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Privacy

Security Checkpoints Predict What You Will Do 369

An anonymous reader writes "New security check points in 2020 will look just like something out of the futuristic movie, The Minority Report. The idea of the new checkpoints will allow high traffic to pass through just as you were walking at a normal pace. No more waving a wand to get through checkpoints — the new checkpoint can detect if you have plans to set off a bomb before you even enter the building."
Encryption

Using Lasers To Generate Random Numbers Faster 149

Pranav writes "Using semiconductor lasers, scientists from Takushoku University, Saitama University, and NTT Corporation achieved random number rates of up to 1.7 gigabits per second, which is about 10 times higher than the second-best rate, produced using a physical phenomenon. Future work may center on devising laser schemes that can achieving rates as high as 10 Gbps."
Power

Batteries To Store Wind Energy 275

Roland Piquepaille writes "Scientific American reports that Xcel Energy, a Minneapolis-based utility company, has started to test a new technology to store wind energy in batteries. The company is currently trying it in a 1,100 megawatt facility of wind turbines in Southern Minnesota. The company started this effort because 'the wind doesn't always blow and, even worse, it often blows strongest when people aren't using much electricity, like late at night.' It has received a $1 million grant from Minnesota's Renewable Development Fund and the energy plant should be operational (PDF) in the first quarter of 2009. If this project is successful, the utility expects to deploy many more energy plants before 2020 to avoid more polluting energy sources."
The Courts

RIAA's Request For Appeal Denied In Thomas Case 197

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "The RIAA's request for permission to appeal from the decision setting aside its $222,000 jury verdict has been denied by District Court Judge Michael J. Davis. In a brief, 6-page decision (PDF) the Judge dismissed the RIAA's arguments that there is a 'substantial ground for a difference of opinion' on the question of law presented, whether the Judge had erred in accepting the RIAA's proposed jury instruction that merely 'making files available' could constitute an infringement of the plaintiffs' distribution rights. He likewise dismissed their argument that granting permission for the appeal would 'materially advance the ultimate termination of the litigation,' since (a) depending on the outcome of the trial, plaintiffs might not wish to appeal from the judgment, and (b) no matter how the appeals court rules on the 'making available' issue, the case will still have to continue in the lower court, since even if the RIAA wins on the 'making available' issue, the Court will still have to address the constitutionality of the large jury verdict, which may result in a new trial."
The Courts

RIAA Case May Be Televised On Internet 221

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "In SONY BMG Music Entertainment v. Tenenbaum, the Boston case in which the defendant is represented by Prof. Charles Nesson and his CyberLaw class at Harvard Law School, the defendant has requested that audio-visual coverage of the court proceedings be made available to the public via the internet. Taking the RIAA at its word — that the reason for its litigation program is to 'educate the public' — the defendant's motion (PDF) queries why the RIAA would oppose public access: 'Net access to this litigation will allow an interested and growingly sophisticated public to understand the RIAA's education campaign. Surely education is the purpose of the Digital Deterrence Act of 1999, the constitutionality of which we are challenging. How can RIAA object? Yet they do, fear of sunlight shone upon them.'"

Cryptol, Language of Cryptography, Now Available To the Public 140

solweil writes to mention that Cryptol, a 'domain specific language for the design, implementation and verification of cryptographic algorithms,' is now available to the public. Cryptol was originally designed for the NSA. It allows for a quick evaluation and continued revisions, and is available for Linux, OS X, and Windows.
Portables (Apple)

Smooth Open Street Maps For the iPhone 46

detrow writes "A number of projects are working on bringing a smooth Open Street Maps Viewer to the iPhone, where smooth means as smooth as the Google Maps application. Route-Me is one of them (New BSD License, complete Objective-C native code). The GPS Mission blog reports that their application (GPS Mission) uses Route-Me and made it to the App Store as the first application using that OSM component. The map looks real nice and behaves just like Google Maps with all the well known zooming and panning available. What other iPhone applications exist that feel as smooth as Google Maps but use the Open Street Map?"
The Internet

Repair Crews Reach Vicinity of Damaged Cables In Mediterranean 145

GWMAW writes "A robotic submarine searched beneath the Mediterranean on Sunday for damaged communications cables, two days after Web and telephone access was knocked out for much of the Middle East. Telecommunication providers from Cairo to Dubai continued Sunday to scramble to reroute voice and data traffic through potentially costly detours in Asia and North America after the lines running under the Mediterranean Sea were damaged Friday." According to the article, "Once found, the cable ends will be pulled to the surface and repaired on deck — a process that could take several days."
Networking

Net Neutrality Opponent Calls Google a "Bandwidth Hog" 320

Adrian Lopez writes "According to PC World, an analyst with ties to the telecom industry — in a baseless attack on the concept of Net Neutrality — has accused Google Inc. of being a bandwidth hog. Quoting: '"Internet connections could be more affordable for everyone, if Google paid its fair share of the Internet's cost," wrote Cleland in the report. "It is ironic that Google, the largest user of Internet capacity pays the least relatively to fund the Internet's cost; it is even more ironic that the company poised to profit more than any other from more broadband deployment, expects the American taxpayer to pick up its skyrocketing bandwidth tab."' Google responded on their public policy blog, citing 'significant methodological and factual errors that undermine his report's conclusions.' Ars Technica highlighted some of Cleland's faulty reasoning as well."
Windows

Windows Drops Below 90% Market Share 595

ozmanjusri writes "Online market share of the dominant Windows operating system has taken its biggest monthly fall in years to drop below 90%, according to Net Applications Inc. Computerworld reports that Microsoft's flagship product has been steadily losing ground to Mac OS X and Linux, and is at its lowest ebb in the market since 1995. 'Mac OS X... [ended] the month at 8.9%. November was the third month running that Apple's operating system remained above 8%.' The stats show that while some customers are 'upgrading' from XP to Vista, many are jumping ship to Apple, while Linux is also steadily gaining ground. A Net Applications executive suggests the slide may be caused by many of the same factors that caused the fall in Internet Explorer use. 'The more home users who are online, using Macs and Firefox and Safari, the more those shares go up,' he said. November has more weekend days, as well Thanksgiving in the US, a result that emphasizes the importance of corporate sales to Microsoft."
United States

Who Will Obama Choose As Copyright Czar? 174

seanpark writes "Who will President Elect Obama select for the recently established post of Copyright Czar? Biden has a longstanding relationship with Big Content, and he was partly responsible for the PRO-IP Act that created the position. The short list according to the article includes a few lobbyists (who would likely be disqualified by stringent ethical guidelines) and Lawrence Lessig, who was a technology adviser to the Obama Campaign."
Education

How to Deal With an Aging Brain? 684

An anonymous reader writes "I'm sure this is something all older Slashdotters are aware of: as I get older my once-sharp brain is, well, getting worse. In particular, I'm not able to remember things as well as I once did. As a geek my capacity in this area was always what defined me as a geek. Nowadays things seem to go in OK, but then leak out. A few weeks later I've mostly forgotten. So, I ask Slashdot: how do you cope with your mind getting older? What's your trick? Fish-oil? Brain Training on the DS? Exercise? Or just trying harder to remember things?"
Space

Massive Martian Glaciers Found 314

Kozar_The_Malignant writes "Scientific American is reporting that 'data from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter point to vast glaciers buried beneath thin layers of crustal debris.' Data from the surface-penetrating radar on MRO revealed that two well-known mid-latitude features are composed of solid water ice. One is about three times the size of the City of Los Angeles. This certainly makes the idea of establishing a station on Mars far more plausible."
The Courts

Palin E-mail Hacker Indicted 846

doomsdaywire writes "A University of Tennessee student who is the son of a Memphis legislator has been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of hacking Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's personal e-mail. [...] If convicted, [David C.] Kernell faces a maximum of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and a three-year term of supervised release. A trial date has not been set."

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