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Businesses

Submission + - Australian court rules eBay auctions as binding

Ellis D. Tripp writes: "An Australian court has ruled that an eBay seller cannot back out of an auction sale once it is successfully completed. The court has ordered a seller to hand over a vintage airplane to an eBayer who bid just over the reserve price of $128,000, despite a subsequent non-eBay offer of over $200,000. More details here:

http://www.comcast.net/news/technology/index.jsp?c at=TECHNOLOGY&fn=/2007/08/03/730424.html"
Communications

Submission + - Brain electrodes help man speak again (yahoo.com)

An anonymous reader writes: "He was beaten and left for dead one night in a robbery while walking home in 1999. His skull was crushed and his brain severely damaged. The doctor said if he pulled through at all, he'd be a vegetable for the rest of his life." "Researchers chose him for an experimental attempt to rev up his brain by placing electrodes in it."
Software

Submission + - BitTorrent 6.0 beta closed source, Windows only

makomk writes: The BitTorrent (Mainline) 6.0 beta has been released, and it's a rebranded version of uTorrent. Unfortunately, it's also closed source and Windows-only. (Apparently, BitTorrent Inc always planned that the next version of Mainline would be closed-source, even before they decided to base it on uTorrent.) It also comes with a mysterious content delivery system called BitTorrent DNA, which appears to consist of a single invisible background task, dna.exe.

Does the original, open source BitTorrent client have a future, or is it time for its users to switch to one of the many other BitTorrent clients?
Quickies

Submission + - New FingerprintingTechnique to Reveal Race and Sex (telegraph.co.uk) 1

Tech.Luver writes: "Telegraph reports, " A new fingerprinting technique that can identify the race and sex, and possibly the diet of suspects has been developed. Scientists have shown that using a gelatine-based gel and high-tech chemical analysis can provide significant clues to a person?s identity even if police do not hold existing fingerprint records. ""
IBM

Submission + - Getting supercomputers on the cheap (networkworld.com)

jbrodkin writes: "You don't need Ivy League-type cash to get a supercomputer anymore. Organizations with limited financial resources are snatching up IBM supercomputers now that Big Blue has lowered the price of Blue Gene/L. Alabama-Birmingham and other universities that previously couldn't afford such advanced technology are using supercomputers to cure diseases at the protein level and solve equally challenging problems. IBM lowered the price of its Blue Gene/L supercomputer before releasing a more powerful model known as the Blue Gene/P last month. Sales of Blue Gene/L have more than doubled since then, bringing supercomputing into more corners of the academic and research worlds."
Google

FCC Goes Halfway On Opening 700 MHz Spectrum 192

The FCC has set rules for the upcoming auction of 700-MHz spectrum and they went halfway on the four open access principles that Google and others had called for. The agency said yes to "open devices" and "open applications," thus requiring the auction winner to permit consumers to use any device or application on the network. But the FCC turned down "open services" and "open networks," so the winners will not be obligated to let others buy access at wholesale prices in order to offer network services. This vote would seem to mean that Google won't bid in the spectrum auction. Ars has a more in-depth look at the outcome.
Sony

Submission + - Porn on Blu-ray: Sony reconsiders its position 1

allengineering writes: It is well known, the sex makes sell, and Sony undoubtedly does not wish to reiterate with Blu-ray the experiment of Betamax, which had not known to be essential vis-a-vis format VHS. Whereas the Japanese group was shown up to now rather reticent with the idea to accomodate pornographic contents on its optical format high definition, it would come according to PCWorld to equip a manufacturer with discs taiwanais of a press dedicated to the Blu-ray format by knowing this that last was going to collaborate with the Japanese industrialists of X.
Sony and Disney, one of its partners for the development of Blu-ray, however were historically opposed to the pornographic contents, Disney going even until refusing to collaborate with the manufacturers who has a presentiment of discs for adults. If various editors already have the means of proposing films X on Blu-ray discs, Sony granted the machines allowing dune mass production and the technical support associated only with some selected manufacturers.Here already estimated that by refusing the pornographic contents, Sony was likely to alienate some chances of victory in the battle which opposes its Blu-ray format to HD DVD. The partisans of the format developed at the point by Toshiba do not embarrass indeed such scruples.
Privacy

Submission + - Military recruiters have access to student records

piersonr writes: "Under No Child Left Behind, high schools are required to turn over lists of student contact information to the Department of Defense, which adds this information to an extensive database of children. The Department of Defense claims to need the names, addresses, and phone numbers of high school students for recruiting purposes, because it enables recruiters to contact children directly in their homes and at school, which is often done without the knowledge or consent of their parents. Yesterday, Silicon Valley Congressman Mike Honda introduced legislation to restrict recruiter's access to just those students who have "opted-in" to the list."
Media (Apple)

Submission + - Apple says iTunes bugs remain on Vista

pointbeing writes: According to MSNBC an update to Apple Inc.'s iTunes music software still hasn't resolved some of the compatibility problems with Microsoft Corp.'s new operating system.

The iTunes program is key to synching music on computers with iPod portable players, and the latest version, iTunes 7.1, comes a month after the iPod and Macintosh computer maker warned PC users against installing Windows Vista until Apple could fix the problems.

Apple removed that outright warning from its Web site on Monday and stated instead that the updated iTunes is recommended for use with most editions of Windows Vista. But Apple also conceded that some glitches, including possible corruption of a user's iPod player upon ejection from a PC, remain. Story continues below advertisement

"Apple is actively working with Microsoft to resolve a few remaining known issues," the posting stated.

Apple representatives declined further comment and would not say how much longer users would have to wait for iTunes to be completely Vista-friendly.

According to the notice posted on Apple's Web site, the previous glitch that prevented Vista users from playing music or video purchased from the online iTunes Store is no longer an issue.

But in addition to the iPod-ejection problem, Apple warned that iTunes 7.1 may still exhibit difficulties synchronizing Windows contacts with an iPod. The text and graphics of iTunes running on a Vista machine also may not be correctly displayed, though resizing the iTunes screen should correct the issue.

Apple also reminded users that iTunes remains unsupported on 64-bit editions of either Windows XP or Windows Vista.

Microsoft has said it is working with a long list of partners, including Apple, to make sure their software is compatible with Vista. The new operating system launched Jan. 30.

Though Microsoft and Apple are partners in some cases — iTunes works with Windows PCs and Microsoft Office has a version for Macs — the two are also longtime rivals. They compete in computer systems, which Microsoft dominates, and in the digital music arena, which Apple dominates.
Music

Submission + - New Royalty Rates Could Kill Internet Radio

FlatCatInASlatVat writes: Kurt Hanson's Radio Internet Newsletter has an analysis of the new royalty rates for Internet Radio announced by the US Copyright Office. The decision is likely to put most internet radio stations out of business by making the cost of broadcasting much higher than revenues. From the article: "The Copyright Royalty Board is rejecting all of the arguments made by Webcasters and instead adopting the "per play" rate proposal put forth by SoundExchange (a digital music fee collection body created by the RIAA)...[The] math suggests that the royalty rate decision — for the performance alone, not even including composers' royalties! — is in the in the ballpark of 100% or more of total revenues." Clear Channel, in the meantime, pays nothing. So long Radio Paradise, and all the other wonderful internet stations.
Technology (Apple)

Submission + - GoDaddy Deletes Domain Name for Bad E-mail address

An anonymous reader writes: Domain registrar GoDaddy canceled the domain registration for FamilyAlbum.com because the owner provided an inaccurate e-mail address for its 'whois'. The phone number and address were correct but GoDaddy never contacted the customer that way and simply deleted the domain from his account. GoDaddy sold the domain to someone who placed a backorder for the domain and maintains it did the right thing. Here's the scoop: http://domainnamewire.com/2007/02/27/godaddy-delet es-domain-name-for-inaccurate-email-address/ http://domainnamewire.com/2007/02/28/godaddy-respo nds-to-deletion-over-invalid-email-address/
Music

Submission + - Internet radio buckles under new royalty law

geogeek6_7 writes: The Copyright Royalty Board has sided with RIAA lobbyists and decided to move internet radio stations' royalties to a per-play system. According to calculations by RAIN, the seemingly benign change comes at a high cost to existing internet radio stations: most stations' royalty costs will be over 100% of their revenue! Independent radio stations, like RadioParadise, say they will go out of business unless a "percentage-of-revenue" system can be negotiated instead.
Security

Homeland Security Offers Details on Real ID 227

pr0nqu33n writes "C|Net is running an article on the DHS's requirements for the Real ID system. Thursday members of the Bush administration finally unveiled details of the anticipated national identification program. Millions of Americans will have until 2013 to register for the system, which will (some would argue) constitute a national ID. RFID trackers for the cards are under consideration, as is a cohesive nation-wide design for the card. States must submit a proposal for how they'll adopt the system by early October of this year. If they don't, come May of next year their residents will see their licenses unable to gain them access to federal buildings and airplanes. The full regulations for the system are available online in PDF format. Likewise, the DHS has a Questions and Answers style FAQ available to explain the program to the curious."

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