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Google

Android 2.0 SDK Released, Google Maps Navigation Announced 121

stoolpigeon writes "The Android 2.0 SDK is now available from Google. This puts to bed concerns about Google not releasing the SDK or perhaps being in some kind of exclusivity deal with Verizon around 2.0. The release notes give a nice overview of what is there. Those who already have the SDK can grab the updated tools as SDK components; everyone else will pick up everything when downloading the new SDK." Relatedly, reader riffzifnab reports that Google has also announced Google Maps Navigation, a GPS application for Android 2.0 that takes voice input and integrates with internet searches and Street View.
The Almighty Buck

Device Protects Day Traders From Emotional Trading 260

Philips Electronics, a Netherlands-based company, has come up with a device designed to protect day traders from emotionally based trading decisions. The Rationalizer measures your galvanic skin response and lets you know when you are under stress. An online trader can then take a "time-out, wind down and re-consider their actions," according to the company. This may have come too late for us, but at least future generations won't have to live through the horror of angry day trading.
IT

Why Developers Get Fired 535

jammag writes "Other coders get canned — but never you, right? From a developer who's now a manager (and who admits to being fired himself) comes the inside story on how the Big Ax might sneak up on you. To prevent it, he recommends some strategic bragging, keeping a CYA (Cover Your ...) folder to document your efforts, and making sure that your talent isn't frittered away so much that even your most mediocre colleagues look good. "
Transportation

MIT Electric Car May Outperform Rival Gas Models 457

alphadogg writes "Inside a plain-looking garage on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's campus, undergraduate Radu Gogoana and his team of fellow students are working on a project that could rival what major automobile manufacturers are doing. The team's goal is to build an all-electric car with similar performance capabilities of gasoline-only counterparts, which includes a top speed of about 161 kph, a family sedan capacity, a range of about 320 kilometers and the ability to recharge in about 10 minutes. They hope to complete the project, which they chronicle on their blog, by the third quarter of 2010. Each member of MIT's Electric Vehicle Team works almost 100 hours a week on the project they call elEVen. 'Right now the thing that differentiates us is that we're exploring rapid recharge,' Gogoana said during an interview. He said that many of today's electric vehicles take between two to 12 hours to recharge and he doesn't know of any commercially available, rapidly recharging vehicles."
Graphics

Five Nvidia CUDA-Enabled Apps Tested 134

crazipper writes "Much fuss has been made about Nvidia's CUDA technology and its general-purpose computing potential. Now, in 2009, a steady stream of launches from third-party software developers sees CUDA gaining traction at the mainstream. Tom's Hardware takes five of the most interesting desktop apps with CUDA support and compares the speed-up yielded by a pair of mainstream GPUs versus a CPU-only. Not surprisingly, depending on the workload you throw at your GPU, you'll see results ranging from average to downright impressive."
PC Games (Games)

Interview for Mytheon 32

Kheldon tips an interview with Petroglyph's Chuck Kroegel about an upcoming MMO called Mytheon, which will be free to play, but also involve micro-transactions. It's an action strategy game with RTS and RPG elements. He says, "The game starts in the Greco-Roman era, as well as Egypt, and as time goes on we'll expand throughout the whole world. Something everyone has in common is they all have their mythologies, these beasts and these stories that have come to us through legends and folklore. All the nations of the world, they all have their own. So in our game Mytheon, we can eventually fill the Earth in terms of being able to explore mythologies of all nations. It's an action/strategy game, with elements of RPG, and elements of RTS that people have to come to appreciate and enjoy."
Update — 4/30 at 17:30 by SS: The summary originally linked to an article stating that Petroglyph was working with Trion World Network on Mytheon. This is not the case; they are working together on a different game, which is the MMORTS previously referenced in the title.
Democrats

Senator Arlen Specter Becomes a Democrat 1124

Akido37 was one of many readers letting us know that US Sen. Arlen Specter has changed parties to become a Democrat. This gives the Democrats 59 seats in the Senate, and 60 if and when Al Franken gets seated from Minnesota. However, Specter said in his announcement that he will not be an automatic 60th vote for breaking Republican filibusters. While the senator's move seems to have surprised many Republicans, it is understandable to moderate Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine, who said, "You haven't certainly heard warm encouraging words of how they [Republicans] view moderates. Either you are with us or against us." Specter noted that in his home state of Pennsylvania, 200,000 formerly Republican voters switched party allegiance last year.
Privacy

Rep. Jane Harman Focus In Yet Another Warrantless Wiretap Scandal 312

Many different sources are talking about the latest scandal surrounding the warrantless wiretapping program. Incriminating evidence against California rep. Jane Harman was apparently captured some time ago on a legal NSA wiretap. However, Attorney General Gonzales supposedly intervened to drop the case against her because (and this is where the irony meter explodes) Bush officials wanted her to be able to publicly defend the warrantless wiretap program. "Jane Harman, in the wake of the NSA scandal, became probably the most crucial defender of the Bush warrantless eavesdropping program, using her status as 'the ranking Democratic on the House intelligence committee' to repeatedly praise the NSA program as 'essential to US national security' and 'both necessary and legal.'"
Privacy

Wikipedia Opts Out Of Phorm 98

ais523 writes "Wikipedia (and other websites run by Wikimedia) have requested to opt-out from Phorm; according to the email they sent, they 'consider the scanning and profiling of our visitors' behavior by a third party to be an infringement on their privacy.'" Another reader points to this post on techblog.wikimedia.org which includes a confirmation from Phorm that those sites will be excluded.
Social Networks

Digg Backs Down On DiggBar 180

Barence writes "Social news website Digg.com has made key changes to its recently introduced DiggBar. The browser add-on had been much criticised for its use of frames to 'host' third-party websites within the digg.com domain using an obfuscating short URL, thereby boosting its own traffic figures to the detriment of those third parties. After many major sites ran negative articles on the DiggBar, and even changed their code to block it, Digg has relented and announced two changes to ease concerns."
Spam

The Ecological Impact of Spam 176

krou writes "A new study entitled 'The Carbon Footprint of Spam' (PDF) published by ICF International and commissioned by McAfee claims that spam uses around 33 billion kilowatt hours of energy annually, which is approximately enough to power 2.4 million US homes (or roughly 3.1 million cars) for a year. They calculated that the average CO2 emission for a spam email is around 0.3 grams. Interestingly, the majority of energy usage (around 80%) comes from users viewing and deleting spam, and searching for legitimate emails within spam filters. They also claim that 'An individual company can find that one fifth of the energy budget of its email system is wasted on spam.' One of the report's authors, Richi Jennings, writes on his blog that 'spam filtering actually saves an incredible amount of energy.' He continues, 'Imagine if every inbox were protected by a state-of-the-art spam filter. We could save about 75% of the spam energy used today — 25 TWh per year; that's like taking 2.3 million cars off the road.""
Privacy

Using Net Proxies Will Lead To Harsher Sentences 366

Afforess writes "'Proxy servers are an everyday part of Internet surfing. But using one in a crime could soon lead to more time in the clink,' reports the Associated Press. The new federal rules would make the use of proxy servers count as 'sophistication' in a crime, leading to 25% longer jail sentences. Privacy advocates complain this will disincentivize privacy and anonymity online. '[The government is telling people] ... if you take normal steps to protect your privacy, we're going to view you as a more sophisticated criminal,' writes the Center for Democracy and Technology. Others fear this may lead to 'cruel and unusual punishments' as Internet and cell phone providers often use proxies without users' knowledge to reroute Internet traffic. This may also ultimately harm corporations when employees abuse VPN's, as they too are counted as a 'proxy' in the new legislation. TOR, a common Internet anonymizer, is also targeted in the new legislation. Some analysts believe this legislation is an effort to stop leaked US Government information from reaching outside sources, such as Wikileaks. The legislation (PDF, the proposed amendment is on pages 5-15) will be voted on by the United States Sentencing Commission on April 15, and is set to take effect on November 1st. The EFF has already urged the Commission to reject the amendment."
Moon

Volunteers Recover Lunar Orbiter 1 Photographs 150

mikael writes "The LA Times is reporting on the efforts of a group of volunteers with funding from NASA to recover high resolution photographs of the Moon taken by Lunar Orbiter 1 in the 1960s. The collection of 2000 images is stored entirely on magnetic tape which can only be read by a $330,000 FR-900 Ampex magnetic tape reader. The team consisted of Nancy Evans, NASA's archivist who ensured that the 20-foot by 10-foot x 6-foot collection of magnetic tapes were never thrown out, Dennis Wingo, Keith Cowing of NASA Watch and Ken Zim who had experience of repairing video equipment. Two weeks ago, the second image, of the Copernicus Crater, was recovered."
The Almighty Buck

Paper Companies' Windfall of Unintended Consequences 284

Jamie found a post on ScienceBlogs that serves as a stark example of the law of unintended consequences, as well as the ability of private industry to game a system of laws to their advantage. It seems that large paper companies stand to reap as much as $8 billion this year by doing the opposite of what an alternative-fuel bill intended. Here is the article from The Nation with more details and a mild reaction from a Congressional staffer. "[T]he United States government stands to pay out as much as $8 billion this year to the ten largest paper companies.... even though the money comes from a transportation bill whose manifest intent was to reduce dependence on fossil fuel, paper mills are adding diesel fuel to a process that requires none in order to qualify for the tax credit. In other words, we are paying the industry — handsomely — to use more fossil fuel. 'Which is,' as a Goldman Sachs report archly noted, the 'opposite of what lawmakers likely had in mind when the tax credit was established.'"

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