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NASA

Virtual Telescope Zooms In On Milky Way Black Hole 181

FiReaNGeL writes "An international team has obtained the closest views ever of what is believed to be a super-massive black hole at the center of the Milky Way galaxy. The astronomers used radio dishes in Hawaii, Arizona and California to create a virtual telescope more than 2,800 miles across that is capable of seeing details more than 1,000 times finer than the Hubble Space Telescope. The target of the observations was the source known as Sagittarius A* ("A-star"), long thought to mark the position of a black hole whose mass is 4 million times greater than the sun. Though Sagittarius A* was discovered 30 years ago, the new observations for the first time have an angular resolution, or ability to observe small details, that is matched to the size of the event horizon."
Robotics

Monkey's Thoughts Make Robot Walk 146

geekbits writes "For all those who have at one time or another been too lazy to get up off the couch and go to the fridge and get a beer, heat up some pizza, or change the channel when the remote is missing, we may be one step closer to being able to keep our tushes parked just a little while longer. There may also be some slightly more noble implications here. According to an article in The New York Times, in an experiment at Duke University, a 12-pound, 32-inch monkey made a 200-pound, 5-foot humanoid robot walk on a treadmill using only her brain activity. She was in North Carolina, and the robot was in Japan."
Republicans

Netcraft Shows Smartech Running Ohio Election Servers 688

goombah99 writes "Netcraft is showing that an event happened in the Ohio 2004 election that is difficult to explain. The Secretary of State's website, which handles election reporting, normally is directed to an Ohio-based IP address hosted by the Ohio Supercomputer Center. On Nov. 3 2004, Netcraft shows the website pointing out of state to a server owned by Smartech Corp. According to the American Registry on Internet Numbers, Smartech's block of IP addresses 64.203.96.0 – 64.203.111.255 encompasses the entire range of addresses owned by the Republican National Committee. Smartech hosted the recently notorious gbw43.com domain used from the White House in apparent violation of the Presidential Records Act, from which thousands of White House emails vanished." Update: 04/25 01:24 GMT by KD : ePluribus Media published a piece called Ken Blackwell Outsources Ohio Election Results to GOP Internet Operatives, Again on election eve 2006, when a similar DNS switch to Smartech occurred. They have been investigating the larger story of IT on Capitol Hill and elsewhere for two years.
Mozilla

Submission + - Firefox Co-Founder Blake Ross on Firefox and Opera

Kelson writes: "Opera Watch recently interviewed Blake Ross, co-founder of Firefox. Ross spoke on Firefox's evolution, how it can improve, its relationship with Opera and other browsers, implications of IE7, and the state of the web today. When asked about the fan rivalry between Firefox and Opera, he called it "ridiculous," adding that "Millions of people out there rely on us to make the Web better, not have pissing contests." Asked to describe Opera in three words, he said, "Our best ally.""
Privacy

Submission + - Owner of Winners, HomeSense says hacker stole data

kartis writes: is this the headline event that is going to finally get serious protections from our respective governments on privacy? Apparently this breach has been ongoing since 2003. "Millions of credit card accounts may have been compromised after hackers stole customer information last year from computer systems of TJX Cos., the U.S. parent firm of Canadian retailers Winners and HomeSense...Citing unnamed sources, the Globe and Mail reported Thursday that two million Visa credit card accounts in Canada and 20 million Visa cards globally have been affected." http://www.cbc.ca/money/story/2007/01/18/winnersbr each.html

Bethesda Says No to Oblivion Expansion 60

Heartless Gamer writes to mention a GamersReport article clarifying things for the many Oblivion fans looking forward to more content. Despite reports to the contrary, there is no expansion coming for the game any time soon. From the article: "'There's no expansion in development called Knights of the White Stallion. That's the name of a quest in Oblivion. Right now we have no announced plans for any new content, add-ons, or expansions. If that changes, we'll let folks know.' So there you have it folks, it seems that the listing was an honest mistake. While we have no doubt there will eventually be an expansion, Bethesda is far from ready to announce it."

How Strategy Guides Affected Gaming 352

Heartless Gamer writes "2old2play has another great story up looking into how games have become more complicated due to strategy guides. From the article; "Strategy guides have affected gaming by making games harder for all of us. That's right, it's not a typo — strategy guides have created more difficult games. Lend me your eyes and attention spans, and I'll explain. Admittedly, it may be a rambling explanation, but bare with me and we should get there eventually." Ya know I always find a strategy guide for things like Final Fantasy just because some puzzles are just ridiculous and I have no interest in trial & erroring for an hour when I'd rather kill monsters. But there really is somethign to this.

The Xbox 360 Uncloaked 118

Videogames may be nothing more than evening diversions to most Americans, but the industry as a whole is a multi-billion dollar heavyweight. Microsoft broke ground in the business when the Xbox launched in 2001, and came back swinging last year with the Xbox 360. The war for the seventh generation of game consoles has barely begun, and it's hard to know the score without a scorecard. We can get a good look at the odds, though, thanks to the reporting of Dean Takahashi. The author of the definitive book on the original Microsoft console, Opening the Xbox, offers the complete story of their next-gen offering in the recently published The Xbox 360 Uncloaked. A sometimes exhausting read that could have been more concisely edited, Uncloaked still highlights the human side of a complicated technical and business endeavor. Read on for my impressions of Takahashi's new look behind the curtains at Microsoft.

SiN Episodes - Emergence Review 198

Along with pale imitations, it seems the destiny of genre-defining games to provoke a reversal in design decisions. The success of 3D platformers has lead to a renaissance in 2D gaming, World of Warcraft has pushed online game designers away from the fantasy genre, and Half-Life 2 has prompted a lot of story-light brainless shooters. It's this last genre that houses SiN Episodes: Emergence. A traditional run and gun First Person Shooter (FPS), SiN is a blood-soaked five hour jaunt you can download from Steam for about twenty bucks. At that price and that length, this Aeon Fluxian gorefest may just be a happy start for the age of episodic content. Read on for my impressions of a good-looking throwback that proves you don't need millions of dollars to make a fun title.

New Super Mario Bros. Review 248

In the "everything old is new again" spirit of the 21st century, there have been many bad remakes, remixes, and 'reinvisionings'. The gaming industry is especially guilty, with endless sequels and a lack of imagination being oft-discussed elements at developer get-togethers. Despite all this, it does appear you can go home again. Nintendo has competently revived the series that made it a household name in the U.S., with New Super Mario Bros.. A classic 2D platformer with plenty of new tricks, Mario comes bounding to the DS with a focus on what he does best. New Super Mario Bros. is not going to make you rethink what is possible in a game; It's not going to make you cry or change your life. It will, however, make you smile. Read on for my impressions of the pudgy plumber's newest adventure.

US Releasing 9/11 Flight 77 Pentagon Crash Tape 1098

Robotron23 writes "The BBC is reporting that the US government has decided to release the videotape depicting the crash of Flight 77 into the Pentagon building, nearly five years after the 9/11 attacks. The government had previously withheld the tape due to 'ongoing investigations' into al-Qaeda's Zacarias Moussaoui. A government representative commented that they 'hope that this video will put to rest the conspiracy theories.'"

Interview With Leader of Sweden's Pirate Party 476

CrystalFalcon writes "Linux-P2P has published an interview with Rick Falkvinge, leader of the Swedish Pirate Party which is aiming to gain entry to Swedish Parliament this fall. (The party's founding was previously covered on Slashdot.) The party is totally for real, totally serious, and has seen approval ratings of 57% in some polls, with only four percent needed to gain seats. Its goals are to cut back copyrights, abolish patents, and strengthen the right to privacy."

Everglide s-500 Headphone Review 190

Lincoln 'PrOpHeT' Grixti writes "The Everglide s-500 Headphone is the ultimate tool for gamers that pass long hours using their headset for their gaming needs. It has been designed for gamers, by gamers, with the aid of leading world-wide professionals such as Sander "Voo" Kaasjager and other CPL World Tour Winners. The headset is available for sale with a price tag of $99.99 from Everglide Store. Some might say it's quite expensive for a headset, but when compared to other professional gaming headsets, the price is quite cheap." update Sorry folks, apparently the linked website barfed.

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