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Submission + - ARM Boards Now Fast Enough to Challenge i386 (distrowatch.com)

Dog's_Breakfast writes: The latest development boards based on (power-saving and fanless) ARM microprocessors are now fast enough to challenge machines based on low-end Intel i386 chips like the Atom. In this review of the Korean-made ODROID-X board, the author explains how to set up a complete low-cost Linux system.

Submission + - Linux for blind users (distrowatch.com) 1

Dog's_Breakfast writes: This week's edition of DistroWatch Weekly News features a unique story entitled "Linux Accessibility — What is it and Why Does It Matter?" The article was written by Robert Cole, a blind person with a computer science degree. Mr Cole points out that Linux offers an excellent set of free tools for seeing-impaired users. Putting together a similar set of tools on Windows would cost at least US$600, about double what a retail copy of Windows itself costs.

Submission + - Is Economic Collapse Good for Linux? (distrowatch.com)

Dog's_Breakfast writes: "In a declining economy, software licenses become a luxury. Linux, and the BSDs, offer free alternatives. As the USA toys with the possibility of defaulting on its national debt (and thus risking economic collapse), the author wonders if this might not, at last, lead to "The Year of the Linux Desktop." However, in the world today, people in poor nations deal with the issue of high software prices simply by pirating Windows. On the other hand, those nations don't, as a rules, have a tradition of anti-piracy enforcement."

Comment Toshiba 4S reactor (Score 1, Troll) 560

The Toshiba 4S (Super Safe, Small and Simple) reactor solves all these problems: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toshiba_4S It's a mini-sized fast neutron reactor... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fast_neutron_reactor It can burn thorium or depleted uranium, and actually help to eliminate the current stockpile of nuclear waste. This was invented several years ago, but has yet to be deployed anywhere. It's mainly the fear of anything with the word "nuclear" that prevents use of this technology. Ironically, the failure to build more nukes means we'll be building more coal-fired power plants, with disastrous effects on climate. Yeah, I know, the anti-nuke people say that "wind and solar is all we need." And they are right - all we've got to do is reduce the world's population by 90% and move everybody to a place that is windy or very sunny. So, if you live in the Aleutian Islands, the never-ceasing howling wind can provide lights for your hut. Or if you live in Death Valley solar will keep your cell phone and laptop recharged. See, we don't need nukes.

Comment nuclear ion engines (Score 2) 193

I'm surprised that nobody has yet mentioned nuclear-powered spacecraft, which propels itself with an ion thruster: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ion_thruster Such a spacecraft would not have a problem carrying enough fuel to make the return trip. I do need to point out that that space vehicle would not lift off from earth using its nuclear-ion thruster, nor would it land on Mars. It would have to first be propelled into earth orbit with conventional hydrogen-oxygen rockets. The nuke engine would then "go live" propelling it to Mars, where it would stay in orbit. It would drop a module down to Mars (which uses parachutes and the "beachball" technique to land safely). After collecting samples, it would lift off Mars using a conventional rocket and rendezvous with the nuclear-powered craft in orbit, which would return to earth (but stay in orbit). Conventional rockets would be used to recover the payload and take it back to earth. Think of this nuclear-powered rocket like a kind of miniaturized Starship Enterprise, though unmanned. It doesn't land or take off from a planet, it just ferries payloads between planets, never getting any closer than an orbit.

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