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Comment Re:And so what... (Score 5, Informative) 153

While it may not have been on purpose (and probably doesn't really qualify for a proper "nuking"), the United States Airforce have in fact dropped four nukes on Denmark, just 41 years ago.

To quote the article: "The conventional high explosive components of four B28FI model hydrogen bombs detonated on impact, spreading radioactive material over a large area in a similar manner to a dirty bomb, although a nuclear explosion was not triggered. The extreme heat generated as 225,000 pounds of unused aviation fuel burned for the next 5 to 6 hours melted the ice sheet, causing some wreckage and munitions to sink to the ocean floor".

And to make matters even more interesting, only wreckage from three of the four bombs were found.

700 Danish and American people worked on the cleanup project for 9 months, often without adequate protection. A lot of the locals and cleanup crew have subsequently gone to court over alleged radiation poisoning. Oh, and did I mention that the nukes stored on Greenland was a breach of Denmark's nuclear free zone policy, and were stored there without permission?

It's all fun and games when you're the big guy.


Submission + - Water pollution, a grim reality?

An anonymous reader writes: Today's celebration of World Water Day with the theme "Coping with water scarcity" is a reminder of the need to conserve and protect the world's fresh water sources, if we are to avert an impending crisis concerning humankind's most valuable resource.
Water sustains life. The extremely rich biodiversity of Southeast Asia is a testament to the abundance of freshwater systems and high rainfall that support life. The Mekong River of Mainland Southeast Asia, Chao Phraya of Thailand, and the other rivers and lakes of the region are important sources of food, water for various uses, medicines, energy, minerals, etc. More importantly, these surface waters as well as the underground aquifers provide communities with drinking water.

Unfortunately, the development path that countries in Southeast Asia have taken is one that is highly disruptive to the hydrological cycles. Aquifers, which store precious ground water, have lost their water-holding capacities due to massive deforestation such as those experienced in Indonesia and the Philippines. Over-exploitation of water sources for industrial and domestic purposes has contributed to the rapid depletion of already limited freshwater resources. These disruptions have severely compromised the ability of the forests to "catch" and then "shed" the water into streams, rivers and reservoirs, as well as the capacity of aquifers to recharge.

Data from the World Bank shows global per capita renewable freshwater resource of 7,045 cubic meters per year. Within Southeast Asia, there is a wide disparity among countries. Lao PDR and Malaysia have the highest per capita renewable freshwater resource per year at 35,049 cubic meters and 26,074 cubic meters, respectively. Thailand and the Philippines are among the lowest with 1,907 and 1,854 cubic meters, respectively. Meanwhile, Singapore has no renewable freshwater resource and is importing its water to meet its demands.

Thus, water scarcity is an issue that communities and governments must face and address in the next few years. Some quarters speculate that the next world war will be fought over water. Hostilities are starting to erupt not only in water-starved regions in the world but also in areas where abundant freshwater sources have conflicting uses such as in the Mekong River. At a smaller scale, communities are now battling companies for rights and access to drinking water.

But an equally alarming reality is that water quality has been steadily declining through the years. Siltation from deforestation, mining and other land conversion activities, saltwater intrusion from over-extraction of water from underground aquifers, biological pollution from untreated sewage, chemical pollution from industrial and agricultural sources, as well as indiscriminate dumping of garbage on water bodies, have all contributed to degrading water quality. Pollution has made already scarce water resources even scarcer. According to the Asian Development Bank, one out of three Asians still do not have access to a sustainable source of safe drinking water and 50% still do not have sanitation services.

With dirty, polluted water come increasing cases of water borne diseases as well as other sickness caused by chemical pollution. In 1992, the World Health Organization pegged the number of infant deaths per year from exposure to contaminated waters at 500,000 in Southeast Asia, while a study in 1997 by the ADB identified lead from industrial sources as the major contaminant in water sources.

While there have been many efforts to clean up dirty bodies of water and waterways, and many governments have made attempts to enforce water standards (such as the Philippines' Clean Water Act, or Thailand's Pollution Control Act), these can be at best only interim measures.

If we are to protect our valuable water resources, changes have to be made in the way we see and treat our environment. The real solutions to protecting water quality must begin at the sources of pollution. One such effective and lasting measure is the implementation of clean production processes. By eliminating the use of toxics from the very first steps of production, pollution of water sources can be effectively prevented.

Our constant exposure to polluted fresh water sources — clogged, or foul smelling river and lakes, as well as contaminated groundwater — have made water pollution a given, a reality we have learned to accept. Thus, we focus on technology meant to 'clean up' pollution rather than prevent it, and draft laws that merely regulate the extent of toxicity in water, rather than prohibit it completely.

We must learn to unlearn this 'reality.' Clean water is the given we must protect if we are to ensure that our water will continue to sustain life well into the future.

Organism Survives 100 Million Years Without Sex 343

zyl0x writes "The Times has an interesting article online on the discovery of a 100-million-year-old micro-organism which has survived its entire lifespan without sex." From the article "A tiny creature that has not had sex for 100 million years has overturned the theory that animals need to mate to create variety. Analysis of the jaw shapes of bdelloid rotifers, combined with genetic data, revealed that the animals have diversified under pressure of natural selection. Researchers say that their study "refutes the idea that sex is necessary for diversification into evolutionary species".

Submission + - College Demands RIAA Pay Up For Wasting Its Time

An anonymous reader writes: We've already seen the University of Wisconsin tell the RIAA to go away, but the University of Nebaska has gone one step further: it's asking the RIAA to pay up for wasting its time with the silly demand to push students into paying up. The spokesperson for the University also notes that since they constantly rotate IP addresses and have no need to hang onto that information for very long, they simply cannot help the RIAA. They have no clue who was attached to which IP address at the time the RIAA is complaining about.

Submission + - New Inkjet Technology 5 to 10 Times Faster

sarahbau writes: "Silverbrook's new Memjet technology can print 60 full-color pages per minute. Instead of having a print head that moves side to side like current inkjets, the print head spans the full width of the page, containing 70,400 nozzles in the A4 version. They also have a large format printer (51") that prints 6" to 1 foot per second. Products are expected to start shipping in late 2007."

Submission + - One million photos georeferenced at

Eduardo Manchon writes: "The photo-sharing community just reached the magic number of one million georeferenced photos from all around the world. Now every corner on Earth is illustrated by the members of Panoramio's community. Even remote places like North Pole or Antarctica are included in Panoramio's collection of mapped photos."
The Internet

Submission + - USA Today adds User Generated Content

* * Beatles-Beatles writes: "With the new features we've introduced on the site, readers will have the ability to:
  Scan other news sources directly on;
  See how readers are reacting to stories;
  Recommend stories and comments to other readers;
  Comment directly on stories;
  Participate in discussion forums;
  Write reviews (of movies, music and more);
  Contribute photos;
  Better communicate with USA TODAY staff."
PC Games (Games)

Submission + - S.T.A.L.K.E.R Gold

Aksel writes: "S.T.A.L.K.E.R shadow Of Chernobyl has gone gold, meaning it has finally been sent to the manufacturing plant. From the Offical website: "We are pleased to announce that the game has gone to print! The project developed by GSC Game World over 5 long years has finally crossed the finish line. We are sure that many of those, who discover the world of the Zone will "come down" with S.T.A.L.K.E.R. for a long time. Soon anyone will be able to explore the world of the technological catastrophe and the unsolved mystery. Mutants, monsters and anomalies, enemies and comrades, dangerous fights and exciting missions await you!""
The Internet

Submission + - Who will digg Digg, and for How Much?

linux-laptop writes: "(May be From who-will-snap-our-rival department?) In its annual book of predictions "The World in 2007", The Economist puts it as a foregone conclusion that Digg will get snapped up for a fortune this year and that Kevin Rose will become a household name. The site which put social news on the scene, with a great position to soak up a whole lot of new users and traffic as it adds more categories (witness the quick success of the US Elections 2008 category), will certainly be a prize catch for any acquirer. This article analyzes the suitors and the dynamics which might guide their actions."

Submission + - Ubuntu Ultimate Gamers Edition

Usser writes: "What is Ubuntu Ultimate Gamers Edition ?screenshots.

Due to the increased popularity of each prior release Ubuntu Christmas Edition (~15,000 downloads in 2 weeks), Ubuntu Ultimate 1.2 has seen over 50,000 downloads in 3 days. I have decided to make another distro I'm calling "Ubuntu Ultimate Gamers Edition" it has everything included from any of the prior distros plus many many games & a few enhancements. I have however removed Java, Flash and Acrobat reader due to licensing agreements. Please freat not included in the release is my custom repo which contains all the software and much more. Firefox's homepage will give a detailed description on obtaining all additional software from the repo.

Ubuntu Ultimate Gamers Edition is here "

Submission + - TeamSpeak, Ventrilo - Are there Free alternatives?

syrion writes: "Due to a hack currently going around, a TeamSpeak server I regularly use is getting repeatedly hosed. I'd like to help fix this issue with a more secure alternative, but I'm not so knowledgeable about the VoIP landscape. Are there any alternatives? Can something like the GNU telephony stack help — and are there tutorials on how to set it up?"

Submission + - Museum IDs New Species of Dinosaur

Uryugen writes: A new dinosaur species was a plant-eater with yard-long horns over its eyebrows, suggesting an evolutionary middle step between older dinosaurs with even larger horns and the small-horned creatures that followed, experts said. The dinosaur's horns, thick as a human arm, are like those of triceratops — which came 10 million years later. However, this animal belonged to a subfamily that usually had bony nubbins a few inches long above their eyes

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