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Communications

First Room-Temperature Germanium Laser Completed 80

eldavojohn writes "MIT researchers have built and demonstrated the first room-temperature germanium laser that can produce light at wavelengths suited for communication. This achievement has two parts: '[U]nlike the materials typically used in lasers, germanium is easy to incorporate into existing processes for manufacturing silicon chips. So the result could prove an important step toward computers that move data — and maybe even perform calculations — using light instead of electricity. But more fundamentally, the researchers have shown that, contrary to prior belief, a class of materials called indirect-band-gap semiconductors can yield practical lasers.' While these are only the initial steps in what may become optical computing devices, the article paints it as very promising. The painful details will be published in the journal Optics Letters."
United States

Obama To Name Melissa Hathaway Cybersecurity Chief 188

hargrand writes "President Obama has found the cyber tsar to head his new White House office of cybersecurity. According to US press reports this morning, an announcement expected later today will confirm Melissa Hathaway is to come in as cyber chief, after being cyber coordination executive for the director of national intelligence."

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