from the chewing-up-the-scenery dept.
KentuckyFC writes "While preparing for the job of US Secretary of Energy in the incoming Obama administration (and being director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and a Nobel Prize winner to boot), Steven Chu has somehow found time to make a major breakthrough in the world of atom interferometry. One measure of an interferometer's sensitivity is the area that its arms enclose. Chu and colleagues have found a way to increase this area by a factor of 2,500 by canceling out the noise introduced by lasers, which work as beam splitters sending atoms down different arms (abstract). One thing this makes possible is the use of different types of atoms in the same interferometer, allowing a new generation of tests of the equivalence principle. (This is the assumption that the m in F=ma and the m's in F= Gm1.m2/r^2 are the same thing). Let's hope he's got equally impressive breakthroughs planned for his encore as US Secretary of Energy."
MrDrBob writes: "Love it or hate it, version 2.4 of our Marmite-favoured graphics editor has been released, and includes quite a few big changes. The selection tools have been rewritten from scratch, including a new way of selecting things with round corners, as requested by web designers. Better zooming code means that whole lines of your image will no longer disappear when zoomed out, and new colour management code should be welcomed by digital photo artists.
The GIMP also includes a new Tango-style icon set, which goes hand-in-hand with the redesigned website.
Unfortunately, GEGL integration still isn't anywhere to be found, but perhaps it'll make it in a later release."
Nefarious420 writes: "Bush commutes Libby sentence, no jail time served. So much for holding his administration accountable for anything. I guess on the plus side of things his approval ratings can't get much lower."
asimbaig writes: "Its been over a year since I last posed a question on whether its "really" possible to make a decent living building open source software. I got a lot of good feedback from slashdotters and the open source community. I thought I would provide an update on our experience. In one short year, CATS, our open source Applicant Tracking System has become the number one ATS in the market including commercial packages. We didn't have any revenue last year and we didnt focus on it either since we were too busy building the sofware. We started selling the hosted solution this year and have sold about 100 seats in 2 months bringing us $3000/month in recurring revenue. We just signed an OEM / Source Code license agreement with a large company for $200k. I expect to sell 4-5 of these OEM deals this year. I think making CATS open source played a significant role in our success to date....Marketing."
lisah writes: "The flame wars between Linus Torvalds and the GNOME community continue to burn. Responding to Torvalds' recent claim that GNOME 'seems to be developed by interface Nazis' and that its developers believe their 'users are idiots,' a member of the Linux Foundation's Desktop Architects mailing list suggested that Torvalds use GNOME for a month before making such pronouncements. Torvalds, never one to back down from a challenge, simply turned around and submitted patches to GNOME and then told the list, '...let's see what happens to my patches. I guarantee you that they actually improve the code.' After lobbing that over the fence, Torvalds concluded his comments by saying, 'Now the question is, will people take the patches, or will they keep their heads up their arses and claim that configurability is bad, even when it makes things more logical, and code more readable.'"
An anonymous reader writes: A federal appeals court has upheld an Alabama law banning the sale of sex toys against a claim that the law conflicted with the Supreme Court's prior holding that private sexuality is protected by the Constitution. The court reasoned that, because sex toys are bought and sold in "public" transactions, selling them is just like prostitution, and therefore it could be banned.