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Transparent Aluminum Is "New State of Matter" 406

Professor_Quail writes with this interesting excerpt: "Oxford scientists have created a transparent form of aluminum by bombarding the metal with the world's most powerful soft X-ray laser. 'Transparent aluminum' previously only existed in science fiction, featuring in the movie Star Trek IV, but the real material is an exotic new state of matter with implications for planetary science and nuclear fusion."

Comment Re:Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice (Score 1) 1376

I would just like you to read the rest of this thread, and legitimately say to me that atheists are not antagonistic towards religion. This topic has some very strong parallels to the article on racism a day or two ago: do you have the right to be offensive?

I would argue that yes, you have the right to be offensive. However, you don't have the right to be heard. Also, being offensive just shows that you are a dick.

The way I see it, I believe something; you might believe something else. Does that make it ok for me to call you stupid and uneducated? And FFS, stop stereotyping Christians as anti-environmental, anti-technology ass-backwards inbreeds. Most of the Christians that don't care about the environment are in direct contradiction to the Bible that they supposedly hold true to (it specifically says that we are to care for the world).

Look at yourself before you go spouting off hate at "religionists" who all supposedly spend their time trying to screw atheists.


Submission + - Has Windows 7 Upgrade Removed OS Activation Check? (

Acererak writes: "Will Windows 7 require an installed and activated version of a previous operating system prior to an upgrade? That's been the question on everyone's minds lately, spurred by a report referencing an unnamed Microsoft spokesperson. If true, it'll be a giant hassle for Windows 7 re-installations given that the upgrade process invalidates the CD key of the previous operating system--can't activate an operating system with an invalid key, after all.

The confusing part? A Microsoft employee is now directly contradicting this information. Windows 7 has allegedly downgraded to Windows XP's authentication process. You'll only need to insert the DVD of a previous operating system during the Windows 7 installation to satisfy upgrade eligibility. But is this really accurate, seeing as it doesn't fit with Microsoft's desire to increase anti-piracy measures in its future operating systems? If not, it just goes to show that Microsoft is just as confused about how to upgrade to Windows 7 as anyone else right now."

The Courts

Submission + - Court Appoints Pro Bono Counsel For RIAA Deft (

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: "In what could be a turning point in the RIAA's litigation campaign, a Michigan judge has decided to appoint pro bono counsel to represent college student Brittany Kruger, who is being sued by the RIAA in SONY BMG Music Entertainment v. Kruger. As this article points out, 'if other judges follow suit, things will change dramatically'. That is because the RIAA's entire litigation campaign is based upon economic inequality of the litigants : almost none of those sued by the RIAA can afford legal representation, and the RIAA has a huge economic incentive to fight cases to the death, while the defendants have no economic incentive greater than the 'settlement' amount, which they often pay even when entirely innocent. If the courts follow the lead of District Judge Timothy P. Greeley (PDF), and appoint pro bono legal counsel, the RIAA will no longer be able to achieve the easy pickings default judgments and 'settlements' it's routinely obtained in the past."

Comment Soon, in the UK... (Score 1) 345

(Young entrepreneur painstakingly copies letter-by-letter the Windows 7 source code, gets sued and heads to court)

The defense?

But I worked hard on it and spent a lot of time and money copying the code.

Effort on its own means jackshit in this world (except maybe public schools), you need to actually produce something of its own merit.

United States

Submission + - Majority of US Scientists Identify as Democrats ( 4

Ripit writes: According to a Pew Research poll released on July 9, 2009, US scientists overwhelmingly identify themselves as Democrats. 55% of scientists say they are Democrats, compared to 35% of the general population. Only 6% of scientists say they are Republicans, compared to 23% of the general population. Surprisingly, scientists identified themselves as independents less often than the population as a whole, 32% to 34%, respectively.

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As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality. -- Albert Einstein