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Comment Re:Doesn't need to be a spaceship (Score 2, Informative) 436

Actually, it looks like you're pretty close:

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DeLorean_time_machine#Operation

"As it accelerates, several rails around the body of the car glow blue, a wormhole generator on top of the car makes a wormhole in front of the car."

As I remember, the car does shoot a couple of sparks or something forward just before the jump.

Space

Submission + - Arecibo Observatory's Future in Doubt

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: "The future is hazy for the legendary Arecibo radio observatory in Puerto Rico, a 'jewel of space instruments'. The New York Times reports that the National Science Foundation, which pays for the observatory's operation, has slashed Arecibo's annual budget from $10.5 million to $8 million, and may close it altogether in four years, imperiling its historic work, including its detection of the near-Earth asteroid KW4 eight years ago. "The planetary science community is in danger of losing one of its instrumental crown jewels," Donald K. Yeomans, a scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, told the House subcommittee on space and aeronautics."
Media

Submission + - FOX News content too racy for Digg and YouTube (bravenewfilms.org) 1

Leighton Woodhouse writes: "Hi, my name is Leighton Woodhouse and I'm the Communications Director at Brave New Films. Last week, we had an experience with our latest YouTube video release that we thought you might be interested in hearing about.

The editors at Digg.com temporarily banned Brave New Films from posting on their site, and YouTube flagged our latest video as inappropriate for minors. We've been penalized for submitting "Adult Content" to each of the web sites.

What did we post? Clips from FOX News.

A little background: Brave New Films is the producer of "OutFoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism." Following on the success of that feature length documentary, BNF has been busy producing short online videos highlighting FOX's flagrant biases and the speciousness of its claim to be a real news organization. The series is called "FOX Attacks."

We've produced videos focused on FOX's racism, its warmongering, its global warming denial, and numerous other issues. Our latest video, which has garnered well over half a million views and counting, focuses on FOX's technique of driving up ratings by featuring explicit sexual content, frequently in stories denouncing the moral depravity of the "liberal media" for broadcasting that very material. The video, as you will see, masquerades as adult entertainment:

http://foxnewsporn.com/

You might wonder, as we did: Are the editors at Digg and YouTube just clueless, and incapable of understanding parody? After all, we weren't posting actual "adult content," just content lifted from FOX News programs that we facetiously labeled X-rated. Right?

Apparently not, according to one such Digg editor, who patiently explained to us that "that submission was Adult content. Yes, it was against our TOS, even though it was broadcast on FOX."

We thought we were doing parody, but apparently we weren't. According to Digg, FOX News IS porn. No irony necessary.

Our question is: Could Digg have banned BNF to cozy up to the News Corp., owner of FOX News, which they're rumored to be courting for a possible acquisition?

http://www.techcrunch.com/2006/10/24/digg-does-the-acquisition-dance-with-news-corp/

Our privileges have now been reinstated at Digg, after we were forced to promise that we wouldn't post FOX News' inappropriate content again. And after a minor rebellion by Digg users, Digg founder Kevin Rose was even forced to post a personal apology for censoring us.

YouTube, however, still has our sample of FOX News' footage behind an adult content firewall.

If you're interested in learning more about this story, please let me know. We'd like people to learn about this ridiculous episode, and I'm happy to help however I can."

Announcements

Submission + - Adobe Online Photoshop coming soon !

An anonymous reader writes: Adobe Systems has committed to shipping a beta version of its online image-editing tool, Photoshop Express, this year, and said it will be complete in 2008.
                                          "By late this year, we anticipate having a beta version," said John Loiacono, senior vice president for Adobe Creative Solutions, speaking at the 6sight digital imaging conference. And next year, the online service will be "available to anyone," he said.Photoshop Express is a profoundly important project, and Adobe's schedule indicates that its repercussions are near-term and not academic.
The Internet

Submission + - MLB Fans Who Bought DRM Videos Get Hosed

Billosaur writes: "Found via BoingBoing, Major League Baseball has just strengthened the case against DRM. If you downloaded videos of baseball games from MLB.com before 2006, apparently they no longer work and you are out of luck. MLB.com, sometime during 2006, changed their DRM system. Result: game videos purchased before that time will now no longer work, as the previous DRM system is no longer supported. When the video is played, apparently the MLB.com servers are contacted and a license obtained to verify the authenticity of the video; this is done by a web link. That link no longer exists, and so now the videos will no longer play, even though the MLB FAQ says that a license is only obtained once and will not need to be re-obtained. The blogger who is reporting this contacted MLB technical support, only to be told there are no refunds due to this problem."
Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft's XO Laptop Strategy... Huh? 2

gbulmash writes: "Microsoft is spending a "non-trivial" amount of money to get Windows XP working on the OLPC project's XO laptop. But why? Despite the conjecture that the Linux-based XO could convince millions of people in the developing world that they don't need Windows and build a huge base of developers for Linux, there still remains the question of how Microsoft would convince owners of XO laptops to buy and install Windows XP over the functional Linux-based OS already on it. It's doublful that Microsoft could encourage or coerce Negroponte to put XP on the machine, so whose arms will they twist?"
Portables

Submission + - Scented Cellphones Look Good, Smell Delicious (inventorspot.com)

An anonymous reader writes: If anyone still needs proof that Japan's cellphones are the most advanced in the world, Sony Ericsson's line of scented phones should do the job quite nicely. Officially known by their model name: DoCoMo SO703i, these phones excel in a number of ways besides the somewhat gimmicky scents. So, are you ready for the smellyphone?
Movies

Submission + - Fair Use or DMCA Violation? (movielandmarks.com)

An anonymous reader writes: A friend and I came up with a very cool idea for a Google Map mashup. Movie filming locations combined with YouTube video clips and photos of the precise filming location. We setup up shop at MovieLandmarks.com and we've been banging away at the code and adding landmarks for the last month. It is almost ready to 'go public', but we've run into a snag.

YouTube just pulled some of our short video clips for DMCA violations. These clips were of specific filming locations, and were less than a minute long in most cases. Similar clips, from the same movie of over 5 minutes are still available on Youtube! What gives?

Our goal is to create a Movie Landmark search engine, linking fan sites and filming location information from around the web in one location, using Google Maps to present it in a unique way (ie. no cartoon bubbles!). We've implemented photo caching so that hits to our site don't unexpectedly suck up the bandwidth of sites being linked to, and we always provide links to the sources for the material we display.

So what do you think? Is this fair use of these Movie clips? And even if it is (I think so, but I'm biased), what can we do about it? We're just 2 guys with a great idea, not the means to take on the film industry. In the long run this benefits them — we are promoting their films, and hopefully selling a few through our Amazon Associate account. But they obviously don't see it that way.

It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Digital 'smiley face' turns 25 (yahoo.com)

mytrip writes: "PITTSBURGH — It was a serious contribution to the electronic lexicon. :-) Twenty-five years ago, Carnegie Mellon University professor Scott E. Fahlman says, he was the first to use three keystrokes — a colon followed by a hyphen and a parenthesis — as a horizontal "smiley face" in a computer message.

Fahlman posted the emoticon in a message to an online electronic bulletin board at 11:44 a.m. on Sept. 19, 1982, during a discussion about the limits of online humor and how to denote comments meant to be taken lightly.

"I propose the following character sequence for joke markers: :-)," wrote Fahlman. "Read it sideways."

The suggestion gave computer users a way to convey humor or positive feelings with a smile — or the opposite sentiments by reversing the parenthesis to form a frown.

To mark the anniversary Wednesday, Fahlman and his colleagues are starting an annual student contest for innovation in technology-assisted, person-to-person communication. The Smiley Award, sponsored by Yahoo Inc., carries a $500 cash prize."

The Courts

Submission + - State Senator files lawsuit against God (google.com)

Geoffrey.landis writes: "A Nebraska state senator just filed a civil lawsuit against God.

"Chambers says in his lawsuit that God has made terroristic threats against the senator and his constituents, inspired fear and caused 'widespread death, destruction and terrorization of millions upon millions of the Earth's inhabitants.'"

He's apparently trying to make some kind of point."

Music

Submission + - Russian court aquits former owner of allofmp3.com (themoscowtimes.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Moscow's Cheremushkin District Court has acquitted Denis Kvasov, former owner of the music download website allofmp3.com, of violating intellectual property laws, reports Moscow Times.

The court has cited insufficient evidence of criminal activity — a question of fact — without touching the question of law of whether the site's activities (had they been proven by the prosecution) actually violated Russian copyright law. Yekaterina Sharapova, the trial's presiding judge, said: "I want to draw particular attention to the sloppy job done by prosecutors in collecting and analyzing the facts."

According to the Moscow Times, though, the allofmp3.com case is far from over. Two more criminal trials are scheduled to take place: one against Vladimir Mamotin, the media director of MediaServices, the parent company of allofmp3.com, and another against the company itself.

allofmp3.com has been a long subject of controversy. According to the licensing agreement, it pays a percentage of its revenue to the Russian Multimedia and Internet Society, which in turns pays individual rights holders of the songs. However, western music labels claim that ROMS's licensing agreement violates their intellectual property rights.

Media

Submission + - Dan Rather uncovers flaws in touchscreen voting

goombah99 writes: Dan Rather Reports has posted a lengthy YouTube teaser of their upcoming touchscreen voting expose (to air tuesday at 8 or 11pm ET) This is sort of a "60-minutes" style investigation of touchscreen voting. It's apparently not a rehash either. Rather turns up some new evidence such as tracking down the dilapidated plant where the ES&S ivotronic touchscreens were assembled. There they were having a 30 to 40% rejection rate on the screen themselves. Apparently the issue here was a rush to market to meet the election schedule. They needed lots of machines, fast. So plant workers say the rejects got shipped too. The "rush to market" aspect demonstrates an often overlooked strength of the use of open source software with commodity hardware and a multiple vendor business model like open voting consortium. This should be much less subject to single source point failures and has a built-in adversarial oversight nature that might lend some quality control. I just hope their conclusion is not "we need perfect machines and perfectly trained operators" and instead is we need a different approach that is transparent, robust and self correcting in the face of errors.

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