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Submission + - NetHack 3.6.0 released

An anonymous reader writes: After 11 years, a new version of NetHack got released.
Windows

Submission + - Russinovich explains Vista SP1 file copy changes (technet.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Mark Russinovich, in his latest blog post, overviews the significant work that went into enhancing the file copy performance of Windows Vista SP1, including the team undoing some of the changes that had originally been made for Windows Vista RTM.
Power

Submission + - Why Not Nuclear Power? Politics! (theoildrum.com) 1

Gooseygoose writes: "
A couple of days ago I was reading the CNN/YouTube Democratic presidential debate transcript. Of course I am always interested to hear what the candidates have to say about energy. There were a lot of good comments, and the usual spattering of dumb comments. But I won't dissect them right now. What got me to thinking were the comments of John Edwards...
http://www.theoildrum.com/node/2826"

NASA

Submission + - NASA's Mars Phoenix ready for Launch

StaffInfection writes: "After a one day delay in fueling of the Boeing Delta II-7925 (http://www.boeing.com/defense-space/space/delta/d elta2/delta2.htm) launch vehicle due to weather, the Phoenix Mars Scout Mission is prepared for launch on Saturday, August 4th, at 5:26 a.m. or 6:02 a.m EDT. The Mars Phoenix lander (http://phoenix.lpl.arizona.edu/mission.php) is a table for four — about the size of a modest dinner table. At Mars, it will soft land a suite of science instruments for studying the Martian Polar regolith. Phoenix is the rekindling of the Mars Surveyor Lander, twin to the ill-fated Mars Polar Lander (MPL, http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/missions/profile.cfm?M Code=MPL). The science payload will analyze the martian polar soil for water and mineral content and study the surrounding morphology and atmospheric conditions. The stationary lander includes an 8 foot robotic arm that will feed soil samples to miniaturized chemical laboratories (MECA,http://phoenix.lpl.arizona.edu/science_meca. php and TEGA, http://phoenix.lpl.arizona.edu/science_tega.php). Landing (animations at http://phoenix.lpl.arizona.edu/newsArchive.php?p=4 &y=2007) will be a Viking style soft landing rather than the air bag system used on the Mars Pathfinder and Rover missions. All missions to Mars are challenging but Phoenix represents a last chance to rectify for the loss of MPL and Mars Climate Orbiter in 1999. All three spacecraft share a common development lineage at Lockheed Martin, Denver. A successful landing will present our first visit to the Martian Polar environment. In the last ten years, American, European and Japanese Mars exploration has resulted in seven successful missions and four failures. Phoenix will be supported by a constellation of orbiters presently at Mars — Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Mars Express and Mars Odyssey, functioning as communication relays."

Feed Science Daily: Unknotting DNA Clue To Cancer Syndrome (sciencedaily.com)

A new study that explains the actions of a gene mutation that causes early onset cancer provides a fundamental insight into the mechanism of DNA-break repair. Normally, to repair broken DNA, matching chromosomes associate so that an intact chromosome can act as a template for the damaged one.
NASA

Submission + - Mars mission borrows technology from PS3, Xbox 360 (networkworld.com)

jbrodkin writes: "The same IBM processors in your Xbox 360, PS3, the car you drive and some of the world's fastest supercomputers are leaving for Mars today to support a NASA mission searching for extraterrestrial life. And this is no mere coincidence. Lessons learned from the incredible video throughput of the PlayStation 3 and the extreme scalability and reliability of mainframes factor into the processors being used on the Phoenix Mars Lander. Similarly, the experience building processors that make the most efficient use of energy on a spacecraft is helping IBM make data centers on Earth more efficient in a time when limitations of space and power are increasingly important. "This is the onboard machine that runs all of the functions that will have to be performed somewhat autonomously on Mars when it lands," explains Dave McQueeney, chief technology officer for IBM's federal contracting business. "These are the computers inside the spacecraft that are responsible for the navigation, control, scientific instruments, power management ... the things that are the brains of the Lander itself.""

Feed Techdirt: ATT CEO: We Don't Promote $10 DSL Because No One Wants It (techdirt.com)

Remember the story back in June about how ATT had extremely quietly started offering $10 DSL as was required in its deal to buy BellSouth? The company was promoting many other, more expensive, DSL options, but the only way you could get the required $10 version was if you specifically knew to ask about it. Broadband Reports points to an interview from an Atlanta newspaper with ATT CEO Randall Stephenson where he's asked about the $10 DSL. The interviewer points out that no story about ATT resulted in a more irate response from ATT customers as its story about the hidden offer for $10 DSL, suggesting that this was a huge issue for ATT customers. Stephenson's response? First he denies that the company made it hard to find, and then he says that they're not promoting it because customers don't want it. This, despite the clear response from customers to the very newspaper who was conducting the interview. Then, he basically admits that the $10 DSL doesn't work very well, saying that they don't promote it because they don't want to give customers a product that sucks. Of course, he says that as if it's not his company that has quite a bit of control over whether or not the product sucks. Yes, that's right. ATT actually thinks you'll believe that they're hiding their cheap broadband offering because, seriously, who wants cheap broadband when more expensive broadband is available? Of course, this isn't a new strategy from ATT. Back when it was SBC and refused to offer naked DSL, the claim was that customers didn't want naked DSL either, despite the success many other companies were having with it, and numerous articles with people clamoring for it. It appears that ATT has figured out that when there's really no competition, you get to decide what it is your customers really do or do not want.
Security

Submission + - New Tool Automates Webmail Account Hijacks (washingtonpost.com) 1

andrewd18 writes: "According to the Washington Post's Security Fix blog, a tool was debuted at the Black Hat conference that makes it simple to hijack webmail services over a wireless network. While the dangers of unencrypted data transfer on a public wireless network have been around for some time, this tool presents the first example of an automated webmail hijack. Since the tool uses a cookie based attack, it works whether or not the user changes his or her password. This tool could potentially automate the attack of any user on a wireless network, so long as the website the user logs into does not encrypt its login information."
Security

Submission + - Laptop Anti-theft Software Options for Linux

yourexhalekiss writes: "I'm going back to school this fall, and I run GNU/Linux on my laptop. With school being what it is, I want to keep my Kubuntu-powered System76 Darter Ultra as safe as it can be. Checking through SourceForge and Freshmeat, I can't find a single laptop theft-prevention or tracking program that works with GNU/Linux and has published code.

What do other people use to protect their non-Windows or Mac laptops, and how effective is it?"
AMD

Submission + - Upgrade enables HD decoding on AMD 690G Chipset[- (hdtvinfo.eu)

Xbm360 writes: AMD recently released a BIOS update that brings several features to the table.

http://www.hdtvinfo.eu/content/view/92/1/

This BIOS update brings DVD/HD hardware decoding in both 720p & 1080p resolutions, making the 690G chipset the cheapest graphics subsystem that can decode 1080p video.

MPEG-2, VC-1 & H.264 video standards/codec's are supported.

Some motherboards which have the 690G chipset are:

* ASUS M2A-VM
* ECS AMD690GM-M2
* MSI K9AGM2-FIH"

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