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Submission + - Fiat Chrysler Diesels Dodge Air Pollution Regulations (epa.gov)

gpronger writes: The EPA has accused Fiat — Chrysler of using engine software which changes engine operating conditions on some of their diesel vehicles to pass nitrogen oxide emission laws.

The vehicles involved were the 2014, 2015 and 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks with 3.0 liter diesel engines sold in the United States.

Submission + - International Space Station to Trial Aussie-designed Ion Thruster (abc.net.au)

theweatherelectric writes: Barney Porter from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation writes, "An Australian-designed rocket propulsion system is heading to the International Space Station (ISS) for a year-long experiment that ultimately could revolutionise space travel. The technology could be used to power a return trip to Mars without refuelling, and use recycled space junk for the fuel. Former University of Sydney student, Dr Paddy Neumann — now of Neumann Space — and two co-inventor professors from his alma mater have developed an ion thruster that could replace the current chemical-based rocket propulsion technology, which requires huge volumes of fuel to be loaded onto a spacecraft."

Submission + - F-35A Catches Fire at Mountain Home Air Force Base (defensenews.com)

theweatherelectric writes: Writing for Defense News, Valerie Insinna reports that another F-35 has caught fire during an exercise. She writes, "The incident took place at around noon and involved an F-35A aircraft from the 61st Fighter Squadron located at Luke Air Force Base, the service said in a statement. No serious injuries seem to have been sustained by the pilot or nearby crew.

'The pilot had to egress the aircraft during engine start due to a fire from the aft section of the aircraft,' Air Force spokesman Capt. Mark Graff said in an email. 'The fire was extinguished quickly. As a precautionary measure, four 61st Aircraft Maintenance Unit Airmen, three Airmen from the 366th Maintenance Group and the 61st Fighter Squadron pilot were transported to the base medical center for standard evaluation.'"

Comment Deterrent Not Prevention (Score 1) 222

So, the idea that this is newsworthy, is the shock to me. In Junior High (a goodly number of years ago) the benefit of a Master lock was that when you forgot or lost your key, you took a buddies shoe, whacked it solid on the top and it came open. If you're buying a Master Lock, or any similar style lock, that it is somehow theft-proof is naive at best. You're buying a deterrent. On your school locker, the school ne'er-do-well' can't simply rummage your stuff as he slinks on through. sure he could take his shoe and whack it open, but that's noisy, and likely draw suspicion. Master Lock sells stuff that generally does the job, just recognize what you're buying and get on with life.

Submission + - Niobium nanowire breakthrough could boost performance of wearables (thestack.com)

An anonymous reader writes: A team of researchers is developing an innovative nanowire technology [http://newsoffice.mit.edu/2015/nanowire-supercapacitors-energy-boost-0707] for delivering short bursts of electrical power required by electronic wearable devices. Scientists at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of British Columbia explain that wearable devices such as fitness monitors and smartwatches are currently limited by insufficient power from their small batteries needed for data transmission. According to the researchers, supercapacitors can provide a solution to this issue, storing and releasing short bursts of power. The latest development uses yarns of niobium nanowire as the electrodes in a compact supercapacitor. The team discovered that although nanoparticles such as graphene and carbon are potential solutions, they are typically characterised by low electrical conductivity. Their current study has found that the niobium yarn could offer a new alternative, demonstrating the ability to store as much as five times more power in a given volume as carbon nanotubes.

Comment Re: Sad, isn't it? (Score 1) 529

You're almost right.

It is not 'keeping the aliens from fucking with your brain waves'.

As we all know, they are much more intelligent than we, and they no longer copulate in the traditional sense. What they do, is they 'copulate with brain waves' (switched verbs for clarity of point). And when they do abduct you (given your incredible advanced intellect it's a given), you know what you're in for.

And by the way, the reason foil hats work, is that as we all have probably noticed, someone wearing an aluminum foil hat, looks utterly ridiculous, which completely shoots the cross species sex appeal.

Comment Over Excited Marketing directors? (Score 1) 328

So, my experience may be part of the reason the market is not there. In my way-back machine, I had one of the original "Pocket Pc's", a HTC 8525. I liked the device (it was really more of a tiny computer than phone) with the slide out keyboard, and integrated well with Office. When I finally laid it to rest (sadly), the one issue I had was that my eyes no longer could cope with the screen size (I tended to use it to type full emails, not just quick texts) and some spreadsheet work. In any case, at the phone store, I asked; "What's your biggest device?" And was handed the original Galaxy Note (which I just replaced with a Note 4). Through this period, tablets were theoretically the "hot item" (as well as all the electronic book thingies). Never saw the purpose. With the Note, I could pretty much do what the folks carrying both the phone, and tablet around could do. And it was a phone. The marketing gurus, I believe, missed the impact of the larger devices (really can't call them phones, and phablets is too goofy). For what people use a tablet for the Galaxy (and the iPhone 6+) handle. If I need computing power, either a desktop or laptop, but not a tablet.

Submission + - What consumers want from their smart homes (robohub.org)

Hallie Siegel writes: Despite the energy savings and environmental friendliness that has often been associated with smart home technologies, a recent poll showed that consumers want their homes to optimize for their comfort level and personal preference (45%). Security/Safety and Energy Savings tied in second place (18%). Environmentally friendliness came in at only 11%. Note that the three most voted choices have direct advantages for the user, as opposed to Environmental Friendliness, which is primarily a societal benefit.

Submission + - How we'll know whether BICEP2 was right about gravitational waves

StartsWithABang writes: The Big Bang takes us back to very early times, but not the earliest. It tells us the Universe was in a hot, dense state, where even the possibility of forming neutral atoms was impossible due to the incredible energies of the Universe at that time. The patterns of fluctuations that are left over from that time give us insight into the primordial density fluctuations that our Universe was born with. But there’s an additional signature encoded in this radiation, one that’s much more difficult to extract: polarization. While most of the polarization signal that’s present will be due to the density fluctuations themselves, there’s a way to extract even more information about an even earlier phenomenon: gravitational waves that were present from the epoch of cosmic inflation! Here's the physics on how that works, and how we'll find whether BICEP2 was right or not.

Submission + - Space Elevator in Obayashi Corporate Report for 2050

gpronger writes: Obayashi Corp (http://www.obayashi.co.jp/english/ir/corporate_report/ir2012en.pdf) has published its corporate report including planning to develop a space elevator using carbon nanotubes by 2050.

There's a number of articles out 'there', but a decent one to glance at is; http://news.discovery.com/tech...

This could be interpreted as wishful thinking, but at the same time, I am impressed that they are placing timelines of that far-out (pun intended) in a corporate report. From what I've seen, there are few US firms willing to plan out more than a decade.

Submission + - Expert calls for closure of nuclear plant in California (dailyitem.com)

mdsolar writes: A senior federal nuclear expert is urging regulators to shut down California’s last operating nuclear plant until they can determine whether the facility’s twin reactors can withstand powerful shaking from any one of several nearby earthquake faults.

Michael Peck, who for five years was Diablo Canyon’s lead on-site inspector, says in a 42-page, confidential report that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is not applying the safety rules it set out for the plant’s operation.

The document, which was obtained and verified by The Associated Press, does not say the plant itself is unsafe. Instead, according to Peck’s analysis, no one knows whether the facility’s key equipment can withstand strong shaking from those faults — the potential for which was realized decades after the facility was built.

Continuing to run the reactors, Peck writes, “challenges the presumption of nuclear safety.”

Peck’s July 2013 filing is part of an agency review in which employees can appeal a supervisor’s or agency ruling — a process that normally takes 60 to 120 days, but can be extended. The NRC, however, has not yet ruled. Spokeswoman Lara Uselding said in emails that the agency would have no comment on the document.

Submission + - Internet access required to map local drive Windows 8.1 (youtube.com)

An anonymous reader writes: On my Dell Venue 8 pro running Windows 8.1 x86 it requires Internet access in order to map a local Samba share. I created a short video showing the behavior. It will not allow the local drive mapping until it is able to talk to Microsoft. In the video the IP address is (owned by Microsoft) on port 443.

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The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford