel and signing up for Gmail, Facebook, the lot. If 'they' have my soul already, I might as well reap the benefits of this newfangled, privacy-less, AJAX-2.0 world. It doesn't really matter if it was me or my friends selling me out. Or does it? I'd love to hear your thoughts on the matter. How many Windows-eschewing users are not also eschewing the social networking services and all the other 2.0 supersites with their dubious end-user license agreements?"