redletterdave writes: In an unprecedented move sure to shake up the world of particle physics, CERN announced on Monday that it will give away its newly-discovered Higgs boson particles in a lottery. But given the rarity of Higgs boson particles – only one particle is created out of one million million collisions – CERN will only be able to reward 10 lucky winners. 'At CERN, we have always believed in sharing the results of our research, and the time has come to make that tangible,' said CERN director of research Sergio Bertolucci. 'This is our way of saying thanks for the incredible level of enthusiasm that has greeted this discovery.'
The response ends in a call to those interested in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields of study:
If you do pursue a career in a science, technology, engineering or math-related field, the Force will be with us! Remember, the Death Star's power to destroy a planet, or even a whole star system, is insignificant next to the power of the Force.
MrSeb writes: "Hackers are masochists. Almost by definition, hackers push hardware and software (and themselves) beyond breaking point to find out, once and for all, whether something is possible or not. In Dmitry Grinberg’s case, he decided to find out the lowest spec possible for a Linux PC. Barring exceptional circumstances, Linux generally requires a 32-bit processor with a modern memory management unit (MMU) and more than 1MB of RAM — Grinberg, obviously not a fan of excess bits, has successfully booted Ubuntu Linux (Jaunty) with an ATmega1284p, 8-bit RISC microcontroller clocked at 24MHz and equipped with no less than 16KB of SRAM and 128KB of flash storage. Of course, Ubuntu wouldn't boot on an 8-bit RISC chip, so Grinberg had to write an ARMv5 emulator. The effective speed of the computer, after emulation, is just 6.5KHz. It takes 2 hours to boot to command line, a further 4 hours to load Ubuntu, and if you want to open an actual window manager, Grinberg simply says 'starting X takes a lot longer.'"
AlistairCharlton writes: After the slow-motion plane crash that was 2011, Research in Motion feels that 2012 is the year to turn its BlackBerry brand around, and a team of cartoon superheroes is — apparently — the answer.
Simon321 writes: In a prime example of trickle-down cyborg robotics, the remote-controlled rhinoceros beetle created (modified, really) by DARPA may soon be available in a DIY kit, using cockroaches instead of giant beetles. It could help you realize your dream of turning your cockroach friends into remote-controlled errand-roaches.
RockDoctor writes: Flying cars may be 10 years or more away, as they have been for longer than fusion power has, but the (ab-)normally quiet town of St.Johns, Newfoundland, has evidently plans for the future and this winter has been trialling parking meters for their expected fleets (flocks?) of flying cars. Or something. (Well, it made me laugh when I saw it on the telly!)