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Comment Re:This is well known from Formula One (Score 4, Insightful) 185

Those cars, to be competitive, were engineered to fall apart on the other side of the finish line. Without maintenance they would have failed. They are now engineered to last a few races instead of just one. Odds are they are slightly slower in one form or the other but it being a level playing field, it doesn't matter.

Comment A 20 year old fight. (Score 3, Informative) 437

Tucson AZ has been fighting light pollution for more than 20 years. This isn't exactly a new fight. That said, it's gaining momentum. In part thanks to the IDA. That having been said, this won't be won until the general population sees light pollution as a bad thing. We aren't there yet but with more general public articles there are chances that light pollution becomes as well known as air and water pollution.

For what it's worth, some estimate that there are about 700,000 amateur astronomers in the US. It's not a huge number. But it's much bigger than the just a few geeks that some would make you think.

It's a good fight and it starts at home, you can do your part by turning off the exterior lights of your house when you don't need them. With 2009 the international year of astronomy, if you help now, maybe we all will get a better view of the night sky to celebrate the 400 years of telescope observing of the night sky.

Submission + - The 1 million pound laptop

An anonymous reader writes: The UK Financial Services Authority (FSA) has imposed a fine of nearly £1m on the Nationwide — the largest building society in the country — because of poor controls over data on a laptop that was stolen from an employee's home. The laptop contained data on 11 million customers, but the Nationwide didn't take any action for 3 weeks. There is no evidence that the confidential data was actually used to disadvantage customers.

According to the FSA, the Nationwide: failed adequately to assess the risks in relation to the security of customer information; had procedures in relation to information security which failed adequately and effectively to manage the risks it faced; failed to implement adequate training and monitoring to ensure that its information security procedures were disseminated and understood by staff; and failed to implement adequate controls to mitigate information security risks, to ensure that employees followed its procedures, and to ensure that it provided an appropriate level of information security.

How many other businesses meet the standards of information security excellence demanded by the FSA?

Submission + - P = NP Finally Proved?

Yosi writes: Ashay Dharwadker claims to have proved that P = NP. In a paper he publishes on his website he claims to have found a polynomial algorithm for finding maximal independent sets in a graph and provides actual source code implementation of the proposed algorithm. If this is indeed true, I guess a lot of professors will start looking for a new job.

Submission + - Ebay lose the plot

Devon Dan writes: Ebay have announced that they are to start charging users $5 to use their service. In a BBC article it is claimed that trials in the US will soon require users to log in using a key code generated by a security token in an attempt to defeat phising attacks. This move seems to not only be hugely inconvenient (in that you will need to have the thing with you when ever you want to log in or buy a new one if you lose it) but to have almost no security value other than to prove you have a token.

Submission + - TGV breaks speed record

zeux writes: While testing the new Paris — Strasbourg line, the TGV broke a 17 years old speed record (babelfish translation), travelling at 553 km/h (343 mph). The last record, of 515 km/h (320 mph), was set on May, 18th 1990. According to the French National Railroad Company (SNCF) the testing campaign will continue and speeds up to 570 km/h (354 mph) could be atteigned by June of this year.

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