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Science

Submission + - Purported Relativity Paradox Resolved (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: A purported conflict between the century-old theory of classical electrodynamics and Einstein's theory of special relativity doesn't exist, a chorus of physicists says. Last April, an electrical engineer claimed that the equation that determines the force exerted on an electrically charged particle by electric and magnetic fields—the Lorentz force law—clashes with relativity, the theory that centers on how observers moving at a constant speed relative to one another will view the same events. To prove it, he concocted a simple "thought experiment" in which the Lorentz force law seemed to lead to a paradox. Now, four physicists independently say that they have resolved the paradox.
Piracy

Submission + - Antigua applies to WTO for permission to run 'pirate' website (bbc.co.uk)

another random user writes: Antigua is seeking permission to run a website that sells music, movies and software — but ignores copyright law. The Caribbean island is due to appear before the World Trade Organization (WTO) on 28 January seeking permission to run the site.

The decision to set up the site is the end point of a long-running dispute with the US over gambling. The US has objected to Antigua's plan saying it amounted to official "piracy" of intellectual property.

Antigua went to the WTO after the US moved to stop American citizens using gambling services, including web-based betting shops and casinos, run from the Caribbean country. Antigua claims that action deprived it of billions of dollars in revenue.

The WTO agreed with Antigua and dismissed a US appeal against its ruling. However, because the US took no action to lift the controls on cross-border gambling Antigua filed an application to recoup its lost cash by other means.

It sought permission to sell movies, music, games and software via a store that would be able to ignore global agreements on copyright and trademark controls, reports filesharing news site TorrentFreak. It wanted to be able to sell up to $3.4bn of those goods before having to make copyright payments.

The WTO rejected that figure, but said Antigua could sell $21m annually via the store before it had to consider paying copyright fees. The US is believed to have offered to pay Antigua $500,000 annually as compensation for the lost revenue.

Comment Re:How about.... (Score 2) 605

How about. But, it won't happen. The real incentive here is profit in the Tech Sector. American developers are paid a living wage (most of the time). This bill allows American tech companies to bring in workers who cannot compete in the open market for the best pay. This allows the tech companies to pay them much less than an American. The powers that be may want low unemployment, but they also want low wages.

Submission + - Steve Jobs movie clip historically inaccurate, says Woz (networkworld.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: Yesterday saw the first clip from the upcoming Steve Jobs biopic starring Ashton Kutcher as Jobs and Josh Gad as Steve Wozniak. The full film will be premiering at the Sundance Film Festival later today and is set for a wider theatrical release in April.

After seeing the clip, Woz chimed in and noted that the event depicted therein was completely false and never happened.

"Totally wrong. Personalities and where the ideas of computers affecting society did not come from Jobs. They inspired me and were widely spoken at the Homebrew Computer Club. Steve came back from Oregon and came to a club meeting and didn't start talking about this great social impact. His idea was to make a $20 PC board and sell it for $40 to help people at the club build the computer I'd given away. Steve came from selling surplus parts at HalTed he always saw a way to make a quick buck off my designs (this was the 5th time).

The lofty talk came much further down the line.

I never looked like a professional. We were both kids. Our relationship was so different than what was portrayed. I'm embarrassed but if the movie is fun and entertaining, all the better. Anyone who reads my book iWoz can get a clearer picture."

Biotech

Submission + - DIY BioPrinter Hack Lets You Print Biomaterials Using an Old Inkjet (instructables.com)

MikeChino writes: Instructables member Patrik has successfully transformed an old HP5150 inkjet printer into a DIY bioprinter. To do this he removed the plastic covers and panels and rewired the paper handling mechanism. Then he prepped ink cartridges to be able to handle biological materials by opening the lid, removing the ink, and washing it out with deionized water. For his first experiment, he printed a simple solution of arabinose onto filter paper.

Comment Re:Heh... Radical...Islamists...redundant... (Score 1) 564

Sunnis hate the apostate Shiites. Shiites hate the apostate Sunnis. They kill one another in a never ending battle over a schism 1400 years old. Oh, but, the Sunnis are moderate. They want to moderately destroy all who don't agree with them. The Shiite are not. They want to immoderately destroy all who don't agree with them.
They are obviously very different.
Businesses

Submission + - Google Invests $1 Billion To Build New London HQ (ibtimes.com)

redletterdave writes: "Google just purchased a 2.4-acre plot in the King’s Cross Central development in London, where the company plans to build a brand-new, 1 million square foot office. Google reportedly invested about £650 million ($1.04 billion) on the property, which, when finished, will be valued at more than £1 billion ($1.6 billion). While Google traditionally leases its overseas offices, the company's decision to buy rather than rent in this case was likely tax motivated, since Google can’t repatriate its cash to the US without paying a hefty tax."
Government

Submission + - "What Have We Done?": White House Staffers React to Insane Online Petitions (motherjones.com)

Lasrick writes: As White House officials were busy pondering new gun violence prevention measures, preparing for the coming debt-ceiling showdown with Republicans, and meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, the Obama administration on January 11 also issued an official decision: the US government would not construct the DS-1 Orbital Battle Station, commonly known as the Death Star from Star Wars Episode IV.
Google

Submission + - Google Declares War on the Password (wired.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Wired reports on a research paper from Google employees about the future of authentication on the web. 'Along with many in the industry, we feel passwords and simple bearer tokens such as cookies are no longer sufficient to keep users safe,' the authors write. Their plan involves authenticating just once, to a single device, and then using that to unlock all of your other accounts. "We’d like your smartphone or smartcard-embedded finger ring to authorize a new computer via a tap on the computer, even in situations in which your phone might be without cellular connectivity." Recognizing that this isn't something they can accomplish on their own, they've gone ahead and created a device-based authentication protocol that is 'independent of Google, requires no special software to work — aside from a web browser that supports the login standard — and which prevents web sites from using this technology to track users.'
Open Source

Submission + - Swiss Historical Maps Allow The Creation of On-Demand In Your Browser (admin.ch)

An anonymous reader writes: The Swiss Federal Office of Topography published a complete set of digitized historical maps from 1938 to 2011. The twist: a browser application allows you to create a time travel movie at any place in Switzerland for any zoom level. As an example, you can see the recession of Europe's biggest glacier in the last 75 years. The application is the most recent effort of the Swiss Government to make geodata freely available to the public at no cost using open source software and will include maps dating as far back as 1838.

Submission + - MIT Engineers Harvest Energy From Water Vapors

adeelarshad82 writes: A research group at MIT has recently built a polymer actuator that runs off of water vapor alone. The device is basically a thin composite sheet that deforms in the presence of a vapor gradient much like the bimetalic strip in an old-fashioned thermometer. In a video demonstration, a 30-micron-thick sheet of the material is seen flopping around energetically on top of a vapor source. By applying a thin piezoelectric layer, the researchers were also able to harvest 5.6 nanowatts of electrical power from a single composite sheet. Needless to say this isn't significant, though the team is hoping to make the material's energy conversion more efficient over time.
Science

Submission + - Fossils of Enigmatic Sea Creature Surface (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: New fossil finds reveal that an enigmatic seafloor dweller first described more than a decade ago was armored and much larger than its modern-day kin. Cotyledion tylodes had a goblet-shaped body that surrounded a U-shaped gut, and the animal spent its life anchored to the seafloor or to hard objects that had settled there, such as the molted exoskeletons of trilobites. C. tylodes, which measured between 8 and 56 millimeters tall, dwarfed its modern kin, which typically range between 0.1 and 7 millimeters. It was also covered with distinctive, scalelike features called sclerites, which functioned as primitive armor.

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