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Comment Photosynthesis has a bit head start (Score 1) 158

Not to be a technology pessimist but how is this better than natural photosynthesis? Can we realistically hope to achieve better efficiency in storing energy in carbon based structures than with the technique that nature provides us? Well, maybe in a reeealy long perspective. We will probably have synthesised life a couple of times in different forms before then.

Tetris Clones Pulled From Android Market 396

sbrubblesman writes "The Tetris Company, LLC has notified Google to remove all Tetris clones from Android Market. I am one of the developers of FallingBlocks, a game with the same gameplay concepts as Tetris. I have received an email warning that my game was suspended from Android Market due to a violation of the Developer Content Policy. When I received the email, I already imagined that it had something to do with it being a Tetris clone, but besides having the same gameplay as Tetris, which I believe cannot be copyrighted, the game uses its own name, graphics and sounds. There's no reference to 'Tetris' in our game. I have emailed Google asking what is the reason for the application removal. Google promptly answered that The Tetris Company, LLC notified them under the DMCA (PDF) to remove various Tetris clones from Android Market. My app was removed together with 35 other Tetris clones. I checked online at various sources, and all of them say that there's no copyright on gameplay. There could be some sort of patent. But even if they had one, it would last 20 years, so it would have been over in 2005. It's a shame that The Tetris Company, LLC uses its power to stop developers from creating good and free games for Android users. Without resources for a legal fight, our application and many others will cease to exist, even knowing that they are legit. Users will be forced to buy the paid, official version, which is worse than many of the ones available for free on the market. Users from other countries, such as Brazil in my case, won't even be able to play the official Tetris, since Google Checkout doesn't exist in Brazil; you can't buy paid applications from Android Market in these countries."

Google Releases a Web-App Case Study For Hackers 95

Hugh Pickens writes "The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Google has released Jarlsberg, a 'small, cheesy' web application specifically designed to be full of bugs and security flaws as a security tutorial for coders, and encourages programmers to try their hands at exploiting weaknesses in Jarlsberg as a way of teaching them how to avoid similar vulnerabilities in their own code. Jarlsberg has multiple security bugs ranging from cross-site scripting and cross-site request forgery, to information disclosure, denial of service, and remote code execution. The codelab is organized by types of vulnerabilities." (Read on for more.)
Open Source

Open Source, Open Standards Under Attack In Europe 164

Glyn Moody writes "A battle for the soul of European IT is taking place behind closed doors in Brussels. At stake is the key Digital Agenda for Europe, due to be unveiled in a month's time. David Hammerstein, ex-Member of European Parliament for the Greens, tweeted last week: 'SOS to everyone as sources confirm that Kroes is about to eliminate "open standards" policy from EU digital agenda; Kroes has been under intense lobbying pressure from Microsoft to get rid of interoperability and open source goals of EU.' This is confirmed by the French magazine PC Inpact (Google translation), which also managed to obtain a copy of the draft Digital Agenda (DOC). It's currently supportive of both open source and open standards — but for how much longer?"

Debunking a Climate-Change Skeptic 807

DJRumpy writes "The Danish political scientist Bjørn Lomborg won fame and fans by arguing that many of the alarms sounded by environmental activists and scientists — that species are going extinct at a dangerous rate, that forests are disappearing, that climate change could be catastrophic — are bogus. A big reason Lomborg was taken seriously is that both of his books, The Skeptical Environmentalist (in 2001) and Cool It (in 2007), have extensive references, giving a seemingly authoritative source for every one of his controversial assertions. So in a display of altruistic masochism that we should all be grateful for (just as we're grateful that some people are willing to be dairy farmers), author Howard Friel has checked every single citation in Cool It. The result is The Lomborg Deception, which is being published by Yale University Press next month. It reveals that Lomborg's work is 'a mirage,' writes biologist Thomas Lovejoy in the foreword. '[I]t is a house of cards. Friel has used real scholarship to reveal the flimsy nature' of Lomborg's work."

Comment Re:I got something different from that movie. (Score 1) 870

It might have made an interesting plot if the Navi's actually had engineered the grid themselves, or at least understood it on a more profound level, but the movie seems to suggest that something else made it, evolution probably. I personally find the suggestion on evolution having created it most interesting.

Doom-Like Video Surveillance For Ports In Development 56

oranghutan writes "A research and development group down under is working to develop an advanced video surveillance system for ports around the world that uses video superimposed onto a 3D map. With 16-megapixel high-definition cameras on a distributed (cabled) network and a proprietary system written in a variety of languages (C++, Python, SQL, etc.), the group from NICTA is aiming to allow security teams at the Port of Brisbane — which is 110km long — to monitor shipping movements, cargo and people. By scrolling along a 3D map, the security teams can click on a location and then get a real-time video feed superimposed onto the map. Authorities from around the world with the right permissions can then access the same system. The main difference from regular surveillance systems is the ability to switch views without having to know camera numbers/locations and the one screen view."

Submission + - Will Google keep their hands of the waves?

worldsayshi writes: Through my eyes, Google wave as a service has tremendous potential. I can already count a heap of project ideas lying around in the collective mindset of me and my friends heads waiting to be lifted into some structured and collaborative space. Also, the amount of interest for the service seems to be much wider among my friends than I expected. Although the hype has been around for a while I did only expect "techheads" to be enthusiastic about an invite. From what I can tell Google will have no problem in building a critical mass of users.

But. One great problem regarding the waves ability to fully extend to its potential as a collaborative idea-tool is the question that the title spells out. I know that I am not alone in worries of what will happen to potentially valuable ideas once they are spelled out in (private sessions in) the wave. If the wave succeeds in maintaining an aura of trust in the regard of letting people have their ideas to themselves, it has a potential of attracting some of the greatest ideas and thinkers of the world. If so, would Google be able to keep themselves from taking a peak on that which the user groups would rather have for themselves?

In any case, it is what they would be able to do and what people expect them to be doing that would matter in this regard. If you are unable to trust google with your ideas, you will not use google wave to it's fullest potential. The problem might not be solved by creating an alternative wave server/service. The problem might run deeper than that. There is always someone in the center of things, hosting the service. Can you trust them with that information? If I would be the CEO in a large company, I wouldn't. I would set up my own, internal service. If I would be an entrepreneur filled with ideas in need of development, but with no capital. Probably I would weigh the risk of having someone reading my stuff (and my trusted friends stuff) over my shoulder. Maybe I would take that risk, maybe not.

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