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Submission + - Howard Mann Claims Rights To 273 Jackson Tracks (

clone53421 writes: Howard Mann, the entrepreneur who bought the Jackson estate, claims to have come across a shocking find: 273 masters to unreleased Jackson tracks featuring himself, Tina Turner, and the Jackson family. Finders keepers, he says... the music belongs to him now.

It will be interesting to see how this one plays out in the courts. Undoubtedly I expect the Jackson family will try to paint this as a copyright issue, and they might actually have a case to make: Buying a copy of a song does not give you a claim to owning the song, rather it gives you a license to play it – and even this license has certain restrictions with regards to public performances, etc. It will be up to the courts to decide this one: Is buying the master to a song different because it is the only copy known to exist?


Submission + - Gmail Moves to HTTPS by Default (

clone53421 writes: Although Gmail has long supported HTTPS as an option, Gmail announced their decision yesterday to switch everyone to HTTPS by default:

We initially left the choice of using it up to you because there's a downside: https can make your mail slower since encrypted data doesn't travel across the web as quickly as unencrypted data. Over the last few months, we've been researching the security/latency tradeoff and decided that turning https on for everyone was the right thing to do.

I wonder if this has anything to do with the reports of Chinese users having their accounts hacked? ‘Only two Gmail accounts appear to have been accessed, and that activity was limited to account information (such as the date the account was created) and subject line, rather than the content of emails themselves,’ said David Drummond in that blog update. That does sound like it perhaps could be a result of insecure HTTP traffic being intercepted in transit between the users and Gmail’s servers.


Submission + - GOP Wins Two Races, Dem Defeats Conservative in NY

clone53421 writes: Yesterday, the GOP candidates defeated the Democrat incumbents in New Jersey and Virginia gubernatorial races, while the close mayoral race in New York came as quite a surprise to most: The incumbent Democrat mayor defeated the up-start Conservative candidate by a mere 5% margin – and this after being endorsed by the withdrawing GOP candidate.

In New Jersey, Republican candidate Chris Christie defeated the incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine by a 49:45% margin:

Republican Chris Christie, a former federal prosecutor, pulled out a win in the New Jersey governor's race Tuesday, defeating a deeply unpopular Democratic incumbent whom voters blamed for the state's high taxes and crushing budget woes.

The Associated Press called the race for Mr. Christie over incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine just after 10 p.m. With 91% of precincts reporting Tuesday night, Mr. Christie had 49% of the vote to Mr. Corzine's 45%.

In Virginia, the referendum was even more pronounced:

Former Attorney General Robert F. "Bob" McDonnell, a calm, hard-line conservative Republican from Virginia Beach, clobbered his earnest but vaguely moderate Democratic opponent from Bath County, state Sen. R. Creigh Deeds, by 18 percentage points.

Finally, NY Times editorialist David Carr expressed surprise over the close mayoral race in NYC:

Both polls and pundits had Michael Bloomberg walking away with the New York City mayoralty, but he won only by a margin of five points, and the race was close enough so that media outlets were finessing their predictions deep into the night. It will take weeks to figure out how a two-term incumbent who spent $90 million on his re-election, overpowering his opponent by a 14-1 margin in spending, limped to a narrow victory.

After all of this, we have to ask: What does this mean for the Obama administration? Was this a warning of things to come in the upcoming mid-term elections, and if so, how should the Democrat party react?

Submission + - New Law Bans Flavored Cigarettes (

clone53421 writes: "ABC News reports:

The law, enacted this summer and kicking in today, directs the FDA to crack down on candy and fruit-flavored cigarettes that public health officials say turn children into life-long nicotine addicts.

"These flavored cigarettes are a gateway for many children and young adults to become regular smokers," FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg told reporters.

Dr. Lawrence Deyton, head of the FDA's new Center for Tobacco Products, said they are favored by teens.

"Studies show that 17-year-old smokers are three times as likely to use flavored cigarettes as smokers over the age of 25," Deyton said.

Tobacco companies sweeten their cigarettes because "flavors make cigarettes and other tobacco products more appealing to youth," he added.

Deyton read what he called "a historic memo" from one tobacco manufacturer, outlining plans to directly target children by making "a cigarette that's obviously youth-oriented" and by featuring "flavor which would be candy-like but give the satisfaction of a cigarette."

As for flavorings, the law specifically exempted the most popular one – menthol. But the agency is studying ways to close that loophole – and to regulate flavorings in cigars, chewing tobacco and snuff.



Submission + - 110 MPG? Ohio Engineer Says This and More (

clone53421 writes: Doug Pelmear, a mechanic from Napoleon OH, claims to have created an engine that gives his '87 Mustang a whopping 110 MPG, and he claims the technology can be extended to smaller engines to allow even better mileage.

Even aside from the gas mileage his claims seem spectacular: his car goes 0-60 in three seconds and tops out around 180 MPH. That's enough to make the average car fanatic blink, but these claims seem to be true... the car was tested by Rocket Ventures, a company dedicated to promoting hi-tech, high-paying jobs in northwestern Ohio.

Pelmear may be keeping the design under wraps for now, but the benefits to the automotive industry are obvious. He said, "This'll bring back the automotive industry when they can sell trucks and SUVs and the models that are almost dead at this time". It's also pretty obvious that Pelmear stands to make a lot of money if this is viable.

The only thing that remains to be said is, "When can I get one of those?!"

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