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Submission + - New fabrication process promises faster chips

unchiujar writes: BBC reports chips could run faster and be more energy efficient thanks to a process from IBM that copies nature's creation of seashells and snowflakes. The process, called airgap, enables trillions of microscopic vacuum holes to be placed between the copper wire in chips to act as an insulator.
Linux Business

Which Embedded Linux Distribution? 62

Abhikhurana writes "I work for a company which designs a variety of video surveillance devices (such as MPEG4 video servers). Traditionally, these products have been based on proprietary OSs such as Nucleus and VxWorks. Now, we are redesigning a few of our products and I am trying to convince my company to go down the Linux route. Understandably, our management is quite skeptical about that and so I was asked by our CTO to recommend a few RTOSs which have mature networking stacks and which work well on ARM platform. I know that there are many embedded Linux based distributions out there. There are commercial ones such as Montavista, LynuxWorks, free ones such as uclinux, muLinux and some Linux like distros such as Ecos. What is the most stable and best community supported embedded Linux distribution out there?"

Submission + - Man with golf club foils Electronic Vote Count

Rachel writes: Sitting here waiting for the early results of the Scottish election which happened today...

This was the first use of electronic counting machines in Scottish elections, and AFAIK they have *no* statistical check to see whether the votes reported as counted matched those actually counted.

Just after the polls closed, the politics program had on a bloke from the company supplying the technology saying how it had been fully tested, didn't need any checks through actual live usage, no, no, no, of course not, their testing was full and complete, etc...

Fast forward an hour, and they're reporting that the count has been held up in my local Edinburgh consituency because someone charged into one of the voting stations, attacked the ballot boxes with a golf club, and managed to cause some serious damage to many ballots (ripped up, crumpled, etc) And this is going to delay the count for some considerable time, whilst the electoral officers figure out what the right procedure is about sellotaping back torn-up ballot papers, and whether they can then be put through these "infallible" vote counting machines, and if not, what happens next ...

Wonder whether they tested for this event...
Sun Microsystems

Submission + - "Save a Penguin, Unplug a Linux Server"

robertthefox writes: "Flame suits ready. Probably the first rule that anyone learns in sales is, "don't knock the competition." Probably even more fundamental is to not knock your friends. A user just got an e-mail from Sun which is probably the largest violation of L. Ron Hubbard's Survey tech that I've ever seen. It was an e-mail with the title of, "Save a Penguin — Unplug a Linux Server Today". The e-mail was fairly good-natured, with a headline paragraph stating, "Linux x86-based servers have enjoyed success in the Web tier by delivering UNIX capabilities in a low-cost, open-source platform. However, power-hungry commodity Linux servers are driving up costs as companies continue to build-out Web tier infrastructures horizontally. Yesterday's cost-cutting solutions, inexpensive servers, are today's resource wasters. High-growth Linux Web infrastructures are inefficient, costly, and difficult to manage." Now, noting the average demographic who is a Linux/Sun SysAdmin, knocking Microsoft may be acceptable, even lauded. Cracking a funny joke about retiring a tired old NT server in favor of a nice, spiffy new Solaris or Linux box running Sun hardware would definitely slide right in there. But knocking Linux in a Sun ad?"

Submission + - Illegal Hex Code in Indelible Tattoo Ink

SPQR_Julian writes: "So... how do you DMCA a tattoo off of a person?" Body Modification E-magazine(BME) is fairly well the premier authority and source of information for modified people. So when the owner Shannon Larratt put out the call to see if anyone had (or would get) the HD-DVD code tattooed on their skin, it was only a matter of time before someone did. Now the question is, what will the MPAA do in response?

Submission + - Copyright reprieve for net radio; US-only glitch?

destinyland writes: "On Wednesday, internet radio site Pandora sent an email to its 6.5 million subscribers saying they'd curtail access to subscribers in most non-U.S. countries. But there was good news Thursday. The Copyright Royalty Board announced they'd postpone until July 15 the new rate struture that threatened internet radio in the U.S. Tim Westergren, the founder of both Pandora and the Save Net Radio campaign, gives the inside story of his fight in this new interview."

Submission + - Nasa to be gutted

aftimg writes: NASA Watch is reporting on the current effort to kill the manned space flight program.
"Dave Weldon, M.D. (R-FL) today excoriated the Democratic leadership for failing to allow a vote on an amendment he proposed that would have kept Congress from raiding NASA's budget to fund a 40% increase for the National Science Foundation (NSF). ... Weldon noted that at the hearing to introduce his proposal Rep. Dennis Cardoza (D-CA), who sits on the powerful Rules Committee, said he opposed the amendment because he was 'not convinced' of the need for human space exploration. Nasa may not be perfect, however this would be a loss to humanity beyond words.

Submission + - The Unauthorized State-Owned Chinese Disneyland

rmnoon writes: "Apparently Japanese TV and bloggers have just discovered Disney's theme park in China, where young children can be part of the Magic Kingdom and interact with their favorite characters (like Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and the Seven Dwarfs). The park's slogan is "Because Disneyland is Too Far", and there's even an Epcot-like dome. The only problem? Disney didn't build it, and they didn't authorize it. What's more? It's state-owned!

Now that China is hosting the Olympics and seeking to build international credibility, what responsibility does it have to not engage in blatant violations of international trademarks in publicly-owned operations?"

Submission + - Cisco Courting Hollywood

An anonymous reader writes: Cisco says it wants to be the software provider to Hollywood. That's wha Dan Scheinman told the audience in his keynote speech at the networking giant's Connections 2007 conference in Santa Clara on May 2. Scheinman is the company's former general counsel and is now in charge of its three-month-old Media Solutions Group. He's on the acquisition hunt, looking to buy companies that make software which could help movie studios create their own MySpace-like community sites. "We'd like to empower people to find media and communities which is one of the challenges of the era. We will be a software provider [to Hollywood]," he said. Is Cisco out of its league here or is this a natural evolution, what with networking being the enabling technology for streaming video?

Submission + - DVDs Endgame and set-top boxes

An anonymous reader writes: With all the major movie publishers ranting about the disclosure of the secret number used to decode HD-DVD and BlueRay discs, it seems more and more likely that some company will provide an easy way to stop giving people actual discs. Products like the Apple TV would be a perfect platform to sell movies that have individual encryption that would allow studios to lock the movie to your set-top box, much the same way software gets locked to your computer, intead of trying to figure out how to encrypt 500,000 copies of "Camp Beverly Hills", they can issue a key that only works on a single box.

Miguel Plans Silverlight on Mono & Linux by Years End 350

El Lobo writes "The Mono open-source project will create a Linux version of Silverlight by the end of year, said Miguel de Icaza, a Novell vice president and head of Mono. Asked about plans for Linux, Microsoft executives have been non-committal, saying that it will depend on demand. But de Icaza, who is attending Mix, was able to commit without hesitating."

Submission + - The battle to dig moon dirt heats up

coondoggie writes: "Digging moon dirt is hot. How hot? This weekend NASA will give one research team $250,000 for a robotic lunar front-end loader — with benefits. Teams from Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., Livermore, Calif., Berkeley, Calif., Fulks Run, Va., Rolla, Mo., Berkley, Mich., Milwaukee, and Vancouver, British Columbia, have registered to participate in the The Regolith Excavation Challenge to excavate as much moon dirt or lunar regolith as possible in 30 minutes. http://www.networkworld.com/community/?q=node/1483 9"

Submission + - Smartphones Getting Too Buggy for their Own Good?

Posthis writes: Nokia's flagship multimedia $750 smartphone was released a few days ago, the Nokia N95. However, the first results are not encouraging because of reported bugs in the system. Nokia even released a new firmware on Monday, just days after the original release, but many bugs remain in the system. Apparently WiFi gets disconnected all the time (and so VoIP gets disconnected too, while their SIP implementation has additional problems too), it has a suspiciously low standby time, audio hissing, terrible GPS reception (some users reported 10 minutes of wait-time before they lock-on to a satellite, others couldn't connect at all) and Bluetooth headset incompatibilities. Apparently, since Symbian S60 3.x came out last year most of Nokia's phones were having software issues, while Sony Ericsson with its Symbian UIQ line faired even worse according to user reports online (e.g. in the popular P990). Is this a sign of the things to come in the embedded world? Once upon a time, embedded devices used to shine for their stability and bug-free nature compared to desktop OSes, but now that smartphones try to become mini-desktops, it seems that these manufacturers are struggling to release well-tested, stable products.

Submission + - Is RFID A Security Risk?

An anonymous reader writes: From ABC news: "All it takes is a second, and it's gone — a modern day pick-pocket can snatch your credit card and other personal information without ever touching your wallet. The thieves need only a little know how, and about a hundred bucks. The technology we rely on everyday — is being abused." Video at http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=7on_your_ side&id=5065414

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