Smelly Jeffrey writes: After November 11, 2010, Google's free Directory Assistance service, GOOG-411, will be switched off. Since the service launched in 2007, Google has been quietly bettering its various voice-driven systems. When Google launched its own free 4-1-1 service, the company said it planned to use the voice samples captured by the phone system to improve its voice recognition. With the imminent closing of GOOG-411, users calling from landlines have been scrambling to find other free alternatives. While the old standby of 1-800-FREE-411 remains in mediocre homeostasis, and Microsoft's relatively new BING-411 service is sure to pick up when google drops the ball.
Smelly Jeffrey writes: The BBC is reporting that the LHC has had all eight of its sectors cooled to 1.9 Kelvins. Their tagline is that it is now "colder than deep space", as caused by CMB. LHC engineers have spent nearly $40,000,000 USD on a new system to prevent the "quench" condition that caused the LHC to be down for warming, repairs, and re-cooling over the last several months. The entire LHC is now cold enough to being colliding particles in search of the Higgs Boson. High power collisions won't be started until late this December, or more likely early next January. However, some low power collisions could be begun as early as next week!