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Comment Re:This raises hope... (Score 0) 359

I write software for a company that deals in building controls middleware that recently branched out in to end-user power management software for buildings. Not so long ago, we engineers had a rather fierce battle with the CTO over precisely this point. He insisted that a critical feature of the software had to be the ability to control arbitrary building controls via an unsecured, public-facing web service. The fact was lost on him that, should all of a medium-sized building's controls be cycled simultaneously, the local grid could very well collapse. Eventually he was overridden, but barely. Rest assured that the engineers are not, in fact, complete morons. Just the executives.

Blimps Monitor Crowds At Sporting Events 180

Death Metal tips news about how defense contractor Raytheon is adapting military-style surveillance packages for use aboard blimps at public events like the Indy 500. "Until recently, Raytheon's eye-in-the-sky technology was used in Afghanistan and Iraq to guard American military bases, working as airborne guards against any oncoming desert threat. Using infrared sensors and a map overlay not unlike Google Earth, the technology scans a large area, setting important landmarks (say, the perimeter of a military base), and constantly relays video clips back to a command center. If a gun fires or a bomb is detonated, the airships can detect the noise and focus the camera — all from a mighty-high 500 feet." Though the technology is expensive, Raytheon is shopping it around to police departments and other organizations that might want to keep an eye on large gatherings of people.

Google's Stomach Pangs - Adjusting to DoubleClick 98

An anonymous reader writes "C|Net is reporting on some trouble Google is having integrating DoubleClick into their family of products. External problems, like antitrust allegations and privacy concerns, are bad enough. The worst problems might come from within, though, as a division within DoubleClick was essentially created to game the very systems the Google search engine is founded on. '"Google is treading in dangerous waters right now," writes Ross Dunn of Google's search results "are supposed to be unbiased and highly relevant," but with Performics, "Google is put into the conflicted position of trying to generate profits by providing result-oriented organic ranking services for its own unbiased organic search results." The worry, in other words, is that Google's search results could be compromised by operating a division with an interest in skewing those results in favor of clients.' The article goes on to say how this Performics division is likely to be sold off to make sure everything stays above board."
United States

Submission + - Geologists discover world's largest fossil forest

solitas writes: The St.Louis post-Dispatch says that geologists have discovered the remains of one of the world's oldest tropical rainforests, preserved in the ceiling of a coal mine 250 feet below the surface.

The four-square-mile fossil forest — the largest find ever — is just south of Danville in Vermilion County, Ill., in the 300-million-year-old Herrin coal bed, a 6-foot-thick strip mined by a subsidiary of St. Louis-based Peabody Coal.

No photos; but a graphic about how they believe it happened.

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