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Submission + - Copyright Reduces Access to Education in Argentina (

langelgjm writes: An Argentinean philosophy professor is being sued for alleged copyright infringement for posting translated versions of French philosopher Jacques Derrida's works on a website. In an attempt to make foreign philosophers' work available to Spanish language readers and students, Prof. Horacio Potel has created several websites: one on Nietzsche, another on Heidegger, and one on Derrida (now deactivated), all in Spanish. Philosophy texts are expensive and not widely available in Argentina; most are imported from Spain, and sold only in Buenos Aires.

According to the authorized French publisher, "Horacio Potel has posted, over the course of several years, without authorisation, and free of charge, full versions of several of Jacques Derrida's works, which is harmful to the diffusion of his (Derrida)'s thought." But Potel believes that by removing the works, the publisher has "inflicted a new death on the philosopher by taking his work off the internet." This dispute serves to highlight the larger debate over how copyright affects access to knowledge and educational materials.

Comment Re:It's Nick's, all Nick's (Score 1) 243

This seems like the only bit of discussion where people actually know something about the history of science and know that things weren't as clear cut then as we seem to think now. Anyway, I guess you're suggesting that Copernicus was the third case, i.e. he proposed a theory that could be empirically validated/falsified and was (presumably) better than the previous model. Well, in fact Copernicus' system was significantly worse in empirical adequacy (correspondence to observation) than Ptolemy's (at that time), wasn't really all that simpler (Copernicus assumed, with Aristotle, that planets have circular orbits and therefore needed epicycles too). Copernicus' system only received `real scientific' support much later from Newton's mechanics (but that was based on Copernicus so it's a bit circular). From several historical studies (Kuhn's for one) it seems that Copernicus' motivation for a heliocentric theory was a) that Ptolemaic system verged too far from Aristotle (orbits of planets weren't circular any more with all those epicycles) and b) the worship of the Sun in the renaissance period. Doesn't sound like `science' (as you define it) to me...

Submission + - First Evidence of Another Universe? 2

blamanj writes: Three months ago, astronomers announced the discovery of a large hole at the edge of our universe. Now, Dr. Laura Mersini-Houghton thinks she knows what that means. (Subscription req'd at New Scientist site, there's also an overview here.) According to string theory, there are many universes besides our own. Her team says that smaller universes are positioned at the edge of our universe, and because of gravitational interactions, they can be observed, and they're willing to make a prediction. The recently discovered void is in the northern hemisphere. They contend another one will be found in the southern hemisphere.
Operating Systems

Submission + - Vista vs. the Gibbon 4

ricegf writes: If you had 7 computers running various versions of Windows and Linux, on which machine would you choose to do most of your work? Rupert Goodwins describes his experience thus: 'So here's the funny thing. I've used Windows since 1.0. I've lived through the bad times of Windows/386 and ME, and the good times of NT 3.51 and 2K. I know XP if not backwards, then with a degree of familiarity that only middle-aged co-dependents can afford each other. Then how come I'm so much more at home with Ubuntu than Vista?'

Feed Bacterial Infection May Contribute To Cardiovascular Disease (

Half of the population of Swedish twenty-year-olds are carriers of the bacterium Chlamydia pneumoniae, an ubiquitous pathogen previously known to cause acute respiratory disease. It now appears that this bacterium also contributes to cardiovascular disease, the single greatest killer disease in the western world.

Feed The Stem Cells That Weren't There -- Surprising Finding May Lead To New Diabetes (

Diabetes researchers, investigating how the body supplies itself with insulin, discovered to their surprise that adult stem cells, which they expected to play a crucial role in the process, were nowhere to be found. Many researchers had proposed that adult stem cells develop into insulin-producing cells, called beta cells, in the pancreas. Instead, the beta cells themselves divide, although slowly, to replenish their own population.

Submission + - New Replacements For Diesel and Gasoline

An anonymous reader writes: A chemical engineering research team from Purdue University has put forth a process to make liquid fuels similar to diesel and gasoline. The process is claimed to be fully renewable, more energy efficient than current oil refining processes and carbon-free in production and distribution. What do Slashdotters think?

Submission + - Intel releases 2.93GHz quad-core QX6800

AnInkle writes: Intel's new QX6800 debuts, and The Tech Report runs the gamut of multi-threaded 64-bit benchmarks, to find out what $1199 can get in a CPU, or if you should get by on the cheap and stick with the $999 QX6700. With popular games, Folding@Home in Linux, real-world scientific applications, and detailed power consumption, the 2.93GHz quad-core QX6800 is compared to over a dozen competitors from both Intel and AMD. The results aren't surprising, but the commentary sure is fun.

Submission + - MIT Professor: Who Cares About Global Warming?

Jomama writes: Noted climate expert Richard S. Lindzen, the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology, writes in a recent Newsweek article that the global warming debate is irrelevant because global warming is actually a good thing that has naturally occured throughout the Earth's history. From the article:

Looking back on the earth's climate history, it's apparent that there's no such thing as an optimal temperature — a climate at which everything is just right. The current alarm rests on the false assumption not only that we live in a perfect world, temperaturewise, but also that our warming forecasts for the year 2040 are somehow more reliable than the weatherman's forecast for next week.

Submission + - Microsoft to offer DRM-free music too

Fjan11 writes: According to a Dutch Microsoft spokesman the company is planning to offer DRM-free music on Zune marketplace. No indication is given on when this will happen however. This is an embarassing 180 because Microsoft claimed DRM was "necessary for the business model" only a few weeks ago when Steve Jobs published his letter.

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This is clearly another case of too many mad scientists, and not enough hunchbacks.