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Synthetic Chromosomes Successfully Integrated Into Brewer's Yeast 107

New submitter dunnomattic writes: "Researchers at New York University School of Medicine have achieved a milestone in synthetic biology. A fully synthetic yeast chromosome, dubbed 'synIII,' has successfully replaced chromosome 3 of multiple living yeast cells. The researchers pieced together over 250,000 nucleotide bases to accomplish this feat. Dr. Jef Boeke, the lead author of the study, says, 'not only can we make designer changes on a computer, but we can make hundreds of changes through a chromosome and we can put that chromosome into yeast and have a yeast that looks, smells and behaves like a regular yeast, but this yeast is endowed with special properties that normal yeasts don't have.' Work is underway (abstract) to synthesize the remaining 15 chromosomes."

Video Working with Real-Time Analytics as a Service (Video) 15

This is wide-ranging interview with Dev Patel and Poulomi Damany of BitYota, an Analytics as a Service startup that works specifically with MongoDB. Open Source? Not yet. But hopefully soon, they say. And why should an IT person or programmer care about marketing-oriented analytics? Because the more you know about functions in your company besides IT (such as finance, investor relations, and -- yes -- marketing), the more valuable you are as an employee. Dev also mentions the two main things he looks for when recruiting for BitYota: "One is intellect, and the other is attitude." He points out that this is not true merely of BitYota, but of any strong startup. This is all good information for any job-seeker hoping to land a spot with a startup -- and for anyone who is happy with where he or she works but hopes to earn promotions and raises, too.

KDE Releases Calligra Suite 2.8 35

It's not just graphics app Krita: user KDE Community writes "The Calligra team is proud and pleased to announce the release of version 2.8 of the Calligra Suite, Calligra Active and the Calligra Office Engine. Major new features in this release are comments support in Author and Words, improved Pivot tables in Sheets, improved stability and the ability to open hyperlinks in Kexi. Flow introduces SVG based stencils and as usual there are many new features in Krita including touch screens support and a wraparound painting mode for the creation of textures and tiles." KDE has also just announced the first beta of its Applications and Platform 4.13.
United States

Study Questions H-1B Policies 361

An anonymous reader writes "One of the arguments for continuing and even expanding the H1-B visa program (pdf) is that it enables highly-skilled immigrants to work in the U.S. and grow the U.S. economy. Counterarguments state that the H1-B visa program does not bring in the 'best and brightest' and is used to drive down wages, particularly in the STEM fields. This Bloomberg article, discussing pending H1-B legislation, quotes some of the salaries of current workers in the U.S. on H1-B visas: $4,800/month and $5,500/month which work out to $57,600/year and $66,000/year; only slightly higher than the average entry-level salaries of newly-graduated engineering or computer science majors."

Comment The cost comparison is off (Score 4, Informative) 403

The comparison should be made to Adobe CS6 Master Collection which is going for $2,100 on Amazon right now, not the smaller package of CS6 goes for $403.99. Adobe also announced the monthly cost for a single app will be $10/mo. for the first year, not the current $19.99/mo. Similarly, if you are an existing CS3 or higher owner, you can get the first year of everything for $39.99/mo. for the first year. Now I'm not saying whether this is a good or bad change, just pointing out that the summary's numbers aren't accurate.

Comment Re:Same security for all (Score 1) 199

It's not exactly "waved through security". If the airport has PreCheck (not all do) and you are at the PreCheck checkpoint (not all checkpoints are configured for it) then you'd be able to see it in action.

If you qualify for PreCheck for that flight when you get to security you don't have to take your laptop or liquids out of your bag, don't have to take your shoes, belt, or jacket, off, and walk through a metal detector not the porno scanner.Last time I went through security (at Denver International Airport) it took me 30 seconds from the time my boarding card was scanned to the time I was walking out the other end of the checkpoint with my stuff.


Comment Relevant story from two weeks ago (Score 4, Informative) 503

What free antivirus do you install on windows

Install Windows Security Essentials and you'll be fine. Seriously, it's not like by putting Windows 7 on a computer your house is immediately going to be invaded by zombies dragging every virus or malware known to man. Install WSE (or one of the other recommendations from the above thread), run with standard (not admin) rights, and that's pretty much all you need to do.


Comment Dell XPS 17 (Score 1) 300

I'm typing this on a Dell XPS 17" laptop that comes with a full keyboard, including a real numeric keypad. Is it Lenovo-quality? No. Does it work just fine? Yes.

Do note that the Dell XPS 17" laptop is large enough that my colleagues nicknamed mine the "schleptop" because it's quite a lot of work to schlep it everywhere.


Comment You only have to pay $50 (Score 3, Informative) 527

And it's not to the TSA. Another spectacular Slashdot story title and summary.

People who have already been screened and approved for the Global Entry ($100) or NEXUS ($50) program are automatically eligible for pre-check. The TSA isn't making (or receiving) any money on this. The money is to pay for the background check and screening done to get into the trusted traveler programs run by customs and immigration.

The TSA is actually being *smart* here. If you've already been checked and interviewed for expedited entry into the country, why *wouldn't* you be trusted for expedited security screening at an airport?


Comment Redmond recently ended their program (Score 2) 433

The city of Redmond, WA did a one year pilot study installing red light cameras at a few key intersections. The full study of how well they reduced traffic accidents is worth a read, but in a nutshell there was essentially no impact to the number of traffic collisions. 89% of the citations issued were for turning right on red without coming to a complete stop. The only place the cameras were useful was in the school zone.

Based on the above study the city decided to cancel the contract for the cameras.


Comment Other sources for good paper data (Score 1) 160

If you're doing fine art inkjet prints on the higher end printers, you likely aren't using the papers referenced in the article :) There are, however, several good sites that collect hard data on the various paper options out there:

  • Dane Creek Folios Inkjet Paper List: A good way to filter on the various inkjet papers by tone, texture, weight, OBA presence, etc. Helps to narrow choices down to a select few for testing. Full disclosure: I maintain this list.
  • Aardenburg Imaging and Archives: Longevity test results for various printer/inkset/paper combinations. Very useful if you care about knowing how long your print will last under assorted lighting conditions or the OBA content of your print media.
  • Spectrum Viz: Spectral plots for inkjet papers to help determine reflectance levels of the various options on the market.

Owner, Dane Creek Printing

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