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Submission + - T-mobile suffering a major phone and data outage. (

Rowanyote writes: T-mobile is suffering a pretty major phone and text message outage that started about 5:30pm EST. Current estimate as of 9pm EST (according to their support page) is that approximately 5% of T-mobile customers are being affected. From the messages in the discussion, it is looking like people are getting intermittent service for voice and data, with one or the other sometimes working.

Personally, I can call out from my t-mobile phone, but incoming calls get a busy signal and no text messages are getting though at all in either direction.

Hardware Hacking

Submission + - Home fab labs getting closer to self replication

Rowanyote writes: "Quoted from "Invention kits let you build (almost) anything"

48-year-old physicist and MIT professor Neil Gershenfeld is the inventor of what he calls the Fab Lab. A Fab Lab (short for fabrication laboratory) is a package of tools designed to make essentially any object.

The kits can include a laser cutter, computer-controlled wood router and a miniature mill for drilling circuit boards, all for around $50,000, including open-source software, batteries and micro-controllers.

Those appliances and materials, Gershenfeld says, are all anyone needs to build whatever he or she can imagine: panels for roofing a house, a simple computer or a better mouse trap. "Basically, the goal is to create a 'Star Trek'-style replicator in 20 years," Gershenfeld says matter-of-factly.

For now, Gershenfeld's project is focused on bringing an early version of that replicator to the masses: He's shipped 26 Fab Labs around the world since 2002. Shepherds in Norway have used a Fab Lab to create radio-frequency ID tags for tracking wandering sheep.

But there's an even more ambitious element of Gershenfeld's plan to spread DIY around the world in small, self-sustaining workshops. He and his MIT team are working on building a Fab Lab that can itself build every element of a Fab Lab: In other words, a Fab Lab that can reproduce.

They've already used a Fab Lab to build working prototypes of a laser cutter and the computer equipment used for design projects."

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