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Comment Anton Ego in Ratatouille (Score 3, Insightful) 507

"In many ways, the work of a critic is easy. We risk very little yet enjoy a position over those who offer up their work and their selves to our judgment. We thrive on negative criticism, which is fun to write and to read. But the bitter truth we critics must face, is that in the grand scheme of things, the average piece of junk is more meaningful than our criticism designating it so. But there are times when a critic truly risks something, and that is in the discovery and defense of the new. The world is often unkind to new talent, new creations, the new needs friends."


Submission + - Science Fiction Writers write DMCA Takedowns (

TheGreatGraySkwid writes: "With an ironic lack of forward thinking, the Science Fiction Writers of America (or, more specifically, their Vice President Andrew Burt) have issued scattershot DMCA takedown notices against numerous items on the document-sharing site Scribd, many of which were not infringing on SFWA copyrights in any way. It appears that a simple keyword search for prominent science fiction names (like "Asimov" and "Silverburg") was used to determine which documents were to be singled out. Included in the documents was Cory Doctorow's "Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom," which is freely available at any number of places. Doctorow is up in arms over at BoingBoing, with several other Science Fiction notables speaking up in the comments."

Submission + - First Look at the Smallest Projector in the World

Iddo Genuth writes: "Projector technology has improved considerably in the last few years, but although brightness, contrast, and color are better than ever, size still remains an issue for those looking for a true portable device. Enter the world's smallest and lightest projector — only a few inches long and with a weight of a mobile phone, the new laser-LED-based projector can easily slip into any pocket. The new projector should be out in the second half of 2007 with a cost in the low several hundred dollar range."

Sony Fixes Back Compat Issues in PS3 Update 147

pl1ght writes in to say that that the much maligned PS2 back-compat issues the PS3 has been experiencing are now a thing of the past. The newest software update takes the OS from version 1.4 to 1.5, and in doing so seems to have cleared up the worst of the blurry and unreadability problems. There are apparently "still problems with specific releases that have yet to be addressed, but for the most part, your library of old releases should run no problem now -- and with higher clarity than was ever possible on the other machines, to boot." Nicely done, Sony.

Submission + - Nano-particles slide through mucus

galactic_grub writes: Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have found a way to make nano-particles pass through mucus. They did this by coating the particles with a chemcial to make them hydrophilic. As gross as it might sound, the researchers say this could be a significant medical breakthrough. This is because nanoscale drug capsules could deliver medicine to the intestine, or other organs, over longer periods than normal drugs.

Submission + - Street Fighting Robot Challenge

ianchaos writes: There's no better way to assure the eventual destruction of mankind then by the event sponsored by Singapore's Defence Science and Technology Agency. Newscientist has a good writeup of the robot challenge, which is to build a robot that can operate autonomously in urban warfare conditions, moving in and out of buildings to search and destroy targets like a human soldier.

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