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Researchers Say Neanderthals Created Cave Art

Rambo Tribble The real news ... (78 comments)

... is that this appears to confirm the Neanderthals IP rights to the octothorpe, and Twitter owes them tons of back royalties.

3 hours ago
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Islamic State "Laptop of Doom" Hints At Plots Including Bubonic Plague

Rambo Tribble This makes it official ... (360 comments)

... Islamic State is a literal plague on humanity.

3 days ago
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Statistics Losing Ground To CS, Losing Image Among Students

Rambo Tribble Statistics? (115 comments)

There's an app for that!

about a week ago
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NRC Analyst Calls To Close Diablo Canyon, CA's Last Remaining Nuclear Plant

Rambo Tribble So, is this ... (216 comments)

... fission frisson or just another energy sector meltdown?

about a week ago
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South Carolina Student Arrested For "Killing Pet Dinosaur"

Rambo Tribble Re:Please, don't tell them ... (421 comments)

Then again, it may simply reflect an act of defiance toward an assignment that was unwelcome.

about two weeks ago
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South Carolina Student Arrested For "Killing Pet Dinosaur"

Rambo Tribble Re:Please, don't tell them ... (421 comments)

Isn't that what they call "Sharia Law"?

about two weeks ago
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South Carolina Student Arrested For "Killing Pet Dinosaur"

Rambo Tribble Re:Please, don't tell them ... (421 comments)

I was afraid of that. So, how do you get pixie dust off your hands?

about two weeks ago
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South Carolina Student Arrested For "Killing Pet Dinosaur"

Rambo Tribble Please, don't tell them ... (421 comments)

... but I strangled my neighbor's unicorn, last night.

about two weeks ago
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Researchers Discover New Plant "Language"

Rambo Tribble Dare I ask ... (70 comments)

... if this means strangleweed fills the plant world's niche that, in our world, is filled by the NSA?

about two weeks ago
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Vint Cerf on Why Programmers Don't Join the ACM

Rambo Tribble On the surface ... (213 comments)

... this would appear to be a call for the ACM to adopt a more open model. And how could that be bad? [Respond on the form provided on the next page.]

about a month ago
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New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids

Rambo Tribble Re:Another high point is achieved ... (205 comments)

Which is precisely why I advocate the use of shock collars. The rest of this stuff is just sissy nonsense.

about a month and a half ago
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New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids

Rambo Tribble Another high point is achieved ... (205 comments)

... in the art of modern parenting. Finally, the American standard of social discourse, "I'm right because I'm yelling louder", can be brought to the homey confines of the minivan and ingrained on the little darlings early on.

about a month and a half ago
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Julian Assange Plans Modeling Debut At London Fashion Show

Rambo Tribble May we call this ... (173 comments)

... the "Zoolander" gambit?

about 2 months ago
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Google Is Offering Free Coding Lessons To Women and Minorities

Rambo Tribble Getting in should be easy (376 comments)

If you're a man, just claim you have one "disabled" chromosome. You're golden.

about 2 months ago
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Exploiting Wildcards On Linux/Unix

Rambo Tribble Wildcards are used on other OSes, as well. (215 comments)

This would seem a problem with universal implications, and one that largely depends on local access by the malefactor.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

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Google Serves Old Browsers Old Search Page

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  2 hours ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "In an apparent move to push those using older browsers to update, Google is reported to be serving outdated search pages to said browsers. The older pages lack features available on the newer versions, and this policy compounds with the limits announced in 2011 on Gmail support for older web clients. As a Google engineer put it, "We're continually making improvements to Search, so we can only provide limited support for some outdated browsers." The BBC offers a fairly comprehensive analysis, here."
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Pollinators Thwarted by Scent Pollution

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 2 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "At the same time that bee populations are crashing, researchers have found that another pollinator group, moths, is being adversely affected by chemicals in the air. The moths' ability to discern the floral species they need to target is diminished by other scents from a variety of human-imposed sources. These range from non-native plants to vehicle exhaust. As one researcher succinctly puts it, "The total combination of dynamic odors, including floral signature odors as well as anthropogenic pollutants, can affect the success of olfactory-based resource finding." Link to Science abstract."
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Seattle Gets Takeout by Amazon

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 2 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "In their ongoing effort to capitalize on local business, Amazon has unveiled a “VERY gradual expansion unless things go gangbusters,” of their Amazon Local services, namely takeout food ordering in Seattle. Rivalling smaller, more focused firms in the space, it appears the online giant is trying to wrap recommendations, ordering, and payments in a convenient Amazon bundle. And to think, "word of mouth" used to involve actual mouths."
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Endorphins Make Tanning Addictive

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 2 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Research published in the journal Cell describes a mechanism whereby exposure to UV light leads to endorphin production in the skin. Additionally, they show that rodents exhibit the characteristics of addiction to those substances. This adds to earlier studies which demonstrated withdrawal-like symptoms in frequent tanners One of the researchers, Dr. David Fisher, commented, 'It sounds like a cruel joke to be addicted the most ubiquitous carcinogen in the world,' The researchers conclusions are subject to some scepticism, however. Addiction researcher, Dr David Belin, is quoted as opining, '... their study is going to be seminal even though their conclusions are not supported by their results.' The BBC offers nicely rounded coverage, as well."
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Researchers Find "Achilles Heel" of Drug Resistant Bacteria

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 2 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Researchers in Britain are reporting that they have found a way to prevent bacteria from forming the "wall" that prevents antibiotics from attacking them. "At the heart of the breakthrough is the way 'gram negative' bacterial cells transport the carrier's molecular 'bricks' to the surface of the cell and form a wall." "The number of superbugs are increasing at an unexpected rate. This research provides the platform for urgently-needed new generation drugs.""
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Make A Date With Fraud

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 2 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Netcraft is reporting that criminals are mounting massive phishing attacks through online dating sites. The scams are numerous and target multiple sites. Actual methods range from blackmail to 419-style scams. Characteristically, fraudsters hijack an existing account on one of the services, then use that as a portal to deliver a PHP script to compromise the site. 'The latest attacks make use of a phishing kit which contains hundreds of PHP scripts, configured to send stolen credentials to more than 300 distinct email addresses.' The BBC offers additional insights ."
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Deforestation Depletes Fish Stocks

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Adding to the well-known fish-killing effects deforestation has in increasing turbidity and temperature in streams, a study published in Nature Communications, (abstract, PDF access), demonstrates deforestation causes a depletion of nutrients in associated lake aquatic ecosystems and, as a consequence, impacted fish stocks. Lead author Andrew Tanentzap is quoted as saying, 'We found fish that had almost 70% of their biomass made from carbon that came from trees and leaves instead of aquatic food chain sources.' This has troubling implications as, 'It's estimated that freshwater fishes make up more than 6% of the world's annual animal protein supplies for humans ...' Additionally, this may have significance in regard to anadromous species, such as salmon, which help power ocean ecosystems. The BBC offers more approachable coverage."
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Portland Edges Closer to Google Fiber

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Portland, Oregon has taken another step toward finalizing a franchise agreement with Google Fiber. In a unanimous vote, the city council has approved the prospective contract. While existing Internet Service Providers fume, Mary Beth Henry, manager of Portland’s Office for Community Technology, pointed out that Google is prepared to make a major investment in the city's infrastructure, while the other firms are not. Ms. Henry also indicated that Google was not receiving any special treatment. Google spokesperson, Jenna Wandres, responded to events in an email, saying, 'There’s still a lot of work to do beyond this one agreement, but we hope to provide an update about whether we can bring Fiber here later this year.'"
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Synaptics Buys Key Apple Supplier

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Synaptics Inc., of touchpad fame, is acquiring Renesas SP Drivers Inc, a division of Japanese chipmaker Renesas Electronics Corp. Renesas SP is the exclusive supplier of Apple's display driver chips for the iPhone. While Synaptics is a major supplier of touchscreen technology to clients such as Samsung, they have not done business with Apple for some eight years. Characterized as 'thrilled' to be back in Apple's supply chain, Synaptics CEO, Rick Bergman, is quoted as saying, '... I don't believe they do any driver chips internally so that would really be an opportunity for us.'"
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Lose Sleep, Fail to Form Memory

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "A research team of Chinese and American scientists claim to have witnessed the mechanism by which sleep contributes to the formation of memories. Using advanced microscopy the researchers witnessed synapses being formed in the brain of sleeping mice recently exposed to a learning task. They compared this to similarly tasked mice, that were subsequently sleep-deprived. The sleeping mice showed a marked increase in the formation of new synapses. As one researcher explained, 'We thought sleep helped, but it could have been other causes, and we show it really helps to make connections and that in sleep the brain is not quiet, it is replaying what happened during the day and it seems quite important for making the connections.' Link to original publication [abstract, paywall]"
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Nanoparticles Used to Create Thermal "Barcodes"

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Researchers from the Worcester Polytechnic Institute, in Massachusetts, have developed nanoparticles with distinct melting points, which they suggest be used as forensic "barcodes" to identify the origins and integrity of things such as explosives and currency [PDF]. To demonstrate the technique, the researchers used the explosive, TNT, as a test case. Commenting on the viability of the approach, researcher Dr Ming Su said, 'The nanoparticle does not participate in any chemical reaction, and it will not effect the function of the existing object. The only thing it will do is to provide a thermal signature.' He added, 'Nanoparticles are so small, they can be put into any objects.' The BBC has more approachable coverage."
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Hypertext and the Internet: The Unappreciated Backstory

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "While the seminal influence of Vannevar Bush's 'As We May Think' is not in dispute, many don't realize that he was rekindling ideas that had been around for decades. 'In the years leading up to World War II, a number of European thinkers were exploring markedly similar ideas about information storage and retrieval, and even imagining the possibility of a global network—a feature notably absent from the Memex [of Bush's essay].' In fact, some of these thinkers even predated WW I."
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Oregon vs. Oracle: The Battle of Blame Heats Up

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "The ongoing efforts to assign responsibility for the disastrous attempts to create the Cover Oregon health exchange, the primary contractor for which was Oracle Corporation, have entered a new round, with Governor John Kitzhaber calling on State Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum to initiate legal action against the firm. Kitzhaber has also sought the help of Washington D.C. in sanctioning Oracle, though Oregon's own management of the project and the terms of their contract with Oracle muddy the waters, considerably. Although the AG's office hasn't committed to filing suit, yet, AG Rosenblum has said, 'I share your determination to recover every dollar to which Oregon is entitled.' Although the outcome of this is uncertain, it is likely heads, both corporate and political, will roll."
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The Light Might Make You Heavy

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Writing in the American Journal of Epidemiology, researchers have found that sleeping with high ambient light levels may contribute to obesity [Abstract; paywall]. In a large survey, of 113,000 women, a high correlation was found between higher bedroom light levels and increased propensity to overweight or obesity. Excess light in the sleeping environment has long been known to adversely affect melatonin production and circadian rhythms. It is posited that such an interference with the "body clock" may be behind these results. Although there is not yet enough evidence to call this a smoking gun, as one researcher put it, 'Overall this study points to the importance of darkness.' The BBC offers its take on the story, here."
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Wikipedia Medical Articles Found to Have High Error Rate

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "A group of researchers publishing in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association found that 90% of the articles they sampled contained errors regarding common medical conditions. Unsurprisingly, they recommend your General Practitioner as a more reliable source, while noting, '... 47% to 70% of physicians and medical students admitting to using it [Wikipedia] as a reference.'

At issue in the study is the small sample size used in the study, 10 medical conditions, and ongoing efforts to improve the quality of Wikipedia's articles, according to a Wikipedia spokesman, '... especially in relation to health and medicine.'

The BBC has more approachable coverage, here."
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Is Too Much Computer Time Killing Kids' Ability to Learn?

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "A teacher's union in Northern Ireland is asserting that children spending too much time on computers are impairing their ability to learn. The asserted excessive computer use is being blamed for an inability to concentrate or socialize. As one teacher puts it, '... these gadgets are really destroying their ability to learn.' One question no one seems to be asking is whether the kids showing these symptoms are getting enough sleep."
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Google Buys Android Security Firm

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Google is reported to be buying Divide, (formerly Enterproid), a firm focused on providing enterprise-grade security enhancements to the Android platform. This comes after Motorola acquired a similar company, 3LM, but it's unclear but what that entity might be going to Lenovo, with it's purchase of Motorola. Divide's technology is said to employ, '... a container approach, in which corporate information is separated from personal information on a device.'"
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Radioactivity Cleanup at Hanford, 25 Years On

Rambo Tribble Rambo Tribble writes  |  about 3 months ago

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "The cleanup of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Washington was supposed to be entering its final stages by now. The reality is far from that. The cleanup was to be managed under the 'Tri-Party Agreement', signed on May 15, 1989, which was supposed to facilitate cooperation between the agencies involved. Today, underfunded and overwhelmed by technical problems, the effort is decades behind schedule. Adding to the frustrations for stakeholders and watchdogs is a bureaucratic slipperiness on the part of the Federal Department of Energy. As one watchdog put it, 'We are constantly frustrated by how easily the Department of Energy slips out of agreements in the Tri-Party Agreement.'"

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