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Submission + - Flat lens focuses without distortion (harvard.edu)

yahyamf writes: Applied physicists at the Harvard have created an ultrathin, flat lens that focuses light without the distortions of conventional lenses.

“Our flat lens opens up a new type of technology,” says principal investigator Federico Capasso. “We’re presenting a new way of making lenses. Instead of creating phase delays as light propagates through the thickness of the material, you can create an instantaneous phase shift right at the surface of the lens. It’s extremely exciting.”

Google

Submission + - Microsoft Sends DMCA Notices To Legitimate Websites

An anonymous reader writes: In the past couple of days, a bunch of technology sites received a DMCA takedown notice from Microsoft (through Google). NGOHQ and PowerArchiver for hosting screenshot(s) of Windows 8 RTM while their forum users were criticizing the new Metro UI. BetaNews received a notice for posting a link to the Windows 8 Developer Preview.
Programming

Submission + - Vanilla JS Used On More Sites Than jQuery (i-programmer.info)

mikejuk writes: If you are looking for a new framework to help you build a web site, then you need to know about Vanilla JS. This is the most powerful and lightweight of all the frameworks. It is already in use by a huge number of websites and autodownloaded by most browsers. Benchmarks show that the best alternative framework is less more than twice as slow and everyone's favourite jQuery is four times slower. Just think of all that speed you are giving up! Other benchmarks reveal an even bigger advantage for Vanilla JS .
Security

Submission + - Hackers Dump Millions of Records of CIA, Banks, Politicians (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: TeamGhostShell, a team linked with the infamous group Anonymous, is claiming that they have hacked some major US institutions including the likes of CIA, major banking institutions, accounts of politicians and has posted those details online. The dumps comprising of millions of accounts has been let loose on the web by the hacking collective. The motivation behind the hack, the group claims, is to protest against banks, politicians and the hackers who have been captured by law enforcement agencies.
Technology

Submission + - AirPod, a car that runs on air is coming to India (gizmocrazed.com)

Diggester writes: Tata Motors (an Indian car manufacturer) is changing things up with the first car to run on air, the Airpod.

The Airpod's technology was originally created in France at Motor Development International but has since been bought buy Tata in hopes to bring it to the Indian consumer car market. With virtually zero emissions and at the cost of about a penny per kilometer, it is definitely one of the most environmentally and economically friendly vehicles in the world. The tank holds about 175 liters of compressed air that can be filled at special stations or by activating the on-board electric motor to suck air in from the outside. Costing about $10,000, this car could beat out most smart cars from the market.

Politics

Submission + - Startup Installs Pipelines With Helicopter - Seriously (singularityhub.com)

kkleiner writes: "A major earthquake strikes a town leaving power plants damaged, water pipelines broken, and roads blocked. How will people get clean water? A new startup says it has the answer. TOHL, which stands for Tubing Operations for Humanitarian Logistics, has developed a simple method to deliver fresh water for emergency relief: install a really long plastic tube with a helicopter. And it works."
Linux

Submission + - World's First Linux Ultrabook Ships (pcworld.com)

Rozzin writes: ""It's one of my pet peeves that the world's most robust, high-end software is so often housed in low-end, unappealing machines or, worse, tweaked to work on machines that were built for Windows," says ZaReason CEO Cathy Malmrose; "Our goal is to build hardware that more aptly matches the high-end aspects of FOSS"."

Submission + - A modest proposal for sequestration of CO2 in the Antarctic (judithcurry.com)

Alienwise writes: "Judith Curry reports a scientific concept of a atmosphere CO2 sequestration plant. It would be base on Antartic in order to profit from the cold weather, which would be facilitate to create CO2 snow, which would then be burried. The plant could be powered by windmills. There is much more in the original paper, whose abstract can be viewed at http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JAMC-D-12-0110.1"
Operating Systems

Submission + - Tizen drops EFL for HTML5 (tizen.org) 1

DustyMutant writes: According to one of Tizen's architects Carsten "Rasterman" Haitzler talking to user richrboo on the official project's IRC channel, there will be no option for native development in Tizen nor support for native apps in the application store. Rasterman is also co-author and benevolent dictator of the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries (EFL), customized by Samsung for the needs of its Linux platform that gave birth to Tizen in 2011. Tizen OS 1.0 is scheduled for the first quarter of 2012.

While Samsung never announced its roles in Tizen officially (or maybe because of that) Rasterman as Samsung's employee has been informally acting and the spokesperson or community manager for the project within the developer circles. Over a year ago he shared breaking news for open source enthusiasts: "Samsung is putting real resources behind EFL and using it to make a production-ready OS. The OS not only is Linux based, It uses all the other infrastructure from Linux [..] It is also going to be Open Source (GPL, LGPL etc.) and with Opensource upstream gaining contributions back from Samsung."

But last week Carsten admitted that he has already given up pushing EFL as the native GUI framework within Tizen and he does not care about that anymore. "I don't hear anything except 'the future is html5'. [..] So go make webapps and be happy as that is obviously the one and only true future. Go talk to the 'technical steering committee'." — he said apparently embittered.

This is second similar move in Tizen's history after notable removal of the Qt libraries and tools before reusing some other components from MeeGo late 2011. The move has polarized the communities and probably boosted creation of alternative projects such as Mer and Nemo. After the change EFL would be only used internally by some "system" applications like the system's web browser for the GUI. It was not disclosed how the OS will handle natively-running games that are not based on HTML5.

For open-source backers the project's reality is getting bitter every month. Tizen's upstream contributions are largely disputable because git history for the open source packages have never been published. And the fact that the SDK fueling Tizen is closed-source does not help to win more souls. It is not clear if the statement about merge of Tizen with the closed-source bada OS that hit the news in January was just a gossip. Now the state of Samsung's EFL contributions is uncertain. So if this is all true and Tizen goes full steam with Web-only approach, because of fundamental (not just technical) differences, it is hard to consider the project as a continuation of the MeeGo platform, contrary to what the sponsored Linux Foundation declares. But even more practical question can be: why is Tizen any better than other Web-based initiatives?

Science

Submission + - Science Reveals Why Airplane Food Tastes So Bad

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Jad Mouawad writes that at low elevations, the 10,000 or so taste buds in the human mouth work pretty much as nature intended but step aboard a modern airliner, and the sense of taste loses its bearings. Even before a plane takes off, the atmosphere inside the cabin dries out the nose, as the plane ascends the change in air pressure numbs about a third of the taste buds, and at 35,000 feet with cabin humidity levels kept low by design to reduce the risk of fuselage corrosion, xerostomia or cotton mouth sets in. This explain why airlines tend to salt and spice food heavily. Without all that extra kick, food tastes bland. “Ice cream is about the only thing I can think of that tastes good on a plane,” says Marion Nestle, a professor of nutrition, food studies and public health at New York University. “Airlines have a problem with food on board. The packaging, freezing, drying and storage are hard on flavor at any altitude, let alone 30,000 feet.” Challenges abound. First food safety standards require all meals to be cooked first on the ground. After that, they are blast-chilled and refrigerated until they can be stacked on carts and loaded on planes. For safety, open-flame grills and ovens aren’t allowed on commercial aircraft so attendants must contend with convection ovens that blow hot, dry air over the food. “Getting any food to taste good on a plane is an elusive goal,” says Steve Gundrum, who runs a company that develops new products for the food industry."
Iphone

Submission + - "Cyber Illusionist" Marco Tempest (bbc.co.uk)

bLanark writes: The BBC have a piece about illusionist Marco Tempest who uses technology to generate magical illusions. As he says in the interview unlike most magicians and illusionists he shares his techniques in an act that he calls "open sorcery." The techniques include using iPhone apps, and high-speed digital cameras. There is a growing band of people using and contributing to the field.
Government

Submission + - Congress Probes iOS App Developers On Privacy (itproportal.com)

hypnosec writes: Over in the US, Congress is gathering further information on iOS developers and how they deal with and implement privacy policies. The Next Web got hold of a letter from Congress which had been sent out to Tapbots, along with some 32 other iOS developers, including both Twitter and Facebook, and the devs of Path, SoundCloud, Foodspotting and Turntable.fm. The apps were picked due to the fact that they come under the social networking umbrella in the "essentials" area of the App Store. The letter begins: "We are writing to you because we want to better understand the information collection and use policies and practices of apps for Apple's mobile devices with a social element." What follows is a series of eight questions designed to gather more details regarding the popularity of the app in question, and the privacy policy it holds to (and how it's made known to users).

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