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The Internet

Weather Balloons To Provide Broadband In Africa 179

An anonymous reader writes "Two African entrepreneurs have secured exclusive access to market near-space technology — developed by Space Data, an American telecommunications company — throughout Africa. The technology raises hydrogen-filled weather balloons to 80,000 — 100,000 feet, which individuals contact via modems. The balloons, in turn, serve as satellite substitutes which can connect Africans to broadband Internet. 'Network operation centers are located close to a fiber optic cable — say, in Lagos or Accra — and a signal is sent back and forth to the [balloon] in near space,' says one of the entrepreneurs, Timothy Anyasi. The technology will also allow mobile phone operators to offer wireless modems to customers."
Power

Submission + - Continuous Rotation about a Magnetic Ring

Sterling D. Allan writes: "The Searl International Space Research Consortium has published two videos at YouTube demonstrating a key proof of concept of a technology John Searl produced in the 1960's, but for which he was jailed, and his devices and papers pilfered by the government. The completion of this mock-up marks the first time since 1968 that a roller has rotated about a ring continuously. According to Searl, the purpose of the mock-up was to find out why the rollers spin, why they stay on the plate, and to see what input power is necessary for operation — to see what kind of rare earth material will be able to provide the input power in the place of the small electrical excitation. The next task will be to build a full Searl Effect Generator (SEG) capable of cheaply and safely producing electricity (15 kW) without fuel, pollution, friction, or noise. Anti-gravity applications will be pursued after that."
Portables (Apple)

Submission + - Mac sleep LED on AC power?

Anonymous Coward writes: "I noticed the other day, when I picked up a sleeping Macbook, that its breathing LED thingie made blinky trails when my eyes were focused elsewhere and not following it (like LED christmas lights do if you wave them around). I then shook the Mac a little bit to be sure, and yeah, it looks like 60Hz AC to me. None of the LED's on any of my PC's do this, and it seems really weird to have AC power in a laptop case, when they put so much effort into making everything in there DC. I've just confirmed that a different iBook also has an LED like this. Anyone know what the story is behind it?"
Software

Submission + - hd dvd commercial copy software

heper writes: Slysoft, the same people who have coded AnyDVD (TM) and Clonecd (TM) bring us something new: AnyDVD HD (TM)

We all knew that this was possible, but now the public has an all-in-one tool to backup their Hi-def material and/or to watch it on a non-HDCP compliant system.

The complete list of features can be found on AnyDVD HD (TM) products page
User Journal

Journal SPAM: Prosecutors seek OK to create phony files 2

Florida's prosecutors are floating a proposal to the Legislature to give them the power to secretly falsify public court records -- with a judge's approval -- for undercover law enforcement purposes.

Spurred by Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernández Rundle, the draft bill would limit the authority to manufacture and plant fake documents in court files to 180 days.

Data Storage

Submission + - Google paper on disk reliability

oski4410 writes: The Google engineers just published a paper on Failure Trends in a Large Disk Drive Population. Based on a study of 100,000 disk drives over 5 years they find some interesting stuff. To quote from the abstract:

"Our analysis identifies several parameters from the drive's self monitoring facility (SMART) that correlate highly with failures. Despite this high correlation, we conclude that models based on SMART parameters alone are unlikely to be useful for predicting individual drive failures. Surprisingly, we found that temperature and activity levels were much less correlated with drive failures than previously reported."
Education

Submission + - Instructor led Online Training possible?

revantj writes: "Hello,

I was just going through Google and found bunch of IT companies that provided training for various programming languages(C#, PHP, c++, etc.) That got me thinking would it be actually possible to provide Instructor Led Training online? I think with the right experienced instructors, good course material, system of testing and appropriate technology such a service could be possible and much more convenient. What do you guys think ?

           "
Television

Submission + - HBO Gets Rights to Make "Fire and Ice" Min

amaupin writes: "Variety reports that HBO has acquired the rights to George R. R. Martin's fantasy series, "A Song of Fire and Ice." The network plans to condense each book into one television season, with at least one episode being written by Martin himself. Martin goes into further detail about the deal on his site. The ongoing bestselling series of books, starting with A Game of Thrones, is known for its multitude of characters, political intrigue, and non-romanticized portrayal of sex and violence."

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