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NASA Snaps Shot of Mars-Bound Comet

brindafella Siding Spring -- meaning (38 comments)

That name, Siding Spring, comes from the name of Siding Spring Observatory, the most significant optical observatory in Australia, operated by the Australian National University. The mountain is part of the Warrumbungle Range, in the state of New South Wales, near the town Coonabarabran. It is the site of the Anglo-Australian Telescope, among others. Also see Google maps at 31.273038S 149.066804E.

about three weeks ago
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Slashdot Asks: Do You Label Your Tech Gear, and If So, How?

brindafella Business card (250 comments)

In the case cited, a business card slipped into the case/box/etc can be a quick identifier. Folded if necessary for a smaller item. For people who don't normally have business cards, then make some for such instances out of card stock or printer paper, and cut along the lines. Most office or publishing programs will help you design and print cards. A hand-written card is also okay, and might even be better in the instance mentioned.

about 2 months ago
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Juno Needs Radio Amateurs!

brindafella No opportunity for me (82 comments)

Sorry, but this has got to me too late to make the necessary preparations (and be awake and/or available at a sensible time.)

about 6 months ago
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World-First: Woman Becomes Pregnant After Ovarian Tissue Graft

brindafella I was flabbergasted (87 comments)

There was a time when Slashdot was for people to bring interesting and informative things, or to ask good questions and get good advice. (That is why I bothered to submit this report of a world-first procedure.)

And, then people like you came along.

READ what the story is about; watch and listen to the video.

about 7 months ago
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World-First: Woman Becomes Pregnant After Ovarian Tissue Graft

brindafella You did not even read it. (87 comments)

Oh, no. I posted this so that people like you could READ it, and make sensible comments.

To make it easier, get REAL CLOSE to the screen, so the letters are bigger.

Her ovaries were REMOVED, SECTIONED (cut into slices) and FROZEN. AFTERher cancer treatments, the SLICES were RE-IMPLANTED in her ABDOMEN (the part behind the BELLY-BUTTON) and, with FURTHER TREATMENT, then the ovary cells RE-ACTIVATED. EGGS were REMOVED AND FERTILISED, and were IMPLANTED in her WOMB. She has TWO BABIES growing inside her, now.

Now, go and read the longer version, at the links. There is also video, if you can't be bothered reading any more.

about 7 months ago
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Maybe Steve Ballmer Doesn't Deserve the Hate

brindafella My level of caring is zero. (240 comments)

> "Do you agree? Or does Ballmer deserve his reputation as a bad CEO?"

I have no opinion (about Ballmer). My level of caring is zero (about Ballmer).

I refuse to pay the "Micr$oft tax". I DO CARE about that.

about 9 months ago
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Interviews: Ask Freeman Dyson What You Will

brindafella Spiritual / Religious and Scientific approaches (181 comments)

Professor Dyson,

In accepting the Templeton Prize for "an exceptional contribution to affirming life's spiritual dimension, whether through insight, discovery, or practical works", you are marked for having a spiritual / religious side at a level of excellence/standing that is internationally recognised. What has this recognition meant to you, compared to your scientific achievements or insights?

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Magazines Do You Still Read?

brindafella APC (363 comments)

APC (used to be called "Australian Personal Computer) is cutting-edge and is good to have in printed form, even though it has an online presence at www.apcmag.com, too. The editor recently floated the idea that its cover DVD might end soon, with all the good stuff being as downloads.

Before going into the chair at the Blood Bank, I select to read:
National Geographic
Australian Geographic

1 year,5 hours
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Australian PM Targets Imported IT Workers

brindafella Fellow Australians, .... GROW UP. (224 comments)

"Fellow Australians... " [http://www.menziesvirtualmuseum.org.au/1930s/1939.html]

Have a look at yourselves in a mirror.

GROW UP.

This whole discussion is an unseemly airing of our collective political "dirty linen".

Oh, sorry, we do that every so often, and make the rest of the world wonder what being "down under" (standing on our heads) does for the collective blood-flow to the brains, and also wonder shy they would bother to visit and get the same malady.

As I said, GROW UP!

Please... ?!?!?!!!!!!

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: Really Short Time Wasters?

brindafella Electronic design & music composition (279 comments)

Do you compose music? A pad of five-line stave can be bought cheaply at music shops or some news/magazine vendors, and a pen/pencil. There are some simple notation rules, that are easily looked up. A few notes at a time.... You never know when you'll write the next big hit.

Electrical circuit design takes some understanding, but it can be taken up and put down. It takes a blank sheet of paper, and a pen/pencil. Again, there are some simple notation rules, that are easily looked up. Try a simple one-transistor audio amplifier... Soon, you could be doodling a whole multi-input guitar amplifier with effects, or a super-het receiver.

about a year ago
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AT&T: Don't Want a Data Plan for That Smartphone? Too Bad.

brindafella Spend their time (dime). (798 comments)

When ever you feel like it, and have a few spare minutes, call up their call centre using free-call number (that costs the company) and spend a few minutes (or as long as you can spare) complaining about this matter. It racks up a cost to the company. Even better, mention why you call (to cost them more than what they are charging you) in the conversation. Eventually, they will escalate it and someone at a higher level MAY decide to call it 'even' and disconnect you from the plan. This strategy worked for me with a similar company......some years ago...... eventually.

about a year ago
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Samsung Reaches Milestone For 14nm Technology

brindafella Continuous disclosure (123 comments)

One could think that this announcement of 14nm development is Samsung one-upping their competition.

Another interpretation is that companies need to exercise "continuous disclosure" in order to be taken seriously in the share markets and not fall foul of the market regulators which insist that companies reveal important information as soon as is practicable so that investors and possible investors get a true picture of the company's market worth. In most cases, a good-news story is a great way to have the market clamouring to invest, and so assists the company to raise the capital needed to get its developments to market.

It also does not hurt to rub the nose of the opposition.

about a year ago
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Australian Prime Minister's Spoof "Apocalypse" Speech Goes Viral In China

brindafella Re:Best. Prime Minister. Ever. (225 comments)

... A Head of State acting like a human being. Surely, that is a sign of the Apocalypse.

The Prime Minister is the Head of Government (not Head of State; that is the Governpr-General of Australia) [but, someone will point out that the Queen of Australia is actually the Head of State and the Governor-General is merely the 'representative'/proxy].

about a year ago
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Australian Prime Minister's Spoof "Apocalypse" Speech Goes Viral In China

brindafella Re:I am a Chinese American... (225 comments)

... my parents (born in China) have never made any sarcastic expressions in their life, they don't get sarcasm - they take everything anyone says at face value... It just doesn't exist in the culture.

Good point. Culture goes deeply through our life experience.

An American friend of mine regularly travels to China for her work. She is heavily involved in teaching English to her chinese acquaintances. I will ask her about her experiences of humour there.

about a year ago
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Australian Prime Minister's Spoof "Apocalypse" Speech Goes Viral In China

brindafella Re:Who is missing whose sarcasm? (225 comments)

Humor can be hard to translate. Maybe instead of the Chinese speakers missing the Aussie's sarcasm, it's visa-versa.

The article I originally quoted in my submitted story was by a Western-aware Chinese journalist based in China, who reflected on how the Chinese had missed the irony/humour in Gillard's speech.

about a year ago
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Australian Prime Minister's Spoof "Apocalypse" Speech Goes Viral In China

brindafella Re:How 'bout them Aussie's, eh? (225 comments)

Them Aussie's and their pranks. It's all fun and games until some packy nurse tops herself.

Good pick-up. My original post of this article drew the attention of readers to Gillard's speech being on the same day as the death of the Indian nurse as a result of 2Day FM's hoax call. The /. editors changed it to the North Korean link. Fair call, but the hoax in London also works. :-)

about a year ago
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Australian Prime Minister's Spoof "Apocalypse" Speech Goes Viral In China

brindafella Re:Erm.. NBNCo Fibre is a disappointment (225 comments)

In my professional life, I have seen the type of 'commercial' deals that NBNCo is doing. Definitely as case of "sign them up then forget them", from my personal observation. And... foreward thinking? 0%

about a year ago
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Australian Prime Minister's Spoof "Apocalypse" Speech Goes Viral In China

brindafella When DO the bombs start? (225 comments)

Let the sarcasm begin:
* Ronald Reagan's microphone test ("We begin bombing in five minutes") is a case in point. That could have been read much more benignly, I think, if the Rusians had a more 'Western' sense of humour.
* North Korea's (Kim Jong-un's) recent launch of a satellite into orbit, passing over Japan, Philippines, Indonesia and Australia, could be read differently, too, if we folk from those countries had a better Korean sense of humour. Maybe the Chinese and Russians would have understood the North Koreans better, if the launch had been to the north.

about a year ago
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Canada's Supreme Court Tosses Viagra Patent For Vagueness

brindafella Re:Generic name (100 comments)

Alternative: "Mycoxafillin".

about a year and a half ago

Submissions

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Fishing line as artificial 'muscle'

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about 2 months ago

brindafella (702231) writes "Researchers have made what they describe as an "almost embarrassing" discovery, that twisted nylon fishing line can form a "powerful, large-stroke, high-stress artificial muscles" capable of lifting as much as 100 times more weight than human muscles and contracting by 49%, and "generate 5.3 kilowatts of mechanical work per kilogram of muscle weight, similar to that produced by a jet engine." They twisted the fishing line, then heated it to 'set' the shape-memory muscle. The scientists are from the Australian Research Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science at the University of Wollongong, and the University of Texas. It's published in Science magazine."
Link to Original Source
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3D model of Australia's Great Barrier Reef & Choral Sea

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about 5 months ago

brindafella (702231) writes "Research from James Cook University's Dr Robin Beaman has aggregated data into a new high-resolution bathymetry model of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea, called gbr100. The 100 metre-resolution gridded bathymetry dataset covers an area of about 3,000,000 km2, from the Gulf of Papua to northern New South Wales, and easterly into the deep Coral Sea. There is also a really interesting colour poster (909kB PDF) to download."
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2013 Winners - Eureka Prizes - Australian Museum

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about 7 months ago

brindafella (702231) writes "The 2013 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes reward excellence in 17 fields, covering: research and innovation; leadership and commercialisation; science communication and journalism;and school science.

Significant among the prizes were:

CSIRO Eureka Prize for Leadership in Science — Winner: Professor Frank Caruso, University of Melbourne — This international nanotechnology expert has won the CSIRO Eureka Prize for Leadership in Science for his leadership in developing nanotechnology-enabled materials for biomedical applications.

Macquarie University Eureka Prize for Outstanding Young Researcher — Winner: Dr Kerrie Wilson, University of Queensland — Targeted spending provides more bang for the buck when it comes to protecting threatened species, according to new guidelines developed by the University of Queensland’s Dr Kerrie Wilson.

Australian Museum University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize – Secondary — Winner: The Spectacular Spider, Brandon Gifford, Casino High School, NSW — A mini-documentary about spiders has won final-year school student Brandon Gifford the 2013 Australian Museum University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize for secondary students. It’s his third win in a row."
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Woman with cancer, re-implanted with ovarian tissue, is pregnant with twins.

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about 7 months ago

brindafella (702231) writes "A world first! When Australian woman, Vali, was diagnosed with cancer, and treated, she was not looking at a good outcome. Yet, TWO cancer treatments later, she is pregnant with twin girls. Her ovaries were sectioned and frozen before the cancer treatment. She has had her own flesh implanted outside her pelvis. Eggs were gathered, IVF techniques used later with her male partner, and her uterus is now carrying two viable girls due to be born in about 3 months. Melbourne IVF's Associate Professor Kate Stern has explained the process today."
Link to Original Source
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What happens when a gorilla retires? Another zoo.

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about 9 months ago

brindafella (702231) writes "The head gorilla at Australia's most prestigious zoo, Taronga Park Zoo in Sydney, is about to be retired. Kibabu is a 'silverback' and, at age 36, is about to be taken away from his family and retired. His replacement is a 12-year-old silverback from France. It's a natural thing in the wild, but Kibabu is not going to be in a fight that he loses to a younger male. He'll just go. His new home in retirement will be another zoo, about 150km away, at Mogo."
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Australia's latest and best computer - a Japanese god

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about 9 months ago

brindafella (702231) writes "Australia's latest and best computer has been unveiled at the Australian National University in Canberra, within the National Computational Infrastructure's National Facility. Raijin is named after a Japanese god of lightning and thunder, but the name also sounds like "raging" so some geek humour may be involved. It has: 57,472 cores in the compute nodes; approximately 160 TBytes of main memory; Infiniband FDR interconnect; and, approximately 10 PBytes of usable fast filesystem (for short-term scratch space). The brand name is Fujitsu. Peak performance is approximately 1.2 PFlops. It runs CentOS 6.4 Linux distribution (based on RHEL6.4)."
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Geophysics finds 280 new-old craters on the Moon

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about 9 months ago

brindafella (702231) writes "Data fusion has found 280 new (old) craters on the Moon, by taking gravity data from and observations from images and creating a new insight into the Moon's past. Curtin University (Western Australia) researchers led by Professor Will Featherstone says>/a> they first looked for craters on the far side of the Moon, which cannot be seen from Earth. Then, the technique was applied to the face visible from Earth. This research on the 280 new lunar craters will soon be published in the Journal of Geophysical Research – Planets."
Link to Original Source
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"Size does matter": The sexual come-on.

brindafella brindafella writes  |  1 year,9 days

brindafella (702231) writes "Researchers at the Australian National University, Monash University and La Trobe University, show life-sized, computer-generated images of naked men to female subjects, altering the size and proportions of the torso, legs and arms, and... the "male-bit". The research, while only semi-conclusive, shows that "size does matter". Dr Brian Mautz of ANU says that the research results need to be pursued further, although the story isn’t quite as simple as ‘bigger is better’; Larger penises were much more attractive on taller men than shorter men. Yet, it appears that 13cm (flacid [floppy]) is one sweet-spot, although that excludes a vast majority of men. Says Mautz, "Finding a partner is quite a complicated process and who knows how females end up choosing their males.""
Link to Original Source
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Sharp-shooting Linux-powered sniper rifle, or not.

brindafella brindafella writes  |  1 year,11 days

brindafella (702231) writes "When is a sniper rifle not a sniper-rifle? When it is intended for hunting game, of course. The 1,000-1,200 year/metre, US$17,000 Linux-powered rifle uses a special sighting device to 'designate' the target and then only fires its .338 Lapua Magnum round when the rifle is pointing along the computed line-of-fire. Even a novice can shoot this rifle accuretely over its maximum effective range."
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Australian researchers crack insulin's structure

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about a year ago

" rel="nofollow">brindafella writes "Australian research on insulin, using X-ray chrystallography at the Australian Synchrotron, has revealed how molecules of insulin bind to a protein on the cells of the body. Results have been published
  in the journal Nature. Specific results relate to the type 1 insulin-like growth factor receptor (IGF1R), and are expected to create great interest among companies producing insulin for diabetics, possibly leading to a tablet form of insulin (rather than the current need for an injection.)"

Link to Original Source
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Australian Prime Minister's spoof "apocalypse" speech goes viral in China

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about a year ago

brindafella writes "Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, recorded a spoof speech about the Mayan calendar apocalypse several days ago, for radio station "Triple J". Gillard said in part, "Whether the final blow comes from flesh eating zombies, demonic hell beasts or from the total triumph of K-pop, if you know one thing about me it is this: I will always fight for you to the very end."

The speech has been picked up in China on Sina Weibo (China's Twitter) and has achieved well over 23,000 repeats, without anyone picking up the irony.

This is just days after another Australian radio station, 2Day FM, created an international sensation with a prank (spoof) call to the hospital in London where Princess Catherine was undergoing treatment, and a nurse killed herself following the revelation of the prank."

Link to Original Source
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Pound dogs taught to drive a car

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about a year ago

brindafella writes "As discussed in a Letterman "Top 10", a pair of highly trained dogs from New Zealand have passed their doggie driving test, guiding a modified car along a race track on live television. In a project aimed at increasing pet adoptions from animal shelters, a group of cross-breed, rescued dogs from Auckland were taught to drive a car — steering, pedals and all — to show the potential of unwanted canines. See video of Porter and Monty."
Link to Original Source
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Romey's rant to donors

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about a year and a half ago

brindafella writes "Romney has ranted to major donors in a conference call, saying that President Obama in effect bought votes by what he offered to the minorities (also read '47%'). "The Obama campaign was following the old playbook of giving a lot of stuff to groups that they hoped they could get to vote for them and be motivated to go out to the polls, specifically the African American community, the Hispanic community and young people." He said, "In each case they were very generous in what they gave to those groups," including mention of "free contraceptives".

Of the future, Romney said, "So now we're looking and saying, 'OK, what can we do going forward?'," he said. "But frankly we're still so troubled by the past, it's hard to put together our plans for the future.""

Link to Original Source
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The M22 globular cluster has a dark side

brindafella brindafella writes  |  about a year and a half ago

brindafella writes "Astronomers using the Very Large Array radio telescope in New Mexico have found two black holes in M22, a 12 billion year old globular cluster located only about 10,000 light-years from Earth. These are each several times the mass of our Sun, and are actively feeding from nearby companion stars, as confirmed by X-ray observations using the Chandra space telescope. The astronomers expect to find other black holes."
Link to Original Source
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Australian court allows "time-shifting" of sport o

brindafella brindafella writes  |  more than 2 years ago

brindafella writes "In a landmark case, the Federal Court in Australia has allowed a major non-rights-holding telco to 'broadcast' sport onto client's mobile phones, thus undermining the possible income streams of sporting bodies. The judgement, made on Wednesday 1 February 2012, partially settles a case between Singtel Optus Pty Ltd (the telco) and National Rugby League Investments Pty Ltd (No 2) that sells the rights to the rugby league coverage. This article explains the case in plain language.

The judge declined to determine some matters of possible infringement, notably, "These include whether Optus infringes copyright because the technology used to make a recording in the format suitable for certain Apple devices creates and stores six temporary files of 10 seconds duration every minute and then deletes the first 10-second file as the latest one is added one minute later.""

Link to Original Source
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2011 Nobel Prize in Physics

brindafella brindafella writes  |  more than 2 years ago

brindafella writes "Thirteen years ago, two teams of astronomers and physicists independently made the same stark discovery: Not only is the universe expanding like a vast inflating balloon, but its expansion is speeding up. And, the two teams are recognised with the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics.

Half of the prize will go to Saul Perlmutter of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California, Berkeley, who led the Supernova Cosmology Project. The other half will be shared by Brian Schmidt of the Australian National University's Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, who led the High-z Supernova Search Team, and Adam Riess of Johns Hopkins University and the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, who worked on High-z.

In essence, they proved that Einstein's "biggest mistake" (the cosmological constant, to create a 'stable universe') was actually a clever theoretical prediction that there was something else happening — dark energy."

Link to Original Source
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Australian Aboriginal DNA - 70,000 year history

brindafella brindafella writes  |  more than 2 years ago

brindafella writes "Scientists have obtained a DNA genomic sequence from a 100 year old, voluntarily donated hair sample from a full-blood Australian Aboriginal man. This shows "Aboriginal Australians are descendants of an early human dispersal into eastern Asia, possibly 62,000 to 75,000 years ago. This dispersal is separate from the one that gave rise to modern Asians 25,000 to 38,000 years ago. [They] also [found] evidence of gene flow between populations of the two dispersal waves prior to the divergence of Native Americans from modern Asian ancestors. [Their] findings support the hypothesis that present-day Aboriginal Australians descend from the earliest humans to occupy Australia, likely representing one of the oldest continuous populations outside Africa." A news story gives more detail."
Link to Original Source

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