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Earth

Research Vehicle Reaches the Bottom of the Ocean 165

timothy found BBC coverage of the voyage of the Nereus, which on May 31 dove to the bottom of the Challenger Deep in the Marianas Trench. Only two vehicles have accomplished this feat before, the last 11 years ago. "The unmanned vehicle is remotely operated by pilots aboard a surface ship via a lightweight tether. Its thin, fibre-optic tether to the research vessel Kilo Moana allows the submersible to make deep dives and be highly manoeuvrable. Nereus can also be switched into a free-swimming, autonomous vehicle. ... The Challenger Deep... is the deepest abyss on Earth at 11,000m-deep, more than 2km (1.2 miles) deeper than Mount Everest is high. At that depth, pressures reach 1,100 times those at the surface."
Spam

FTC Targets Massive Car Warranty Robocall Scheme 361

coondoggie writes "Robocalls are a scourge, and the Federal Trade Commission today took action against one outfit by asking a federal court to shut down companies that have been bombarding consumers with hundreds of millions of allegedly deceptive robocalls in an effort to sell vehicle service contracts. According to the FTC, the robocalls have prompted tens of thousands of complaints from consumers who are either on the Do Not Call Registry or asked not to be called. Five telephone numbers associated with the defendants have generated a total of 30,000 Do Not Call complaints. Consumers received the robocalls at home, work, and on their cell phones, sometimes several times in one day. Businesses, government offices and even 911 dispatchers also have been subjected to the calls, the FTC said." Reader powerlord points out that another such company, not named in the FTC filing, raised the ire of thousands of internet-goers, who struck back by rickrolling the company's voice mail and digging up personal information on the company's president.
Networking

Why Is Connectivity So Cheap In Stockholm? 443

lpress writes "Symmetric, 100 Mbps service in Stockholm, costs $11/month. Conditions in every city are different, but part of the explanation for the low cost is that the city owns a municipal fiber network reaching every block. They lease network access to anyone who would like to offer service. The ISPs, including incumbent telephone and cable companies, compete on an equal footing."
Networking

Submission + - Why is connectivty so cheap in Stockholm? (csudh.edu)

lpress writes: "Symmetric, 100 Mbps service in Stockholm costs $11/month. Conditions in every city are different, but part of the explanation for the low cost is that the city owns a municipal fiber network reaching every block. They lease network access to anyone who would like to offer service. The ISPs, including incumbent telephone and cable companies, compete on an equal footing."
Microsoft

Microsoft To Open Retail Stores 535

chaz373 writes "CNET reports that Microsoft is going retail. In the 'Beyond Binary' blog Ina Fried reports, 'After years of brushing off the notion, Microsoft said on Thursday that it will open up its own line of retail stores. Without detailing the plans, Microsoft said it has hired David Porter, a 25-year Wal-Mart veteran, to lead the effort. Sources say that Porter's mission will be to develop the company's retail plans and that the effort is likely to start small with just a few locations.'"
Technology

LED Lighting As Cheap As CFLs Invented 553

mcgrew writes "New Scientist reports that a British team has overcome the obstacles to cheap LED lighting, and that LED lamps as cheap as CFLs will be on the market in five years. Quoting: 'Gallium nitride cannot be grown on silicon like other solid-state electronic components because it shrinks at twice the rate of silicon as it cools. Crystals of GaN must be grown at 1000C, so by the time a new LED made on silicon has cooled, it has already cracked, rendering the devices unusable. One solution is to grow the LEDs on sapphire, which shrinks and cools at much the same rate as GaN. But the expense is too great to be commercially competitive. Now Colin Humphreys's team at the University of Cambridge has discovered a simple solution to the shrinkage problem. They included layers of aluminium gallium nitride in their LED design... These LEDs can be grown on silicon as so many other electronics components are. ... A 15-centimetre silicon wafer costs just $15 and can accommodate 150,000 LEDs making the cost per unit tiny.'"
The Internet

Cox Communications and "Congestion Management" 282

imamac writes "It appears Cox Communications is the next in line for throttling internet traffic. But it's not throttling of course; Cox's euphemism is 'congestion management.' From Cox's explanation: 'In February, Cox will begin testing a new method of managing traffic on our high-speed Internet network in our Kansas and Arkansas markets. During the occasional times the network is congested, this new technology automatically ensures that all time-sensitive Internet traffic — such as web pages, voice calls, streaming videos and gaming — moves without delay. Less time-sensitive traffic, such as file uploads, peer-to-peer and Usenet newsgroups, may be delayed momentarily...' Sounds like throttling to me."

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