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Submission + - Scientists claim new algorithm can predict commercial success of books

robbyyy writes: Computer scientists from Stony Brook University in New York have developed an algorithm which they claim can predict the commercial success of a book with an accuracy rate of 84 per cent.

Using the technique ‘statistical stylometry’, which appears more suited to maths than literature, the team sought to determine what connection, if any, there was between writing style and successful literature based on a range of factors.

Submission + - BBC confirms the discovery of nine missing Dr Who episodes ( 1

robbyyy writes: After months of rumour, the BBC has confirmed the existence of nine episodes of its cult science fiction programme, Dr Who. The episodes were feared lost forever due to a short-sighted policy of regularly wiping and destroying the master tapes of programs between 1964 and 1973.

Luckily for sci-fi fans the tapes were gathering dust at a relay station in Nigeria. ‘The tapes had been gathering dust in a store room at a television relay in Nigeria', said Phillip Morris, who is the Director of Television International Enterprises Archives.

The latest recovery now brings the total number of missing episodes of Doctor Who down to 97.


Submission + - How WikiLeaks gags its own staff (leaked document) (

robbyyy writes: "The New Statesman has just revealed the extent of the legal eccentricity and paranoia that exists at tthe WikiLeaks organisation. The magazine publishes a leaked copy of the draconian and extraordinary legal gag which WikiLeaks imposes on its own staff.

Clause 5 of the "Confidentiality Agreement" (PDF) imposes a penalty of £12,000,000 (approx $20,000,000) on anyone who breaches this legal gag. Sounds like they dont trust their own staff..."

Submission + - Can You Make a Bloated Website Speedy? (

itwbennett writes: "We all know the perils of slow websites: 'They repel users, dilute the effectiveness of advertising, weaken sales conversions, damage brands and increase bandwidth, hosting and IT maintenance costs,' writes IDG News Service's Juan Carlos Perez. The trouble is that these days the beefing up back-end elements isn't enough. The bottleneck today comes at the front end and is caused by things that web publishers and end users have come to think of as essential: rich media applications, social media feeds, photos and video coming from content delivery networks and ads, oh the ads! Beyond leaning on providers of third-party content to meet their SLA's, what's a webmaster to do?"

Submission + - Open source foiled the Microsoft antitrust case (

dcblogs writes: The U.S. Department of Justice remedies supervision in the Microsoft antitrust case ends Thursday, closing the landmark case, which began in 1998. But the questions posed by trial federal Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's attempted remedy remain, Did tech innovation suffer over the last 10 years because Microsoft wasn't broken up? "Not really," said Vinton Cerf, Google's chief Internet evangelist, "It has to do with the fact that open source has become such a strong force in the software world."

Submission + - Google Storage is Now Available to All Developers (

aabelro writes: Google has announced at I/O 2011 the availability of their Storage service to all developers without the need for an invitation. The service has been enhanced with OAuth 2.0 support, simplified account management through the API Console, a new EU storage region, and a new API version.

Neal Stephenson Unveils His Digital Novel Platform 157

pickens writes "The NY Times reports that Neal Stephenson's company Subutai has released the first installment of Stephenson's new novel, Mongoliad, about the Mongol invasion of Europe, using what it calls the PULP platform for creating digital novels. The core of the experience is still a text novel, but authors can add additional material like background articles, images, music, and video and there are also social features that allow readers to create their own profiles, earn badges for activity on the site or in the application, and interact with other readers. Stephenson says the material is an extension of what many science fiction and fantasy novels already offer. 'I can remember reading Dune for the first time, and I started by reading the glossary,' Stephenson says. 'Any book that had that kind of extra stuff in it was always hugely fascinating to me.' Jeremy Bornstein says Subutai is experimenting with a new model for publishing books and says the traditional model of paying for content may not hold up when the content can 'be canned and sent around to your friends for free,' but that people will hopefully still pay for content if 'the experience is so much more rich, so much more involving.'"

Submission + - 20 new ideas in science (

Rob writes: "From switching off the aging process to genetically enhancing our babies; understanding consciousness to finding dark matter, or finding extraterrestrial life. The New Statesman takes a look at cutting edge science thinking with 20 new ideas in science."

Submission + - Silicon can be made to melt in reverse ( 1

Rob writes: "InfoGrok is reporting that a team of researchers from MIT have discovered that silicon can be made to melt in reverse. The findings could be useful in lowering the cost of manufacturing some silicon-based devices and could also lead to new methods for making arrays of silicon nanowires tiny tubes that are highly conductive to heat and electricity."

Submission + - America versus the UFO Hacker (

Rob writes: "Gary McKinnon, still suffering from Asperger’s syndrome, has one last chance to avoid extradition to the US to face charges of hacking into NASA and Pentagon computers in search of information on UFO's. Will the new UK government keep its word and help him avoid a savage punishment? The New Statesman looks at the issue."

Submission + - IBM Opens New Cloud Computing Laboratory (

Rob writes: InfoGrok is reporting that IBM is in the process of opening a new cloud computing laboratory, based out of Singapore. The new labs primary aim is to help business, government and research institutions to design, adopt and reap benefits of cloud technologies. The lab will help IBM's clients deploy first-of-a-kind solutions that increase business responsiveness and performance.

Scientists Demonstrate Mammalian Tissue Regeneration 260

telomerewhythere writes "A quest that began over a decade ago with a chance observation has reached a milestone: the identification of a gene that may regulate regeneration in mammals. The absence of this single gene, called p21, confers a healing potential in mice long thought to have been lost through evolution and reserved for creatures like flatworms, sponges, and some species of salamander. 'Unlike typical mammals, which heal wounds by forming a scar, these mice begin by forming a blastema, a structure associated with rapid cell growth and de-differentiation as seen in amphibians. According to the Wistar researchers, the loss of p21 causes the cells of these mice to behave more like embryonic stem cells than adult mammalian cells, and their findings provide solid evidence to link tissue regeneration to the control of cell division. "Much like a newt that has lost a limb, these mice will replace missing or damaged tissue with healthy tissue that lacks any sign of scarring," said the project's lead scientist.' Here is the academic paper for those with PNAS access."

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