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Sci-Fi

Half-Life Short Film Grabs Attention 72

switchfeet writes "For any of you Half-Life fans out there, this new short film based on the game by The Purchase Brothers is really garnering some attention on pretty much every gaming site out there. 'It's a mixture of live action and game footage, and makes smart use of in-game sound effects, and some really fantastic location hunting. ... The Purchase Bros describe the production as 'guerilla style with no money, no time, no crew, no script, the first two episodes were made from beginning to end on a budget of $500.'"
Image

Oklahoma Ambulances Debut Sirens That You Can Feel Screenshot-sm 128

djupedal writes "Booming like a 1980s video game, the Howler can even make liquids ripple — Oklahoma's largest ambulance company will become the first ambulance service in the nation to outfit its entire fleet with new Howler sirens, designed to emit low-frequency tones that penetrate objects within 200 feet — such as cars — to alert drivers." This is all well and fine, but I wonder what they plan to do when their sirens call up one of the big worms from deep below?
Science

Fungus Fire Spores With 180,000 G Acceleration 69

Hugh Pickens writes "Although a variety of spore discharge processes have evolved among the fungi, those with the longest ranges are powered by hydrostatic pressure and include 'squirt guns' that are most common in the Ascomycota and Zygomycota. In these fungi, fluid-filled stalks that support single spores or spore-filled sporangia, or cells called asci that contain multiple spores, are pressurized by osmosis. Because spores are discharged at such high speeds, most of the information on launch processes from previous studies has been inferred from mathematical models and is subject to a number of errors, but now Nicholas Money, an expert on fungi at Miami University, has recorded the discharges with high-speed cameras at 250,000 frames-a-second and discovered that fungi fire their spores with accelerations up to 180,000 g, calling it 'the fastest flight in nature.' Money and his students, in a justified fit of ecstasy, have created a video of the first fungus opera."

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