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Comment Calculus and Trigonometry (Score 1) 1086

I've used calculus and trigonometry for UI animation with some regularity. Sinusoidal easing makes for very comfortable and natural interaction, for example, and it takes a combination of calculus and trigonometry to code it properly. For that matter, it requires familiarity with both to even think of using the technique. So, yeah, it's worth knowing your math even if your CS work is just polishing user interfaces.


Submission + - NY Times Asks Twitter to Shut Down Retweeting Feed (pcmag.com)

WesternActor writes: According to PCMag.com, the New York Times has asked Twitter to shut down the FreeNYT Twitter feed that basically retweets all of the Times' articles. Is this really possible? After all, the feed just points to a list of Times Twitter accounts, all of which can also be found on the Times' website. If the Times succeeds in shutting this down, it could have a chilling effect for Twitter and online free speech in general.

Comment Re:Is a subject really necessary? (Score 1) 168

If the output is naive (i.e. uses the canvas tag to draw individual pixels), you'll have the problems you're worried about. If it makes good use of sprites, SVG, and even WebGL it has a much better chance of performing well. And even if the first version of the HTML5 output is naive, one can hope that Adobe will be responsive to the complaints of their paying customers (i.e. those who actually buy this authoring tool) and improve upon it.

The Military

Submission + - DARPA Open-Sources Military Vehicle Design (foxnews.com)

Velcroman1 writes: The army's secretive technology division has been collecting dozens of ideas for the design of its in-the-works rescue vehicle via a social-media contest — relying solely on the power of the crowd to get the next big thing built. Local Motors of Chandler, Ariz., is running the competition, officially known as the Experimental Crowd-derived Combat-support Vehicle (XC2V) Design Challenge, through March 10. It’s not so different from when multiple users edit a page on Wikipedia, Local Motors CEO John Rogers said. “Effectively, we want to co-create all aspects of a vehicle,” Rogers explained. “The Wikipedia method of co-creation is really not far off from the way we talk about it."

Submission + - Biodegradable Sneakers Sprout Flowers When Planted (gizmag.com)

Zothecula writes: People may joke about their dirty old sneakers turning into science projects or mini ecosystems, but once OAT Shoes' compostable sneakers become commercially available within the next several weeks ... let's just say, those same people may no longer be joking when they make those kind of statements. Made using hemp, cork, bio-cotton, certified biodegradable plastics, chlorine-free bleach and other nontoxic materials, the shoes are designed to completely break down when buried in the ground – the first batch will even come with seeds in their tongues, so that wildflowers will sprout up in commemoration of users' planted, expired kicks.

Submission + - Supreme Court Gives Immunity to Vaccines (washingtonpost.com) 1

locallyunscene writes: In a ruling Tuesday the US Supreme Court upheld a law that provides immunity from lawsuits for vaccine companies and requires that

going before a special tribunal set up by Congress is the only way parents can be compensated for the negative side effects that in rare instances accompany vaccinations.

The dissenting justices in this case were Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg who argued this is a

regulatory vacuum in which no one — neither the FDA nor any other federal agency, nor state and federal juries — ensures that vaccine manufacturers adequately take account of scientific and technological advancements

Is this law necessary to protect vaccine companies from pseudo-science like the autism and vaccine linked studies, or is it too much of an overreach by removing the power to decide from The People and The States?

Submission + - Touchable 3D prototype shocks mobile users

An anonymous reader writes: The world's first 3D smartphone launched last week — the LG Optimus 3D — but Japanese mobile operator NTTDocomo has gone one better, demoing a prototype of what it calls "touchable 3D". The prototype consists of a 3D screen in an L-shaped case with a camera embedded in the top to track the position of a stylus. The pen-like stylus contains a magnet at the tip which can receive an electric charge from a coil placed underneath the 3D screen. The 'touchable 3D' effect is generated when the pen is brought close to the digital chameleon character, which tracks the pen's position using the embedded cameras. The chameleon then shoots out its tongue to zap the pen-tip and the person holding the pen feels a jolt resembling a weak gun recoil.

While the prototype is not yet in any mobile hardware NTTDocomo says it has plans to incorporate it in future handsets.

Submission + - On Stuxnet/Aurora: Get Back to Basics or Get Owned (threatpost.com)

Gunkerty Jeb writes: "Attacks such as Stuxnet or Operation Aurora or GhostNet are not what most enterprises and organizations need to be worried about. The plain fact is that most organizations are falling far short in protecting against the same threats that they've faced for the last 10 years. SQL injection, phishing, malicious attachments, social engineering. Old, every one of them. And yet, still incredibly effective at compromising networks in some of the best-known and theoretically best-protected companies."

Submission + - Hands-on: Despite Stumbles, Xoom Closes in on iPad (infoworld.com)

GMGruman writes: "We've been hearing about iPad-killers for months. Tomorrow, the first 10-inch Android tablet with the tablet-optimized Honeycomb OS — the Motorola Xoom — ships. After spending a day with the Xoom, it's clear that it is no iPad-killer — yet. However, it won't take much for Motorola and Google to make the Xoom into a serious iPad competitor, as this first-look review shows. One thing's for sure: Apple is no longer the only serious tablet provider in town."

Submission + - New Nanoparticle Delivery System For Vaccines (gizmag.com)

Phoghat writes: "Vaccines work by exposing the body to an infectious agent in order to prime the immune system to respond quickly when it encounters the pathogen again. Some vaccines, such as the diphtheria vaccine, consist of a synthetic version of a protein or other molecule normally made by the pathogen, while others, such as the polio and smallpox vaccines, use a dead or disabled form of the virus. However, such an approach cannot be used with HIV because it's difficult to render the virus harmless. MIT engineers have now developed a new type of nano particle (Abstract) Nature Materials that could safely and effectively deliver vaccines for infectious diseases such as HIV and malaria, and could even help scientists develop vaccines against cancer."

Submission + - Millimetre-scale computer is a real eye opener (pcpro.co.uk) 1

nk497 writes: "Researchers have created a complete computer that takes up just over 1 cubic mm of space, while still featuring a microprocessor, pressure sensor, memory, thin-film battery, solar cell and wireless antenna. It was designed as an implant to measure eye pressure for glaucoma patients, but could have other uses, the researchers said: "We can collect data, store it and transmit it. The applications for systems of this size are endless.""

Submission + - Virtual reality, avatars probe consciousness (silicon.com)

An anonymous reader writes: This is a pic story showing a research project taking place in Switzerland in which neurologists are attempting to further the understanding of self-awareness through cognitive science, virtual reality and brain-imaging technology.

Submission + - 24-bit: the new way to make you pay more for music (pcpro.co.uk) 3

Barence writes: "Apple and music labels are reportedly in discussions to raise the audio quality of of the songs they sell to 24-bit. The move could see digital downloads that surpass CD quality, which is recorded at 16 bits at a sample rate of 44.1kHz. It would also provide Apple and the music labels with an opportunity to "upgrade" people's music collections, raising extra revenue in the process. The big question is whether anyone would even notice the difference between 16-bit and 24-bit files on a portable player, especially with the low-quality earbuds supplied by Apple and other manufacturers. Labels such as Linn Records already sell "studio master" versions of albums in 24-bit FLAC format, but these are targeted at high-end audio buffs with equipment of a high enough calibre to accentuate the improvement in quality."

Submission + - New SMB Bug in All Versions of Windows (threatpost.com) 2

Trailrunner7 writes: Researchers have identified a new remotely exploitable vulnerability in all current versions of Windows that could be used by attackers to run arbitrary code on vulnerable machines. There is already a proof-of-concept exploit in circulation for the bug.

The new bug lies in the BROWSER protocol, which runs on top of the SMB (Server Message Block) protocol on Windows. Microsoft security officials said that the vulnerability is most likely to be found on servers, but that all current versions are vulnerable.

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The best book on programming for the layman is "Alice in Wonderland"; but that's because it's the best book on anything for the layman.