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Comment Now's your chance ... (Score 1) 368

... to snag that perfect e-mail address. Back in the days of hotmail, users would register addresses like surferdude@hotmail.com. Once gmail came around, they over-corrected and secured uber-professional addresses like firstname.m.lastname@gmail.com, which turn out to be pain to type into tiny phone keypads (or read aloud over the phone).

Two of my friends have already picked up first@outlook.com. Get 'em before they're gone!

Comment Language! (Score 2) 311

From the last line of the article: "it’s a human thing to have a memory.”

Memory is not the real issue ... the real issue is language. Yes, dolphins, whales, birds, etc. can communicate, but not with an infinitely rich grammar. Many anthropologists (and, not surprisingly, linguists) believe that language is key to understanding the uniqueness of the human mind. To me, that's what makes brain cell implantation freaky.

Surely one cell is not too controversial. Two... maybe a little. But once you start down this path, think about where it could go:

Day 137: Rats seem to react to their names.
Day 409: Rats react to basic commands ("Go left" or "Go right")
Day 687: Rats are able to respond to simple yes/no questions ("Are you hungry?")
Day 992: Rat named Stickers cheeps one word: "Stop."

I'm not passing any judgement on this research ... just sayin' that we're entering some uncharted waters.
News

Submission + - Signing Up to Live in a Billboard (sunshinestatenews.com)

An anonymous reader writes: A California company has come up with a unique, if not bizarre, way to make money and help homeowners buy time against foreclosure — turn their houses into billboards. And the company's CEO says it's an opportunity coming soon to homeowners in Florida.

Comment Plagiarism (Score 1) 362

the report points out that a growing volume of research publications does not necessarily mean in increase in quality

No kidding. China (and Asia South-Pacific in general) has a rampant plagiarism problem. E.g.,:

http://www.forbes.com/fdc/welcome_mjx.shtml
http://articles.sfgate.com/2010-04-11/news/20844688_1_yuan-papers-professor

This practice has permeated many of the country's scientific journals, where it is commonplace to copy-and-paste large sections of others' work. International journals are typically able to shield this using "similarity detectors" and peer review, but the occasional hack-job still gets through occasionally.

Comment Re:Mistake in Summary (Score 4, Informative) 318

The word you're looking for is intractable:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computational_complexity_theory#Intractability

The term "infeasible" w.r.t. constraint satisfaction problems (like 3-SAT) does not refer to the difficultly of the problem, but rather its result. For instance, an easy SAT problem with no solution would be infeasible.

Comment Actual authors (Score 2) 170

After 65 years, Paul Erdos' combinatorial problem has been solved by Indiana University professor Nets Hawk Katz.

It was actually solved by Larry Guth and Nets Hawk Katz. Not sure how it is that authors magically disappear from press releases, especially principal authors...

Comment Re:7.0? Really? (Score 1) 292

Their release schedule was announced back in July, so it's not like they're hiding their intentions:

http://tech.slashdot.org/story/10/07/23/2114230/Google-Schedules-Chrome-6-7-and-8-For-This-Year

And of course they're doing this. It doesn't cost them a nickel, and the average computer may indeed compare version numbers of competing products (even if they shouldn't).

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