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Submission + - NASA boss says Mars colonisation will be corporate only (

99luftballon writes: The head of NASA Ames has said that he expects any colonisation of Mars, the Moon or asteroids to be done by private companies rather than by NASA. There's some interesting parallels with the East India Company, although that was hardly a triumph of capitalism. The article also mentions Google's head of space projects, who has 'Intergalactic Federation King Almighty and Commander of the Universe' on her business cards.

Submission + - Astronomers look for black hole at centre of Milky ( 1

99luftballon writes: Astronomers are planning the Event Horizon Telescope project in Arizona on Wednesday — and say in three or four years they should be able to image the ring of matter around the supermassive black hole at the centre of the Milky Way. The black hole is 26,000 miles away but should be large enough to check if Einstein got his equations right.

Submission + - Negroponte plans tablet airdrops - teachers not in (

99luftballon writes: Nicholas Negroponte is planning to airlift tablets into the remotest corners of the world, and then getting kids to teach themselves to read on them — basically extending hole in the wall computing. It seems teachers aren't being invited to the party. I'm not sure how well this will work on the practical side, but the effort is noble.

Submission + - Text messages to replace stamps in Sweden (

99luftballon writes: "Sweden and Denmark are running tests on replacing stamps with text messages. The writer sends a text message to a central server, which bills for the stamp and returns a code to be written on the letter. It's an interesting system but it better have very good security. Could this be the end of stamp collections and philately?"

Comment A strange breed (Score 2) 405

I met Nobel and Andy the pilot/driver when Thrust SSC was going and they are both very enthusiastic, utterly committed to breaking land speed records and madder than a sack of badgers. Green said the weirdest thing about the whole drive was dealing with the brain's capacity to process relative speed, or rather the lack of ability to do so. At the end of the run he'd found himself getting ready to brake hard as the vehicle felt like it was going slowly enough and found he was still going around 400mph.

Submission + - Veteran IT hack Guy Kewney dies (

99luftballon writes: Guy Kewney, veteran British IT journalist has died at his home last night.

Guy Wrote his column in Personal Computer World from its inception in 1978 to the final issue in 2009 and set up the UK editions of Microscope and PC Dealer. He wrote to the end, still publishing until weeks before his death. He is fondly remembered by colleagues and former foes.

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