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Submission + - Surface Pro 3 has 12" screen, Intel inside

crookedvulture writes: Microsoft unveiled its Surface Pro 3 tablet at a press event in New York this morning. The device has a larger 12" screen with a 2160x1440 display resolution and a novel 3:2 aspect ratio. Intel Core processors provide the horsepower, starting with the Core i3 in the base model and extending all the way up to Core i7 in pricier variants. The tablet is just 9.1 mm thick, which Microsoft claims is the thinnest ever for a Core-based device. Microsoft developed a new radial fan that's suppose to distribute airflow evenly inside the chassis without generating audible noise. The tablet weights 800 g, shaving 100 g off the Surface Pro 2, and it's supposed to have longer battery life, as well. Microsoft has also rolled out new keyboard accessories, a pressure-sensitive stylus, and a docking station that supports 4K video output. The Surface Pro 3 is scheduled to be available tomorrow with prices starting at $799.
Games

Submission + - Frame capture tools produce new insight on game benchmarking (techreport.com)

crookedvulture writes: "A revolution is unfolding in the world of game benchmarking. Instead of using FPS averages that obscure brief but perceptible moments of stuttering, reviewers are increasingly moving to more representative metrics based on frame times. Their efforts are being bolstered by Nvidia, which has developed a suite of tools that allows for a deep analysis of the contents of the individual frames sent to the display. These "FCAT" tools will be freely distributable and modifiable, and some portions will be open-source. Examining the data they generate has produced new insight into how modern graphics cards really perform in games. The display output analysis made possible by the FCAT tools exposes "runt frames" that can make up only tiny slivers of the screen, rendering FPS averages especially meaningless. It also suggests that disruptions in smoothness can be measured both early in the pipeline, using Fraps, and later on, where FCAT takes into account frame metering technologies that can massage the flow of frames to the display."
Cloud

Submission + - One in six Amazon S3 storage buckets are ripe for data-plundering (infoworld.com)

tsamsoniw writes: "Using a combination of relatively low-tech techniques and tools, security researchers have discovered that they can access the contents of one in six Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) buckets whose owners had them set to Public instead of Private. All told, researchers discovered and explored nearly 2,000 public buckets, according to Rapid 7 Senior Security Consultant Will Vandevanter, from which they gathered a list of more than 126 billion files, many of which contained sensitive information such as source code and personal employee information. Researchers noted that S3 URLs are all predictable and public facing, which make it that much easier to find the buckets in the first place with a scripting tool."

Submission + - Library journal board resigns on "conscience crisis" after death of Aaron Swartz (chronicle.com)

c0lo writes: The editor-in-chief and entire editorial board of the Journal of Library Administration announced their resignation last week, citing "a crisis of conscience about publishing in a journal that was not open access" in the days after the death of Aaron Swartz.

The board had worked with publisher Taylor & Francis on an open-access compromise in the months since, which would allow the journal to release articles without paywall, but Taylor & Francis' final terms asked contributors to pay $2,995 for each open-access article. As more and more contributors began to object, the board ultimately found the terms unworkable

The ultimate future of the journal is still undetermined, but the next issue appears to be dead in the water. In a statement to the Chronicle of Higher Education, the journal's editor-in-chief said:

And I advise everyone to take a closer look at the text when I said: “The sad truth is that we’ll never see this particular issue of the Journal of Library Administration.” I never said the content was dead, I simply stated that it would never be in JLA.


Programming

Submission + - Adobe Hedges its Bets on Flash (itworld.com)

itwbennett writes: "Adobe seems to have finally wised up to the fact that Flash on mobile is dead in the water, and is offering developer tools for other kinds of mobile development. Blogger Matthew Mombrea is singing the praises of one 'invaluable' free tool that lets you remotely control a mobile device and manipulate the web browser and DOM as you would on a desktop, making diagnosing a style or layout issue on a particular device oh so much easier."

Submission + - Creationist Bets $10k Against Challengers To Literal Interpretation of Genesis (yahoo.com)

HungWeiLo writes: A California man who believes the literal interpretation of the Bible is real is offering $10,000 to anyone who can successfully debunk claims made in the book of Genesis in front of a judge.

Joseph Mastropaolo, the man behind this challenge, is to put $10,000 of his own money into an escrow account. His debate opponent would be asked to do the same. They would then jointly agree on a judge based on a list of possible candidates. Mastropaolo said that any evidence presented in the trial must be “scientific, objective, valid, reliable and calibrated."

For his part, Mastropaolo has a Ph.D. in kinesiology and writes for the Creation Hall of Fame website, which is helping to organize the minitrial. It’s also not the first such trial he’s tried to arrange. A previous effort, known as the “Life Science Prize,” proposed a similar scenario. Mastropaolo includes a list of possible circuit court judges to oversee the trial and a list of those he challenged to take part on the evolutionary side of the debate.

Anyone up for winning $20,000?

Science

Submission + - Microbes May Slim Us Down After Gastric Bypass (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Gastric bypass surgery is supposed to work by shrinking the size of the stomach, leading to rapid weight loss. But a new study reveals that the procedure changes the population of microbes in our guts, and that these microbes themselves may be helping us lose weight. When researchers transfered microbes from mice that had undergone gastric bypass to mice that hadn't, the recipeint mice loss 5% of their body weight in two weeks. No surgery required.
Intel

Submission + - Ivy Bridge running hotter than Intel's last-gen CPU (techreport.com) 1

crookedvulture writes: The launch of Intel's Ivy Bridge CPUs made headlines earlier this week, but the next-gen processor's story is still being told. When overclocked, Ivy Bridge runs as much as 20C hotter than its Sandy Bridge predecessor at the same speed, despite the fact that the two chips have comparable power consumption. There are several reasons for these toasty tendencies. The new 22-nm process used to fabricate the CPU produces a smaller die with less surface area to dissipate heat. Intel has changed the thermal interface material between the CPU die and its heat spreader. Ivy also requires a much bigger step up in voltage to hit the same speeds as Sandy Bridge. Looks like serious overclockers are better off sticking with Intel's last-generation chips.

Submission + - DARPA Robotics Challenge: Here Are the Official Details (ieee.org)

An anonymous reader writes: The DARPA Robotics Challenge is offering tens of million of dollars in funding to teams from anywhere in the world to build robots capable of performing complex mobility and manipulation tasks such as walking over rubble and operating power tools. It all will culminate with an audacious competition with robots driving trucks, breaking through walls, and attempting to perform repairs in a simulated industrial-disaster setting. The winner takes all: a $2 million cash prize.
Windows

Submission + - Microsoft is ending support for Windows Vista today, still a couple more years f (pureinfotech.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Today, Tuesday, April 10th, 2012 is the day that Microsoft is ending the mainstream support for Windows Vista after five years of its release, and for Microsoft Office 2007. However, because Windows XP still a big players in the operating system world, all support is set to be terminated in about two years, together with Microsoft Office 2003.

Submission + - At what point has a Kickstarter project failed? 2

skywiseguy writes: I have only used Kickstarter to back a single project so far, but one of the backers of that project pointed us to a project promising video capable glasses which was once one of the top 10 highest funded projects in Kickstarter history. After reading through the comments, it is obvious that the project has not met its expected deadline of "Winter 2011" but the project team rarely gives any updates with concrete information, all emails sent to them by backers get a form letter in reply, they routinely delete negative comments from their Facebook page, and apparently very soon after the project was funded, they posted pictures of themselves on a tropical beach with the tagline "We are not on a beach in Thailand." Their early promotions were featured on Engadget and other tech sites but since the project was funded they've rarely, if ever, communicated in more than a form letter. So at what point can a project like this be considered to have failed? And if you had backed a project with this kind of lack of communication from the project team, what would you consider to be the best course of action? Disclaimer: I have not backed this project, but I am very interested in funding Kickstarter projects and I do not want to get caught sending money to a less than reputable project. According to the above project's backers, Kickstarter claims to have no mechanism for refunding money to backers of failed projects and no way to hold the project team accountable to their backers. This does not seem like a healthy environment for someone who is averse to giving their money to scam artists.
Idle

Submission + - Akira's Iconic Motorcycle Races Through Japan (gizmag.com)

Zothecula writes: The 1988 film Akira stands as a classic not just in Japanese animation, but in the entire post-apocalyptic film genre. As such, fans of the film have been drawn to some of its most memorable moments and visuals, particularly the futuristic motorcycle driven by one of the main characters. One fan even went so far as to devote several years to creating a working replica of the signature vehicle, which has become the only one officially recognized by Akira's creator, and which recently toured Japan to raise money for charity.
Intel

Submission + - Intel's Sandy Bridge CPUs finally arrive (techreport.com)

crookedvulture writes: Intel has officially taken the wraps off its next-gen Sandy Bridge processors. It looks like they were worth the wait. Performance is way up versus the competition from AMD, and power consumption is down, resulting in substantially less energy usage overall. The new integrated graphics processor is a big improvement over past iterations, and it offers a nice boost to video encoding performance. You don't have to spend that much to get in on the action, either. Dual-core models start at only $117 and you can get a quad for less than $200.
Intel

Submission + - 32nm Xeons improve performance, power efficiency (techreport.com)

EconolineCrush writes: Intel's Xeon 5600 series is the latest batch of CPUs to tap the company's cutting-edge, 32-nano fabrication process. Code-named Westmere-EP, these new server and workstation CPUs add two cores and 4MB of cache per socket while remarkably staying within the same thermal envelopes as their predecessors. When pitted against the last Xeon generation, the new chips predictably offer better performance and power efficiency. Intel's power-optimized Willowbrook server motherboard may be even more impressive, as it enables a dozen-core Xeon L5640 system to consume just 66W at idle.
Apple

Submission + - User reports searing-hot iPad, melted cord (techreport.com) 3

J. Dzhugashvili writes: A member of the Tech Report forums reports that his iPad's charging cord literally melted in the middle of the night, and the iPad it was connected to became searing hot—hot enough that the user dropped it and caused some damage. Melted charger cables and searing-hot (or combusting) batteries are nothing new, and they've led to mass battery recalls in the past. After getting in touch with Apple, however, the user was simply told he was responsible for damaging the device by dropping it, and that the iPad was out of warranty for having jailbroken software installed.

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