Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment High resolution but small volume (Score 5, Informative) 161

The actual scientific paper is:
C. L. Degen, M. Poggio, H. J. Mamin, C. T. Rettner, D. Rugar Nanoscale magnetic resonance imaging PNAS 2009, doi: 10.1073/pnas.0812068106.

The abstract:

We have combined ultrasensitive magnetic resonance force microscopy (MRFM) with 3D image reconstruction to achieve magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with resolution <10 nm. The image reconstruction converts measured magnetic force data into a 3D map of nuclear spin density, taking advantage of the unique characteristics of the 'resonant slice' that is projected outward from a nanoscale magnetic tip. The basic principles are demonstrated by imaging the 1H spin density within individual tobacco mosaic virus particles sitting on a nanometer-thick layer of adsorbed hydrocarbons. This result, which represents a 100 million-fold improvement in volume resolution over conventional MRI, demonstrates the potential of MRFM as a tool for 3D, elementally selective imaging on the nanometer scale.

I think it's important to emphasize that this is a nanoscale magnetic imaging technique. The summary implies that they created a conventional MRI that has nanoscale resolution, as if they can now image a person's brain and pick out individual cells and molecules. That is not the case! And that is likely to never be possible (given the frequencies of radiation that MRI uses and the diffraction limit that applies to far-field imaging.

That having been said, this is still a very cool and noteworthy piece of science. Scientists use a variety of nanoscale imaging tools (atomic force microscopes, electron microscopes, etc.), but having the ability to do nanoscale magnetic imaging is amazing. In the article they do a 3D reconstruction of a tobacco mosaic virus. One of the great things about MRI is that is has some amount of chemical selectivity: there are different magnetic imaging modes that can differentiate based on makeup. This nanoscale analog can use similar tricks: instead of just getting images of surface topography or electron density, it could actually determine the chemical makeup within nanostructures. I expect this will become a very powerful technique for nano-imaging over the next decade.

The Courts

Submission + - LANCOR v. OLPC Update (

drewmoney writes: According to an article on Groklaw: It's begun in a Nigerian court. LANCOR has actually done it. Guess what the Nigerian keyboard makers want from the One Laptop Per Child charitable organization trying to make the world a better place?

$20 million dollars in "damages", and an injunction blocking OLPC from distribution in Nigeria.

The Courts

Submission + - Xterasys GPL Violation Lawsuit Settled (

I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes: "Xterasys has settled the GPL breech lawsuit brought by the BusyBox developers. In short, they've agreed to comply with the GPL, notify all previous customers as to where they can get source code, appoint an "Open Source Compliance Officer," and to pay undisclosed damages to the plaintiffs. Once the SFLC verifies their compliance with these terms, their right to distribute BusyBox under the GPL's terms will be reinstated."

Submission + - Original KDE3 vs. KDE4 Memory Comparison Debunked (

An anonymous reader writes: The author of the original KDE 3.5 vs KDE 4.0 memory comparison, which indicated that KDE 4.0 used less memory than the KDE 3.5 series, has come out with a more accurate benchmark. In reality, KDE 4.0 uses 110 MB more memory than KDE 3.5.8. This was no surprise to many KDE developers, who saw many mistakes in the way the original results were obtained. However, given the new composite window manager, Plasma/Oxygen bling, and numerous new features, the extra memory consumption is probably well worth it!

Submission + - Dell: You cannot use MS Vol Lic. on Open Source PC ( 2

An anonymous reader writes: Dell says you can't use your existing Microsoft Volume Licensing on its line of Open Source notebook computers. They go on to say, "Customers interested in a Microsoft® Windows® solution should purchase a Dell notebook pre-loaded with Windows XP Professional."

What good is volume licensing if you have to buy a computer that already has a license?


Submission + - T-Mobile Blocking Twitter? (

bblboy54 writes: "While there isn't any (published) official word from T-Mobile or from Twitter, it appears that T-Mobile has begun blocking users from sending SMS messages to the Twitter service. There are a few blog posts popping up regarding this including one over at Alternageek. I personally called T-Mobile last night and spoke with 3 different representatives before finally being told that "T-Mobile does not support third party message providers and while you were able to use the Twitter service previously, this was the result of a bug in their system which has now been corrected." When I specifically asked if I could expect to ever be able to use Twitter with T-Mobile again I was told that it wouldn't occur until Twitter made a contract with T-Mobile (the same mentality that ISPs are using to destroy net neutrality). This can be confirmed by asking anyone on T-Mobile to send an SMS to the Twitter short code (40404) and they will most likely receive a service is unavailable message which has been the result for the last 3 days."

Submission + - Can Blockbuster be sued over Facebook/Beacon? (

An anonymous reader writes: A professor at the New York Law School is arguing that Blockbuster violated the Video Privacy Protection Act of 1988 (Bork law) when movie choices that Facebook members made on its Web site were made available to other members of the social network via Beacon. The law basically prohibits video rental outfits from disclosing rental choice of their customers to anyone else without specific writtine consent. Facebook's legal liability in all of this is unclear though with Blockbuster it's a straightforward case of not complying with the VPPA, the law professor says.

Submission + - Microsoft's OOXML claims its first scalp! (

The Open Sourcerer writes: "In what is an astonishingly outspoken report, Martin Bryan, Convenor, ISO/IEC JTC1/SC34 WG1 has given insight into the total mess that Microsoft/ECMA has caused during their scandalous, underhand and unremitting attempts to get — what is a very poorly written specification — approved as an ISO standard. "The disparity of rules for PAS, Fast-Track and ISO committee generated standards is fast making ISO a laughing stock in IT circles. The days of open standards development are fast disappearing. Instead we are getting "standardization by corporation", something I have been fighting against for the 20 years I have served on ISO committees. I am glad to be retiring before the situation becomes impossible. I wish my colleagues every success for their future efforts, which I sincerely hope will not prove to be as wasted as I fear they could be." The Open Sourcerer"

Submission + - Survey shows colleges serious about copyright (

An anonymous reader writes: According to survey results published yesterday, colleges and universities take copyright issues and P2P traffic very seriously, despite claims to the contrary.

Some in Congress have accused schools of turning a blind eye "to the theft of the creative works of others," but only one of the respondents said his or her school didn't have a bandwidth policy in place and all of the schools said that they had someone designated to handle DMCA complaints. The results also chip away at the logic behind legislation such as last month's education bill that would require schools to develop education plans warning students about the dangers of infringement and to evaluate technological countermeasures. It appears that schools are doing exactly that.

The raw survey data is also available.


Submission + - NASA to scientists: Reveal sex history or lose job 1

Markmarkmark writes: "Wired is reporting that all NASA JPL scientists must 'voluntarily' (or be fired) sign a document giving the government the right to investigate their personal lives and history 'without limit'. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists this includes snooping into sexual orientation, mental & physical health as well as credit history and 'personality conflict'. 28 senior NASA scientists and engineers, including Mars Rover team members, refused to sign by the deadline and are now subject to being fired despite a decade or more of exemplary service. None of them even work on anything classified or defense related. They are suing the government and documenting their fight for their jobs and right to personal privacy."

Submission + - FBI slammed as Amazon wins customer privacy battle

Stony Stevenson writes: The FBI has been slammed in a court ruling after attempting to get Amazon to hand over details on its customers and their reading habits. The agency had taken Amazon to court after the company refused to hand over customer records.

"The [subpoena's] chilling effect on expressive e-commerce would frost keyboards across America," US magistrate Judge Stephen Crocker wrote in an August 2006 ruling which he has just unsealed. "Well-founded or not, rumours of an Orwellian federal criminal investigation into the reading habits of Amazon's customers could frighten countless potential customers into cancelling planned online book purchases."

Submission + - Connect Arkansas Broadband Act signed into law (

An anonymous reader writes: On March 28, 2007, Governor Mike Beebe signed the Connect Arkansas Broadband Act into law to expand broadband infrastructure throughout Arkansas. The legislation paved the way to make internet access and usage available to all Arkansans. Connect Arkansas, a 501(c)(3) private, non-profit organization, was formed to implement this plan and progress is actively underway. Words such as "delivery platform neutral" may sound unusual, but the concept is clear. Connect Arkansas will work with all internet service providers to accomplish its two initial objectives Prepare the people and businesses of Arkansas to secure the economic, educational, health, social and other benefits available via broadband use. Facilitate the availability of broadband service to every home and business in Arkansas.
The Internet

Submission + - EFF fires an upper-cut at Internet traffic futzers ( 1

coondoggie writes: "Looking to keep the pressure on Comcast and any other ISPs who might be messing with Internet traffic, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) today has released software and documentation instructing 'Net users on how to test for packet forgery or other forms of interference by their own service providers.The EFF also published what it calls a comprehensive account of Comcast's packet-forging activities."

Slashdot Top Deals