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Submission + - Solar night (

Dthief writes: Something new is headed for the Southwest desert: solar power plants that can make electricity whether or not the sun is shining.

The Solana plant will be able to meet winter heating and lighting needs by putting electricity on the grid early in the morning—before the sun is shining—and help satisfy summer cooling demand by producing power after sundown. The plant, which can power up to 70,000 houses, has signed a 30-year agreement to sell electricity to utility company Arizona Public Service.

Mark Mehos, a solar program manager for the National Renewable Energy Lab in Golden, Colo., said such molten salt storage systems add about 20% to the construction cost of solar plants but more than make up for it by boosting a plant's flexibility and productivity.

Electricity from solar plants is expensive, especially at a time when natural-gas prices have plunged, making gas-generated electricity cheap by comparison. Utilities, which are under state mandates to buy more clean power, say solar power may look more economical in the future if fossil fuel prices rise or if a tax is imposed on carbon emissions by power plants.

Comment More spam is less? (Score 1) 2

To save on spam you are sending back a canned message asking them to send you more messages... Wouldn't a far better solution to be to hack your spam filter to delete the bit you dislike? Then you don't see it, you don't generate more traffic, and the people trying to send you messages can do it.

Submission + - Police in Britain arrest man for joke on Twitter (

An anonymous reader writes: A British man arrested under anti-terrorism legislation for making a bomb joke on Twitter. Paul Chambers, 26, was arrested under the provisions of the Terrorism Act (2006) –his crime? Frustrated at grounded flights over inclement weather, he made a joke bomb threat on the social networking site Twitter.

Submission + - What punishment fits this computer crime?

ZosX writes: A acquaintance freely admitted that he was using brute force and dictionary attacks to take over yahoo and myspace accounts amongst others as well as causing DDOS and DOS for people with mailbombs and other lame script kiddie attacks. All from his home connection. Seeing as how his computer knowledge is so limited, I decided to investigate into where he read "hacking for dummies" on the web. After googling "how to hack yahoo" it seems there are 15,000 hits and a whole slew of youtube videos, so it seems that yahoo's security must be like a complete sieve at least according to google. If I call the cops he'll go to prison for at least 4-5 years with his record, that is if they even take interest in the case. People have gotten less than that for much worse offenses. He's not attacking corporations, just clueless people who use yaoo. I don't know where his house is (city, yes), but I'm pretty sure I could find out with some searching on google earth given the rough description of the property. This kind of stupid crime really angers me because his actions are that of a completely senseless virtual violence. He was clearly proud of his "savvy" and seemed to derive a sickening amount of pleasure from screwing over someone's myspace account. He doesn't live close, but if I found his address I doubt that I could do much with it from here. I guess I'm asking what would you do slashdot?

Submission + - Air Canada told to provide nut-free zone

JamJam writes: Air Canada has been told to create a special "buffer zone" on flights for people who are allergic to nuts. The Canadian Transportation Agency has ruled that passengers who have nut allergies should be considered disabled and accommodated by the airline. Air Canada has a month to come up with an appropriate section of seats where passengers with nut allergies would be seated. The ruling involved a complaint from Sophia Huyer who has a severe nut allergy and travels frequently. Ms. Huyer once spent 40 minutes in the washroom during a flight while snacks were being served.

Submission + - Full body scanners violate child porn laws. ( 2

gandhi_2 writes: The Guardian has a story about an ongoing legal battle over the use of full body scanners in the UK. The Protection of Children Act 1978, includes provisions in which it is illegal to create an indecent image or a "pseudo-image" of a child....which a full body scanner does.

Submission + - Dangerous liaisons (

An anonymous reader writes: From maze-like genitalia and terrifying spikes to ornamental handicaps and disloyal mothers, evolution seems to have found some seriously stupid designs for sex.

Submission + - SPAM: First Earth-like planet likely a world of fire 1

coondoggie writes: University of Washington astronomers this week said that the first rocky planet discovered outside our solar system is on fire, almost literally. The scientists say if the planet, known as CoRoT-7b, has an orbit that is not almost perfectly circular, then the planet might be undergoing fierce volcanic eruptions. It could be even more volcanically active than Jupiter's moon Io, which has more than 400 volcanoes and is the most geologically active object in our solar system, the researchers said.
[spam URL stripped]

Link to Original Source

Submission + - Which math for programmers? 2

An anonymous reader writes: It is no news that greatest computer scientists and programmers are/were mathematicians. As a kid 'hacking' if-else programs, I was not aware of the importance of math in programming, but few years later, when I read Engines of logic by Martin Davis I started becoming increasingly more convinced of this. Unfortunately, math doesn't return my love, and prefers me to struggle with it. Now, as the end of the semester approaches, I am faced with a dillema: What math subject to choose next? I have two choices: 'Discreet structures with graph theory' (discrete math; proofs, sets, algorithms and graphs) on one side, and 'Selected math chapters' (math analysis; vectors, euclidian space, differentials) on the other. I'm scared of the second one because it's said to be harder. But contrary to my own opinion, one assistant told me that it would be more useful for a programmer compared to the first subject. Then again, he's not a programmer. That's why I turn to you for help, fellow slashdotters — any advice?

Submission + - Mechanism for placebo effect discovered (

An anonymous reader writes: A key to understanding the mysterious 'placebo effect' has been unlocked by scientists: placebos may work by blocking pain signals in the spinal cord from reaching the brain.

Submission + - Debtors Sue Medical System over Privacy Breach ( 1

BarneyRabble writes: "If you go bankrupt in the State of Wisconsin--make sure your ass is covered, literally! Patients who are in
bankruptcy court are finding out their personal medical information is being placed in a public record database
thanks to Aurora Health Care, one of the state's largest health systems. Their electronic medical records not only
disclosed the amount the debtor owed, but what kind of care they recieved, in direct violation of pattent privacy laws.

In a class action lawsuit, the state is suing Aurora for $25,000 per violation."

Submission + - Pirates get competition (

An anonymous reader writes: Pirates get competition from Peerstop, a company whos aim is to give media producers a peer to peer presence.
By searching google most people would find it difficult to find pirated material. This is because of the sheer magnitude of legitimate material on the web.
With Peer-to-Peer networks its the other way around. It would be difficult to find legitimate material, because of the amount of pirated material available.

By establishing a presence on peer to peer networks media producers can provide legitimate alternatives to the pirated content available on peer to peer networks. One such example would be providing media files that can be unlocked for a fee.

Companies of various sizes can also use it to promote their products, e.g. with Demo software, Movie trailers etc...

Having a peer to peer presence is the logical next step, not having one is like not having a web presence, your competitors (however legitimate they may be) will get there first.

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