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Submission + - General Motors: Driverless cars ready by 2018

Gregor Stipicic writes: " Cars that drive themselves — even parking at their destination — could be ready for sale within a decade, General Motors Corp. executives say. "This is not science fiction," Larry Burns, GM's vice president for research and development, said in a recent interview. GM plans to use an inexpensive computer chip and an antenna to link vehicles equipped with driverless technologies. The first use likely would be on highways; people would have the option to choose a driverless mode while they still would control the vehicle on local streets, Burns said. He said the company plans to test driverless car technology by 2015 and have cars on the road around 2018. "

Submission + - 1 + 1 = 74: A New Era in Abstract Mathematics (

Mr Robots writes: "One day when i was teaching a class of academics how to think about the world in abstract ways I asked them to solve one simple problem. The problem was to consider how 1 + 1 might equal 74 (1 + 1= 74). Many of these students were bound for careers in computer programming, in competitive and business intelligence and others in information security. I asked them to consider how 1 + 1 might equal 74 and not 2. Suffice to say — not one student solved the problem. See the workings out."

Submission + - Q-thumb will make using thumboards easier. ( 1

tiberiandusk writes: "Q-thumb is a design concept for an easier way to use thumboards on Blackberrys and other mobile devices. Instead of trying to press tiny buttons with the tips of you thumbs the Q-thumb is worn like a ring and makes it easier to push them. It could reduce the risk of Blackberry thumb since you don't have to bend your thumbs as much to press keys on the thumboard."

Submission + - Mandatory internet filters to protect children ( 5

CaptainDefragged writes: Just announced on the Australian ABC News site Senator Conroy says it will be mandatory for all internet service providers to provide clean feeds, or ISP filtering, to houses and schools that are free of pornography and inappropriate material. ... Senator Conroy says anyone wanting uncensored access to the internet will have to opt out of the service, and will work with the industry to ensure the filters do not affect the speed of the internet.

Submission + - Largest Diamond in the galaxy discovered 5

morpheus83 writes: Astronomers have discovered the largest diamond in the galaxy, located at a distance of 50 light years from earth in the Constellation Centaurus. The space diamond is virtually an enormous chunk of crystallized carbon, 4,000 kilometers in diameter which makes up ten billion trillion trillion carats or five million trillion trillion pounds. Scientists believe that the diamond is the heart of an extinct star that used to shine like the Sun.

Submission + - Wind-powered data center for Google 3

TT writes: Google is considering building a wind-powered data center in Greensburg, Kan. In addition to the huge solar-panel project it's building in Mountain View, this 20-megawatt data center in Greensburg would go a long way toward helping Google get carbon neutral, as is its goal. The company, like the entire universe today, is on the green kick. It announced last month that it wants to make renewable energy cheaper than coal.

Submission + - RIAA Puts Out 'Fake News' (

Fake Newser writes: "The Recording Industry Association of America wants to communicate with TV News audiences. The company I work for just distributed this video package nationwide to TV News Stations. It already aired in Dallas and one network and one major news gathering service have requested tapes. This thing could be all over the news this week. The video you see was preceded by graphics which told stations who paid for the content and offered the name and title of the spokesperson. This is how the RIAA and other organizations get their news out and influence consumers like you. Here's the actual VNR, missing only the informational slates that preceded it on the satellite feeds...."
The Courts

Submission + - FBI zaps couple for shining laser at helicopter ( 3

coondoggie writes: "The US attorney's office and the FBI this week charged a California couple with shining a laser into the cockpit of a sheriff's department helicopter, a federal criminal complaint that could land them in jail for up to 20 years and earn them a $250,000 fine. The federal criminal complaint was filed on December 13, against Jared Dooley and Kendra Snow. The complaint states that on November 8, 2007, at about 10:55 p.m., a green laser beam illuminated the cockpit of a Kern County Sheriff's Department helicopter, which was flying at 500 feet during routine patrol in Bakersfield, California. When the light hit the cockpit, it disoriented the Kern County Sheriff's pilot, causing pain and discomfort in his eyes for a couple of hours, the FBI said in a statement."

Submission + - Google's Orkut fights off worm attack (

DeeQ writes: A computer worm has been spreading on Google's big-in-Brazil Orkut social network, according to a report on the Sounds from the Dungeon blog. The relatively harmless worm appears to use JavaScript and Flash code to create new scrapbook entries on profiles with a New Year's message in Portuguese before propagating to the victim's friends.It may have infected as many as 400,000 users, according to a post on a blog called "c0d3w12."

"It appears Google has responded quickly," writes a blogger on ValleyWag. "Too bad. If Google had let the worm rampage, maybe some American users might actually hear about Orkut for the first time."

Operating Systems

Submission + - Why Windows and Mac OS Adoption Has Halted (

fruitmagnet writes: "With Microsoft's Vista and Apple's Leopard, a latest report believe their adoption has halted, and both have their own issues that Microsoft and Apple respectively need to iron out. The article continues, "So how does Apple fix this? Find open source alternatives and make those a priority, instead of trumpeting MS Office for the Mac might be a solid start. Neo Office, while not legally able to be bundled due to GPL restrictions, could be made more readily available by other means. And a simple wizard that allows the new Mac user to select those legacy applications that they have loved for so long from a pull down menu, so that they can then be presented with open source and freeware alternatives. This alone would make switching for the real casual user much easier. Because it's a tough sell to tell someone that they are dropping $800-$1,200 for a new box and are not easily able to take their favorite apps with them, this option makes sense."
Red Hat Software

Submission + - OpenEDA and Fedora Electronics Lab (

Jonathan Roberts writes: "ReyesSoft has just released it's OpenEDA Toolkit 1.0 for $100. Compared to proprietary options this is cheap, but considering they're repackaging some software from the Fedora Electronic Lab — that includes a complete OS — which would you rather get? Interestingly (or not so interestingly), googling for ReyesSoft shows up much more press coverage than FEL ever got."
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Your worst IT workshop?

suntory writes: I am a lecturer at a Spanish university. This week had to attend a workshop on "Advanced HTML and CSS" for the university staff. Some of the ideas that the presenter (a fellow lecturer) shared with us:
  • IE is the only browser that follows standards. You can see it clearly because it works for all sites, whereas Firefox and other browsers have problems displaying some of them.
  • Frames and tables are the best way to organize your website.
  • You can view the source for most CSS, Javascript and HTML files, so you can freely copy and paste what you feel like — the Internet is so free, you know.
  • Same applies for images. If you can see them in Google Images Search, then you can use them for your projects.
Of course, the workshop turned out to be a complete disaster and a waste of time. So I was wondering what other similar experiences you have had, and what was your worst IT workshop...

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