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Fish Can Count to Four 103

Khemist writes "Fish can count, according to scientists, who have found that North American mosquito fish have the ability to count up to four. Previously it was known that fish could tell big shoals from small ones, but researchers have now found that they have a limited ability to count how many other fish are nearby. This means that they have similar counting abilities to those observed in apes, monkeys and dolphins and humans with very limited mathematical ability."

New Tools Available for Network-Centric Warfare 70

Reservoir Hill writes "MIT Technology Review reports that a new map-based application is the latest tool in the military's long-term plan to introduce what is sometimes called "network-centric warfare." The Tactical Ground Reporting System, or TIGR allows patrol leaders in Iraq to learn about city landmarks and past events and more than 1,500 junior officers in Iraq — about a fifth of patrol leaders — are using the map-centric application before going on patrol and adding new data to TIGR upon returning. By clicking on icons and lists, they can see the locations of key buildings, like mosques, schools, and hospitals, and retrieve information such as location data on past attacks, geotagged photos of houses and other buildings (taken with cameras equipped with Global Positioning System technology), and photos of suspected insurgents and neighborhood leaders. They can even listen to civilian interviews and watch videos of past maneuvers. "The ability ... to draw the route ... of your patrol that day and then to access the collective reports, media, analysis of the entire organization, is pretty powerful," says Major Patrick Michaelis. "It is a bit revolutionary from a military perspective when you think about it, using peer-based information to drive the next move. ... Normally we are used to our higher headquarters telling the patrol leader what he needs to think.""

Submission + - FSF may sue Microsoft over GPLv3 (

mjasay writes: "As Groklaw reports, the Free Software Foundation has issued a press release decrying Microsoft's attempts to distance itself from its obligations to abide by GPL Version 3. Citing Microsoft's earlier refusal to abide by GPLv3, the Free Software Foundation declared, "Microsoft cannot by any act of anticipatory repudiation divest itself of its obligation to respect others' copyrights." The press release goes on to imply that the Free Software Foundation may sue Microsoft over the issue."

Submission + - Yahoo building open source Map/Reduce and GFS (

owenomalley writes: "Yahoo is developing Hadoop, which is an open source implementation of key pieces of Google's infrastructure (namely, Map/Reduce and GFS). Hadoop's framework allows you to write applications that reliably process very large datasets (100's of terabytes) efficiently on large (1000+) clusters of computers. Without a framework like Hadoop, writing applications on large clusters requires a lot of duplicated effort as each application deals with distribution, reliability, and reporting. Hadoop handles those parts for you and just requires you to write your application logic.

Hadoop is managed under Apache."

Feed Engadget: Toyota set to test new plug-in hybrid vehicle (

Filed under: Transportation

Apparently taking a cue from drivers that have already modded their Priuses for plug-in capabilities, Toyota's now gone and created a plug-in version of the Prius itself, and it's set to soon test the vehicle on public roads. Dubbed the Toyota Plug-in HV, the vehicle can be charged simply by plugging it into a standard electrical socket, although you won't get much farther than 8 miles on a single charge (the gasoline engine will kick in after the batts have been exhausted). While Toyota says that a commercialized version will "depend largely on advances in battery technology," the company is planning to test the vehicle in its current state in Japan shortly, with tests in the US and Europe apparently also in the works.

[Via PhysOrg, photo courtesy of Reuters]

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Feed Rocket scientist: Outer space exploration should be open (

Space enthusiast and engineer Paul Wooster wants to open the source code for outer space, because, he says, it should be easier for everyone who wants to contribute to human activities in space to do so, not just people with advanced degrees in rocketry. To that end, Wooster has established DevelopSpace, a community based on open source philosophies, designed to attract anyone interested in sharing their skills in order to make more space exploration possible.

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