Ian Lamont writes: "Thanks to profit-oriented telco industry in the U.S., rural residents don't have as much access to broadband services as those who live in urban or suburban areas. According to the federal government, just 17% of rural U.S. households subscribe to broadband service. But the problem is more than a conflict between Wall Street and small-town residents wanting to surf the 'Net or play Warcraft — the lack of broadband access prevents many businesses from growing and diversifying rural economies, as it's expensive or impossible to get broadband:
Soon after moving to Gilsum, N.H. (population 811), [Kim] Rossey learned that he couldn't get broadband to support his Web programming business, TooCoolWebs. DSL wasn't available, and the local cable service provider wasn't interested in extending the cabling for its broadband service the three-tenths of a mile required to reach Rossey's house — even if he paid the full $7,000 cost. Rossey ended up signing a two-year, $450-per-month contract for a T1 line that delivers 1.44Mbit/sec. of bandwidth. He pays 10 times more than the cable provider would have charged and receives one quarter of the bandwidth.
Roland Piquepaille writes: "Radiotherapy is widely used to fight cancers. Today, only beta particles are approved by health regulators, such as the U.S. FDA. Beta particles are small and travel fast, but it takes thousands of them to kill a cancer cell. Now, U.S. researchers have found a way to use alpha particles to destroy cancer tumors by encapsulating them inside carbon nanotubes. These alpha particles, which are 4,000 times bigger than beta particles, are much slower but are more efficient. According to the researchers, 'cancer cells can be destroyed with just one direct hit from an alpha particle on a cell nucleus.' But major issues need to be overcome before future treatments become possible by using them. Read more for additional details and a picture showing how the alpha particles could be packaged inside carbon nanotubes to destroy cancerous cells."