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Biotech

Submission + - 'Lazarus Project' Ressurects Extinct Frog Species (popsci.com) 1

AbsoluteXyro writes: Extinct since 1983, the Gastric Brooding Frog (the only frog to give birth through it's mouth) has been given a new lease on life. The 'Lazarus Project' at the University of Newcastle has achieved a major milestone by successfully cloning a living embryo of the long dead frog. Unfortunately, the embryo didn't survive long. Using somatic-cell nuclear transfer with genetic material from well preserved specimens and the deactivated eggs of a related species of frog, the researchers believe it won't be long until this unique frog is hopping again.
Crime

Submission + - Aaron Swartz's Estate Seeks Release of Documents

theodp writes: The Boston Globe reports that the estate of Aaron Swartz filed a motion in federal court in Boston Friday to allow the release of documents in the case that has generated national controversy over the US attorney's aggressive pursuit of a stiff sentence. The Court filing suggests that the US attorney's office is still up for jerking Aaron around a little posthumously, seeking what his lawyers termed overbroad redactions, including names and titles that are already publicly known. Swartz's family also seeks the return of his seized property. Last week, Swartz's girlfriend accused MIT of dragging its feet on investigating his suicide. Meanwhile, Slate's Justin Peters asks if the Justice Department learned anything from the Aaron Swartz case, noting that Matthew Keys, who faces 25 years in prison for crimes that include aiding-and-abetting the display of humorously false content, could replace Swartz as the poster boy for prosecutorial overreach.
Earth

Submission + - Earthquakes Deposit Gold in Fault Zones (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Gold deposits may be created in a flash—literally. Along fault zones deep within Earth's crust, small cavities filled with fluids rich in dissolved substances such as gold and silicate minerals can expand suddenly to as much as 130,000 times their former size during a major earthquake, a new analysis suggests. In such circumstances, pressure drops accordingly, driving a process the scientists call flash evaporation. And when the pressure in the cavity suddenly drops, so does the solubility of minerals in the water there. Along with substantial quantities of quartz, large earthquakes could deposit as much as 0.1 milligrams of gold along each square meter of a fault zone's surface in just a fraction of a second Typical rates of seismicity along a fault, such as the San Andreas fault zone shown in the main image, could generate a 100-metric-ton deposit of gold in less than 100,000 years.
Media

Submission + - The Largely Unknown Success Story of Afghanistan's Television Network (vice.com)

Daniel_Stuckey writes: "I met Orner at South by Southwest, where she was hustling her latest film, The Network. The Network features a brighter side of Afghanistan's brighter side: the story of its television revolution. In Orner's opinion, it's a narrative that runs contrary to our common conceptions of a country that has spent decades in a state of war and instability.

She followed Saad Mohseni, a media guru and founder of Afghan media firm Moby Group, who is credited for jump starting the nation's media transformation. Sometimes referred to as the Rupert Murdoch of Afghanistan, Mohseni, an Afghan expat and entrepreneur, explains how he and his siblings returned to Kabul from Australia in 2001, amidst the war shifting into gear. First, they launched a radio station, and by 2004 they'd shifted to television with Tolo TV, quickly turning Moby Group into the largest media conglomerate in the nation.

DS: I heard about 10 percent of Afghanistan has internet access, I saw ...

EO: No, I don't think that's accurate, I actually don't have the figures, I don't address them in the movie. I think the mobile phone capabilities are super high. A lot of people have Internet, they don't have it at home so much; they have it at work. Facebook is huge there. Twitter is not because a lot of them have phones, but they're not connected to the Internet, because it's really expensive to have mobile internet, but that will change very quickly.

From a country that 12 years ago was about 300 years back in time and had no interest in anything but water, was wanton to get to where it is now, which you'll see in the film is the change. It's been extraordinary. Just the change in life expectancy has gone up from about 46 to 64 in the last 10 years. The illiteracy rate, which is between 60 and 70 percent is falling rapidly. The average age of the population is 24. That's a really young country. They want to be connected, they want to be tech-savvy and they want to know what's going on in the rest of the world. They never want to go back to where they were 12 years ago."

Science

Submission + - Nanoscale 3D Printer Now Commercially Available (singularityhub.com)

kkleiner writes: "Now the field of 3D printing has advanced so far that a company called Nanoscribe is offering one of the first commercially available 3D printers for the nanoscale. Nanoscribe's machine can produce tiny 3D printed objects that are only the width of a single human hair. Amazingly this includes 3D printed objects such as spaceships, micro needles, or even the empire state building."
ISS

Submission + - Sarah Brightman's ISS Trip in Peril

RocketAcademy writes: "Actress/singer Sarah Brightman's trip to the International Space Station may not happen in 2015 as scheduled.

Space Adventures works with the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) to fly private citizens like Brightman on Soyuz taxi flights. Those taxi missions normally last eight days, but NASA and Roscosmos are considering a plan to extend the 2015 taxi flight to one month, so it can carry a scientist to perform some additional research aboard ISS. If that happens, Brightman will lose her seat.

This situation points to the need for more flexible transportation options and new orbital facilities which are not subject to the same operational restrictions as ISS. SpaceX, Boeing, and Sierra Nevada are working on the transportation problem, while Bigelow Aerospace expects to begin launching its Space Station Alpha in 2015. So, the era of citizen astronauts visiting ISS may be drawing to a close."
Beer

Submission + - How Beer Gave Us Civilization

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Jeffrey P. Khan writes in the NY Times that recent anthropological research suggests that human's angst of anxiety and depression ultimately results from our transformation, over tens of thousands of years, from biologically shaped, almost herd-like prehistoric tribes, to rational and independent individuals in modern civilization and that the catalyst for suppressing the rigid social codes that kept our clans safe and alive was fermented fruit or grain. "Once the effects of these early brews were discovered, the value of beer must have become immediately apparent," writes Khan. "With the help of the new psychopharmacological brew, humans could quell the angst of defying those herd instincts. Conversations around the campfire, no doubt, took on a new dimension: the painfully shy, their angst suddenly quelled, could now speak their minds." Examining potential beer-brewing tools in archaeological remains from the Natufian culture in the Eastern Mediterranean, the team concludes that “brewing of beer was an important aspect of feasting and society in the Late Epipaleolithic” era. In time, humans became more expansive in their thinking, as well as more collaborative and creative. A night of modest tippling may have ushered in these feelings of freedom — though, the morning after, instincts to conform and submit would have kicked back in to restore the social order. Today, many people drink too much because they have more than average social anxiety or panic anxiety to quell — disorders that may result, in fact, from those primeval herd instincts kicking into overdrive. But beer’s place in the development of civilization deserves at least a raising of the glass. As the ever rational Ben Franklin supposedly said, “Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.”"
Technology

Submission + - Walgreens To Build First Self-Powered Retail Store (hothardware.com)

MojoKid writes: "We hear about green deployment practices all the time, but it’s often surrounding facilities such as data centers rather than retail stores. However, Walgreens is determined to go as green as possible, and to that end, the company announced plans for the first net zero energy retail store. The store is slated to be built at the corner of Chicago Avenue and Keeney Street in Evanston, Illinois, where an existing Walgreens is currently being demolished. The technologies Walgreens is plotting to implement in this new super-green store will include solar panels and wind turbines to generate power; geothermal technology for heat; and efficient energy consumption with LED lighting, daylight harvesting, and “ultra-high-efficiency” refrigeration."
GNU is Not Unix

Submission + - The Pirate Bay's Oldest Torrent is "Revolution OS" (torrentfreak.com)

jrepin writes: "After nearly 9 years of seeding The Pirate Bay’s oldest working torrent is still very much alive. Interestingly, the torrent is not a Hollywood classic nor is it an evergreen music album. The honor goes to a pirated copy of “Revolution OS”, a documentary covering the history of Linux, GNU and the free software movement."

Submission + - CCTV hack takes casino for $33 MILLION in poker losses (theregister.co.uk)

iComp writes: "A sophisticated scheme to use a casino's own security systems against it has netted scammers $33m in a high-stakes poker game after they were able to gain a crucial advantage by seeing the opposition's cards.

The team used a high-rolling accomplice from overseas who was known to spend large amounts while gambling at Australia's biggest casino, the Crown in Melbourne, according to the Herald Sun. He and his family checked into the Crown and were accommodated in one of its $30,000-a-night villas.

The player then joined a private high-stakes poker game in a private suite. At the same time, an unnamed person got access to the casino's CCTV systems in the poker room and fed the information he gleaned back to the player via a wireless link. Over the course of eight hands the team fleeced the opposition to the tune of $33m."

Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft to abandon Windows Phone? (wmpoweruser.com)

symbolset writes: Microsoft has had some trouble as of late getting adoption of their mobile products. Even Bill Gates has said it was inadequate. Despite rave reviews of Windows Phone in the press it has failed to get double digit share of the smartphone market. Now comes reports from WMPoweruser that WP8 will lose mainstream support in July 2014, before even Windows Phone 7.8.

Is this evidence that Microsoft will give up their quest for mobile relevance?

Cellphones

Submission + - Lamenting the Demise of Hangups (theatlantic.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Ian Bogost writes about a cultural tradition we've mostly lost as smartphones become ubiquitous: hanging up. While we still use the terminology (in the same way we say 'rewind' when skipping back on our DVR), the physical act of hanging up a telephone when we're done using it no longer occurs. And we don't get that satisfying crash and clatter when hanging up on somebody to make a point. 'In the context of such gravity, the hangup had a clear and forceful meaning. It offered a way of ending a conversation prematurely, sternly, aggressively. Without saying anything, the hangup said something: we're done, go away. ... Today a true hangup — one you really meant to perform out of anger or frustration or exhaustion — is only temporary and one-sided even when it is successfully executed. Even during a heated exchange, your interlocutor will first assume something went wrong in the network, and you could easily pretend such a thing was true later if you wanted. Calls aren't ever really under our control anymore, they "drop" intransitively.' It's an interesting point about the minor cultural changes that go along with evolving technology.
The Internet

Submission + - Seniors Search for Virtual Immortality

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Most ancestors from the distant past are, at best, names in the family Bible leaving behind a few grainy photos, a death certificate or a record from Ellis Island. But J. Peder Zane writes that retirees today have the ability to leave a cradle-to-grave record of their lives so that 50, 100, even 500 years hence people will be able to see how their forebears looked and moved, hear them speak, and learn about their aspirations and achievements. A growing number of gerontologists also recommend that persons in that ultimate stage should engage in the healthy and productive exercise of composing a Life Review. In response, a growing number of businesses and organizations have arisen to help people preserve and shape their legacy — a shift is helping to redefine the concept of history, as people suddenly have the tools and the desire to record the lives of almost everybody. The ancient problem that bedeviled historians — a lack of information about people's everyday lives — has been overcome. Stefani Twyford, who creates video biographies through her company, Legacy Multimedia says many of her clients are baby boomers who wanted to record their own parents’ lives. “There is a real sense that we can finally get these stories down and they want to act before it’s too late." One of John Butterfield’s daughters hired Twyford to make a DVD about his life for his 80th birthday. “They videotaped me and they talked to relatives and friends,” recalled Mr. Butterfield, who is now 87. “Now, everyone they taped except my brother is dead. It told me to hurry up.” New devices and technologies are certain to further this immortality revolution as futurists are already imagining the day when people can have a virtual conversation with holograms of their ancestors that draw on digital legacies to reflect how the dead would have responded. “People have always wanted to connect with other people and see that they have touched others, and made a difference,” Twyford says. “What’s changed is that we now have the tools to record and share their legacy, forever.”"
Power

Submission + - Graphene-based supercapacitors produced at UCLA (ucla.edu) 1

muon-catalyzed writes: Researchers at UCLA have successfully produced high-performance graphene-based supercapacitors using a computerized LightScribe DVD drive. These devices exhibit ultrahigh energy density values in different electrolytes approaching those of batteries, yet they can be charged in seconds. The devices can be charged and discharged for more than 10,000 cycles without losing much in performance compared with a normal life-time of less than 1000 cycles typical for batteries. Imagine having an energy storage device that stores as much energy as a conventional battery (YouTube video), yet, can be charged 100 to 1000 times faster.
Blackberry

Submission + - Blackberry sells 1 million units to a single buyer (androidanalyse.com) 3

Gumbercules!! writes: At the end of each quarter, investors eagerly await the sales figures for the last three months and probably no company (with the possible exception of Nokia) will be so closely watched this quarter as Blackberry. This quarter has seen the release of what many consider to be their last throw of the dice – the Blackberry 10 range introductory range of handsets and poor sales figures could portent a very difficult time ahead.

So with that in mind, it’s “odd”, in the least, that suddenly someone would suddenly step forward and buy a full and exact million handsets – and Blackberry won’t tell us who. Blackberry is touting this as a huge vote of confidence in their brand – however if someone is so amazingly confident in Blackberry, why do they need to remain secret?

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: how to create a real time failsafe?

rvds86 writes: "I'm just looking at the possibilities to create a failsafe system.
As you continue to grow and your database and traffic with it, how do you keep your webservice online and fast?

Do you optimize one big server and expand the bandwidth/storage, or do you set up multiple small VPS/dedicated servers?
If multiple servers is the best way, how do you keep all the data synchronized realtime?

Because if one server goes down, the other one needs to take over and will need the same data (and how to switch automaticly?)
I'd love to see some answers."

Submission + - Veoh once again beats UMG (after going out of business) (blogspot.com)

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: "Veoh has once again beaten the record companies; in fact it has beaten them in every round, only to have been forced out of business by the attorneys fees it expended to do so. I guess that's the record companies' strategy to do an 'end around' the clear wording of the DMCA "safe harbor": outspend them until they fold. Back in 2009 the lower court dismissed UMG's case on the ground that Veoh was covered by the DMCA "safe harbor" and had complied with takedown notices. The record companies of course appealed. And they of course lost. Then, after the Viacom v. YouTube decision by the 2nd Circuit, which ruled that there were factual issues as to some of the videos, they moved for rehearing in UMG v. Veoh. Now, in a 61-page decision (PDF), the 9th Circuit has once again ruled that the statute means it says, and rejected each and every argument the record companies made. Sadly, though, it did not award attorneys fees."

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: How to best block web content 1

willoughby writes: Many routers today have the capability to block web content. And you all know about browser addons like noscript & adblock. But where is the "proper" place for such content blocking? Is it best to have the router only route packets & do the content blocking on each machine? If using the content blocking feature in the router, will performance degrade if the list of blocked content grows large? Where is the best place to filter/block web content?
Democrats

Submission + - Obama Wants To Fund Clean Energy Research With Oil & Gas Funds (technologyreview.com)

An anonymous reader writes: The Obama Administration has put forth a proposal to collect $2 billion over the next 10 years from revenues generated by oil and gas development to fund scientific research into clean energy technologies. The administration hopes the research would help 'protect American families from spikes in gas prices and allow us to run our cars and trucks on electricity or homegrown fuels.' In a speech at Argonne National Laboratory, Obama said the private sector couldn't afford such research, which puts the onus on government to keep it going. Of course, it'll still be difficult to get everyone on board: 'The notion of funding alternative energy research with fossil fuel revenues has been endorsed in different forms by Republican politicians, including Alaskan senator Lisa Murkowsi. But the president still faces an uphill battle passing any major energy law, given how politicized programs to promote clean energy have become in the wake of high-profile failures of government-backed companies.'
Beer

Submission + - Reddit Emboldens Young Woman to Fight Trademark Troll, We Win (boingboing.net)

Faulkner39 writes: "Ali Spagnola, a Pittsburgh based musical artist, is an advocate of social media, free paintings, and alcohol accompanied partying. To unite the beer loving citizens of the internet, she composed 60 original songs and created a "Power Hour Drinking Game Album" based on the popular college pregame ritual. When a trademark troll was awarded rights to the term "Power Hour", he issued a Cease-and-Desist order on Ali to stop selling her game, had her albums taken down from Amazon and Rhapsody, and began bullying her on the internet and social media. Reddit was not amused, and quickly escalated her story to the front page. The online support encouraged Ali to stand up and fight for our right to binge responsibly. After a 3 year legal struggle costing Ali $30,000 of her own personal money in legal fees, Ali won, giving the internet the right to Power Hour freely. To celebrate the victory, Ali is now running a campaign to fund a Power Hour Freedom Victory Tour"

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