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The Military

US Tests New Missile Defense 278

pumpkinpuss writes "The US military yesterday shot down a missile in a test simulating a long-range ballistic missile attack by a potential adversary such as North Korea or Iran. The target missile was launched from Kodiak Island, Alaska, at 3:04 PM Eastern time, tracked simultaneously by several ground and ship-based radars, and intercepted by a 'kill vehicle' 3,000 kilometers away over the Pacific 25 minutes later, according to the Missile Defense Agency. Lt. Gen. Patrick O'Reilly said, 'The kill vehicle was sent to a very accurate spot in space giving us great confidence.'" Reader gilgsn points out the testing of a different "multiple kill vehicle" by Lockheed Martin, which was able to hover over the ground and track a target. Video of the test (WMV) is also available.
Medicine

Surgeons Weld Wounds Shut With Surgical Laser 151

Ruach writes "The promise of medical lasers goes beyond clean incisions and eye surgery: Many believe that lasers should be used not just to create wounds but to mend them too. Abraham Katzir, a physicist at Tel Aviv University, has a system that may just do the trick and is proving successful in its first human trials."
Games

Review: Gears of War 2 193

The original Gears of War was one of the most popular games of 2006, helping to solidify the Xbox 360's place in the console market. Since then, it's sold about 5 million copies. When word leaked out that a sequel was in the works, many wondered if Epic Games could reach the bar set by the first game. As it turns out, they could. Gears of War 2 will feel very familiar to those who have played its predecessor. Games often have a way of reinventing themselves as sequels come and go, but Epic stuck to the basics of what had already worked so well, and simply set about improving, polishing, and fleshing out the Gears world as much as they could. Read on for the rest of the review.
Microsoft

Ballmer "Interested" In Open Source Browser Engine 410

Da Massive writes "'Why is IE still relevant and why is it worth spending money on rendering engines when there are open source ones available that can respond to changes in Web standards faster?,' asked a young developer to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in Sydney yesterday. 'That's cheeky, but a good question, but cheeky,' Ballmer said. Then came the startling revelation that Microsoft may also adopt an open source browser engine. 'Open source is interesting,' he said. 'Apple has embraced Webkit and we may look at that, but we will continue to build extensions for IE 8.'"
The Military

US Congress Funds Laser Weapons 423

An anonymous reader writes "The Washington Post reports that the US Congress is funding laser weapons for use in the near future. Low-power lasers called 'dazzlers' are already being used in Iraq to temporarily reduce a person's vision. High-power laser weapons would allow precision attacks that minimize civilian casualties. From the Post: 'The science board said tactical laser systems could be developed for broader use because they "enable precision ground attack to minimize collateral damage in urban conflicts." The report suggested, for example, that "future gunships could provide extended precision lethality and sensing." The board also proposed using lasers to protect against rockets, artillery, mortars and unmanned airborne vehicles by blasting them out of the sky. Last month, the Army awarded Boeing $36 million to continue development of a high-energy laser mounted on a truck that could hit overhead targets. But deployment is not expected until 2016, even if all goes well.'"

How To Make Your Friends Call You More 233

B0bReader writes, "Simply sign up to something called jajah (a VOIP service that connects real telephones) using your friend's number (mobiles included), then log in and dial your own number. Your friend's phone will ring and after they hear a brief 'Jajah is connecting your call' they will be calling you and incur all charges. As an added bonus you will quite probably receive your friend's latest voice-mail message as your own (at least on Irish networks), which you may or may not wish to hear. There is even a Jajah Firefox extension — which at the time of writing is the Firefox featured add-on — so you can do it right from your browser. This is about the best example of a bad idea, with terrible implementation, that I have seen all day. And with the wonderful publicity the Firefox page offers it should reach a wide audience in no time."

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