Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Biotech

"Vegetative State" Patients Can Communicate 347

Kittenman writes "The BBC is carrying a story about researchers in the UK and Belgium who can detect the thinking processes within a patient previously thought to be in a vegetative state. The researchers ask the patient verbally to think in certain ways to indicate a 'yes', in other ways to indicate a 'no' — and have successfully communicated with 4 out of 23 patients previously thought to be in a coma."
Cellphones

Truth Or Dare — What Is the Best US Cell Company? 395

Epsilon Eridani writes "I am returning to the US after an extended time overseas and upon my return I need to jump head first into the data enabled phone bandwagon. I have to admit ... I am lost as to what is the best company to choose. Before I left the US I used a Sprint HTC phone running Windows with the 'simply everything' plan to communicate and stay organized and a Sprint Wireless Card to connect my laptop to the world. Coming back several generations of technology later, what is the best set up technology-wise to link phone and laptop or two to the Internet? (Open source solutions accepted too!) Can the Slashdot community verify some of the claims on quality of service before I give my first born up when I sign a service contract?"
Cellphones

What Clown On a Unicycle? 284

R3d M3rcury writes "The New York Times has an article about walking and using a cellphone. 'The era of the mobile gadget is making mobility that much more perilous, particularly on crowded streets and in downtown areas where multiple multitaskers veer and swerve and walk to the beat of their own devices.' But the interesting part was an experiment run by Western Washington University this past fall. There was a student who knew how to ride a unicycle and a professor who had a clown suit. They dressed a student up as a clown and had him ride his unicycle around a popular campus square. Then they asked people, 'Did you see the Unicycling Clown?' 71% of the people walking in pairs said that they had. 51% of the people walking alone said that they had. But only 25% of the people talking on a cellphone said that they saw the unicycling clown. On the other hand, when asked 'Did you see anything unusual?' only about one person in three mentioned a unicycling clown. So maybe unicycling clowns aren't enough of a distraction at Western Washington University..."
GUI

Programming With Proportional Fonts? 394

theodp writes "Betty or Veronica? Mary Ann or Ginger? Proportional or Monospaced? There's renewed interest in an old blog post by Maas-Maarten Zeeman, in which M-MZ made the case for programming with proportional fonts, citing studies that show proportional fonts can be read 14% faster than fixed-width fonts. Try it for a couple of weeks, he suggests, and you might like it too. Nowadays, Lucida Grande is M-MZ's font of choice on OS X, and he uses Lucida Sans on Windows. Helvetica, anyone?"
Biotech

Organ Damage In Rats From Monsanto GMO Corn 766

jenningsthecat writes "A study published in December 2009 in the International Journal of Biological Sciences found that three varieties of Monsanto genetically-modified corn caused damage to the liver, kidneys, and other organs of rats. One of the corn varieties was designed to tolerate broad-spectrum herbicides, (so-called 'Roundup-ready' corn), while the other two contain bacteria-derived proteins that have insecticide properties. The study made use of Monsanto's own raw data. Quoting from the study's 'Conclusions' section: 'Our analysis highlights that the kidneys and liver as particularly important on which to focus such research as there was a clear negative impact on the function of these organs in rats consuming GM maize varieties for just 90 days.' Given the very high prevalence of corn in processed foods, this could be a real ticking time bomb. And with food manufacturers not being required by law to declare GMO content, I think I'll do my best to avoid corn altogether. Pass the puffed rice and pour me a glass of fizzy water!"
Movies

Here We Go Again — Video Standards War 2010 292

Andy Updegrove writes "Think of the words 'standards war,' and if you're of a certain age you're likely to think of the battle between the Betamax and VHS video tape formats. Fast forward, and you'll recall we just finished another video standards war between most of the same companies, this time between HD DVD and Blu-ray. Well, here we go again, except this time its the movie studios that are duking it out, and DRM issues are a big part of it. On the one side are five of the six major studios, dozens of cable, hardware, software, distribution and device vendors, and on the other side there's just Disney — and maybe Apple as well, and that's enough to have the other side worried."
Image

Learning JQuery 1.3 Screenshot-sm 153

Michael J. Ross writes "Of all Web technologies, JavaScript may have the most checkered past — first heralded as a powerful object-oriented language for jazzing up Web pages, but later condemned as a source of spammy pop-up windows and horrid animations polluting websites everywhere. Yet during the past several years, Web designers and developers are increasingly using JavaScript unobtrusively, for client-site interactivity — as a supplement to server-side functionality, not a replacement, and built upon standards-compliant (X)HTML and CSS. As a result, the once-derided language is now enjoying a true resurgence in interest and use. This has been bolstered by the proliferation of JavaScript libraries, of which jQuery is clearly the front runner. Web programmers seeking to get up to speed on this exciting resource can turn to Learning jQuery 1.3: Better Interaction Design and Web Development with Simple JavaScript Techniques." Keep reading for the rest of Michael's review.

Comment Re:Poor Summary (Score 1) 478

You're absolutely right. This slashdot article is a bad summary of a bad summary. The 8% number is in the abstract of the paper, and they cite human genome paper (from 2001) as one of the sources for that. What they're talking about is probably the overall % retroelement content, and not just the particular class of virus that this group is talking about. This is misleading because they also say the virus they're working with infects neuronal cells, which are more or less terminally differentiated, and so sequence from that shouldn't really end up in the germline cells. Of course, I haven't read beyond the first few sentences of the abstract, which is about the same that I think the PR person who wrote the article, and the submitter of the story did as well.
Earth

Climate, Habitat Threaten Wild Coffee Species 274

An anonymous reader writes "BBC reports that Dr. Aaron Davis of the Royal Botanical Gardens claims 'almost three-quarters of the world's wild coffee species are threatened, as a result of habitat loss and climate change. "Conserving the genetic diversity within this genus has implications for the sustainability of our daily cup, particularly as coffee plantations are highly susceptible to climate change.'"
The Courts

CRIA Faces $60 Billion Lawsuit 280

jvillain writes "The Canadian Recording Industry Association faces a lawsuit for 60 billion dollars over willful infringement. These numbers may sound outrageous, yet they are based on the same rules that led the recording industry to claim a single file sharer is liable for millions in damages. Since these exact same companies are currently in the middle of trying to force the Canadian government to bring in a DMCA for Canada, it will be interesting to see how they try to spin this."
Privacy

When a DNA Testing Firm Goes Bankrupt, Who Gets the Data? 114

wiedzmin writes "DeCODE Genetics, a genetics research firm from Iceland, has filed for bankruptcy in the US, and Saga Investments, a US venture capital firm, has already put in a bid to buy deCODE’s operations, raising privacy concerns about the fate of customer DNA samples and records. The company hasn’t disclosed how many clients signed up for its service, but provides a number of customer testimonials on its site, including Dorrit Mousaieff, Iceland’s first lady."
Mandriva

Mandriva Linux 2010 Is Finally Out 267

ennael writes "We finally did it. Mandriva Linux 2010 is out and comes with many improvements and innovations. We still go on supporting in the same level of integration GNOME 2.28 and KDE 4.3.2. Support for netbooks is improved as users can now easily test Moblin 2.0 environment. 'Smart desktop' coming from European research is now fully integrated and is the first real working semantic desktop. Mandriva Control Center also brings improvements in tools: a new netprofile management tool, a GUI for Tomoyo security framework, and parental control. A big thanks to our community, who worked hard and made this release possible."
Google

Google Betas Chrome 4, Touts 30% Speed Boost 383

CWmike writes "Google upgraded the beta version (4.0.223.16) of its Chrome browser yesterday, boasting a 30% speed improvement over the current production edition and adding integrated bookmark synchronization. Developers Idan Avraham and Anton Muhin, who announced the release, tout Chrome 4.0's faster JavaScript rendering speeds. 'We've improved performance scores on Google Chrome by 30% since our current stable release, and by 400% since our first stable release,' they said, referring to Chrome 3.0. The new beta includes the ability to sync bookmarked sites across multiple computers."
Movies

Jack Kirby Heirs Reclaim Marvel/Disney Rights 380

lbalbalba writes "Heirs to comic book legend Jack Kirby sent 45 notices of copyright termination to Marvel Entertainment, prospective Marvel buyer Disney, Sony Pictures, Universal Pictures, 20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, and others studios that that hold licensed media rights to Marvel characters. Some rights could revert to the heirs as soon as 2014, for characters that are among the hottest in Hollywood: The Incredible Hulk, The Mighty Thor, Iron Man, Spider-Man, The Avengers, and others. Among other things the heirs' demand could cause problems for Disney's as yet unconsummated purchase of Marvel."

Slashdot Top Deals

Get hold of portable property. -- Charles Dickens, "Great Expectations"

Working...