Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

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.

Submission + - Hurricane Forecasts Were Dust-Busted

SeaDour writes: "A NASA study is claiming that one of the major reasons last year's hurricane season was so tame compared to the initial forecasts may have been due to increased dust storm activity in Africa's Sahara Desert. The dust particles drifted over the Atlantic, blocking sunlight to the water below which allowed it to cool significantly. "Dust concentrations may play as big a role as other atmospheric conditions, like El Nino, and offer some predictive value, so they should be closely monitored to improve hurricane forecasts," said lead author William Lau."

Submission + - ATI Catalyst 7.3, BSOD on Vista

The Great Danton writes: Recently, Tech ARP wrote about how the ATI Radeon X1950 GT graphics card had managed to obtain Vista certification without a working driver. The first working driver for the Radeon X1950 GT finally appeared on March 28, 2007, the Catalyst 7.3. Should X1950 GT owners jump for joy? Not quite yet as ATI didn't do a pretty good job with this driver set either. This article will show you how wrong it would go if you decided to install it on your Vista system. A nightmare would be an understatement.

Submission + - Jumping from kindergarten to the 3rd grade

mountainman writes: I just got an e-mail from my brother proudly announcing that my nephew's public school is recommending that he skip the first and second grades and go from kindergarten directly into the third grade. My nephew is pretty smart but has average social skills and I think this is a perfectly horrible idea. Skipping one grade might work but, in my opinion, skipping two will do little but guarantee that he'll have no friends until a few years past college when he can start drinking legally.

Does anyone on Slashdot have experience, either personally or as a parent, on skipping two grades like this?

Submission + - Possibly convert all transfusion blood Type O

UnanimousCoward writes: The BBC has an article that talks about a submission to Nature Biotechnology (not the current issue) in which scientists claim to have discovered a technique to convert all blood into Type O with the discovery of an enzyme that can strip the A and B antigens. This has implications to transform the stored blood supply into transfusable blood for all. It does not address the RH negative issue, though.

Submission + - E-Voting Bill That Works? Stop the Presses!

JeremyDuffy writes: "So they're finally going to try and do something about the e-voting disaster.

HR 811 features several requirements that will warm the hearts of geek activists. It bans the use of computerized voting machines that lack a voter-verified paper trail. It mandates that the paper records be the authoritative source in any recounts, and requires prominent notices reminding voters to double-check the paper record before leaving the polling place. It mandates automatic audits of at least three percent of all votes cast to detect discrepancies between the paper and electronic records. It bans voting machines that contain wireless networking hardware and prohibits connecting voting machines to the Internet. Finally, it requires that the source code for e-voting machines be made publicly available.
Holly Clap! There's not one thing in there that's wrong! If they actually implemented all those provisions, e-voting might actually work!

The proposal wasn't without its detractors, however. Several state election officials testified about the practical challenges of implementing the new requirements. Chris Nelson, South Dakota's secretary of state, warned that many of the requirements in the legislation would conflict with the states' own election procedures.
Oh BOO HOO HOO! Cry me a freaking river. "Oh it's too HARD to implement security! We need to have less restrictions so we can do this cheaper!" Idiots. The law allows flexibility in how some of the auditing is done as long as it's NIST approved and the states always have the option of keeping the optical current methods if they decide that the regulations for e-voting are too strict or too expensive to implement at this time. Of course, this almost sounds too good to be true. I'll have to read the law later, but I'm betting it has some terrible hidden catch like it legalizes eating little puppies or provides millions of pork dollars for human RFID implantations."

Slashdot Top Deals

When someone says "I want a programming language in which I need only say what I wish done," give him a lollipop.