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Comment Re:Mattress! (Score 1) 345

False yourself. A "dollar" was originally, and in the proverbial grandparent's day, a denotation of an amount of gold. Before fiat money came along, one could exchange gold notes for gold and silver notes for silver, and the amount of gold or silver one exchanged (either way) didn't change with time. Once the link between currency and any kind of backing store was broken, the "value" of the money was no longer fixed. An hour of labor, a pencil, or whatever, no longer had some common measure (or they did, but the paper money devalued).

Hearts Actually Can Break 136

DesScorp writes "It seems that there's a grain of truth to one old wives' tale; it turns out that you really can die of a broken heart, especially if you're a post-menopausal woman. The Wall Street Journal reports on a phenomena called 'broken-heart syndrome,' which often occurs after great emotional distress. Quoting: 'In a conventional heart attack, an obstructed artery starves the heart muscle of oxygenated blood, quickly resulting in the death of tissue and potentially permanently compromising heart function. In contrast, the heart muscle in broken-heart-syndrome patients is stunned in the adrenaline surge and appears to go into hibernation. Little tissue is lost.' In the article a doctor notes, 'The cells are alive, but mechanically or electrically disabled.' Documented cases track heart attacks in people with seemingly healthy hearts after the grief of the death of a loved one. Intense feelings can cause the heart actually to change shape. Doctors call this 'tako-tsubo,' after the Japanese phrase for 'octopus trap,' so called because the syndrome was first identified by a Japanese doctor who noticed the strange shape in the left ventricle. Doctors note that while strong emotions like grief are usually associated with the syndrome, stress or a migraine can also trigger such heart attacks."

Israeli Scientists Freeze Water By Warming It 165

ccktech writes "As reported by NPR and Chemistry world, the journal Science has a paper by David Ehre, Etay Lavert, Meir Lahav, and Igor Lubomirsky [note: abstract online; payment required to read the full paper] of Israel's Weizmann Institute, who have figured out a way to freeze pure water by warming it up. The trick is that pure water has different freezing points depending on the electrical charge of the surface it resides on. They found out that a negatively charged surface causes water to freeze at a lower temperature than a positively charged surface. By putting water on the pyroelectric material Lithium Tantalate, which has a negative charge when cooler but a positive change when warmer; water would remain a liquid down to -17 degrees C., and then freeze when the substrate and water were warmed up and the charge changed to positive, where water freezes at -7 degrees C."

Comment Re:If you drunk e-mail... (Score 1) 427

I kind of agree with Microsoft's solution, but applied to companies that supply OSes that connect to the internet, not individual users. Key is to make sure the licensing cost is borne by the developer as a progressive tax on sales, and requirements are sufficiently onerous (e.g. your OS must be formally validated to prove it cannot ever allow a computer to send spam meaning it has to be reimplemented from the ground up in a formal language) to cause general panic and Microsoft spreading a lot of money and free software around to help the whole idea go away.

Submission + - Cell phones don't increase chances of brain cancer (smh.com.au)

mclearn writes: A very large, 30-year study of just about everyone in Scandinavia shows no link between mobile phone use and brain tumours, researchers reported on Thursday. Even though mobile telephone use soared in the 1990s and afterward, brain tumours did not become any more common during this time, the researchers reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Some activist groups and a few researchers have raised concerns about a link between mobile phones and several kinds of cancer, including brain tumours, although years of research have failed to establish a connection.

"From 1974 to 2003, the incidence rate of glioma (a type of brain tumor) increased by 0.5 per cent per year among men and by 0.2 per cent per year among women," they wrote. Overall, there was no significant pattern.

Submission + - SPAM: cold war cyber attacks

I Spy writes: 'The "counter-hacking unit" is fighting a cyber cold war against computer-based espionage, largely coming from China and Russia ..

MI5 believe many of the hackers are state-sponsored spies trying to steal intelligence and industrial secrets ..

In March researchers uncovered an electronic spy ring called GhostNet based in China, which searches computers for information, taps into emails and turns on web cameras and microphones ...

This is of course BS, as no one in their right mind would keep 'secrets' on a computer directly connected to the Internet. Especially not a Windows 'computer'.

Link to Original Source

Submission + - U.S. Military Adopts Cloud and Developer 'Forge' (datacenterknowledge.com)

1sockchuck writes: Moving the U.S. military's IT operations to a cloud computing model hasn't been easy. But the Department of Defense's RACE cloud computing platform will save the government "hundreds of millions of dollars," according to Henry Sienkiewicz from the DISA, the military's infrastructure provider. Speaking at the Gartner Data Center Conference, Sienkiewicz said the shift to a portal where developers can quickly provision Windows and Red Hat Linux environments represented "a radical shift" in culture and practice. The DISA has also built Forge.mil, a developer hub that Sienkiewicz calls the "SourceForge for the Department of Defense" that currently hosts 200 projects.
The Internet

Submission + - In Search of the Mythical 'Bandwidth Hog' (arstechnica.com)

eldavojohn writes: Benoit Felten, an analyst in Paris, has heard enough of the elusive creature known as the bandwidth hog. Like its cousin the Boogie Monster, the 'bandwidth hog' is a tale that ISPs tell their frightened users to keep them in check or to cut off whoever they want to cut off from service. And Felton's calling them out because he's certain they don't exist. What's actually happening is the ISPs are selecting the top 5% and revoking service from them even if they aren't statistical outliers. Which means that they are targeting 'heavy users' simply for being 'heavy users.' Felton has thrown down the gauntlet asking for a standardized data set from any telco that he can do statistical analysis on that will allow him to find any evidence of a single outlier ruining the experience for everyone else. Unlikely any telco will take him up on that offer but his point still stands.

Submission + - Security Trends Coming In 2010 (net-security.org)

An anonymous reader writes: Websense released its list of security predictions and trends anticipated for 2010. The emerging trends and predictions show an overall blending of security threats across multiple attack vectors for the purpose of roping computers into bot networks and stealing confidential information. Researchers believe that attackers will look to compromise new platforms such as smartphones and take advantage of the popularity of Windows 7. They are also expected to compromise the integrity of search engine results and use legitimate advertisements to spread their malicious content.

Comment Re:Massive fail (Score 1) 452

The quantum effects that occur within your cells is negligible.

Actually, you'd be surprised. Quantum biophysics is a hot area. One of the interesting results explains why it is that ribosomes can churn out proteins at a constant rate, which one wouldn't normally expect given a random distribution of bound amino acids in the cell. Quantum effects may occur on much larger scales than we suppose.

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Memory fault -- brain fried