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Satellite-Based Laser Hunts Woodpeckers From Space Screenshot-sm 53

University of Idaho scientists have figured out a more effective way to track woodpecker populations than following the incessant laughter. They're using a laser onboard NASA's Icesat spacecraft to determine where the birds might be living. From the article: "NASA's Icesat satellite was initially intended for measuring glacial surfaces at the Earth's poles but has proven to be quite effective in measuring vegetation also. The satellite's laser bounces off of forest canopies, tree trunks and the ground making important characteristics about the forest easily measurable. For example, forest density is determined by the relative amount of light returned versus that which is returned from the ground. Once ideal woodpecker locations are identified 'we actually conduct ground-based woodpecker surveys in these locations as well to verify it,' says team-member Patrick Adam."
NASA

Voyager 1 Beyond Solar Wind 245

healeyb noted that Voyager 1 has now reached a distance from the sun where it is no longer able to detect solar wind. Launched in 1977 to get up close and personal with our solar system's gas giants, scientists estimate that in another 4 years it will cross the heliosphere.
IBM

'Jeopardy!' To Pit Humans Against IBM Machine 164

digitaldc writes "The game show Jeopardy! will pit man versus machine this winter in a competition that will show how successful scientists are in creating a computer that can mimic human intelligence. Two of the venerable game show's most successful champions — Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter — will play two games against 'Watson,' a computer program developed by IBM's artificial intelligence team. The matches will be spread over three days that will air Feb. 14-16, the game show said on Tuesday. The competition is reminiscent of when IBM developed a chess-playing computer to compete against chess champion Garry Kasparov in 1997."
Privacy

Web-Users Fall For Fake Anti-Virus Scams 272

jhernik writes "Fearing their computers may be prone to viruses, many web-users download fake anti-virus software, only to find later that their bank details have been hacked. According to the latest research by GetSafeOnline.org, the UK's national internet security initiative, a rising nunber of organised criminal gangs are tricking security-conscious intenet-users into purchasing anti-virus software to access their bank details. Posing as legitimate IT helpdesks, these fraudsters target internet users concerned about protecting their computers. By offering free virus checks, they normally tell consumers that their machines are infected and offer fake security software protection – usually costing around £30 – which is actually malicious software in disguise." The fact that there is such a thriving market for fake AV scams really says something about the present state of the legitimate AV market.

Comment Re:Bluff City is south of Bristol Motor Speedway (Score 2, Insightful) 680

The only real solution is near 100% enforcement - either the law will be generally accepted or you'll finally manage to piss off so many people that the law is changed.

That's the perfect solution. I really hate it when people spend all this time and energy to get around laws, to complain about laws, to fight the lawful punishments for those laws, but nothing on getting the laws changed. If this guy's so eager to get the law changed, start a Paypal or something similar to get donations to fund a road study. Take those results (assuming it says the speed should be upped) and a petition signed by voters in the area, and get in front of the city council to get the limit changed. But no, it's easier to buy a domain, setup a website, and whine.

Same thing with the kids in schools where the parents get all huffy when their son or daughter gets suspended for a zero tolerance policy because they took aspirin to school without a note from a doctor. Why didn't they hire a lawyer to fight the rule when it was proposed instead of waiting till their kid gets popped for the offense?

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Australian Women Fight Over "Geekgirl" Trademark Screenshot-sm 187

bennyboy64 writes "Two prominent women in the Australian IT industry are in a bitter dispute over the ownership of the trademark 'geekgirl.' A woman attempting to use 'geekgirl' on Twitter told ZDNet that women had been advised by the trademark owner to stop doing so since she owned the trademark for the word. 'She noted her trademark and asked me to stop calling myself a "geekgirl" in general conversation and to cease using the hashtag "#geekgirl" on Twitter,' IT consultant Kate Carruthers said."
Education

3rd-Grader Busted For Jolly Rancher Possession Screenshot-sm 804

theodp writes "A third-grader in a small Texas school district received a week's detention for merely possessing a Jolly Rancher. Leighann Adair, 10, was eating lunch Monday when a teacher confiscated the candy. Her parents said she was in tears when she arrived home later that afternoon and handed them the detention notice. But school officials are defending the sentence, saying the school was abiding by a state guideline that banned 'minimal nutrition' foods. 'Whether or not I agree with the guidelines, we have to follow the rules,' said school superintendent Jack Ellis."

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