Open Source

How We Can Get Submarines to Travel at Supersonic Speed

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 2:22pm
Chinese researchers say they are developing technology that would allow submarines to travel more than 750 mph. That’s faster than commercial aircraft fly, and yes, it is possible. The technology is called supercavitation, and it’s been around for decades. The idea is to increase the speed of an object like, say, a submarine or torpedo […]






Categories: Open Source, Technology

U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 2:06pm
Several readers sent word that U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) has begun speaking in favor of mandatory cameras for police across the country. "Everywhere I go people now have cameras. And police officers are now at a disadvantage, because someone can tape the last part of an encounter and not tape the first part of the encounter. And it gives the impression that the police officer has overreacted when they haven't." This follows the recent controversy ove the shooting death of Michael Brown in a police incident, as well as a White House petition on the subject that rocketed to 100,000 signatures. McCaskill continued, "I would like to see us say, 'If you want federal funding in your community, you've got to have body cams on your officers. And I think that would go a long way towards solving some of these problems, and it would be a great legacy over this tragedy that's occurred in Ferguson, regardless of what the facts say at the end as to whether or not anyone is criminally culpable."

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Predictive Analytics: Potential Cure for What Ails the American Economy?

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 1:35pm
The way we hire and manage employees in America is fundamentally broken. Not only are unemployment rates still high in most cities, but approximately 32 percent of the current unemployed population has been unemployed for seven months or longer. Many people believe these long term unemployed workers no longer fit in today’s workplace, but they […]






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Secrets of the Flamboyant Cuttlefish’s Display

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 1:35pm
The flamboyant cuttlefish (Metasepia tullbergi) earned its moniker for a reason. Like many cephalopods, this cuttlefish can change its appearance with remarkable flexibility and speed. Sometimes it displays bright colors; other times, it camouflages itself to seamlessly blend into the background. In a new study, Gilles Laurent, Michael Kuba, Tamar Gutnick, and Andres Laan of […]






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Scientists Craft Seamless 2D Semiconductor Junctions

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 1:21pm
vinces99 (2792707) writes Scientists have developed what they believe is the thinnest-possible semiconductor, a new class of nanoscale materials made in sheets only three atoms thick. The University of Washington researchers have demonstrated that two of these single-layer semiconductor materials can be connected in an atomically seamless fashion known as a heterojunction. This result could be the basis for next-generation flexible and transparent computing, better light-emitting diodes, or LEDs, and solar technologies. "Heterojunctions are fundamental elements of electronic and photonic devices," said senior author Xiaodong Xu, a UW assistant professor of materials science and engineering and of physics. "Our experimental demonstration of such junctions between two-dimensional materials should enable new kinds of transistors, LEDs, nanolasers, and solar cells to be developed for highly integrated electronic and optical circuits within a single atomic plane."

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Scientists Turn Bad Memories Into Good Inside the Brains of Mice

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 1:20pm
Neuroscientists have devised a technique for switching the emotional association of a memory from bad to good by directly manipulating the neurons that encode it.






Categories: Open Source, Technology

‘The Shift’: BYO Brings a Big Challenge to the Software Community

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 1:20pm
There was a time not too long ago when web sites and web applications prescribed directions on how each should be sourced to be properly viewed and utilized. For example, on many sites there was a banner that would proclaim that this application or website should be viewed using a certain browser and a specific […]






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Meet the Rebels in These Awesome New Hunger Games: Mockingjay Posters

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 12:49pm
If there's anything fans of The Hunger Games know, it's that advertising is just propaganda with a nicer name. So in promoting the film franchise's next installment, Mockingjay—Part 1, it's only makes sense that the marketing onslaught have the look and feel of the message war that plays out as Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and her fellow Panem revolutionaries rally to take on the Capitol. The latest installment? These Rebel Warriors posters.






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Google Buys Zync Cloud Graphics Rendering Service

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 12:39pm
mpicpp (3454017) writes To beef up its cloud platform with more specialized packages, Google is acquiring Zync for its large scale rendering service for movie special effects, called Zync Render. Google plans to offer the Zync service on its Google Cloud Platform, where it can be used by motion picture studios that do not want to build their own rendering farms.

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Dropbox Slashes Its Price as the Cost of a Gigabyte Nears Zero

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 12:34pm
When I talk to folks at Dropbox, they’re eager to tell me about how different people are using its file-sharing service: the musician, the photographer, the professor, the startup founder. They like to talk about new features, like password-protected links and the remote wipe tool that lets you remove files from a lost computer. But […]






Categories: Open Source, Technology

GOG Introduces DRM-Free Movie Store

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 12:04pm
Via Engadget comes news that GOG, the DRM-free game store platform, has launched a DRM-free movie store. The initial set of movies are gamer oriented, and you won't find major studio releases (yet, and not for a lack of trying on the part of GOG). From GOG: Our goal is to offer you cinema classics as well as some all-time favorite TV series with no DRM whatsoever, for you to download and keep on your hard drive or stream online whenever you feel like it. We talked to most of the big players in the movie industry and we often got a similar answer: "We love your ideas, but we do not want to be the first ones. We will gladly follow, but until somebody else does it first, we do not want to take the risk". DRM-Free distribution is not a concept their lawyers would accept without hesitation. We kind of felt that would be the case and that it's gonna take patience and time to do it, to do it, to do it right. That's quite a journey ahead of us, but every gamer knows very well that great adventures start with one small step. So why not start with something that feels very familiar? We offer you a number of gaming and Internet culture documentaries - all of them DRM-Free, very reasonably priced, and presenting some fascinating insight into topics close to a gamer's heart. Videos are mostly 1080p (~8GB for a 90 minute film) and can be acquired for about $6. They're using h.264/mp4 and not VP9/Matroska, but you can't have everything ;). If you don't want to download that much data, it looks like all of the videos are also available in 720p and 576p.

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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 11:25am
frdmfghtr (603968) writes Over at Ars Technica, there's a story about a bill in the Ohio legislature that wants to downplay the teaching of the scientific process. From the article: "Specifically prohibiting a discussion of the scientific process is a recipe for educational chaos. To begin with, it leaves the knowledge the kids will still receive—the things we have learned through science—completely unmoored from any indication of how that knowledge was generated or whether it's likely to be reliable. The scientific process is also useful in that it can help people understand the world around them and the information they're bombarded with; it can also help people assess the reliability of various sources of information." The science standards would have "...focus on academic and scientific knowledge rather than scientific processes; and prohibit political or religious interpretation of scientific facts in favor of another." Political interpretation of scientific facts include humans contributing to climate change according to the bill's sponsor, who also thinks intelligent design would be OK under the law.

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Climate Damage 'Irreversible' According Leaked Climate Report

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 10:45am
New submitter SomeoneFromBelgium (3420851) writes According to Bloomberg a leaked climate report from the IPPC speaks of "Irreversible Damage." The warnings in the report are, as such, not new but the tone of voice is more urgent and more direct than ever. It states among other things that global warming already is affecting "all continents and across the oceans," and that "risks from mitigation can be substantial, but they do not involve the same possibility of severe, widespread, and irreversible impacts as risks from climate change, increasing the benefits from near-term mitigation action."

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Chromium 37 Launches With Major Security Fixes, 64-bit Windows Support

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 10:05am
An anonymous reader writes Google has released Chrome/Chromium version 37 for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Among the changes are better-looking fonts on Windows and a revamped password manager. There are 50 security fixes, including several to patch a sandbox escaping vulnerability. The release also brings stable 64-bit Windows support which ...offers many benefits for speed, stability and security. Our measurements have shown that the native 64-bit version of Chrome has improved speed on many of our graphics and media benchmarks. For example, the VP9 codec that’s used in High Definition YouTube videos shows a 15% improvement in decoding performance. Stability measurements from people opted into our Canary, Dev and Beta 64-bit channels confirm that 64-bit rendering engines are almost twice as stable as 32-bit engines when handling typical web content. Finally, on 64-bit, our defense in depth security mitigations such as Partition Alloc are able to far more effectively defend against vulnerabilities that rely on controlling the memory layout of objects. The full changelog.

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Time Warner Cable Experiences Nationwide Internet Outage

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 9:26am
Wolfrider (856) writes Reports are coming in from multiple U.S. states that TWC is having a major Internet outage since early this morning. ... TWC's customer service reps are reportedly a bit overwhelmed by call volume at the moment, and no ETA yet. According to CNET, most locations should be more-or-less back online as of 7 a.m. EDT or so (my TWC connection came back around 7:30 a.m. EDT). TWC says it's maintenance gone wrong: In response to a query by CNET, Time Warner Cable issued this statement: "At 430am ET this morning during our routine network maintenance, an issue with our Internet backbone created disruption with our Internet and On Demand services. As of 6am ET services were largely restored as updates continue to bring all customers back online."

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Statistics Losing Ground To CS, Losing Image Among Students

Slashdot - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 8:45am
theodp (442580) writes Unless some things change, UC Davis Prof. Norman Matloff worries that the Statistician could be added to the endangered species list. "The American Statistical Association (ASA) leadership, and many in Statistics academia," writes Matloff, "have been undergoing a period of angst the last few years, They worry that the field of Statistics is headed for a future of reduced national influence and importance, with the feeling that: [1] The field is to a large extent being usurped by other disciplines, notably Computer Science (CS). [2] Efforts to make the field attractive to students have largely been unsuccessful." Matloff, who has a foot in both the Statistics and CS camps, but says, "The problem is not that CS people are doing Statistics, but rather that they are doing it poorly. Generally the quality of CS work in Stat is weak. It is not a problem of quality of the researchers themselves; indeed, many of them are very highly talented. Instead, there are a number of systemic reasons for this, structural problems with the CS research 'business model'." So, can Statistics be made more attractive to students? "Here is something that actually can be fixed reasonably simply," suggests no-fan-of-TI-83-pocket-calculators-as-a-computational-vehicle Matloff. "If I had my druthers, I would simply ban AP Stat, and actually, I am one of those people who would do away with the entire AP program. Obviously, there are too many deeply entrenched interests for this to happen, but one thing that can be done for AP Stat is to switch its computational vehicle to R."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.


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An F1 Car Doing Donuts Looks Even Cooler in Infrared

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 6:40am
Watch heat fly off a Red Bull RB8 Formula 1 race car as it does donuts.






Categories: Open Source, Technology

Your Next Polo Shirt Could Have an Activity Tracker Built Right In

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 6:40am
Wimbledon ball boys and ball girls have cornered the market in stoic roboticism. But if it's cyborgs you want, look no further than this year's U.S. Open. A select few ball boys at this year’s tournament will wear Ralph Lauren Polo Tech shirts with biometric tracking capabilities.






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An Infographics Genius Plots Out Another Insanely Detailed Year of His Life

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 6:40am
For nearly a decade, Nicholas Felton has tracked his interests, locations, and the myriad beginnings and ends that make up a life in a series of sumptuously designed "annual reports."






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Flappy Bird Creator’s Latest Game Was More Intriguing Before He Updated It

Wired - Top Stories - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 6:40am
Swing Copters is not the mobile game we wanted, but it is the mobile game we deserve.






Categories: Open Source, Technology