The conditions in the lake are presumed to be similar to those of Europa and Enceladus and there is a hope that previously unknown forms of life could have found a niche in this unusual environment. Despite having been warned that their drilling technology (using freon and kerosene to lubricate the bore hole) may not be up to the task of reaching the lake without harmful enviromental side-effects, the Russians have decided to go on with the drilling. They haven't been heard from for the past five days.
K. S. Kyosuke writes: The battle for the "next-gen Linux file system" might have just become a little fiercer. Hewlett-Packard have just released their AdvFS file system under GPL. There is a press release on the HP web site, but the Wikipedia entry sports less PHB talk. The reaction of Sun and Oracle (each with their own advanced FS initiative, ZFS and Btrfs, respectively) to this might be interesting.