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Submission + - Disney is working on more natural moving robots (

dibdublin writes: From Engadget: "Disney may not have much of a stake in robots at the industrial scale, but the company sure employs plenty of animatronics at its parks and films. So it only makes sense that it would want to build the most natural moving robots it can and encourage you to suspend your disbelief. Its research labs have developed a new method for controlling mechanical puppets, without the usual motors, pumps or valves."

Submission + - Bill Nye To Debate Creationist Museum Founder Ken Ham 1

cusco writes: Creation Museum Founder and AiG President/CEO Ken Ham will debate Bill Nye at the Creation Museum on Tuesday, February 4, at 7 PM. According to the Washington Post, 'Ham had been hoping to attract the star of TV’s “Bill Nye The Science Guy” to the northern Kentucky museum after Nye said in an online video last year that teaching creationism was bad for children. The video was viewed nearly 6 million times on YouTube.'

Submission + - New Book, "Hacking Secret Ciphers with Python" Released and Free to Download (

AlSweigart writes: Al Sweigart's third book, Hacking Secret Ciphers with Python, is finished. The book is aimed at people who have no experience programming or with cryptography. Hacking Secret Ciphers goes through writing Python programs that not only implement several ciphers but also can hack these ciphers.

Each chapter of the 415 page book presents a new program and explains how the source code works. At the same time, various ciphers and cryptography concepts are explored.

It is free to download under a Creative Commons license from, and available for purchase as a physical book on Amazon for $25 (which qualifies it for free shipping). 100% of the proceeds from the book sales will be donated to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Creative Commons, and The Tor Project.


Submission + - Google Flash Internet Race Game Crashes (

An anonymous reader writes: As part of celebrating (marketing) the inclusion of Adobe Flash into the Chrome browser, Google announced a Flash-based game on YouTube. Sounds good, except for one problem — it keeps crashing. Apparently the site can't take the number of users trying to play the game. One of Apple's big complaints about Flash is that it was unstable. Hmm, maybe he had a point — or maybe Google can't figure out how to handle traffic spikes, not a good then when you want to be in the cloud business.

Submission + - Don Henley Wins Copyright Suit Against Senatorial

David Weiskopf writes: On Thursday, the Federal Court in the Central District of California issued its 37 page non-tentative Minutes Order, siding with Eagles singer Don Henley by finding that senatorial candidate Chuck DeVore's modified campaign versions of two well-known Eagles songs constituted copyright infringement. See the original "Boys of Summer" and "All She Wants to Do Is Dance" Eagles songs at issue. The DeVore videos have apparently been removed from YouTube and elsewhere.

Submission + - New Reaction Doubles Fuel Cell Efficiency in Cars (

greenrainbow writes: Researchers at Purdue University have discovered a new highly efficient technique for making hydrogen fuel cells for vehicles. The technology has the potential to be twice as effective as current fuel cells at around half the temperature, and instead of requiring pressures of 5,000 psi like most hydrogen fuel cells today, this process requires a measly 200 psi. Dubbed hydrothermolysis, the new process uses a high hydrogen-content powdered chemical called ammonia borane and combines two hydrogen generating processes — hydrolysis and thermolysis — to achieve conditions appropriate for use in vehicles.

Submission + - The epic battle between Geek and Nerd. (

Andrew D73 writes: Have you ever resorted to hair-pulling when arguing with a friend over who is the more repenty vampire, Angel or Edward Cullen? Have you nearly started a food fight with your roommate because you feel that strongly that Batman is the bigger badass than Boba Fett? Have you ever found yourself debating with a co-worker by the water cooler that Indiana Jones is a more action-packed archaeologist than Lara Croft?

Geeks versus Nerds is a hilarious comedy/improv show in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada where two teams face-off live on stage to settle the most common of geek arguments once and for all. With each team passionately representing their champion, it’s a debate showcasing participants’ wits, humour, and geek expertise until only one side is declared victor over the other.


Submission + - How Many Million Priuses to Offset BP Oil Spill? (

thecarchik writes: One million gallons a day is a lot of oil. According to estimates late last week, that could be the daily rate of oil escaping from the Deepwater Horizon well in the Gulf of Mexico.
To put that number in perspective, we decided to look at what it would take to compensate just for the lost gasoline. We asked, How many Toyota Prius hybrids would you need to sell to offset the loss?

Submission + - Digitally filtering out the drone of the World Cup 1

qubezz writes: World Cup soccer fans may think a hornet's nest has infiltrated their TVs. However the buzz that is the background soundtrack of the South African-hosted games comes from tens of thousands of plastic horns called Vuvuzelas, that are South Africa's version of ringing cowbells or throwing rats. It looks like the horns won't be banned anytime soon though.

A savvy German hacker, 'Tube' discovered that the horn sound can be effectively filtered out by applying a couple of digital notch filters to the audio at the frequencies the horn produces (another summary in English). Now it looks like even broadcasters like the the BBC and others are considering using such filters on their broadcasts.

Submission + - Apple's iPhone app moral hypocrisy (

GMGruman writes: The puritan impulse just can't be restrained, it seems. Once again, Apple has censored an app, this time due to a cartoon's image of a nude swimmer. As InfoWorld's Galen Gruman blogs, Apple's misguided attempts to decide the morality of the apps for its iPhone and iPad undercuts the creative thinking that underlies Apple's success. Just last week, at WWDC, CEO Steve Jobs said that Apple combined the best of liberal arts and engineering, but the company's censorship reveals the corporate hypocrisy. Ultimately, that hypocrisy will not just turn away the customers that form Apple's base (which has started to happen, Gruman argues) but also chase away the employees who make Apple's great products happen.
The Media

Submission + - New York Times bans use of word "Tweet" (

An anonymous reader writes: New York Times standards editor Phil Corbett has had enough of his journalists' sloppy writing. Their offense? Using the "inherently silly" word "tweet" 18 times in the last month. In an internal memo obtained by, he orders his writers to use alternatives, such as " 'use Twitter' . . . or 'a Twitter update'." He admits that " . . . new technology terms sprout and spread faster than ever. And we don’t want to seem paleolithic. But we favor established usage and ordinary words . . . ." After all, he points out, ". . . another service may elbow Twitter aside next year, and “tweet” may fade into oblivion." Of course, it is also possible that social media sites will elbow paleolithic media into oblivion, and Mr. Corbett will no longer have to worry about word use.

Submission + - Help! I need a new career!

musicmanfz writes: I have been chip design engineer for nearly 20 years. I am bored to tears, depressed and I want to make a change. The way I see it, I have 3 options: figure out a way to leverage my current job skills, obtain new skills or start a photography business. I'm married and in my mid-40s with no kids. Except for my mortgage, I'm debt free. Help me, /.! You're my only hope!

Submission + - 'No Safe Harbor' From Record-Tying Patch Tuesday (

CWmike writes: Microsoft says it will deliver 10 security updates next week to patch a record-tying 34 vulnerabilities in Windows, Internet Explorer, Office and SharePoint. The patches will also quash two bugs that Microsoft acknowledged in February and April. 'I'd actually call this a moderate month,' said Andrew Storms, director of security operations at nCircle Security. 'Looking at the criticality of the bulletins, and the fact that the number [of bulletins] is low, it doesn't look like a huge month to me.' By the numbers, however, next week's updates will be huge. All six updates affecting Windows will impact Microsoft's newest operating system, Windows 7. And with one exception — Windows 2000 and Windows XP will not need Bulletin 9 — all currently-supported versions of Windows will require all the patches. 'There's no safe harbor this month,' said Storms.

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