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Toys

Submission + - James Bond Submarines for Sale

syguy writes: "Uboatworx is selling personal submarines that are straight out of a James Bond movie. Starting at $82,000 for a 1 person vessel (about the same price as a Porsche 911) and requiring a 4 day training course, their C-Quester submarines open up an underwater playground. Well, at least the first 164ft (50m) of it, at 3-4mph and for as long as the electrical power lasts, which is about 2.5 hours."
Patents

Submission + - Orphan 70-Year-Old Plane Data = 'Trade Secrets'?

Anonymous Flyboy Coward writes: The Experimental Aircraft Association is taking on the Federal Aviation Administration, which has denied a FOIA request for access to construction data to the owner of 70+ year old antique Fairchild F45 aircraft. The FAA sided with a company that was formed in 1990 (and which didn't even know the airplane type existed until the FAA's inquiry) that claims it "owns" the design and manufacturing data to the aircraft, calling the data a "trade secret". The company failed to register with the FAA (as required by law) yet the FAA is standing by it's assertion that they "own" this data, which was turned over to the public domain in the 1950s. Many vintage aircraft owners face a Catch-22 situation: they are required by law to perform maintenance to the manufacturer's specs, but much of this data is unavailable because the FAA refuses to release it without the data's owner's permission... even if there is no such owner. The decision in this case will likely have wide-ranging implications on FOIA requests, as well as affect whether historical antique aircraft will remain flyable or lost forever to a pointless bureaucratic death. The full story is available here.
Portables

Submission + - Asus EcoBook -- Bamboo laptop

An anonymous reader writes: CNET.co.uk has a photo story of a bamboo laptop created by Asus. The Asus Ecobook looks a lot like a MacBook Pro, but is made of real bamboo. The wood above each of its ports is engraved, the keys on the keyboard are designed to mimic the look of bamboo joints, and best of all it's biodegradeable.
Quickies

Submission + - Man dies trying to use laptop while driving

Scoopy writes: "The Sacramento Bee reports that a 28-year-old Chico, CA man was killed Monday after he lost control of his car while working on his laptop computer while driving, according to the California Highway Patrol.

"We have reason to believe he was operating his laptop because it was still on and plugged into the cigarette lighter," said CHP Cmdr. Scott Silsbee."
Democrats

Submission + - Gore's Home Energy Use Increases Since "Truth&

MightyYar writes: Apparently Al Gore's home energy use has actually increased since he made "An Inconvenient Truth", according to The Tennessee Center for Policy Research. While this organization is certainly not apolitical and I am a bit skeptical about their claims, if true this would give Gore critics further ammunition — he would indeed appear to be an elitist hypocrite, willing to preach to us about how to live without following his own advice. For us geeks, the Drudge Report gives us the numbers.
Security

Submission + - Where to report attempted break-ins?

tomscott writes: I run Linux and have opened port 22 on my cable modem so that I can SSH into my system from work. Being able to SSH into my system also gives me the oppurtunity to monitor my system and I noticed while running top that there were a lot of SSH connections begining and ending quickly. So I took a look at my /var/log/messages file and saw: Feb 26 02:33:05 tsc64 sshd[8115]: Did not receive identification string from 65.107.44.150 Feb 26 02:34:19 tsc64 sshd[8119]: Failed password for root from 65.107.44.150 port 4407 ssh2 Feb 26 02:34:20 tsc64 sshd[8121]: Invalid user admin from 65.107.44.150 Feb 26 02:34:20 tsc64 sshd[8121]: Failed password for invalid user admin from 65.107.44.150 port 44127 ssh2 ... Feb 26 07:04:06 tsc64 sshd[11384]: Invalid user test from 219.239.98.111 Feb 26 07:04:06 tsc64 sshd[11384]: Failed password for invalid user test from 219.239.98.111 port 59963 ssh2 So I am seeing two unauthorized systems try to gain access to mine via SSH. As far as I have seen in the logs no one has actually gained access to my system which is good. I would like to know if there is an organization or group or even if I should contact the police to report such things?
Portables

Submission + - The decline and fall of the Palm empire

PetManimal writes: "According to Computerworld, Palm is doomed to decline and failure, thanks to a series of bad business decisions including Palm's acquisition by U.S. Robotics back in 1995 and the musical chairs with PalmSource/PalmOne earlier in this decade. There's also been a lack of innovation — Palm's own corporate timeline has tons of references to innovation and development milestones from 1995 to 2000, but since then it's been mostly boring corporate marketing speak about partnerships, new markets, and product releases. Now the Treo has tons of new competitors, and when the iPhone comes out, it will be game over for Palm, says the Computerworld article: '... Last month, [the] iPhone changed everything. Jobs' Macworld keynote was like a nuclear bomb in the world of smart-phone enthusiasts. The "key influencers" who gave Treos visibility and cachet a year ago — Hollywood types, gadget freaks and absolutely everyone who's anyone in Silicon Valley — have stopped talking about Treos and are simply waiting for the iPhone to come out, at which time they will unceremoniously dump their Treos and embrace the new innovation leader. Meanwhile, it looks like Palm isn't even trying to innovate. [Palm CEO Ed] Colligan said in an interview recently that the company is focused on ease of use, rather than design, and that the company doesn't want to "follow design fads." In other words, Palm is not only failing to set trends, it's not even following them anymore.'"
Announcements

Submission + - Stable Open Source NTFS After 12 Years of Work

irgu writes: "Open source NTFS development started in 1995 by Martin von Loewis under Linux, which was taken over by Anton Altaparmakov in 2000. Two years ago Apple hired Altaparmakov to work on Mac OS X and made a deal with the team to relicense the code and return the new one, soonest in the spring of 2008. But the team also continued the work and Szabolcs Szakacsits announced the read/write NTFS-3G driver for beta testing last year. Only half year passed and NTFS-3G reached the stable status and has been already ported to FreeBSD, Mac OS X, BeOS, Haiku, 64-bit and big-endian architectures, and new CPU's!"
Classic Games (Games)

Submission + - High Score Obsession 80 Million or bust

Brady the Anonymous Coward writes: Taken from site — "Although technology continues to evolve, a group of die-hard gamers refuses to abandon the classic arcade games of yesteryear. The 80's live on for these enthusiasts, who compete against each other and history to record the world's highest scores. Portland gamer Bill Carlton is one of the most brazen, fearlessly taking on some of the toughest records on the books. HIGH SCORE follows Bill as he attempts to take down the Atari classic Missle Command and its twenty year-old record. To get the 80 million points he'll have to play the game on one quarter for over two days straight. There is no pause button. There will be no sleep. There can be only one victor in this classic story of Man versus Missle Command."
The Courts

Submission + - Developments in the Julie Amero case

Arrogant-Bastard writes: Julie Amero has a new attorney who is requesting a postponement of sentencing. Steve Bass of PC World has summarized the case. There are at least two blogs covering this: State v. Amero and Julie Amero. The latter is run by Julie's husband, Wes Volle, and is accepting donations to help with her defense. Please spread the word, and please contribute: this woman is facing 40 years in prison over pop-ups.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Interview from Hell

Griffin writes: I went for a job interview recently. Not that I was particularly looking to move from contracting back into full-time work, but I came upon the role completely by accident and thought:
Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft slapped with $1.52 billion payout in MP3

Ice.Saoshyant writes: "Those federal juries in San Diego do seem to frown on MP3 patent infringement. They just ordered Microsoft to fork over $1.52 billion (yes, with a "b") to Alcatel-Lucent for infringing on two MP3 audio patents with its Windows Media Player, the largest patent ruling in history. Naturally, Alcatel-Lucent seems to like this turn of events.

I guess that's what they get for not using non-proprietary patent-free formats like Vorbis and FLAC. Software patents are a nightmare."

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