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Space

Submission + - A decade-long mystery has been solved

justelite writes: "A decade-long mystery has been solved using data from ESA's X-ray observatory XMM-Newton. The brightest member of the so-called 'magnificent seven' has been found to pulsate with a period of seven seconds. The discovery casts some doubt on the recent interpretation that this object is a highly exotic celestial object known as a quark star."
Databases

Submission + - MetaWeb to construct an open Semantic Web database

prostoalex writes: "The New York Times runs an article on AI export Danny Hillis and others starting a company called MetaWeb, that at first glance looks like Wikipedia with tagging, but on the second is really an open platform for Semantic Web, available to other developers. NYT explains: "That would make it possible for programmers and Web developers to write programs allowing Internet users to pose queries that might produce a simple, useful answer rather than a long list of documents. Since it could offer an understanding of relationships like geographic location and occupational specialties, Freebase might be able to field a query about a child-friendly dentist within 10 miles of one's home and yield a single result.""
Privacy

Sweden Admits Tapping Citizens' Phones for Decades 273

paulraps writes "Sweden is close to implementing new surveillance legislation that will include the monitoring of emails, telephone calls and keyword searches using advanced pattern analysis. The objective is to detect 'threats such as terrorism, IT attacks or the spread of weapons of mass destruction' but the proposals have divided the country. In a misguided attempt to put people at ease, the government admitted that Sweden has been tapping its citizens' phones for decades anyway."
Networking

Submission + - Will an open source router replace your Cisco ?

Tom writes: "David Davis CCIE, CCNA, CCNP test drives Open-Source Router....."In my opinion, anything you want to do with a standard Cisco router, you can do with Vyatta for the most part, and you don't have to worry about the various Cisco IOS licenses.""
Math

Submission + - Berkeley Ph.D. Proves "Jesus Tomb" Improba

Daniel Foster writes: "Looks like the 'Jesus Tomb' people got their math wrong. Dr. Randy Ingermanson (Ph.D. in physics from U.C. Berkeley) recalculates the statistical probability used by the Jesus Tomb book and documentary and finds that 'Jesus of Nazareth is EXTREMELY UNLIKELY to be the Jesus found in the family tomb.' He says, 'My estimate is that the odds are at least 10,000 to 1 AGAINST Jesus of Nazareth being the man found in the tomb.' Check out his data and decide for yourself whether he's onto something."
Linux Business

Helping Dell To Help Open Source 177

Glyn Moody writes "Dell's IdeaStorm is turning into a fiasco — for Dell, and for open source as well. Instead of just shouting at the company to sell pre-installed GNU/Linux systems, how about helping them find a way to do it? Here's a suggestion that I've posted on the IdeaStorm site: that Dell set up an independent business unit for GNU/Linux systems, just like The Innovator's Dilemma tells us to do when faced with a disruptive technology."
Censorship

Submission + - France bans citizen journalists from reporting vio

ahbi writes: As reported from the IDG News Service, the French Constitutional Council has approved a law that criminalizes the filming or broadcasting of acts of violence by people other than professional journalists. The law could lead to the imprisonment of eyewitnesses who film acts of police violence, or operators of Web sites publishing the images, one French civil liberties group warned on Tuesday.

The broad drafting of the law so as to criminalize the activities of citizen journalists unrelated to the perpetrators of violent acts is no accident, but rather a deliberate decision by the authorities, said Cohet. He is concerned that the law, and others still being debated, will lead to the creation of a parallel judicial system controlling the publication of information on the Internet.
Space

Milky Way's Black Hole a Gamma Source? 100

eldavojohn writes "A paper recently accepted for publication (preprint here) proposes a sound explanation for the source of the gamma rays that permeate our galaxy. The Milky Way's central object Sagittarius A*, widely believed to be a supermassive black hole, is now suspected to be the source. To test this theory, two scientists created a computer model to track the protons, flung outward with energies up to 100 TeV by the intense magnetic fields near the event horizon, as they make a random walk through the plasma environment. It can take thousands of years for them to travel 10 light-years from the black hole, where they collide with lower-energy protons to form pions. These decay into gamma radiation emanating from a torus-shaped region around the central object."
The Almighty Buck

Submission + - Global Warming "Scam" documentary to air o

sf_basilix writes: A documentary being broadcast on TV this week claims that Global Warming is "the biggest scam of modern times." After all the articles on global warming we continue to hear, it will be nice to finally hear another side. An article from the Washington Times describes how these panel of scientists claim "...that [carbon dioxide] has no proven link to global temperatures... Solar activity is far more likely to be the culprit...Scientists in the Channel 4 documentary cite what they claim is another discrepancy involving conventional research, saying that most of the recent global warming occurred before 1940, after which temperatures around the world fell for four decades...Mr. Durkin's skeptical specialists view this as a flaw in the official view, because the worldwide economic boom that followed the end of World War II produced more carbon dioxide, and therefore should have meant a rise in global temperatures — something he says did not happen."
Censorship

Submission + - iTunes Censorship - Artists, Lyrics and Videos

Apple Employee writes: "iTunes Censorship is out of control — S**k my Kiss by Red Hot Chili Peppers. Such Great Heights video has been altered. Thousands of Artists iTunes won't let you hear. They won't even let you search for certain key words — So why carry Explicit Albums.?"
Music

Major Broadcasters Hit With $12M Payola Fine 222

Gr8Apes writes with a just-breaking AP story reporting that the FCC is wrapping up a settlement in which four major broadcast companies would pay the government $12.5 million and provide 8,400 half-hour segments of free airtime for independent record labels and local artists. The finish line is near after a 3-year investigation. An indie promoter is quoted: "It's absolutely the most historic agreement that the independent community has had with radio. Without a doubt, nothing else comes close."

Feed Chinese Spies: Threat or Not (wired.com)

Its intelligence services are running wild in the U.S. and pilfering technology, according to a new counterintelligence exec on China. Is this the latest Bush fear-mongering? Plus: Bush board backs wiretaps. In 27B Stroke 6.


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