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Biotech

Submission + - The worst sounds in the world: official

An anonymous reader writes: Over 1.1 million votes have been counted and the results are in. But the worst sound is not fingernails on a blackboard (16th), or babies crying (3rd). The number one is truly sickening . . . vomiting.
Google

Submission + - Google Sues Leo Stoller for Racketeering

EdwardianDandy writes: "Leo Stoller — the Chicago attorney who has successfully sued companies like Paramount and Northrop Grumman because he claims to own the trademark "stealth" (as in stealth bomber) — has finally been sued by Google for racketeering. Stoller has been harassing Google for years, arguing that he owns the trademark "Google," and submitting forged documents to the courts to prove his case."
United States

Submission + - Revived House Science/Tech Investigations Subcomm.

Doc Ruby writes: The US House of Representatives has revived the once moribund Investigations and Oversight Subcommittee of the House Committee on Science and Technology. Slashdot has covered government bias/censorship of science in policy. This subcommittee's job is to expose and correct such misgovernment. The new subcommittee Chair describes its recent history and immediate future in an interview. He mentions an anonymous tipoff form anyone can use to report abuse to the subcommittee.
Slashdot.org

Submission + - Cheap Geographic Web Site Load Balancing

David Tiberio writes: "I have about 20 geographically dispersed web hosting accounts averaging $10 per month. I load balance my traffic on these servers with DNS failover. My total cost is about $300 per month for the entire setup including DNS failover service. I have 100% uptime, and fast performance, separating apps and media on different datacenters. Users go to their nearest datacenter. Here's how I did it."
Movies

Submission + - Blu-ray says NO to porn, porn says NO to Blu-ray

Sarusa writes: If this is true, it's Beta vs VHS all over again and HD-DVD may be the foregone winner of the format wars. First, Heise reports (summarized from the German by sgknox.com) that Digital Playground (NSFW), who were committed to Blu-ray last year, are now producing HD-DVD titles instead. No Blu-ray disk manufacturer would make their disks because Sony doesn't want porn on Blu-ray (just as with Betamax). Second, as reported by tgdaily, the porn industry at CES overwhelmingly favors HD-DVD because it's much cheaper and easier to produce. As noted in the tgdaily article, porn was a huge factor in VHS winning the VHS/Beta format wars even though most people don't like to acknowledge it. Porn, like gaming, pushes tech adoption.
Television

Submission + - Senator to FCC: no broadcast flag for you!

Flag waver writes: Senator John Sununu (R-NH) will introduce legislation that will prevent the FCC from creating technology mandates for the consumer electronics industry. As a result, the FCC would be hamstrung in its efforts to revive the broadcast flag. '"The FCC seems to be under the belief that it should occasionally impose technology mandates," Sununu said in a statement. "These misguided requirements distort the marketplace by forcing industry to adopt agency-blessed solutions rather than allow innovative and competitive approaches to develop."' Sen. Sununu previously tried without success to remove the broadcast flag provisions from the massive telecommunications bill that died before reaching the Senate floor during the last Congress.
Networking

Submission + - Michigan county launches free WiFi network

hlovy writes: "Wireless Oakland is part of a longer-term plan to "close the digital divide" by first blanketing the county's 910 square miles with free Internet service, then providing "low-cost or no-cost" computers and training to the county's "underserved population groups." Story and video can be found here."
Portables

Submission + - Study: Zune fails to crack top 10 in sales

srizah writes: "CNET News.com.com is running a story on a study done by market researcher Current Analysis about how Zune has captured a decent share of the HDD based portable media player market. The study however goes on to highlight that Zune has not yet broken into the top 10 list in sales. The picture is expected to change when a flash-based player option is available with Zune to compete with Ipod Nano/Shuffle and Sandisk players. The full story is available here. http://news.com.com/Study+Zune+fails+to+crack+top+ 10+in+sales/2100-1041_3-6147422.html?tag=newsmap"
The Media

Submission + - Dutch Ban Segways From Public Roads

srizah writes: "Segway has been banned on the public roads of the Netherlands. The traffic authorities claim that it is a motorized vehicle and a mo-ped. An excerpt from the story in Physorg, "Segway Nederland director Piet Kruijt said Tuesday the company was "completely ambushed" by the decision, first announced by national police on Nov. 27, 2006. "We're working on all fronts to get this resolved," Kruijt said. He estimated that "a number of hundreds" of Segways have been sold in the Netherlands. For the time being, they are only legal on private property. Police said that with no approval of the vehicles in sight by the country's Royal Traffic Agency, they could not be allowed to continue using public streets. The Segway "is a motorized vehicle, and according to Dutch law, a mo-ped," a police statement said. But because the Traffic Agency hasn't approved the vehicle, the police statement said, it can't be issued license plates. "It's a nice vehicle, I've ridden one myself," said Hans van Geenhuizen, a spokesman from the Traffic Agency, which is responsible for licensing. But he said the agency cannot license the Segway under current law. "It doesn't have a brake, you brake by leaning back, and that's clearly not permissible," he said. " http://www.physorg.com/news86965198.html"
Censorship

Submission + - Jack Thompson Interview

jasoncart writes: "Play.tm have published a frank interview with Jack Thompson, in which the lawyer explains that he does not want want to be regarded as the enemy of gamers, but simply hopes to keep adult games out of the hands of influential minors. Here's an extract:

I am trying to get this industry to stop the sale and marketing of adult games to kids. That is my ONLY issue. Are you with me, now that you know what I really stand for, which explains why the industry and uninformed gamers demonize me?
"
Software

Submission + - Software company uses "logic bomb" on cour

An anonymous reader writes: A software vendor in Cleveland is threatening to disable the Juvenile Court's computers at the end of the month .. and is preventing them from using another company for support. A more modern version of "extortion". http://www.newsnet5.com/news/10670270/detail.html Similar problems have, in the past, resulted in strange things like cars getting stranded in a parking garage.
Christmas Cheer

Submission + - USA, NY

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Security

Submission + - Money Laundering Via MMO's

Anonymous writes: Apparently, it is rather easy to move illicit funds through virtual economies such as Second Life (among many others) via currency conversion from real cash to virtual cash, followed by transferring that to another player, who then converts it back to real cash. Although the author of this posting gives a simple scenario, it is quite plausible that motivated criminals can be capable of much more robust schemes. http://www.world-check.com/articles/2007/01/02/vir tual-money-laundering-now-available-world-wide-/

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