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Science

The Proton Just Got Smaller 289

inflame writes "A new paper published in Nature has said that the proton may be smaller than we previously thought. The article states 'The difference is so infinitesimal that it might defy belief that anyone, even physicists, would care. But the new measurements could mean that there is a gap in existing theories of quantum mechanics. "It's a very serious discrepancy," says Ingo Sick, a physicist at the University of Basel in Switzerland, who has tried to reconcile the finding with four decades of previous measurements. "There is really something seriously wrong someplace."' Would this indicate new physics if proven?"
Networking

OnLive Latency Tested 204

The Digital Foundry blog has done an analysis of recently launched cloud gaming service OnLive, measuring latency across several different games. Quoting: "In a best-case scenario, we counted 10 frames delay between button and response on-screen, giving a 150ms latency once the display's contribution to the measurement was removed. Unreal Tournament III worked pretty well in sustaining that response during gameplay. However, other tests were not so consistent, with DiRT 2 weighing in at 167ms-200ms while Assassin's Creed II operated at a wide range of between 150ms-216ms. ... OnLive says that the system works within 1000 miles of its datacenters on any broadband connection and recommends 5mbps or better. We gave OnLive the best possible ISP service we could find: Verizon FiOS, offering a direct fiber optic connection to the home. Latency was also reduced still further simply due to the masses of bandwidth FiOS offers compared to bog standard ADSL: in our case, 25mbps."

Comment Re:Norwegian helicopter ambulance video (Score 0, Offtopic) 410

It's quite fast and cheap here, and we have very good coverage (: I think it comes down to governmental pushes and demanding consumers (e.g. there used to be "5 GB a month" deals, but they disappeared quickly because deals with no caps are just as cheap), but I really have no idea why we're well off. My girlfriend is from Portugal, and the offers there are really bad in comparison, despite having twice the population and a much smaller country.

Long winter = country of nerds, perhaps? ;)

Comment Norwegian helicopter ambulance video (Score 4, Informative) 410

This links leads to a page with a video of an ambulance helicopter that was coated in a fine layer of ash in Norway today. It flew during a small windows of opportunity where the air cleared to pick up a patient in Sweden. The link is in Norwegian, but the video is, obviously, visual.

The interesting part is at ~00:30 where he shows of the ash (requires Flash): http://www.dagbladet.no/2010/04/18/nyheter/innenriks/aske/vulkan/flyforbud/11335687/

Makes me think that a large passenger jet flying long routes and sucking in a whole load of air on the trip might be at risk of engine failure as they say.

Image

Professor Says UFO Studies Should Be Taught At Universities Screenshot-sm 311

New York anthropology professor Philip Haseley wants young people to get the best education possible, and part of that education, he says, should be about UFOs. Haseley thinks universities should offer classes on UFOs and other unexplained phenomena from space. "[A sighting] happens to millions of people [around the world]. It's about time we looked into this as a worthy area of study. It's important that the whole subject be brought out in the open and investigated," he said. I want to believe the truth is out there in 500 words or less.

Comment Re:wtf (Score 5, Informative) 284

how did opera get this through the app store approval process!?

Because, as far as I understand, it is not really a browser, but rather a viewer for a remotely processed webpage: http://www.engadget.com/2010/02/17/opera-mini-on-iphone-is-fast-but-why/

It allowed my old Sony Ericsson phone (can't remember which model, but it was not a smartphone) to have a Safari like zoomable web-browser of quite hight quality (:

Games

Rockstar Employees Badly Overworked, Say Wives 633

juicegg writes "Wives of Rockstar Games employees in San Diego recently published an open letter on their Gamasutra blog. The authors say that Rockstar employees are seriously strained by unending crunch periods of 12-hour work days and 6-day weeks. High levels of stress are leading to serious psychological and physical problems for some of the employees. They charge that studio management uses arbitrary, deceptive and manipulative practices to get employees to work more unpaid overtime hours at greater intensity — despite over $1 billion in Grand Theft Auto revenue. Among the blog comments, some current and past Rockstar employees are confirming problems with the studio. 'Ex Rocker' writes: 'What makes R* crunch periods different then any other studio is that they tell you the game has to be finished in 6 months, so let's start our final push to get this awesome game out there! 6 months turns into 1 year, 1 year turns into 2.' Other comments reveal worker hopelessness and general mismanagement at the San Diego studio. This turmoil is affecting development on upcoming games as well." Read on for responses from Rockstar itself and other members of the industry.
Privacy

Net Users In Belarus May Soon Have To Register 89

Cwix writes "A new law proposed in Belarus would require all net users and online publications to register with the state: 'Belarus' authoritarian leader is promising to toughen regulation of the Internet and its users in an apparent effort to exert control over the last fully free medium in the former Soviet state. He told journalists that a new Internet bill, proposed Tuesday, would require the registration and identification of all online publications and of each Web user, including visitors to Internet cafes. Web service providers would have to report this information to police, courts, and special services.'"
Image

Music By Natural Selection Screenshot-sm 164

maccallr writes "The DarwinTunes experiment needs you! Using an evolutionary algorithm and the ears of you the general public, we've been evolving a four bar loop that started out as pretty dismal primordial auditory soup and now after >27k ratings and 200 generations is sounding pretty good. Given that the only ingredients are sine waves, we're impressed. We got some coverage in the New Scientist CultureLab blog but now things have gone quiet and we'd really appreciate some Slashdotter idle time. We recently upped the maximum 'genome size' and we think that the music is already benefiting from the change."
Science

Aussie Scientists Find Coconut-Carrying Octopus 205

An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from an AP report: "Australian scientists have discovered an octopus in Indonesia that collects coconut shells for shelter — unusually sophisticated behavior that the researchers believe is the first evidence of tool use in an invertebrate animal. The scientists filmed the veined octopus, Amphioctopus marginatus, selecting halved coconut shells from the sea floor, emptying them out, carrying them under their bodies up to 65 feet (20 meters), and assembling two shells together to make a spherical hiding spot. ... 'I was gobsmacked,' said Finn, a research biologist at the museum who specializes in cephalopods. 'I mean, I've seen a lot of octopuses hiding in shells, but I've never seen one that grabs it up and jogs across the sea floor. I was trying hard not to laugh.'"

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