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Hardware Hacking

Maker Faire Storms Newcastle 43

krou writes "The BBC is reporting on the first Maker Faire in the UK, in Newcastle. The event saw an incredible gathering of tech DIY enthusiasts showing off their robotic wares. Maker Faire is firmly established in the US; the 4th annual running in the Bay Area begins on May 30. The BBC video shows the fire-breathing horse, Rusty, and Titan, an eight-foot tall fully-animated robot that likes scaring kids. Elsewhere, the Faire also had Ian Sharp's physical realization of the Lunar Lander computer game, low-cost multi-touch displays, and one of the oldest-ever case mods, made by veteran computer enthusiast John Honnibal, who also showed off his old over-clocked kit computer. Pictures from the Faire are also on Flickr, and videos on YouTube."

Comment Re:A reasoned analysis? That's good. (Score 1) 869

Well, to go even further off topic, look at it like this:

The two major candidates are Bill and Ben. You disagree with both of them, but find Ben marginally less objectionable. Now one of either Bill or Ben WILL, with absolute certainty, win the election. So, even though you might agree whole heartedly with the policies of candidate Bob, it would still make sense to vote for Ben, since Bob has no chance of winning, but your vote could help stop Bill winning.

You could argue that voting for your truly preferred candidate is never a waste, and I can certainly see that point of view. On the other hand, I suspect an awful lot of people who voted for Nader wished Gore had won in 2000.

Or, put another way, a blow job is more fun than having a testicle amputated, but if your choice is lose the gonad or die of testicular cancer, asking the nurse to go down on you will be very little help.

NASA Contractor Needs Urine 291

Apparently, NASA sent a memo to its employees at the Johnson Space Center asking for their urine so they, NASA, could use it to test the Orion space capsule. How much urine? 30 liters per day, including weekends. Disposal of urine for up to six months would be required if Orion is to work as planned.

Alert reader nettamere adds a link to story at, excerpting: "Donations will be treated with a chemical that can hold solid particulates in the liquid so they don't clog up the tubing in microgravity, said Leo Makowski, company spokesman for Hamilton Sundstrand, a contractor designing the new spaceship's toilet. ... "It's difficult to come up with a faux urine, explained NASA's Jim Lewis, the systems manager overseeing development of Orion's potty. 'That's why we depend on collections.'"

The Courts

Google Trends vs. Community Standards On Obscenity 332

circletimessquare writes "Google Trends is being used in a novel way in a pornography trial in Florida. Under a 1973 Supreme Court ruling, 'contemporary community standards' may be used as a yardstick for judging material as unprotected obscenity. This is a very subjective judgment, and so Lawrence Walters, a defense lawyer for Clinton Raymond McCowen, is using Google Trends to show that, in the privacy of their own homes, more people in Pensacola (the only city in the court's jurisdiction that is large enough to be singled out in the service's data) are interested in 'orgy' than "apple pie'."

Windows XP SP3 Creating Havoc 742

ozmanjusri writes "According to Information Week, within hours of its wide availability Windows XP SP3 had drawn hundreds of complaints from users who claim the update is wreaking havoc on their computers. One user said in a Microsoft newsgroup: 'I downloaded and installed [the SP3] package for IT Professionals and Developers on one of my computers. Now I can't get the computer to boot. I don't think Microsoft should have made this a critical update.' Other sites including IT Wire are also reporting problems, which include include random reboots or the inability to boot at all." Note that XP3 won't install on systems running beta IE8; and after a successful SP3 install users will no longer be able to downgrade from IE7 to IE6.
Operating Systems

Journal Journal: I just noticed a funny thing...

I just noticed a funny thing. I had a few minutes to kill (I'm going out in a bit), and I was idly checking my Slashdot posts to see if anyone had replied to any of them, when I spotted this funny thing.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Random Ramblings on the UK election

Random Ramblings on the UK election.

Four days to go to the most under-anticipated general Election in history, and British democracy really is in a pathetic state.

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