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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 41 declined, 8 accepted (49 total, 16.33% accepted)

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Submission + - Commercial Mars mission planned ( 1

tsa writes: "The Dutch entrepeneur Lars Benschop has started Mars-One. From his website:
"Mars One will take humanity to Mars in 2023, to establish the foundation of a permanent settlement from which we will prosper, learn, and grow. Before the first crew lands, Mars One will have established a habitable, sustainable settlement designed to receive new astronauts every two years. To accomplish this, Mars One has developed a precise, realistic plan based entirely upon existing technologies. It is both economically and logistically feasible, in motion through the integration of existing suppliers and experts in space exploration."
The idea is to form several groups of four space explorers, make a TV channel that follows them 24/7 while they prepare for the launch, and let the public choose the order in which the teams leave Earth."

Submission + - State of the climate: warming, no sign of waning (

tsa writes: Ars Technica has a nice and concise piece about the annual report of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The 2009 report reveals that global average surface temperatures have risen 0.2C above the 1990s average and 0.3C above the 1980s average. Those values are large given the short time span, but seem mild considering that the report estimates 90 percent of the warming over the past 50 years has been absorbed by the oceans. I was also pretty shocked to hear on the news yesterday that the amount of plankton in the seas has almost halved in the last 60 years.

Submission + - Interview with Steve Ballmer on Dutch TV (

tsa writes: Yesterday there was an interesting and very funny interview with Steve Ballmer on our national TV. The audience were 600 students of our Erasmus University, who were allowed to ask questions. There is a small part that is in Dutch because Steve happened to have a Belgian teacher for a while. She tells us what kind of a kid he was when he was 8 years old. During the interview Steve gets some tough questions that he answeres like a pro. Despite the fact that they don't ask him about the chair, it's worth watching!

Submission + - Google CEO to discuss his future as an Apple direc (

tsa writes: "AppleInsider tells us that Google chief executive Eric Schmidt's position at Apple's board of directors gets more and more precarious now that Andoid, Google Chrome, and Chrome OS are on, or coming to, the market. From the article: "Even before Google announced plans for the new Chrome OS based off its nine-month-old web browser, the Federal Trade Commission began looking into the whether the companies were in violation of the Section 8 provision of The Clayton Antitrust Act of 1914, which forbids "interlocking directorates." In addition to Schmidt, Genentech chief executive Arthur Levinson also sits on the board of both companies.""

Submission + - Experts warn of porn Mac attacks (

tsa writes: "BBC News tells us that two novel forms of Mac OS X malware have been discovered. OSX/Tored-A — an updated version of the Mac OS Tored worm — and a Trojan called OSX/Jahlav-C were both found on popular pornographic websites. Users logging on to these sites are asked to download a "missing Video ActiveX Object" but are sent a virus payload instead."

Submission + - Heilein's house is for sale (

tsa writes: "The house Robert A Heinlein had built for himself and his wife in Colorado Springs is up for sale for a mere $650,000. Features "private wooded lot w/three cascading ponds." See here for details."
The Courts

Submission + - Lego loses its unique right to make lego blocks (

tsa writes: "The European Department of Justice has decided that the Danish company Lego does not have exclusive rights to the lego building block anymore (sorry, it's in Dutch). Lego went to court after a Canadian firm had made blocks that were so like lego blocks that they even fitted the real blocks made by Lego. The European judge decided that the design of the lego blocks is not protected by European trade marks and so anyone can make the blocks."
The Courts

Submission + - Telco appeals city's fiber-optic win (

tsa writes: "In a predictable move, TDS Telecom filed an appeal after its complaint against Monticello, Minnesota's new fiber network was tossed by a county judge in early October. As you may remember, the city decided to build its own fibre optic network after the telco made it clear they wouldn't build it because it wouldn't be economically feasible for them. TDS Telecom then changed its mind and sued the city for unfair competition."
Real Time Strategy (Games)

Submission + - Dutch court punishes theft of virtual property (

tsa writes: "Last week, the Dutch court subjected two kids of ages 15 and 14 to 160 hours of unpaid work or 80 days in jail, because they stole virtual property from a 13 year old boy. The boy was kicked and beaten and threatened with a knife while forced to log into Runescape and giving his assets to the two perpetrators. This ruling is the first of its kind for the Netherlands. Ars Technica has som more background information."
The Courts

Submission + - Judge tosses telco suit over city-owned network (

tsa writes: "The city of Monticello, Minnesota, was sued by their local telco Bridgewater Telephone Company because the city chose to build a fibre optics network of their own. The judge dismissed their complaint of competition by a governmental organization. From the article: The judge's ruling is noteworthy for two things: (1) the judge's complete dismissal of Bridgewater Telephone Company's complaint and (2) his obvious anger at the underfunding of Minnesota's state courts. Indeed, the longest footnote in the opinion is an extended jeremiad about how much work judges are under and why it took so long to decide this case."
The Almighty Buck

Submission + - Norwegian standards body members resign over OOXML (

tsa writes: "Arstechnica tells us that 13 of the 23 members of the technical committee of the Norwegian standards body Standards Norway, the organization that manages technical standards for the Scandinavian country, have resigned because of the way the OOXML standardization was handled. From the article: The standardization process for Microsoft's office format has been plagued with controversy. Critics have challenged the validity of its ISO approval and allege that procedural irregularities and outright misconduct marred the voting process in national standards bodies around the world. Norway has faced particularly close scrutiny because the country reversed its vote against approval despite strong opposition to the format by a majority of the members who participated in the technical committee."
Portables (Apple)

Submission + - Apple wants you to use Nike exclusively (

tsa writes: "Arstechnica writes about Apple, who apparently wants to tie your shoes to your clothes with DRM. From the fine article: If you're a Nike+iPod Sport Kit fan, you may eventually find yourself being restricted to using it with Nike-branded sportswear, thanks to a recently-published Apple patent. The patent, filed for in March of 2007 and published last week, describes a "Smart Garment" that would allow a gadget to authenticate to a specific garment--whether that garment is shoes, pants, or a jacket. When the garment is authenticated, however, unapproved garments would be blocked from being able to use the device."

Submission + - T-Mobile USA seen cloning iPhone's App Store (

tsa writes: "T-mobile USA is copying Apples App store for their mobile phones. They have a German App store as well, in which they also sell PC software. I'm not sure I like this development. On the one hand, you get guaranteed spyware- and virusfree applications. On the other hand we're moving towards total control of your devices by the provider."

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