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Comment Re:What the hell is KMS? (Score 1) 374

(Vast simplification coming up.) KMS makes changing between video modes much nicer, so no more annoying blinks and flickers when you switch from a tty to X (among other things.)

It is also hugely important for the 'nouveau' nvidia open-source driver, which has been waiting for KMS to go live for a long time now.

Comment Slashdotted - cache. (Score 3, Informative) 81

First, the obligatory Google Cache link.

There's not much on the main page except a link to the YouTube video, here.

Anyway, I wonder how easy it really is to control this thing. Holding a WiiMote level for a long time is harder than it sounds.

The GPS-autonomous mode is really cool, though. Last time I checked the progress of robo-mowers, many of them required a buried cable, fence, or other tangible barrier. This thing is orders of magnitude more convenient.

United States

Submission + - Believing in Medical Treatments That Don't Work

Hugh Pickens writes: "David H. Newman, M.D. has an interesting article in the NY Times where he discusses common medical treatments contradicted by the best available evidence e.g. for decades doctors have administered "beta-blockers" to heart attack victims although studies show that the early administration of beta-blockers does not save lives; patients with ear infections are more likely to be harmed by antibiotics than helped — the infections typically recede within days regardless of treatment and the same is true for bronchitis, sinusitis, and sore throats; no cough remedies have ever been proven better than a placebo; back surgeries to relieve pain are, in the majority of cases, no better than nonsurgical treatment; and knee surgery is no better than sham knee surgery where surgeons "pretend" to do surgery while the patient is under light anesthesia. Newman says that treatment based on ideology is alluring "but the uncomfortable truth is that many expensive, invasive interventions are of little or no benefit and cause potentially uncomfortable, costly, and dangerous side effects and complications." The Obama administration's plan for reform includes identifying health care measures that work and those that don't and there are signs of hope for evidence-based medicine: earlier this year hospital administrators were informed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that beta-blocker treatment will be retired as a government indicator of quality care, beginning April 1, 2009. "After years of advocacy that cemented immediate beta-blockers in the treatment protocols of virtually every hospital in the country," writes Newman. "the agency has demonstrated that minds can be changed.""

Submission + - Government demands universal wiretapping

StonyandCher writes: Sweeping reforms will make it easier than ever for law enforcement to intercept communications if amendments to the Telecommunications (Interceptions) Act are agreed upon by a Senate standing committee. The Australian government is pushing a bill to force all telecommunications providers to facilitate lawful data interception across fixed and mobile telephone systems, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), Instant Messaging (IM) and chat room discussions. This follows from a story earlier this week where the Australian government is legislating to allow employers to snoop on employees' email and IM conversations.

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