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Comment Re:Clever? (Score 1) 229

Yet AT&T profited by $7.3 billion last year, which is enough to replace 2.3% of their assets (including buildings and wires).

Assuming those number are right, they could make more money by selling all their stuff and investing the money in 10-year treasury bonds. The yield there is a bit over 3%, and not quite as risky as operating a business.

Submission + - Woz compares the cloud and PRISM to communist Russia ( 1

An anonymous reader writes: Some journalists run into Steve Wozniak at the airport and asked him about iOS 7 and PRISM, where he made an interesting comparison about how the US is becoming what it once feared most.

In communist Russia "you couldn't own anything, and now in the digital world you hardly own anything anymore. You've got subscritpions and you already said ok, ok, agree and you agree that every right in the world belongs to them and you got no rights and anything you put in the cloud, you don't even know", says Woz. "Ownership was what made America different than Russia".

Submission + - Silicon-based nanoparticles could make LEDs cheaper (

vinces99 writes: Light-emitting diodes, or LEDs, are the most efficient and environmentally friendly light bulbs on the market, but they carry a bigger price tag than other bulbs, especially the ones with warmer and more appealing hues. University of Washington researchers have created a material they say would make LED bulbs cheaper and and more environmentally friendly to manufacture, driving down the price for consumers. Their silicon-based nanoparticles soften the blue light emitted by LEDs, creating white light that more closely resembles sunlight. They have started a company called LumiSands to put those nanoparticles in the hands of LED manufacturers.

Submission + - Brain Zaps Make People Appear More Attractive ( 1

sciencehabit writes: The lightning-quick spark that triggers desire when you see an attractive face is kindled within a deep brain region called the ventral midbrain, associated with processing reward. Now, researchers have discovered a way to stoke that fire with 2 milliamps of electrical current. Using a technique called transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), which passes current through the brain between two electrodes on the scalp, the team asked 19 volunteers to rate the attractiveness of two sets of computer-generated male and female Caucasian faces with neutral expressions before and after the activity in their ventral midbrains ramped up. Compared with the control group, the volunteers who received tDCS rated the second set of faces as significantly more attractive on a eight-point scale than the first . The researchers are not proposing that we use their discovery to bewitch prospective lovers, however. Rather, they say their newfound ability to manipulate a deep region of the brain without drugs or an invasive surgery suggests that similar techniques could be used to treat disorders associated with faulty ventral midbrain circuitry, such as Parkinson's disease and schizophrenia.

Comment Re:Why not use hydrogen? (Score 1) 270

gahh. a shortage in the market doesn't necessarily mean that there is a shortage of the substance to be tapped. My point was that the current shortage of helium in the market is due to the lack of suppliers that are able and willing to pull it out of the natural gas wells. It is not because we have reached 'peak helium' where we want helium, but can't find any to pull out of the ground.

Comment Re:Why not use hydrogen? (Score 1) 270

What the fine article fails to mention is how little helium is captured at wells. There is no point in figuring how much is in fraking wells since none of them capture any of it.

Which is why I called it an economic problem. You can damn well be sure that fracking wells would figure out a way to capture the helium if Joe Consumer's floating balloon budget started to approach his natural gas heat and appliances budget.

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Submission + - KIrby Ferguson TED Talk: IP is a bad remix (

Stirling Newberry writes: "Techdirt has a link to one of Kirby Ferguson most recent talks, as well commentary on his point:

"The key point he makes in the end is that the system is broken because of the combination of a few factors that conflict with the fact that everything is a remix. When you mix laws that fundamentally treat creative works as property, with the massive rewards and huge legal fees associated with court cases, combined with the cognitive bias people have against others copying themselves (with a complete blindness for the fact that they are always copying others), you have a system that fundamentally does not work and cannot work."

Anyone familiar with say, Derrida's ideas on deconstruction will find little new on that side, however he puts the other point: that IP doesn't protect the idea, but the branding of it, in order to create a stream of money. Has the fuel of interest strangled the fire of genius? Or do we really want a system that rewards those who push paper better?"

Submission + - If Your AV Doesn't Detect New Malware Right Away, It Likely Never Will (

rmurphydigital writes: "We recently downloaded 90 malicious samples from We submitted each to VirusTotal to scan with 43 different antivirus products to see if their detection power increased over time as some might have expected. As in our first such test in March, we didn’t really care which singular AV was the best among the group, we just wanted to know two things: 1) if the signatures of all AVs collectively were considerably better than using any one signature set individually and 2) if over time it was reasonable to expect each piece of malware to be detected by all antivirus products. Our results were interesting and a little surprising. Have a look..."

Comment Re:Metropolitan speeds? (Score 1) 118

There's something missing from the report, and that's Metropolitan speeds.

My broadband has about 5-10 mbps bandwidth if I transfer something from "general" Internet, but metropolitan speed is 100 mbps. My country-wide connection speed is about 50 mbps, tested with friends; http, p2p and ftp transfers are all equally fast.

What country is this. In the US, a connection like that would be seen as a rip-off. (I'm paying for a 100 Mbps connection, but only get 5-10 % of the speed when connecting to the actual Internet) I take it that most people are using a single ISP, and their internal network is much faster that their peering. There are enough different ISPs in the US, that that probably wouldn't work as well.

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