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Music

Ozzy Osbourne's Genome Reveals Some Neanderthal Lineage 151

ByOhTek writes "CNN reports that in July, rocker Ozzy Osbourne became one of few to submit his blood to have his full genome sequenced and analyzed. The results are in, and it turns out his genome reveals some Neanderthal lineage. What does Ozzie have to say about it? 'I was curious, given the swimming pools of booze I've guzzled over the years - not to mention all of the cocaine, morphine, sleeping pills, cough syrup, LSD, Rohypnol... there's really no plausible medical reason why I should still be alive. Maybe my DNA could say why,' he wrote."
Security

Hiding Backdoors In Hardware 206

quartertime writes "Remember Reflections on Trusting Trust, the classic paper describing how to hide a nearly undetectable backdoor inside the C compiler? Here's an interesting piece about how to hide a nearly undetectable backdoor inside hardware. The post describes how to install a backdoor in the expansion ROM of a PCI card, which during the boot process patches the BIOS to patch grub to patch the kernel to give the controller remote root access. Because the backdoor is actually housed in the hardware, even if the victim reinstalls the operating system from a CD, they won't clear out the backdoor. I wonder whether China, with its dominant position in the computer hardware assembly business, has already used this technique for espionage. This perhaps explains why the NSA has its own chip fabrication plant."
Businesses

IE6 Addiction Inhibits Windows 7 Migrations 470

eldavojohn writes "As anyone in the industry will tell you, a lot of money went into developing web applications specific to IE6. And corporations can't leave Windows XP for Windows 7 until IE6 runs (in some way) on Windows 7. Microsoft wants to leave that non-standard browser mess behind them, but as the article notes, 'Organizations running IE6 have told Gartner that 40% of their custom-built browser-dependent applications won't run on IE8, the version packaged with Windows 7. Thus, many companies face a tough decision: Either spend time and money to upgrade those applications so that they work in newer browsers, or stick with Windows XP.' Support for XP is going to end in April 2014. In order to deal with this, companies are looking at virtualizing IE6 only (instead of a full operating system) so that it can run on Windows 7 — even though Microsoft says this violates licensing agreements. IE6 is estimated to have roughly 16% of browser market share, and due to mistakes in the past it may never truly die."

Comment What about Java (Score 3, Interesting) 162

The only thing I'm concerned about regarding this deal is how this will change Java. The way I see it, one of two things will happen: One, current Oracle staff will manage the Java platform development and bad things will happen (all sorts of bad things could happen). Two, Oracle will deem Java an unprofitable product and will spin off a free software foundation, the likes of Mozilla or Apache.

Power

Submission + - SPAM: Refrigerator technology to cool computers

coondoggie writes: "Researchers today said they are working on a way to use tiny refrigerator components to cool computers, a move they say would increase system performance and shrink the size of the devices. Researchers at Purdue University said they have developed miniature refrigerator technology such as compressors and evaporators to cool computer innards. Researchers said they have developed a model for designing tiny compressors that pump refrigerants using penny-size diaphragms made of ultra-thin sheets of a plastic called polyimide and coated with an electrically conducting metallic layer to help remove heat. [spam URL stripped]"
Link to Original Source
The Almighty Buck

Submission + - OLPC cost rises from $100 to $188 per laptop (cnn.com)

Arathon writes: "Turns out that the amazing "$100" laptop designed by the "One Laptop Per Child" program isn't going to make it out the door for that price. CNN reports that the laptops are now expected to cost $188 apiece when they come out later this fall. This is expected to make the program's appeal potentially much smaller, since the developers were relying on the mind-bogglingly low-price to hook governments into the concept of buying laptops for their people. OLPC's spokesman guarantees that the price won't rise further, to "above $190". The price differential is being blamed on raw materials costs and currency fluctuation.
Is this the end of the OLPC's newsworthiness, or should we continue to hope that it will make the difference that so many have said it will?"

Communications

Submission + - Comcast Needs to Clearly Define their Usage Policy (newsgroupreviews.com)

UsenetJunkie writes: "Comcast is currently in the hot seat with many customers.Causes range from disconnecting users for utilizing too much bandwidth to drastically limiting BitTorrent traffic. What is the answer to the madness? While Comcast denies bandwidth throttling and traffic shaping allegations I wonder what they would do if all the BitTorrent users switched ISP's."
Toys

Company Demos Personal Aircraft, Future Jetpack 98

coondoggie writes "Earlier this week researchers with the company ESG Elektroniksystem in Germany demonstrated a form of 'strap-on jet wing' that lets a user truly fly through the air. The system, called Gryphon, consists of a six-foot wing and hand-held rotary controls for the rudder. The pilot has several different instruments available to him, including onboard oxygen and helmet that features a heads-up display. 'Researchers say the final version of the flying wing will contain an electronic system that will take care of some of the steering for the pilot which today can be a little tricky, researchers say. The company also plans to add small jets to the wing making it a true jetpack in the future.'"
Caldera

SCO Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy 421

Can you say "the SCO, the" in German? writes "Trading of SCO's stock has been halted on news that SCO has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. This move just so happens to fall on the eve of SCO's trial with Novell. One would think that their prior boasts were mostly bluster, that they believe they have almost no chance of prevailing at trial, and that they're now desperate to protect their executives from SCO's creditors while seeking yet another delay. From the release: 'The SCO Group intends to maintain all normal business operations throughout the bankruptcy proceedings. Subject to court approval, SCO and its subsidiaries will use the cash flow from their consolidated operations to meet their capital needs during the reorganization process. "We want to assure our customers and partners that they can continue to rely on SCO products, support and services for their business critical operations," said Darl McBride, President and CEO, The SCO Group. "Chapter 11 reorganization provides the Company with an opportunity to protect its assets during this time while focusing on building our future plans."'"
Media (Apple)

Apple Cuts Off Linux iPod Users 854

Will Fisher writes "New iPods will no longer be able to work with Linux. iTunes now writes some kind of hash (SHA1, md5?) to the iPod database which new iPods check against. If this check fails then the iPod reports that it contains 0 songs. This appears to be protection against 3rd party applications writing out their own databases. We haven't found out how to generate our own valid hashes (but we do know the hash includes the database itself, and possibly the iPod serial number), and are looking for help."
Censorship

How To Configure Real PC Parental Controls? 618

Orange Crush writes "As the resident computer geek in an office full of accountants, my boss recently asked me how she could reasonably keep her teenage son from using the family computer to 'access inappropriate sites.' I of course responded 'Give up now. There's nothing in this world that can keep a determined teenager from acquiring porn.' Sadly, she was dissatisfied with this answer. I mentioned that there was in fact software available for this purpose, but that all of it was trivially easy to bypass for a clever young mind. I really can't think of another answer. She could password protect the BIOS to prevent booting a different OS, but that's easily defeated with a screwdriver at most. The only solutions I can think of involve upstream firewalls/proxies/etc to which I gleefully redirected her to her ISPs tech support number. As much as I disagree with her reasoning — and ignoring the obvious 'go to a friend's house' loophole — is there really any other way (on a home budget) to netnanny a household computer?"
Programming

Debating the Linux Process Scheduler 232

An anonymous reader writes "The Linux 2.6.23 kernel is expected around the end of the month, and will be the first to include Ingo Molnar's much debated rewrite of the process scheduler called the Completely Fair Scheduler. In another Linux kernel mailing list thread one more developer is complaining about Molnar and his new code. However, according to KernelTrap a number of other Linux developers have stood up to defend Molnar and call into question the motives of the complaints. It will be interesting to see how the new processor really performs when the 2.6.23 kernel is released."

Gates Successor Says Microsoft Laid Foundation for Google 500

thefickler writes "According to Bill Gates' successor Craig Mundie, there would have been no Google without Microsoft. 'I mean, the fact is: Google's existence and success required Microsoft to have been successful previously to create the platform that allowed them to go on and connect people to their search servers. Now, Microsoft's business is not to control the platform per se, but in fact to allow it to be exploited by the world's developers. The fact that we have it out there gives us a good business, but in some ways it doesn't give us an advantage over any of the other developers in terms of being able to utilize it.' This comment comes from a lengthy interview between Mundie and APC magazine, which talks with the newly installed strategy and R&D head. Other interesting topics discussed include the future of Microsoft and Windows, OOXML, and and the 'rise of Linux' on the desktop."

How the iPod Touch Works 208

starexplorer2001 writes "The iPod Touch isn't in stores yet, but HowStuffWorks has a nice summary of how the 'touch' part of the iPod Touch works. Very similar to how the iPhone works, without those pesky rebates! From the article: 'The iPod touch also has a few other features that iPod enthusiasts had hoped to see on standard iPod models. Some users hoped for a wirelessly enabled iPod so they could synch their music or share files with friends over a Bluetooth or WiFi connection. The iPod touch is the first iPod to have wireless capability, although it doesn't use it to synch with a computer or friends' iPods. Instead, you can use it to browse the Web, watch YouTube videos or download music from a WiFi-specific iTunes Music Store. With its widescreen display and WiFi capability, the iPod touch might sound like a big step up from older iPod models. But the iPod touch isn't for everyone.'"
Intel

DDR3 Isn't Worth The Money - Yet 120

An anonymous reader writes "With Intel's motherboard chipsets supporting both DDR2 and DDR3 memory, the question now is whether DDR3 is worth all that extra cash. Trustedreviews has a lengthy article on the topic, and it looks like (for the moment) the answer is no: 'Not to be too gloomy about this, but the bottom line is that it can only be advised to steer clear of DDR3 at present, as in terms of performance, which is what it's all about, it's a waste of money. Even fast DDR2 is, as we have demonstrated clearly, only worthwhile if you are actually overclocking, as it enables you to raise the front-side bus, without your memory causing a bottleneck. DDR3 will of course come into its own as speeds increase still further, enabling even higher front-side bus speeds to be achieved. For now though, DDR2 does its job, just fine.'"

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