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Submission + - Sony introducing Xperia Z smartphone with water resistance feature (

vividtimes writes: "Sony Mobile Communications introduce its new flagship Android smartphone, Xperia Z at CES show. It brings the best of Sony’s unique technology, content, design and connectivity to deliver rich user experiences. The important feature that the phone has a super-high-resolution display, an impressive camera, and water resistance."

Submission + - Facit Homes Claims to Build World's First "Digitally Fabricated" House (

Zothecula writes: Facit Homes claims to be the first company in the world to digitally fabricate a bespoke home on-site. The company has developed a process (D-Process) whereby it delivers a compact mobile production facility (MPF) to the construction site, equipped with all the materials and machinery required to transform a 3D digital design into a physical building. “We are the first company in the world to have successfully trialed manufacturing a house on-site,” Managing Director of Facit Homes, Bruce Bell told Gizmag. “We bring our compact high-tech machine to site and make it there and then—its an amazingly efficient way of designing and making a house.”

Submission + - Fermi Observations of Dwarf Galaxies Provide New Insights on Dark Matter (

fishmike writes: "There's more to the cosmos than meets the eye. About 80 percent of the matter in the universe is invisible to telescopes, yet its gravitational influence is manifest in the orbital speeds of stars around galaxies and in the motions of clusters of galaxies. Yet, despite decades of effort, no one knows what this "dark matter" really is. Many scientists think it's likely that the mystery will be solved with the discovery of new kinds of subatomic particles, types necessarily different from those composing atoms of the ordinary matter all around us. The search to detect and identify these particles is underway in experiments both around the globe and above it."

Submission + - Swedish researchers uncover key to Great Firewall of China's Tor-blocking tricks (

An anonymous reader writes: A pair of researchers at Karlstad University have been able to establish how the Great Firewall of China sets about blocking unpublished Tor bridges.

The GFC inspects web traffic looking for potential bridges and then attempts "to speak Tor" to the hosts. If they reply, they're deemed to Tor bridges and blocked.

While this looks like another example of the cat and mouse game between those wishing to surf the net anonymously and a government intent on curtailing online freedoms, the researchers suggest ways that the latest blocking techniques may be defeated.


Submission + - Music sales falling, despite French anti-P2P Laws (

Fluffeh writes: "France has one of the strictest "Three Strikes" laws in the world enforced by a French authority called Hadopi, but it is interesting to see that although the studios pushed so hard for these, they don't seem to be having the effect of raising sales, they are declining — even if they are slowing down piracy. Hadopi released a report this March saying French ISP users had significantly decreased their illegal file sharing. Despite that announcement, the French music industry still saw a decline in revenue. "For all the fanfare in Hadopi's 14-page report celebrating the crackdown on music and video piracy, the music and video industries in France did not see increased profit in 2011 compared to the year before. The overall recorded music industry saw a 3.9 percent loss, and France's video market dropped 2.7 percent overall.""

Submission + - Australian Federal Court awards damages to artist for false copyright claim (

BarryHaworth writes: In a decision handed down earlier this month, the Australian Federal Court awarded damages to Aboriginal artist Richard Bell over a false claim of copyright infringement. The claim related to a take-down notice claiming copyright infringement from film footage used in a trailer for a film being made by the artist. The court declared Mr Bell the owner of the copyright and awarded him $147,000 in damages for lost sales of paintings and catalogues. The full decision can be found here.

At time of writing, Youtube does not appear to have caught up with the decision.


Submission + - Don't Expect Facebook To Go Dark For SOPA

An anonymous reader writes: Internet companies are reportedly considering a joint blackout of their services in protest of the upcoming U.S. anti-piracy legislation Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT IP Act (PIPA). A group known as netCoalition, which Facebook is part of, confirmed last week that the extreme "nuclear option" was under consideration. Still, don’t expect the social networking giant to participate in a joint blackout of Internet services.
Hardware Hacking

Home-Built Turing Machine 123

stronghawk writes "The creator of the Nickel-O-Matic is back at it and has now built a Turing Machine from a Parallax Propeller chip-based controller, motors, a dry-erase marker and a non-infinite supply of shiny 35mm leader film. From his FAQ: 'While thinking about Turing machines I found that no one had ever actually built one, at least not one that looked like Turing's original concept (if someone does know of one, please let me know). There have been a few other physical Turing machines like the Logo of Doom, but none were immediately recognizable as Turing machines. As I am always looking for a new challenge, I set out to build what you see here.'"

Call For Scientific Research Code To Be Released 505

Pentagram writes "Professor Ince, writing in the Guardian, has issued a call for scientists to make the code they use in the course of their research publicly available. He focuses specifically on the topical controversies in climate science, and concludes with the view that researchers who are able but unwilling to release programs they use should not be regarded as scientists. Quoting: 'There is enough evidence for us to regard a lot of scientific software with worry. For example Professor Les Hatton, an international expert in software testing resident in the Universities of Kent and Kingston, carried out an extensive analysis of several million lines of scientific code. He showed that the software had an unacceptably high level of detectable inconsistencies. For example, interface inconsistencies between software modules which pass data from one part of a program to another occurred at the rate of one in every seven interfaces on average in the programming language Fortran, and one in every 37 interfaces in the language C. This is hugely worrying when you realise that just one error — just one — will usually invalidate a computer program. What he also discovered, even more worryingly, is that the accuracy of results declined from six significant figures to one significant figure during the running of programs.'"
Sun Microsystems

Submission + - Sun Kills Off Solaris Express Community (

An anonymous reader writes: Sun (soon to be Oracle) has stopped producing new builds of their Solaris Express Community Edition operating system and at the end of this week they will remove all traces of the experimental Solaris operating system. Phoronix has bid farewell to Solaris Express Community Edition by providing screenshots and verbage about this last SXCE release, that never really innovated and got past the old Solaris text-based installer. Solaris Express Community did though provide many multimedia applications and multiple other programs to all address one task. Sun recommends any users to switch to OpenSolaris, but that has angered some users.

The Apple Tablet Interface Must Be Like This 278

kylevh writes "On one side, there are the people who think that a traditional GUI—one built on windows, folders and the old desktop metaphor—is the only way to go for a tablet. In another camp, there are the ones who are dreaming about magic 3D interfaces and other experimental stuff, thinking that Apple would come up with a wondrous new interface that nobody can imagine now, one that will bring universal love, world peace and pancakes for everyone. Both camps are wrong: The iPhone started a UI revolution, and the tablet is just step two. Here's why." There are lots of cool UI ideas in there, even if it is entirely speculation. It's worth a read just to think about what the future could be like.

A Hyper-Velocity Impact In the Asteroid Belt? 114

astroengine writes "Astronomers have spotted something rather odd in the asteroid belt. It looks like a comet, but it's got a circular orbit, similar to an asteroid. Whether it's an asteroid or a comet, it has a long, comet-like tail, suggesting something is being vented into space. Some experts think it could be a very rare comet/asteroid hybrid being heated by the sun, but there's an even more exciting possibility: It could be the first ever observation of two asteroids colliding in the asteroid belt."

Simulation of Close Asteroid Fly-By 148

c0mpliant writes "NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory have released a simulation of the path of an asteroid, named Apophis, that will come very close to Earth in 2029 — the closest predicted approach since humans have monitored for such heavenly bodies. The asteroid caused a bit of a scare when astronomers first announced that it would enter Earth's neighborhood some time in the future. However, since that announcement in 2004, more recent calculations have put the odds of collision at 1 in 250,000."

Accountability of the Scientific Stimulus Funding 242

eldavojohn writes "A blog tipped me off to a government site that allows me to see where my tax dollars went when the nebulous 'scientific stimulus' was granted. You might be able to find this information in a bill, but you can click on your state in this interactive site to see what has happened locally to you. Perhaps it's a sign of more government transparency in regards to spending or just more propaganda."

No problem is so formidable that you can't just walk away from it. -- C. Schulz