bmsleight writes: "The Guardian has a story on the HECToR, The largest supercomputer in the UK — around five times more powerful than its predecessor, HPCx, which is also at the University of Edinburgh. It measures up well internationally, sitting at 17 in the top500.org list of the most powerful computers in the world."
Maur writes: BountySource is a hosted project management site for OSS, but unlike SourceForge or Google Code, BountySource incorporates code bounties directly into the bug/feature tracker. Other sites (like Bounty County) have tried to track bounties but have failed because they merely link to the bounty details and do not hold the money in escrow.
BountySource currently allows bounties to be placed using Paypal and has a built-in dispute settlement system. The site shows signs of beta software, but it's under active development and according to their roadmap they have some cool features in the works. Some major projects, such as ZSNES, have already switched to it.
Folding@Home costs nearly $70million, uses 584gigawatt hours of power, and produces 730 kilotons of Carbon dioxide. Is fighting mad cow worth it? This article weighs the cost benefit of donating electricity and CPU Cycles, VS. the Real Cost of the project."
coondoggie writes: "Smile and the world smiles with you? Seems so, even in cyberspace. Ohio State University research released today says the simulated emotions of digital characters on Web sites have a real impact on potential customers looking at them. The study, appearing in the International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, found that digital characters might be better merchants if they act consistently happy, even if the products they're selling — such as novels or movies — are heart-wrenchingly sad. Still...If your avatar is going down to protest Second Life headquarters, you might want to look a little mean.
holden writes: "NewsForge is talking about a recent talk ReactOS lead kernel developer, Alex Ionescu, gave about the internals of ReactOS. In his talk, Ionescu explains the similarities between ReactOS and Windows. and how ReactOS is close to being API compatible with Windows Server 2003. The talk looks at a lot of the technical details of how the ReactOS team implements the Windows NT kernel functionality, along with some of the problems they've faced from graphics drivers which use hard-coded values and work-arounds they are considering."
Guy Yernisberg writes: Israeli defense contractor Elbit Systems has just completeted the final model of its new VIPeR autonomous defense robot. It's armed with an Uzi submachine gun and can throw grenades. It has an onboard camera for aiming and identifying possible targets. The problem is, once armed, it shoots at everything it can see. It's supposedly intended for use against Palestinian and Lebanese guerilla fighters — but they live amongst the civilians and not in "combat zones" as the IDF claims. Releasing a killing machine in the middle of a city might not be such a good idea after all.
Max Romantschuk writes: "Parallelization of code is a very tricky thing. We've all heard of the challeges with Cell, and with dual and quad core pocessors this is becoming an ever more important issue to deal with. The Inquirer writes about a new auto-parallelizing compiler called Sieve from Codeplay: What Sieve is is a C++ compiler that will take a section of code and parallelize it for you with a minimum hassle. All you really need to do is take the code you want to run across multiple CPUs and put beginning and end tags on the parts you want to run in parallel.