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Toys

Flying Humans 330

mlimber sends us to the NYTimes for a story about flying people who jump from planes or other high locations wearing a wing suit akin to a flying squirrel's. Their efforts have potential military and Xtreme sports applications. The story profiles, with video, one guy who wants to be the first to jump from a plane and land without a parachute (and live). Here's a YouTube video of another of these fliers skimming six feet above skiers in the Swiss Alps. Quoting: "Modern suit design features tightly woven nylon sewn between the legs and between the arms and torso, creating wings that fill with air and create lift, allowing for forward motion and aerial maneuvers while slowing descent. As the suits, which cost about $1,000, have become more sophisticated, so have the pilots. The best fliers, and there are not many, can trace the horizontal contours of cliffs, ridges and mountainsides."
Businesses

Cisco Offices Raided, Execs Arrested In Brazil 537

Many readers are writing in about the raids and arrests in Brazil's Cisco operation. At least 40 people were arrested earlier today, and Brazilian authorities asked the US to issue arrest warrants for five more suspects in this country. The allegation is that Cisco brought at least $500M of equipment into Brazil without properly paying import duties, and now owes over $826M in taxes, fines, and interest.
Microsoft

Microsoft Will Not Sue Over Linux Patents 291

San Muel writes "In an official statement, Microsoft has said it has no immediate plans to sue after alleging patent infringements by open-source vendors for the time being. The company goes on to say that, essentially, it could have done that any time in the last three years if it wanted to. So what's the purpose of these bold announcements? '[John McCreesh, OpenOffice.org marketing project lead] added that while Microsoft may not have plans to sue, it could be using the threat of litigation to try to encourage corporate customers to move to those open-source product vendors with whom it had signed licensing agreements, such as Novell. "Microsoft has spent time and money accumulating patents. Maybe it has started using that armory to move corporate customers to open-source software that Microsoft approves of."'"
Security

Submission + - Cisco says FTP feature in IOS is a hacker backdoor

dark_15 writes: "'Cisco says a flaw in the FTP server utility in its IOS router/switch software could be used as a backdoor by attackers. IOS FTP, which comes disabled by default in IOS, is used to upload IOS software images and other software to routers and switches remotely. However, Cisco says attackers could exploit a vulnerability in the FTP server to gain access to the file system of an IOS-based router or switch and affect configuration settings.'

More details on this advisory can be found here"
Power

Submission + - Hybrid Cars to Get More Realistic Mileage Ratings

Skidge writes: "Wired is running a piece showing the drastically reduced mileage ratings for hybrids after the upcoming changes in gas mileage calculations by the EPA. While the cars themselves aren't changing, plugging these new numbers in to the equation makes a hybrid much less cost effective: "The two top-selling hybrid vehicles, the Prius and Honda's Civic Hybrid, will lose 12 and 11 miles per gallon respectively from their city driving estimates." The new values come from more realistic testing; the old, over-inflated ratings were higher in part because the cars idled a lot, allowing the hybrids to completely turn off their engines. The new ratings should be more in line with what hybrid drivers are actually seeing."
Education

Teachers Fake Gunman Attack 863

Anti_Climax writes "Staff members of an elementary school staged a fictitious gun attack on students during a class trip, telling them it was not a drill as the children cried and hid under tables. It'll be interesting to see what happens to these teachers after the charges brought against students in recent months."
Software

Submission + - Norway Moves Towards Mandatory use of ODF and PDF

Andy Updegrove writes: "Norway has become the latest European country to move closer to mandatory government use of ODF (and PDF). According to a press release provided in translation to me by an authoritative source, Norway now joins Belgium, Finland, and France (among other nations) in moving towards a final decision to require such use. The Norwegian recommendation was revealed by Minister of Renewal Heidi Grande Roys, on behalf of the Cabinet-appointed Norwegian Standards Council.If adopted, it would require all government agencies and services to use these two formats, and would permit other formats (such as OOXML) to be used only in a redundant capacity.Reflecting a pragmatic approach to the continuing consideration of OOXML by ISO/IEC JTC 1, the recommendation calls for Norway to "promote the convergence of the ODF and OOXML, in order to avoid having two standards covering the same usage."According to the press release, the recommendation will be the subject of open hearings, with opinions to be rendered to the Cabinet before August 20 this summer.The Cabinet would then make its own (and in this case binding) recommendation to the Norwegian government.
http://www.consortiuminfo.org/standardsblog/articl e.php?story=20070513180219689"
Enlightenment

Submission + - Where do you get your IT news?

whiggy writes: I am a network admin in a small company with predominantly MS systems and some Linux. I am attempting to organize myself in order to be more productive. One of the things on my list is to keep up with the latest technology trends, of course. I have several sites in my bookmarks that I visit daily but I am just curious what other good resources are out there. We are a MS shop with some Linux. What are your favorite sites (or other resources) you get your morning news from? Which ones are the "must haves" (other than /.)?
The Internet

Enforced Ads Coming to Flash Video Players 397

Dominare writes "The BBC is reporting that Adobe is releasing new player software which will allow websites that use their Flash video player (such as YouTube) to force viewers to watch ads before the video they selected will play. 'But the big seller for Adobe is the ability to include in Flash movies so-called digital rights management (DRM) — allowing copyright holders to require the viewing of adverts, or restrict copying. "Adobe has created the first way for media companies to release video content, secure in the knowledge that advertising goes with it," James McQuivey, an analyst at Forrester Research said.' This seems to have been timed to coincide with Microsoft's release of their own competitor, Silverlight, to Adobe's dominance of online video."

Father of Internet Warns Against Net Neutrality 322

An anonymous reader writes "At a recent talk at the Computer History Museum Robert Kahn, co-inventor of TCP/IP, warned against net neutrality legislation that could hinder experimentation and innovation. Calling 'net neutrality' a slogan, Khan also cautioned against 'dogmatic views of network architecture.' A video of the talk is also available."
Microsoft

Microsoft Looking to Run Windows on OLPC 392

pete314 writes "Microsoft has been provided with a number of test models of Nicholas Negroponte's One Laptop per Child computers and is trying to get Windows installed on them. The current design runs a custom version of Red Hat's Fedora Linux. Running Windows will take quite a bit of additional memory: the OLPC has 512Mb of Flash, where XP requires a minimum of 1.5Gb storage."
Microsoft

Get on the 'Gates for President' Bandwagon 654

netbuzz writes "Dilbert's Scott Adams kicked off the idea in his November 19th blog post, saying there isn't anything wrong with this country that President Bill Gates couldn't cure in less time than it takes to get a new operating system out the door. Today, the idea is moving forward with a brand-new 'Bill Gates for President' Web site. Adams is also back on the campaign trail, flogging the site and Gates' candidacy." A blog post at Network World includes a lot of eye-rolling about this idea, but neither Adams nor the folks at the 'Gates for President' website seem to be taking this lightly.

PS3 Scales 1080i To 480p On HDTVs 125

Dr. Eggman writes "According to an article from IGN, PS3 owners are finding that 1080i-only HDTV sets are scaling down launch games to 480p. The scale-down occurs because the launch games do not support 1080i, however they should be scaling down to an HD resolution of 720 instead of 480p. It is unknown if this is a technical or software issue and if it can be patched soon." ABC news is reporting that a patch which should be available to PS3 owners soon will correct the backward compatibility issues we discussed the other day.

Microsoft One Step From World's Greenest Company 492

An anonymous reader writes "According to this article, Microsoft is only a few lines of code away from becoming the greenest company on Earth." From the article: "Redmond should issue a software upgrade to every computer running Microsoft Windows worldwide to adjust each machine's energy-saving settings for maximum efficiency." The author figures that the upgrade would affect 100 million computers and that the power cost savings could hit $7 billion per year. CO2 emissions would be cut by 45 million tons. But what about the impact on computing?

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