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Modeling a White Hole With Your Kitchen Sink 104

jamie passes along this excerpt from Wired: "That ring of water in your kitchen sink is actually a model white hole. For the first time, scientists have shown experimentally that liquid flowing from a tap embodies the same physics as the time-reversed equivalent of black holes. When a stream of tap water hits the flat surface of the sink, it spreads out into a thin disc bounded by a raised lip, called the hydraulic jump. Physicists’ puzzlement with this jump dates back to Lord Rayleigh in 1914. More recently, physicists have suggested that, if the water waves inside the disc move faster than the waves outside, the jump could serve as an analogue event horizon. Water can approach the ring from outside, but it can’t get in."

Comment Re:Without any evidence? (Score 1) 457

See I disagree.

Like many other people, my computer remembers and automatically logs me into almost all of my internet identities. Anyone sitting in front of my laptop can assume my identity online and pretty much the only thing they won't have access to is my bank account.

"I left my computer on downloading X while I went to the mart. I failed to lock my computer before leaving. Anyone with physical access to the premises (i.e. my roommates) could have easily posted whatever it is I am accused of posting."

While I personally would never leave my computer unlocked during a prolonged absence, it is not inconceivable to forget, let alone those who just leave everything on and logged in (like both of my roommates do... daily.)

IP ties it to a computer and a physical location. It's like saying "We saw your Rideshare speeding and since it was your turn to be driving we're ticketing you."

Comment Another I'll have to avoid... (Score 4, Insightful) 266

Some people can just pay for a better connection; living in the middle of the desert in a Marine Corps barracks leaves me with fewer options.

While I'm more than willing to shell out the cash for a game like C&C4, my internet is horrible (one of the main reasons I like playing SP games so much now) and to make SP games reliant on a constant internet connection means one less sale for them. Ubisoft has already lost my sale on AC2 and now it looks like EA is going to follow in their footsteps.

A shame too because I loved AC and the C&C series.


Submission + - MIT scientists change polythene into heatsink (

arcticstoat writes: Polythene might be better known as the world's most widespread plastic, but scientists at MIT have found a way of altering the material to create heat-conducting fibres that could be used to help cool computer chips. As well as being effective heat conductors and electrical insulators, the fibres also only conduct heat in one direction, giving them an immediate advantage over metals when it comes to moving heat way from a chip. According to MIT, the transformation of the material mainly involved getting all the polymer molecules to line up the same way, rather than forming the jumbled mess of molecules that they usually form. The work is detailed in a paper published in Nature Nanotechnology this month.

Comment Re:I only hope (Score 1) 300

The idea is that previously had you searched for TS on you would not have found any results related to the protests. The image supplied shows that a very famous and previously censored image does now show up on the .cn version of google. As mentioned page rank will still rank those pages very low, however, they are no longer censored.

Comment Re:Ok for MMOs, perhaps... (Score 1) 190

Chuck had a good ending - and it came back!

Largely the reason why Babylon 5's 5th season sucked so bad (or rather, was well below the standards set by the previous 4). JMS thought that the show was getting cancelled after the 4th season, so he wrapped everything up and had the ending filmed at that season. Then they get approved for another season and he had to try and make a show with completely new plotlines since all the previous ones were wrapped up.

I must say though, I'd really, really favor a system of financing for shows that sets aside budget in escrow for 3 episodes. At such time as the series is canceled without warning that money is to fund development of 3 episodes with which to close out and end the show. While it might be a little rushy, most good crews can do that with 3 episodes. If the network wants the timeslot back then show the finish up episodes late at night on a weekend where the die hard fans can at least catch them or DVR them. Naturally digital distribution of shows (which I definately see as on the way - the iTunes model of subscribing to a TV show is the future of episodic content IMHO) would render even that unnecessary since there's no concept of channels or timeslots any longer.

Either way, something needs to be done. It really ticks me off to get invested in TV shows that get canceled without warning and never wrapped up. Babylon 5 Crusade was a good example. Show ended right in the middle with no resolution. It's embarrassing to admit, but I also got into a show called "Wolf Lake" years ago that was just canceled mid run with no conclusion. Terminator The Sarah Connor Chronicles basically did the same. They made it to the end of the second season and the director claimed that that episode was good enough to end the series on, but realistically it just left the entire storyline in disarray.

Farscape and Firefly were the lucky exceptions. Those two were cut off unexpectedly (and Farscape in particular ended on what absolutely should NOT have finished off that series), but they at least got movies to tie them up.

Comment Re:Free trade of ideas, anyone? (Score 1) 687

Not me, with China I know exactly what I'm dealing with. A giant who doesn't pretend to be nice but is quite open about it's policies and it's agenda.

That is a stupid comment and you are a stupid person for making it. China has for many years preached about how great it would be to do business with them, how they are turning their IP law around, blah blah blah. It's all been lies. Now, show us the lie Google told.

This opposed to google who tries really REALLY hard to be seen as the world's nicest and biggest friend but of which I have no idea of the hidden agenda behind it.

Companies don't have agendas; people do. That should scare you more than anything else about google; it's possible for them to be destroyed by a government who then takes over their operation (or hands it to a sympathetic party.) But that's not so much a problem with Google as with corporatism.

In google's case. Put your money where your mouth is and gtfo of China, then we'll talk again.

You're not very well-acquainted with diplomacy, are you? It probably went like this: "Stop attacking our servers or we'll pull out. You're forcing us to censor searches which makes us look bad anyway." "Yeah, you'll pull out of your mom maybe, I'd like to see you do it." So now Google is proving that they are serious by going public. Odds are, China will change nothing, and Google will really have to withdraw. But "have to" is a relative term. If they can't make money there, then there's no point in being there. If the government is attacking Google (they probably are) then Google really has no choice but to give up and go home, because ultimately you can't defend against any such attack without the assistance of the government.

Comment Re:Riddle me this (Score 2, Insightful) 766

Correct. The free market assumes perfect access to information (information wants to be free, no?). We just got more information on this product. Thus we can make decisions based on this new information (it gets "priced in"). We then return to an equilibrium after the use of this GM corn falls in disfavor. Of course, I'd also like to see more studies confirming this before any conclusions are drawn. How about a simple comparison of how widespread this GM corn is, when it was released, and national rates of organ failure over a long period of time?

Comment Re:No sandboxing? (Score 1) 340

Ultimately, I'd like to see a simple/advanced install dialog. The simple one is what Android uses now. The user is presented with what the app wants to function optimally, user accepts or denies. The advanced one would require more than just one set of permission requests:

First, the absolute minimum to run with any functionality at all. So a syncing app would require at the minimum access to what you want synced, and a network connection. If an app has autoupdate functionality, instead of updating automatically, the app will tell the user to manually check for updates at this privilege level.

Second, the optimal permissions. For example, if an app has update functionality, this would be included here. Similar if a syncing app would want to read other utility data files.

Finally, the maximum permissions an app can ever have: For example, some apps should never be run as root, just because they never, ever need anything UID 0 offers. Web browsers for example. A simple Tetris clone might just need the ability to check for updates, and that is it. It would never need access to contacts or any other data files than its saved high scores. So handing a program access it will never need in its installed lifetime is stupid. Max permissions might come into play when one wants to have a utility that normally is a diary writer, but wants to use it to read/edit binary files in a directory not owned by it. Normally, few users would want to let the program out of its sandbox, but an advanced user who trusts the program can manually install it with these abilities.

The other thing I'd like to see is something like Droidwall, but part of the OS (perhaps buried somewhere so a novice user doesn't hamstring themselves on it). I shouldn't need to root my phone and have to see if some modder added iptables in order to ensure that some apps that don't need it either have no network connectivity, or only communicate to the few sites they are authorized to.

Comment Re:Won't someone please think of the children? (Score 1) 344

Your argument is both a red herring and a troll. The discussion is what we teach in high schools, not government policy or media spin. I will, however, reply.

It's generally logical fallacies which are used to justify drug use: Appeal to unqualified authority, appeal to common practice (or appeal to popularity) and the genetic fallacy. There is also a general lack of scrutiny to ulterior motives.
A good example of a typical conversation, he speaks first:

"My buddy Jack says it's totally natural. It can't be that bad if it doesn't have crazy chemicals and shit in it."
"Who is Jack?"
"My dealer... but he like knows and stuff; he went to college."
"What about snake venom or poison ivy? These are natural substances."
"Well those are poisons! Those aren't like good for you and stuff."
"Any idea where he went to college?"
"ITT Tech... he's was a computer technician."
"How does learning how to solve computers help you understand the safety of complex molecules in humans?"

Obviously, this does not represent every drug user, however, my personal experiences with users generally turns up an inability to logically defend their choice.

I get these arguments from my friends who are as old as 21. They show an acute inability to weigh the pros and cons of arguments. As much as I hate testimonial arguments, I would expect that at least half of my high school graduating class (2006, FYI) could be easily duped into a DHMO-type scam.

Children do not have the tools necessary (and, unfortunately, are not being given them) to make informed decisions on... pretty much anything. Since there is no magic adulthood epiphany which occurs at 18 or 21, most adults lack this skill as well.

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