bananaendian writes: "BBC is reporting on a discovery of how a creature has survived for 80 million years without sex. Scientists have long pondered how asexual organisms can survive the evolutionary pressures of changing environments but according to Science magazine, a team of UK scientists have shown that a tiny invertebrate known as a bdelloid rotifer has found a way to benefit from such long celibacy. The team has been able to show for the first time that gene copies in asexual animals can have different functions."
bananaendian writes: "According to F-Secure Security Labs the government websites of Estonia are still under relentless DDOS attack by unknown sources. The attacks have continued since Saturday and seem to originate from botnets all over the world. Estonian authorities have responded by replacing essential sites with text-only versions and by restricting traffic from abroad. Estonia has seen riots and pressure from Russian nationalists since the relocation of a
disputed World War Two Red Army monument. A visiting Russian government delegation has demanded the resignation of Estonian parliament and PM. Since Putin stepped into power, Russian defence strategy has focussed on Asymmetric Warfare and placed a large budget for Electronic and Information Warfare."
bananaendian writes: "Several news source in Sweden are reporting a problem with geothermal energy. The people of Hudiksvall community have installed so many geothermal pumps to heat their houses that the ground temperature has begun to sink, as much as 2-3 degrees C (4-5F). None of the experts know what this lowering of ground temperature could lead to. Boreholes have been drilled into the bedrock, sometimes every 10-20 meters (32-64ft), and it is feared that this could lead to the freezing of ground water during winter. Geothermal energy has become very popular form of heating in Sweden because it is a lot cheaper then oil and is thought to be more ecological."
PBS is running an extensive documentary series (viewable online) on the state of the news media. In a series called "News War", FRONTLINE correspondent Lowell Bergman examines the role of the online news outlets, from Yahoo to to MSNBC: "No one between ages 20-30 watches the evening news anymore. They get their news online." Will journalism survive when none of these emerging news outlets have actual reporters on the streets? Online news and bloggers have taken over most of the ad-revenue but are mainly running on stories that originated from traditional newspapers which are now struggling to cope.
I'm a hopeless news junkie and addict of contemporary history but I'm sick of the lack of meaningful analysis on BBC and CNN and it takes more than six months for PBS or Adam Curtis to come up with a documentary on a subject. It's easy for people working for the stock market, intellegence community or diplomatic missions to get their hands on expensive current affairs information services with expert analysis on historical backgrounds. But are there any good free Open Source Intellegence (OSINT) sources on the internet? That is unless someone has a backdoor to Intellipedia?
Wikinews reports on new developments on the Nullity story. Mathematicians are furious at BBC News and Dr James Anderson from University of Reading for claiming that his theory of "nullity" is revolutionary for finally showing how to devide by zero. 'He's defined a non-solution to a non-problem!' they say. Dr. Anderson is already intending to profit from his "invention" by registering a company called Transreal Computing Ltd, whose mission statement is "to develop hardware and software to bring you fast and safe computation that does not fail on division by zero". It has also been suggested that the university of Reading, who recently closed their physics department, should drop CS and Math too and stick to folk dancing and knitting.
"NASA scientists have announced that the Mars Global Surveyor has captured images taken by the Mars Orbiter Camera, of what is believed to be liquid water "flowing" into "gullies" from below the surface of the planet Mars and scientists also say that the water appeared within the past seven years. The gullies are located inside the Terra Sirenum crater and the Centauri Montes regions of the Red Planet."
Apple's latest OSX security update fixed some 31 vulnerabilities, some rated as serious, but fails to fix all but one of the MoKB (Month of Kernel Bugs)-project's vulnerabilities for OSX. The aim of the project is to highlight vulnerabilities in operating systems by publishing a bug a day during the month of November. It also includes proof-of-concept tools and procedures for testing them. Nine of the bugs published so far by the project are for OSX. Interestingly ten are for Linux and only one for Windows. That should get some discussion going. The people behind the project purport to be 'hatless': "Hats are too old fashion. And they look sinister, right?:-)"
bananaendian writes: "BBC News reports that major US cinema chains refuse to screen a UK film portraying the death of President Bush. The Death of a President directed by Gabriel Range which won the prestigious FIPRESCI Prize at the 31st Toronto International Film Festival has been banned by two major US cinema chains. The Entertainment Group, which has more than 6,300 screens in 40 US states, said it would not show the film because of its subject matter. Also Cinemark, which operates about 2,500 screens in 34 states, told it would not screen the film. Other major cinema chains are also considering pulling the film.
As computer generated characters allow for a new generation of controversial subjects to be put on film, can the audience be relied upon to distinguish between fiction and reality?"