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The Military

US Navy Considering Wii Fit and DDR For Boot Camp 104

almehdaaol writes "New military recruits are coming in physically heavier and out of shape, so the US Navy has decided to take an interesting course of action by creating a new training regimen inspired by the fitness-centric Wii Fit and Dance Dance Revolution." This comes alongside a report confirming some of the BS we told our parents when we were growing up: "Bavelier said playing the kill-or-be-killed games can improve peripheral vision and the ability to see objects at dusk, and the games can even be used to treat amblyopia, or lazy eye, a disorder characterized by indistinct vision in one eye. She said she believes the games can improve math performance and other brain tasks."
Cellphones

Tetris Clones Pulled From Android Market 396

sbrubblesman writes "The Tetris Company, LLC has notified Google to remove all Tetris clones from Android Market. I am one of the developers of FallingBlocks, a game with the same gameplay concepts as Tetris. I have received an email warning that my game was suspended from Android Market due to a violation of the Developer Content Policy. When I received the email, I already imagined that it had something to do with it being a Tetris clone, but besides having the same gameplay as Tetris, which I believe cannot be copyrighted, the game uses its own name, graphics and sounds. There's no reference to 'Tetris' in our game. I have emailed Google asking what is the reason for the application removal. Google promptly answered that The Tetris Company, LLC notified them under the DMCA (PDF) to remove various Tetris clones from Android Market. My app was removed together with 35 other Tetris clones. I checked online at various sources, and all of them say that there's no copyright on gameplay. There could be some sort of patent. But even if they had one, it would last 20 years, so it would have been over in 2005. It's a shame that The Tetris Company, LLC uses its power to stop developers from creating good and free games for Android users. Without resources for a legal fight, our application and many others will cease to exist, even knowing that they are legit. Users will be forced to buy the paid, official version, which is worse than many of the ones available for free on the market. Users from other countries, such as Brazil in my case, won't even be able to play the official Tetris, since Google Checkout doesn't exist in Brazil; you can't buy paid applications from Android Market in these countries."

Comment Re:Obama is LEFT wing?! (Score 1) 913

Sorry, but sometimes the stupid just burns: "They are merely two different brands of corporatism that use different approaches to achieve the same goal of statism."

No, corporatism is its own goal, and the very opposite of statism. In a corporatist reality, our reality, the corporations control the state. It expresses their interests. Any reasonable definition of statism must put corporations in service of a powerful central state, and no sane observer could imagine that we have that or are moving in that direction.

There is only one political party... the left third of the Democratic party... and the rest is just one big corporate funded subsidiary of powerful interests.... 100% of the Republicans and 2/3 of the Democrats, doing corporate bidding.

As for Obama... well he believes in the art of the possible... does what the corporate party requires of him... and lacks the will to attack the paymasters of Congress. When people worry about "statism" I just laugh. They have no idea. We should be so lucky as to have a strong central government, able to see a need and levy a tax to fund an efficient government office to solve the problem. It can be done, but we way too far gone for it to happen.

Image

Son Sues Mother Over Facebook Posts 428

Most kids hate having their parents join in on a discussion on Facebook, but one 16-year-old in Arkansas hates it so much he has filed suit against his mother, charging her with harassment. From the article: "An Arkadelphia mother is charged with harassment for making entries on her son's Facebook page. Denise New's 16-year-old son filed charges against her last month and requested a no-contact order after he claims she posted slanderous entries about him on the social networking site. New says she was just trying to monitor what he was posting." Seems like he could just unfriend her.
Earth

Cooling the Planet With a Bubble Bath 219

cremeglace writes "A Harvard University physicist has come up with a new way to cool parts of the planet: pump vast swarms of tiny bubbles into the sea to increase its reflectivity and lower water temperatures. 'Since water covers most of the earth, don't dim the sun,' says the scientist, Russell Seitz, speaking from an international meeting on geoengineering research. 'Brighten the water.' From ScienceNOW: 'Computer simulations show that tiny bubbles could have a profound cooling effect. Using a model that simulates how light, water, and air interact, Seitz found that microbubbles could double the reflectivity of water at a concentration of only one part per million by volume. When Seitz plugged that data into a climate model, he found that the microbubble strategy could cool the planet by up to 3C. He has submitted a paper on the concept he calls “Bright Water" to the journal Climatic Change.'"
Input Devices

Is the Line-in Jack On the Verge of Extinction? 411

SlashD0tter writes "Many older sound cards were shipped with line-out, microphone-in, and a line-in jacks. For years I've used such a line-in jack on an old Windows 2000 dinosaur desktop that I bought in 2000 (600 Mhz PIII) to capture the stereo audio signal from an old Technics receiver. I've used this arrangement to recover the audio from a slew of old vinyl LPs and even a few cassettes using some simple audio manipulating software from a small shop in Australia. I've noticed only recently, unfortunately, that all of the four laptops I've bought since then have omitted a line-in jack, forcing me to continue keeping this old desktop on life support. I've looked around for USB sound cards that include a line-in jack, but I haven't been too impressed by the selection. Is the line-in jack doomed to extinction, possibly due to lobbying from vested interests, or are there better thinking-outside-the-box alternatives available?"
Earth

Planned Nuclear Reactors Will Destroy Atomic Waste 344

separsons writes "A group of French scientists are developing a nuclear reactor that burns up actinides — highly radioactive uranium isotopes. They estimate that 'the volume of high-level nuclear waste produced by all of France’s 58 reactors over the past 40 years could fit in one Olympic-size swimming pool.' And they're not the only ones trying to eliminate atomic waste: Researchers at the University of Texas in Austin are working on a fusion-fission reactor. The reactor destroys waste by firing streams of neutrons at it, reducing atomic waste by up to 99 percent!"
Earth

Dinosaur Feather Color Discovered 219

anzha writes "Do you remember being a kid and told we'd never know what colors the dinosaurs were? For at least some, that's no longer true. Scientists working in the UK and China have closely examined the fossils of multiple theropods and actually found the colors and patterns that were present in the fossilized proto-feathers. So far, the answer is orange, black and white in banded and other patterns. The work also thoroughly thrashes the idea that fossils might not be feathers, but collagen fibers instead. If this holds up, Birds Are Dinosaurs. Period. And colorful!"

Comment Don't know much about evolution... (Score 1) 411

... but I do know that
1) genotypes are a direct function of enviro-types
2) the envirotype of 2010 and and of 1900 to the present (antibiotics, changed cultural mores etc.) is pretty different from anything that proceeded it, so of course the genotype will adjust.... if that envirotype hangs around long enough.

On the other hand, while the Western envirotype has shifted, has the planetary envirotype shifted? Isn't the normative human environment still China, India, Africa and Brazil? Must be, because that's where the people live. So whatever evolution is happening for the species as a whole, it is surely happening because of environmental changes facing people living in places other than Europe and the U.S.

Seems to me that for human evolution to occur in a meaningful sense you'd need a big change in some fundamental environmental factors, and they would have to effect most of the planet, particularly the places where most of the people live.

Given climate change and global warming, I'm not even sure we'll be around long enough to measure such effects. 2500 indeed! Good luck getting to 2200, planet earth.

Then of course you can get into different scenarios. What if Asia and Africa are wiped out by global warming, and Framingham Europeans are really a population bottleneck? Well then you could have evolutionary changes to adopt to Framingham environtypes... but only if they persisted over generations.

In retrospect, the antibiotic technology based stage of human evolution may prove to be quite temporary... a few generations. Do you really believe that antibiotics are forever? I suggest you have forgotten the evolutionary potential of bacteria.

The world of 20th and 21st century America and Europe is probably a deviation from the basic human condition of the past (certainly) and African villages and Mad Max warriors and Ghengis Kahn is more like the real future (I predict) and so the forms that evolve to live in the modern world are probably dead ends any way.

I know that you tech optimists find that improbable. You think antibiotics and high energy society are forever. I think African villages and are closer to forever, and that if there is a long run that's more what it looks like. The human forms that can survive in that world will continue to be the face of humanity.

My two cents.

Comment Intel X25-M G2 (Score 1) 467

Intel X25-M G2 (80gb) is a transformative computing experience. Applications boot "instantly". Of course I don't keep data files on an 80gb ssd drive... that's all over on standard 1TB platter. Once I upgrade to Win7 with TRIM I'm hoping for performance to be maintained for a good long while.

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