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Submission + - GPS Spoofing with $3000 worth of equipment and a Laptop. (

svartbjorn writes: Todd Humphreys and a team from the University of Texas proved the concept that a terrorist could take over the navigation of a ship or even a plane. Making it appear to the crew that the ship was moving along a straight line course when in fact it was changing course under the control of the device. This raises some serious issues for this being used for terrorist purposes.

A Computer-based Smart Rifle With Incredible Accuracy, Now On Sale 551

WheezyJoe writes "A story on NPR reports that the TrackingPoint rifle went on sale today, and can enable a 'novice' to hit a target 500 yards away on the first try. The rifle's scope features a sophisticated color graphics display (video). The shooter locks a laser on the target by pushing a small button by the trigger... But here's where it's different: You pull the trigger but the gun decides when to shoot. It fires only when the weapon has been pointed in exactly the right place, taking into account dozens of variables, including wind, shake and distance to the target. The rifle has a built-in laser range finder, a ballistics computer and a Wi-Fi transmitter to stream live video and audio to a nearby iPad. Every shot is recorded so it can be replayed, or posted to YouTube or Facebook."

Comment Re:motion tracking video (Score 1) 189

I wondered about this too, having spent many years in various choirs, you anticipate the motions so you are ready when the baton hits the point that you know it will when it is time, the acceleroneter giving continuous rumbles with variation whenever it changes course (the upbeat and down and side to side would likely get the job done. It would take some practice but likely would be workable especially since each piece would have been rehearsed many times beforehand. The nuances would be more difficult to accomplish, much of the dynamics have to do with reading the eyes, the "free" hand, the facial expressions, is the baton pointing at my section or another, ? This is likely something that would beg for more but i imagine a blind man is used to picking up on other inputs far more than we might imagine they could, and again considering that they practice many times, it would seem it could move them forward quite a ways. Best of all, it's simple. The singer could learn to anticipate the proper interval to be there on time even with a bit of delay in the siganl feedback as long as the delay is always consistent.

Submission + - Typewriters finally dead? (

svartbjorn writes: The last typewriter manufacturer Godrej and Boyce declared it is ceasing operations in its' Mumbai factory. Is this one more sign that print is dead? For that matter, why don't we have a more efficient keyboard layout than the QWERTY keyboard was originally designed to slow down certain key combinations to prevent the hammers on the letters from becoming jammed if the typing was too fast. Dvorak anyone? Do any slashdotters us an alternate layout?

Comment Re:"Bulletproof glass" mistake? (Score 1) 308

I remember that show and previous ones where he extolled the properties of the barrier by saying "This is the stuff they make bulletproof glass out of". I knew that what he had was Lexan (polycarbonate) the same stuff the Astronaut's helmets were made of, as well as CD's. When he said that I got nervous for him because he was clearly putting faith in something that did not deserve it. Lexan is the main component in bulletproof glass but it is a highly specialized (and thick) laminate that works as an effective bulletproof glass. The finny thing is it may stand up to a bullet but it can't handle windshield wipers. the tiny bits of grit scratch the surface too easily to be practical. That is why they are still looking for good scratch proof coatings for it. I think he really did believe he was using a very good protection that wasn't up to bulletproof glass level which would be much more expensive. I also think the look on his face when he saw how easily it was compromised was genuine.

Submission + - DARPA Reveals Hummingbird Spy Drone (

svartbjorn writes: A year and a half ago, we saw our first look at DARPA's hummingbird drone, a teeny robotic spyplane inspired by the mid-air dexterity of the hummingbird. But now we've got a video of the drone in action, much more capable and with the ability to do its acrobatics for much longer.

Comment RFC: Is it time to codify Epoch celebrations? (Score 1) 81

RFC: Is it time to codify Epoch celebration traditions? What should they be? New Years eve has large parties, kissing someone at Midnight, Champagne, Time-Square, Dropping a large lit ball, Music, College Football Bowl Games,Rose Parade... So what is appropriate for Epoch day? First should major celebrations be a power of ten or a Power of Two? Since they come at less than one per years should the celebrations be bigger and more lavish? Come on Slashdotters, should we be honoring history? or should we ceremonially burn obsolete technologies instead of dropping the Ball? For instance we could have blown up a bunch of floppies instead of fireworks, Dropped a ball made of CD's instead of crystal.... Food: Pizza? Chinese, anything from the local take-out? Drink? Red Bull, Starbucks Parade: Floats made entirely of obsolete computer technology. Discuss

Comment Re:I call shenanigans! (Score 1) 234

The term "crash" comes from the old giant hard drives that looked like washing machines. The head on those drives drives had to float very close to but not in contact with the platter. If something happened to make that head come in contact with the platter it would "crash" into it. and physically remove the magnetic coating thus removing the data permanently. Since computers had so little RAM then, itwas a matter of seconds before everything went south. The most common cause of a crash was smoking in the computer room because the smoke would get into the drive and begin a buildup of a film of the smoke on the platter. The film would eventually get thick enough to cause a Bernoulli effect from the spinning drive being close enough to the head to cause a vacuum to suck the head down into contact.

Comment Re:He wouldn't be paying income tax on that (Score 1) 650

But if congress allows the Bush tax cuts to expire he will take a big hit on Capital Gains if he Doesn't sell before the end of the year. Also, would the State income tax he helped quash be effective ion 2010 income? I'm guessing unlikely. His plan is much more oriented to Federal capital gains is my guess. And by the way, watch your portfolio in December because more than he will be looking to "diversify" which will lead to a big selloff. Which Pelosi will undoubtedlysay was because people are afraid of the Republicans being in congress again. You heard it here first!

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