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Microsoft

MS Design Lets You Put Batteries In Any Way You Want 453

Posted by timothy
from the dis-orientation dept.
jangel writes "While its strategy for mobile devices might be a mess, Microsoft has announced something we'll all benefit from. The company's patented design for battery contacts will allow users of portable devices — digital cameras, flashlights, remote controls, toys, you name it — to insert their batteries in any direction. Compatible with AA and AAA cells, among others, the 'InstaLoad' technology does not require special electronics or circuitry, the company claims."
Linux Business

Is LGP Going the Way of Loki Software? 124

Posted by Soulskill
from the bad-news-bears dept.
An anonymous reader writes "After the demise of Loki Software, Linux Game Publishing sprouted up in its place, and for the past nine years has ported a number of games to Linux. But LGP may now be sharing the same fate as Loki. Linux Game Publishing hasn't updated its blog or news pages in months, has stopped responding to e-mails, and its only active ports are games they began work on in 2002/2003."
Earth

Sticky Rice Is the Key To Super Strong Mortar 194

Posted by timothy
from the what-can't-sticky-rice-do? dept.
lilbridge writes "For over 1,500 years the Chinese have been using sticky rice as an ingredient in mortar, which has resulted in super strong buildings, many of which are still standing after hundreds of years. Scientists have been studying the sticky rice and lime mortar to unlock the secrets of its strength, and have just determined the secret ingredient that makes the mortar more stable and stronger. The scientists have also concluded that this mixture is the most appropriate for restoration of ancient and historic buildings, which means it is probably also appropriate for new construction as well."
Moon

Decades-Old Soviet Reflector Spotted On the Moon 147

Posted by Soulskill
from the always-in-the-last-place-you-look dept.
cremeglace writes "No one had seen a laser reflector that Soviet scientists had left on the moon almost 40 years ago, despite years of searching. Turns out searchers had been looking kilometers in the wrong direction. On 22 April, a team of physicists finally saw an incredibly faint flash from the reflector, which was ferried across the lunar surface by the Lunokhod 1 rover. The find comes thanks to NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, which last month imaged a large area where the rover was reported to have been left. Then the researchers, led by Tom Murphy of the University of California, San Diego, could search one football-field-size area at a time until they got a reflection."
Classic Games (Games)

OpenTTD 1.0.0 Released 107

Posted by Soulskill
from the and-so-soon dept.
Gmer writes "Eming.com reports that OpenTTD, the open source clone of the Microprose game Transport Tycoon Deluxe, has reached a milestone. OpenTTD 1.0.0 has been released 6 years after work started on the first version, with the help of hundreds of contributors and thousands of testers/players. Over 30 language translations are considered complete, and OpenTTD is available for *BSD, Linux, Solaris and Windows. OpenTTD is a business simulation game in which the player is in control of a transport company and can compete against rival companies to make as much profit as possible by transporting passengers and various goods by road, rail, sea or air."
Open Source

Linux Kernel 2.6.32 Released 195

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the download-compile-reboot-repeat dept.
diegocg writes "Linus Torvalds has officially released the version 2.6.32 of the Linux kernel. New features include virtualization memory de-duplication, a rewrite of the writeback code faster and more scalable, many important Btrfs improvements and speedups, ATI R600/R700 3D and KMS support and other graphic improvements, a CFQ low latency mode, tracing improvements including a 'perf timechart' tool that tries to be a better bootchart, soft limits in the memory controller, support for the S+Core architecture, support for Intel Moorestown and its new firmware interface, run-time power management support, and many other improvements and new drivers. See the full changelog for more details."
Math

The Math of a Fly's Eye May Prove Useful 90

Posted by kdawson
from the saw-that-one-coming dept.
cunniff writes "Wired Magazine points us to recent research that demonstrates an algorithm derived from the actual biological implementation of fly vision (PLoS paper here). Quoting the paper: 'Here we present a model with multiple levels of non-linear dynamic adaptive components based directly on the known or suspected responses of neurons within the visual motion pathway of the fly brain. By testing the model under realistic high-dynamic range conditions we show that the addition of these elements makes the motion detection model robust across a large variety of images, velocities and accelerations.' The researchers claim that 'The implementation of this new algorithm could provide a very useful and robust velocity estimator for artificial navigation systems.' Additionally, the paper describes the algorithm as extremely simple, capable of being implemented on very small and power-efficient processors. Best of all, the entire paper is public and hosted via a service that allows authenticated users to give feedback."
The Internet

In Japan, a 900 Gigabyte Upload Cap, Downloads Uncapped 368

Posted by timothy
from the no-such-luck-in-tennessee dept.
Raindeer writes "While the Broadband Bandits of the US are contemplating bandwidth caps between 5 gigabyte and 40 gigabyte per month, the largest telco in Japan has gone ahead and laid down some heavy caps for Japan's broadband addicts. From now on, if you upload more than 30 gigabyte per day, your network connection may be disconnected. Just think of it ... if you're in Japan and want to upload the HD movie you shot of yesterday's wedding, you soon might hit the limit. The downloaders do not face similar problems."
Debian

Ubuntu Dev Summit Lays Out Plans For Hardy Heron 261

Posted by Zonk
from the hee-such-humorous-names dept.
Opurt writes "On the first day of the Ubuntu Developer Summit in Boston this week, a roundtable session focused on the vision for the upcoming Hardy Heron Ubuntu release. Unlike Gutsy Gibbon, which brought a handful of experimental features along with some new functionality, the focus with Heron will be on robustness as it will be supported on the desktop for 3 years. 'The Compiz window manager, which adds sophisticated visual effects to the Ubuntu user interface, will be a big target for usability improvements. Keyboard bindings and session management were noted as two areas where Compiz still needs some work.' PolicyKit and Tracker will also be significantly tweaked, while Heron is also likely to see a complete visual refresh."

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