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Comment Another use for the Rockbox recorder (Score 5, Interesting) 66

My ears got plugged up while swimming and I could barely hear the next day. Rockbox's recorder function outputs the microphone to headphones even when it is not recording. That $30 Clip+ worked reasonably well as a makeshift hearing aid, as long as I was facing the person I was trying to hear.

Comment Misleading title (Score 2) 642

If you check a competing exchange, you will find that the price of bitcoins has gone from $17 to $13. How does that constitute a crash when the price of a BTC had fluctuated down to around $13 within 48 hours before the breach? This is a security breach that only affected people using MtGox to trade their bitcoins for USD, so the trust in MtGox has been undermined, not the trust in the entire BTC economy. Most traders will likely move over to or some other competing exchange who have hopefully learned some lessons from MtGox's failures. The thing about currency is that if it is not properly secured, it can be stolen. When someone robs a bank or steals a wallet, do we stop trusting paper money or do we just work that much harder to keep it secure?

Comment Re:Are we finally using the term "pirates" correct (Score 1) 63

First sentence in TFA: "A year ago I blogged about how hackers managed to hijack hundreds of high-profile websites to make them promote online stores that sold pirated software at about 5-10% of a real cost." When they say pirates, they are referring to the fact that these web sites were built to sell pirated software. Even a profession that was not in the tech black market category would have fit in the summary. For example "To drive traffic to their web sites full of illegal and potentially poisonous recipes, rogue chefs hack reputable legitimate websites injecting hidden spammy links and creating doorway pages."

Comment Cost control (Score 2, Funny) 565

Before and during FDR's administration, the free market electric company shills argued that providing "socialized electricity" would be a disaster financially since generating electricity was supposedly so expensive that there was no way the government could provide cheaper service. To back up their claims, they pointed to a few mismanaged municipal electric programs as proof that it could never work. In reality, many of the electric companies were enjoying fat monopolies and wanted to keep their operations small scale so they could keep prices high. The government finally stepped in during the 1930's and proved that electricity did not have to be so expensive if the provider did not have profit as their only motivation. This sounds so familiar to another debate over other services that should or should not be "socialized" come to think of it...

Generating Power From Ocean Buoys and Kites 131

cheezitmike writes "Researchers at Oregon State University are testing a new type of wave-energy converter to generate electricity from ocean waves: 'Even when the ocean seems calm, swells are moving water up and down sufficiently to generate electricity. ... For decades the challenge has been to build a device that can withstand monster waves and gale-force winds, not to mention corrosive saltwater, seaweed, floating debris and curious marine mammals. ... In the most recent prototypes, a thick coil of copper wire is inside the first component, which is anchored to the seafloor. The second component is a magnet attached to a float that moves up and down freely with the waves. As the magnet is heaved by the waves, its magnetic field moves along the stationary coil of copper wire. This motion induces a current in the wire — electricity.'" Meanwhile, researchers at Stanford are working to design "turbine kites" that operate at 30,000 feet, where air currents flow much faster than they do close to the ground. Ken Caldeira, a Stanford associate professor, said, "If you tapped into 1% of the power in high-altitude winds, that would be enough to continuously power all civilization."

Is the Kindle DX Worth the Money? 263

An anonymous reader writes "Now that some little time has passed, and the hype has died down a bit, I'm wondering if anyone has taken the $500 plunge and gotten a Kindle DX. From the academic-paper-reading-geek perspective, is it worth the money? How well does it work with PDFs, and is it easy to get them on and off? I haven't been able to find any good reviews on the interweb that address its usability as I would like to use it."

Squeezing a Wikipedia Snapshot Onto an 8GB iPhone 169

blackbearnh writes with this excerpt from O'Reilly Radar "Think about Wikipedia, what some consider the most complete general survey of human knowledge we have at the moment. Now imagine squeezing it down to fit comfortably on an 8GB iPhone. Sound daunting? Well, that's just what Patrick Collison's Encyclopedia iPhone application does. App Store purchasers of Collison's open source application can browse and search the full text of Wikipedia when stuck in a plane, or trapped in the middle of nowhere (or, as defined by AT&T coverage...)"

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