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United Kingdom

Submission + - Petition to stop Richard O'Dwyer being extradited (gopetition.com)

stop.extradition writes: Richard O'Dwyers' Mother [Julia O'Dwyer] has set-up a petition to halt the extradition of her son [TV Shack Admin] Richard O'Dwyer to the USA for an alleged copyright offence.
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http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/stop-extradition-fair-uk-trial-for-richard-o-dwyer.html
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I think this story and petition could do with some slashdot style/size support.

Please, everyone who reads this go and sign the petition now!

Google

Submission + - Google To Drop Support For H.264 In Chrome 1

Steve writes: oogle just made a bold move in the HTML5 video tag battle: even though H.264 is widely used and WebM is not, the search giant has announced it will drop support for the former in Chrome. The company has not done so yet, but it has promised it will in the next couple of months. Google wants to give content publishers and developers using the HTML5 video tag an opportunity to make any necessary changes to their websites.

Here's the current state of HTML5 video: Microsoft and Apple are betting on H.264, while Google, Mozilla, and Opera are rooting for WebM. Although Internet Explorer 9 supports H.264, excluding all other codecs, Microsoft says it is making an exception for WebM, as long as the user installs the corresponding codec. Google developed WebM, but made an exception for H.264, until today's announcement. Meanwhile, Mozilla and Opera refuse to provide support for H.264 because the H.264 patent license agreement isn't cheap.

http://www.techspot.com/news/41936-google-to-drop-support-for-h264-in-chrome.html

Submission + - Google Chrome tag to abandon H.264

Art3x writes: As you know, HTML 5 introduced the <video> tag, so you don't have to use Flash, QuickTime, etc. It can even enclose several versions of the same video (H.264, WebM, Ogg, etc.) for different computers or browsers. Well, for Google Chrome in a couple months, you will have to provide it something other than H.264, because it is dropping support for H.246. 'Though H.264 plays an important role in video, as our goal is to enable open innovation, support for the codec will be removed and our resources directed towards completely open codec technologies,' wrote Mike Jazayeri, Product Manager.

Submission + - Wireless Networks May Be Regulated Medical Devices (computerworld.com)

Lucas123 writes: As hospitals continue to connect patient monitoring equipment, physician PDAs and laptops to wireless networks, and then collapse those data paths onto traditional IT networks, the closer the U.S. Food and Drug Administration comes to regulating them, according to Computerworld. The focus of the FDA's regulation comes in its recently finalized 80001-1 standard that established risk management practices for those networks and the adherence to which may be voluntary but would determine Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements. "If you don't comply, then you have two choices. You can have the federal government come in and inspect your hospital, or you can decide not to accept money from Medicare or Medicaid," Hampton said. "Voluntary sometimes isn't exactly voluntary," said Rick Hampton, wireless communications manager for Partners HealthCare System in Boston.
Piracy

Submission + - New laser makes pirates wish they wore eye-patches 1

vieux schnock writes: The New Scientist has an article about a new laser developed by a company in Farnborough, UK, aiming at deterring modern high-seas pirates. Devised as a "warning shot" to "distract suspected pirates rather than harm them", the meter-wide bean can scan the pirates' 6-metre skiffs and make it difficult for them to aim their AK-47 or rocket-propelled grenades at the ship.
Science

Submission + - Replicability of science declining? (newyorker.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Scientists are finding that the replicability of findings in biological and psychological experiments is, in at least some cases, in a state of decline, thus casting doubt on certain things we think we know. The New Yorker article about the decline effect suggests publication bias and selective reporting as significant contributors to this effect, coupled with sheer "randomness". No examples are given from the hard sciences.
Nintendo

Submission + - Nintendo Warns 3D Games Can Ruin Children's Eyes 1

Hugh Pickens writes: "Fox News reports that Sony has posted a cautionary note on its Japanese website that "“vision of children under the age of six has been said [to be in the] developmental stage,” adding that 3D content “delivers 3D images with different left and right images, [which] has a potential impact on the growth of children’s eyes.” The notice went to say that Sony recommends that all viewers take regular breaks while watching 3D video or playing stereoscopic 3D games (google translation). Dr. Michael Ehrenhaus, an ophthalmologist with New York Cornea Consultants, thinks Nintendo and Sony may be getting ahead of themselves with these disclaimers. "It's hard to say that it'll ruin development," says Ehrenhaus. "I don't foresee it as a major issue, they're just being overly concerned." Ehrenhaus says the disclaimer comes from worries about the eye strain people can get by focusing on something for long periods of times and that young children may suffer from a condition called amblyopia or "lazy eye," where one eye sees better than the other. Eye strain from 3D may turn out to be merely the latest in a long line of fears about television and video gaming similar to the widespread worries that arose after flashing lights in games led to rare epileptic fits, or the old wives tale about sitting too close to the television. "A lot of these myths never really play out," Ehrenhaus says."
Earth

Submission + - End the Ethanol Insanity

theodp writes: It's now conceivable, says BusinessWeek's Ed Wallace, that the myth of ethanol as the salvation for America's energy problem is coming to an end. Curiously, the alternative fuel may be done in by an unlikely collection of foes. Fervidly pro-ethanol in the last decade of his political career, former VP Al Gore reversed course in late November and apologized for supporting ethanol, which apparently was more about ingratiating himself to farmers. A week later, Energy Secretary Steven Chu piled on, saying: 'The future of transportation fuels shouldn't involve ethanol.' And in December, a group of small-engine manufacturers, automakers, and boat manufacturers filed suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals to vacate the EPA's October ruling that using a 15% blend of ethanol in fuel supplies would not harm 2007 and newer vehicles. Despite all of this, the newly-elected Congress has extended the 45 cent-per-gallon ethanol blending tax credit that was due to expire, a move that is expected to reduce revenue by $6.25 billion in 2011. 'The ethanol insanity,' longtime-critic Wallace laments, 'will continue until so many cars and motors are damaged by this fuel additive that the public outcry can no longer be ignored. Adding an expensive, harmful, useless filler to gasoline just to win farmers' gratitude is not remotely the same as having a legitimate national energy policy.'
The Internet

Submission + - Skype outages continue into second day (networkworld.com)

netbuzz writes: And according to a statement issued this morning, the company doesn’t appear to know when service will return to normal: “Unfortunately, it’s not possible for us to predict on an individual level when you’ll be able to sign in again, and we thank you for your patience in the meantime.” In a blog post yesterday, Skype blamed the disruption on problems with “supernodes.”

Submission + - BYTE is coming back (technologizer.com)

harrymcc writes: More than a dozen years after its death, BYTE magazine is still the most beloved computer magazine of all time--the one that employees of every other tech mag got used to being compared unfavorably with. And now it's being revived, in the form of a new BYTE.com. The new version isn't replicating the focus of the old BYTE--it's focused on the use of consumer tech products in a business environment--and I'm pretty positive it won't feature Robert Tinney's art or epic Jerry Pournelle columns. But I'm glad to see the legendary brand back in use rather than sitting in limbo.

Submission + - JBI's Plastic To Oil Gets Operating Permit (jbiglobal.com) 2

Whammy666 writes: JBI, Inc. announced that it has entered into a formal Consent Order with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Region 9, which will allow the Company to immediately run its Plastic2Oil (P2O) process commercially and begin construction of an additional processor at its Niagara Falls, New York P2O facility. JBI has developed a process that takes waste plastic destined for landfills and converts it into diesel fuel, gasoline, and natural gas with very little residue. The process is said to be very efficient thanks to a special catalyst developed by JBI and an attention to process optimization. That plastic water bottle you tossed in the trash could soon be fueling your car instead of sitting in a landfill for 1000 years.
The Internet

Submission + - Protect Your Pre-1997 IP Address (computerworld.com)

CWmike writes: With IPv4 space running out any day now, is your legacy IP address space safe? Computerworld columnist Marc Lindsey writes that if your company obtained its IP address space before 1997, you have probably received several letters from the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) encouraging you to enter into a contractual agreement to protect the IP address. But should you sign it? he asks. Be careful — there are several issues you should consider before signing up for this, writes Lindsey, who offers a deep look at the issue.
Google

Submission + - Google Plans "Searchless" Search (internetevolution.com)

rsmiller510 writes: Google has a vision for the future of search where instead of explicitly entering keywords, Google serves you results automatically based on what it "knows" about you and where you are in the world at any given moment. Creepy, fascinating or both?
Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft (probably) didn't just buy Unix (itworld.com)

jfruhlinger writes: Word came down this morning that, when Attachmate bought Novell, certain intellectual property rights were sold to a Microsoft-led consortium as part of the deal. Since Unix is the most valuable piece of IP Novell owns, there was a certain amount of panic that suddenly Redmond is in charge of this foundational technology for Linux and a number of other open source projects. But, while MS is being cagey, Brian Proffitt doubts that Unix was part of the IP package that was sold — and believes that Linux would be safe even if it were.

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