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Android

Custom Android ROM Developers Get OTA Update Capabilities Like Carriers 50

hypnosec writes "A new service dubbed OTA Update Center has been launched that enables Android ROM developers to provide over-the-air (OTA) updates of their ROMs in a centralized and easy fashion. Custom ROM developers had very little at their disposal when it came to providing updates and when any user with such a ROM did want to apply an update, he/she was required to reinstall the new ROM from scratch, which often involved deletion of the backup, installation of the new ROM, and restoration of data. This was a lengthy process and often a deterrent when it came to updating the ROM. Also, the developers were required to have their own infrastructure whereby they would be required to host their own servers and have the required bandwidth to serve scores of downloads. The OTA Update Center changes this and provides a free-to-use service that is easy and noob-friendly to use."
Businesses

MS Buying Yahoo? Bad Idea, Even At a Discount 141

jfruhlinger writes "Nearly four years ago, Microsoft tried to buy Yahoo, but eventually withdrew the offer in the face of resistance from Yahoo's leadership. This week rumors resurfaced that Microsoft was once again bidding on the struggling Internet pioneer, this time for significantly less money. But even at a discount, it might be a pretty bad idea for Microsoft to get involved in the unfocused, money-losing Yahoo."
Google

Google Buys Manhattan Office/Telecom Hub 87

1sockchuck writes "Google will soon own one of the world's choice pieces of Internet real estate. The company has reportedly signed a contract to buy 111 8th Avenue in New York for an estimated $1.9 billion — or about $250 million more than Google spent to buy YouTube. The building serves as Google's main New York sales office, but is also one of the city's main telecom hotels, housing major data center operations for Digital Realty Trust, Equinix, Telx and dozens of network providers. Google currently has about 500,000 square feet of office space at 111 8th Avenue."
Transportation

China Defends Its IP Practices, Says 'We Paid Up' 214

hackingbear writes "Countering accusations that China's high-speed rail technologies are knockoffs, the head of China's Intellectual Property Administration in a conference said (paraphrasing): "We bought technologies from German, Japan, France, and Canada. We paid up. It is perfectly legal. We then innovate on top of them like most other inventions in the world. Why is that pirating?' (Link is to a Google translation; here is the original.) He cited China's ability, the world's first, to build high-speed rail in a high mountain area as an example of additional innovation."
Botnet

Bredolab Botnet Taken Down 187

Leon Buijs writes "Monday a 27-year-old Armenian was arrested at request of the Dutch authorities. The Dutch police think he is the brain behind the infamous, 30 million infected computers large Bredolab network, that was taken down by their Team (in Dutch) High Crime. Bredolab was used to spread virii and spam via the Netherlands. While taking the botnet down at a Dutch ISP, the suspect did several attempts to regain control. When this didn't work out, he did a DDoS attack on the ISP's servers using a 220,000 computers botnet. However, this was also broken off by taking 3 servers offline that the Armanian used for this, in Paris."
Earth

UN May Ban Blotting Out the Sun 377

Supervillains and Mr. Burns are among those to be most affected by the United Nations' Convention on Biological Diversity decision on space sunshades. Even though organizations like NASA have been looking into them as a possible way to slow climate change, the UN is expected to limit research into the technology or ban it outright. From the article: "The Convention may consider banning or limiting research into space sunshades. Some question their wisdom. A space sunshade would have a rapid effect on global warming and provide time to develop more permanent measures, they say. The technique has already received serious attention from NASA and other organizations. But others, such as the ETC group, an environmental and social advocacy group, fear simply blocking the sun is a bandage, meant to cover up the problem, and allow humans to continue using fossils fuels. Another fear is that geo-engineering, as techniques like this are called, could have unforeseen consequences on the weather, ecosystem and agriculture."
Government

CA City Mulls Evading the Law On Red-Light Cameras 366

TechDirt is running a piece on Corona, CA, where officials are considering ignoring a California law that authorizes red-light cameras — cutting the state and the county out of their portion of the take — in order to increase the city's revenue. The story was first reported a week ago. The majority of tickets are being (automatically) issued for "California stops" before a right turn on red, which studies have shown rarely contribute to an accident. TechDirt notes the apparent unconstitutionality of what Corona proposes to do: "The problem here is that Corona is shredding the Sixth Amendment of the US Constitution, the right to a trial by jury. By reclassifying a moving violation... to an administrative violation... Corona is doing something really nefarious. In order to appeal an administrative citation you have to admit guilt, pay the full fine, and then apply for a hearing in front of an administrative official, not a judge in a court. The city could simply deny all hearings for administrative violations or schedule them far out in advance knowing full well that they have your money, which you had to pay before you could appeal."
Technology (Apple)

iPhone SDK and Free Software Don't Match 304

kookjr writes "Are you planning to develop software for the iPhone? If you want to develop Free Software, Linux.com (Shares corp overlord w/ Slashdot) has a good review of the conflicts between Apple's Registered iPhone Developer Agreement and licenses like the GPL. This is important for people who may not read all the agreements they click Agree to."
Science

Ceiling Height May Affect Problem-Solving Skills 279

An anonymous reader writes to mention that a recent University of Minnesota study suggests that ceiling height may affect problem-solving skills. "'When people are in a room with a high ceiling, they activate the idea of freedom. In a low-ceilinged room, they activate more constrained, confined concepts.' Either can be good. The concept of freedom promotes information processing that encourages greater variation in the kinds of thoughts one has, said Meyers-Levy, professor of marketing at the University of Minnesota. The concept of confinement promotes more detail-oriented processing."

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