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Making Sense of Census Data With Google Earth 65

mikemuch writes "Imran Haque has developed a mashup of Google Earth with data from the U.S. Census Bureau, called gCensus. The app uses the XML format known as KML (Keyhole Markup Language), which can create shapes and colors on the maps displayed by GE. Haque had to build custom code libraries (which he's made available as open source) that could generate KML for the project. He also had to extract the relevant data from the highly counter-intuitive Census Bureau files and store them in a database that could handle geographic data. gCensus lets you do stuff like create colorful overlays on maps showing population ages, race, and family size distributions."

Submission + - Impact from DST?

Lokatana writes: "Managing the email environment for a large financial institution, I've spent the last month and a half working to prepare for the adjustments to Daylight Saving Time. There has been a large amount of effort communicating to users, upgrading old blackberries, and patching servers and workstations. Now that we're here, and the changes have been made, the silence so far has been deafening.

Is this another Y2K, and the hype has been overstated, or have all of our preparations paid off? What are others in the community experiencing in their workplaces? Is there anyone out there who did not prepare for DST, and if so, what kind of impact are you seeing today?"

Drug Selectively Removes Rats' Memory 64

rednuhter writes "Nature online is reporting scientists have used drugs to selectively remove one memory while not affecting another. Musical tones were played to the rats and at the same time the subjects were given a mild electric shock. Half the study group were given the drug (not approved for use in humans) and then the experiment was repeated with a new tone. The following day the rats that had not been given the treatment were afraid of both tones while the treated half were only afraid of the second tone: the memory of fear of the first had been erased."

Submission + - Is Slashdot in crisis?

bigredgiant1 writes: Given its recent track record, Slashdot has continually published FUD, flamebait, news not for nerds, stuff that doesn't matter, and has consistent flame wars erupt in user comments. Grammar in articles has become worse than that provided by a US third grader, and article accuracy is consistently missing the mark. It seems that any kid with a pointless blog can get slashdotted these days. Is Slashdot still worth reading? Perhaps a better experience would be found with another technical news site.

Submission + - Royalty Rates Rock Internet Radio

Bucc5062 writes: "With all the attention on DRM, DCMA, *IAA arm twisting and their effect on the music industry, an area of digital music that is been less talked about, but important to diversification of music listening is Web Radio or streaming radio. Congress has started to impose higher and higher fees on each song "performed" such that within a year, smaller internet radio stations may have to go off line.

Those affected by the new rates, which change the royalty paid to a song's performers from a percentage of revenue to a per-song, per-listener fee, include not just Web-only outfits mimicking traditional radio stations, but also more specialized digital music services such as Pandora ( and the Internet streams of traditional broadcast stations. "It's absurd," said Hanson. "Under this, our royalty would go to $600,000 for the year, which means we would be bankrupted." has established a site to information and promote the fight against these rate hikes. The Chicago Tribune s/chi-0703070314mar07,0,6077662.column?coll=chi-bu siness-hed covers this lesser known but important story. Internet radio is a grass roots system to hear music from around the world or the local home front. It needs to be saved."

Is Daylight Saving Shift Really Worth It? 652

Krishna Dagli writes "Two Ph.D. students at the University of California at Berkeley say that Daylight Saving Shift will not do any good or create any energy savings. We are already spending money for software upgrades in the name of saving energy and after reading following article I wonder has congress really studied the impact of DST shift? " I also read some back story on the concept; OTOH, I found TiVo's suggestions that I manually change everything on my Series 1 device to be somewhat...insulting.

Opera's Slashdot Easter Egg and Speed Dial 157

Thelomen writes "Opera Browser contains an Easter egg that is not widely known, recently reported over at type /. in the address bar and you are taken directly to Other recent news from Opera is their new Speed Dial feature, present in the most recent build from Desktop Team. At first glance Speed Dial just looks like 9 bookmarks you can open with CTRL+1 to CTRL+9. However, the pages on the Speed Dial are shown in thumbnail and are automatically pre-fetched in background — a useful thing if you have some heavy pages among your top bookmarks."

Googlebot and Document.Write 180

With JavaScript/AJAX being used to place dynamic content in pages, I was wondering how Google indexed web page content that was placed in a page using the JavaScript "document.write" method. I created a page with six unique words in it. Two were in the plain HTML; two were in a script within the page document; and two were in a script that was externally sourced from a different server. The page appeared in the Google index late last night and I just wrote up the results.
Linux Business

Why Dell Won't Offer Linux On Its PCs 628

derrida sends us to an article in the Guardian by Jack Schofield explaining why he believes Dell won't offer Linux on its PCs. In the end he suggests that those lobbying Dell for such a solution go out and put together a company and offer one themselves. Quoting: "The most obvious [problem] is deciding which version of Linux to offer. There are more than 100 distros, and everybody seems to want a different one — or the same one with a different desktop, or whatever. It costs Dell a small fortune to offer an operating system... so the lack of a standard is a real killer. The less obvious problem is the very high cost of Linux support, especially when selling cheap PCs to naive users who don't RTFM... and wouldn't understand a Linux manual if they tried. And there's so much of it! Saying 'Linux is just a kernel, so that's all we support' isn't going to work, but where in the great sprawling heap of GNU/Linux code do you draw the line?"

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