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Submission + - How the Facebook platform is changing the world

malbrech writes: "An article in the Guardian technology blog points us to how the Facebook platform makes web applications explode virally. There is also an excellent analysis of Facebook by Marc Andreesen (remember? the guy who did Mosaic and Netscape). In a nutshell: the carefully designed instant awareness of your friends of the application you just started using, makes them use it too. That cascades onto their friends, and so on. The result: your servers get blown apart in very short time. You might be famous, but flat out beaten by traffic."

FBI Releases Results of Operation Bot Roast 189

coondoggie writes to tell us that the FBI has released the findings of their recent botnet study and have identified over 1 million botnet crime victims. "The FBI is working with industry partners, including the Computer Emergency Response Team Coordination Center at Carnegie Mellon University, to notify the victim owners of the computers. Microsoft and the Botnet Task Force have also helped out the FBI. Through this process the FBI may uncover additional incidents in which botnets have been used to facilitate other criminal activity, the FBI said in a statement.Bots are widely recognized as one of the top scourges of the industry. Gartner predicts that by year-end 75% of enterprises 'will be infected with undetected, financially motivated, targeted malware that evaded traditional perimeter and host defenses.'"

Submission + - Partner choice 'shaped by father'

gollum123 writes: "Much as she might hate to admit it, a woman's choice of partner may depend a lot on her own father ( ). Scientists have found women who were treated well by their dad during childhood are attracted to men who resemble their father facially. But the link is lost on women who did not have good relationships with their fathers. Women in the study were asked to rate pictures of men's faces for attractiveness, and assess their relationship with their fathers. They found in women who reported more positive relationships with their fathers, there was a link between the faces the women found most attractive and their father's faces. The study was the first of its kind to use facial measurements to assess the similarity of the faces."

Feed Space Station gets boost from new solar array (

Filed under: Misc. Gadgets

It may have taken longer than expected, but the International Space Station is slowly starting to come up to full speed, with a new solar array now fully unfurled after being installed earlier during Atlantis' mission. Measuring 240 feet long, the twin solar panels are the third of four "wings" to be installed on the Space Station, which are required to provide the necessary power to the new modules set to be attached to the ISS later this year and next. Before they can be put into service, however, the astronauts have to retract part of an older solar array in order to make room for the new wings to rotate, which so far appears to be going off without a hitch.

[Via, photo courtesy of NASA]

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Office Depot Featured Gadget: Xbox 360 Platinum System Packs the power to bring games to life!


Submission + - How to deal with an abusive web host?

An anonymous reader writes: I recently sent a DMCA takedown notice to a hosting company, regarding a customer who was blatantly posting copyrighted material from my website, along with attacks against me based on sexual orientation. I was told that, because they agreed with the person's attacks, the offending content would not be removed. They also claim that copyright is irrelevant, because they agree with their customer's "comments." I couldn't believe this response, but upon Googling the name of this host, I found dozens of webmasters and ISPs complaining about legal threats and spam attacks originating from this company. What is the correct way to deal with this issue?

Submission + - AT&T to Block Content For RIAA/MPAA

Nom du Keyboard writes: Several sources are reporting an agreement between AT&T and the RIAA/MPAA alliance to block copyrighted material on their network. And as has been pointed out, AT&T has a lot of network, meaning most packets traverse a piece of it at some point. Money quote: "As AT&T has begun selling pay-television services, the company has realized that its interests are more closely aligned with Hollywood." Nice to know that their interests aren't aligned with their paying customers any longer.

Submission + - Your neck bone's connected to your cellphone (

stevedcc writes: "New Scientist are running an article about using sound waves to communicate between different devices attached to a user's body, avoiding the potential interception issues of wireless signals. From the article:

They want to use the human skeleton to transmit commands reliably and securely to wearable gadgets and medical implants. Their research, funded by Microsoft and Texas Instruments, could also lead to new ways for people with disabilities to control devices such as computers and PDAs.


Submission + - Plants 'recognize' their siblings (

An anonymous reader writes: Biologists have discovered that just like humans, plants can also recognize their relatives. Researchers at McMaster University have found that plants get fiercely competitive when forced to share their pot with strangers of the same species, but they're accommodating when potted with their siblings.

Submission + - The 40 Fastest-Growing Software Companies (

morningside writes: The biggest software makers continue to rely on acquisitions for growth, according to this article (with rankings) in Baseline. "While the software industry has matured, M&A is still letting stalwarts like Oracle, Adobe and Symantec post top-line growth in excess of 20%. Here's our list of the company's with the best year-over-year revenue rise."

Feed Financial Institutions Start To Turn On The Almighty FICO (

If you wanted to get a truly accurate picture of an individual's creditworthiness, you'd want to include factors like salary, past payment history, career risk, health risk, family situation and so on. But for the most part, the lending market operates on the assumption that a single numerical score, the FICO score, can adequately synthesize all of the relevant data into a useful indicator for lenders. However, the recent breakdown of the subprime mortgage market has some market participants wondering whether the FICO score is becoming irrelevant. Certainly, it did an inadequate job of anticipating default rates among borrowers on the low end of the spectrum. Critics are also pointing out that the system has only been used by mortgage lenders since the 90s, during which housing prices have steadily grown along with the economy. Thus, the system hasn't been tested during a period of slumping housing prices and significant economic weakness. Already, we've seen new services spring up that try to give more detailed information on the reliability of a borrower or renter, in an attempt to break the stranglehold on the market held by the credit reporting agencies. If banks and other lenders continue to grow dissatisfied by the FICO system, it's likely that more alternative institutions will emerge.

Feed Plants Recognize Their Siblings, Biologists Discover (

Biologists have found that plants get competitive when forced to share their plot with strangers of the same species, but they're accommodating when potted with their siblings. It's the first time the ability to recognize and favor kin has been revealed in plants.

Feed Physicists Discover 'Triple-scoop' Baryon (

Physicists have discovered a new heavy particle, the Îb (pronounced "zigh sub b") baryon, with a mass of 5.774±0.019 GeV/c2, approximately six times the proton mass. The newly discovered electrically charged Îb baryon, also known as the "cascade b," is made of a down, a strange and a bottom quark.

Matter Discovered Traveling at Near Light Speed 403

mcgrew writes to mention New Scientist is reporting that scientists have clocked matter traveling at 99.999% the speed of light. "The fastest flows of matter in the universe shoot out of dying stars at more than 99.999% the speed of light, new observations reveal. When a massive star runs out of fuel, it collapses to form a black hole or a neutron star. In the process, some of the matter from the star also explodes outward at blistering speeds, producing an intense burst of gamma rays and other radiation."

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