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jggimi (1279324) writes "The United Arab Emirates has decided to end data services to its 500,000 users, according to widely publicized reports, such as this one in the New York Times. "The Emirates have been in a long dispute with Research In Motion, the smartphone’s producer, over the BlackBerry’s highly encrypted data system, which offers security to users but makes it more difficult for governments to monitor communications....The monitoring of information is a particularly thorny issue for autocratic regimes in the Persian Gulf worried that the Internet might be used for antigovernment purposes — a concern heightened by the passionate online response in Iran to the 2009 presidential election that helped energize the opposition and led to weeks of unrest."" top
jggimi (1279324) writes "In yesterday's New York Times, Iraq Swears by Bomb Detector U.S. Sees as Useless reports of sales of fifteen hundred remote sensing devices to Iran's Ministry of the Interior, at prices ranging from $16,500 to $60,000 each. Used for bomb and weapon detection at checkpoints, these devices, that have no battery or other power source, are waved about "'...on the same principle as a Ouija board — the power of suggestion — said a retired United States Air Force officer, Lt. Col. Hal Bidlack, who described the wand as nothing more than an explosives divining rod."
Debunked by the US Military, the US Department of Justice, and even Sandia National Laboratories, the Iranians are thrilled with the devices. "'Whether it's magic or scientific, what I care about is it detects bombs,' said Maj. Gen. Jehad al-Jabiri, head of the Ministry of the Interior's General Directorate for Combating Explosives."
Last year, the James Randi Educational Foundation offered a $1 Million prize to "...any of the manufacturers, distributors, vendors, advertisers, or retailers of the... device....Such test can be performed by anyone, anywhere, under your conditions, by you or by any appointed person or persons, in direct satisfaction of any or all of the provisions [in their promotional material]."
No one has taken the foundation up on its offer." top
jggimi writes "This morning, Dell is reported to be acquiring Perot Systems, witih a cash offer of $30/share. Reported variously as a deal worth $3.6B or $3.9B, it is expected to close during the November — January quarter. The bid is a 67% premium over Friday's closing price.
Perot is intended to become Dell's services arm, and help boost Dell's financial outlook, which according to CNN, has been down 22% Y/Y in the last reporting quarter." top
Each of us has at least 100 new mutations in our DNA, according to research published in the journal Current Biology.
"Scientists have been trying to get an accurate estimate of the mutation rate for over 70 years. However, only now has it been possible to get a reliable estimate, thanks to 'next generation' technology for genetic sequencing. The findings may lead to new treatments and insights into our evolution.""
jggimi (1279324) writes "In John Edward's August 10 Infoworld article, Does GPL still matter?, he proposes that other licensing of open source program products have become more relevant than in the past. The article is interesting, of course, but the best part was this editorial comment:
[ Editor's note: InfoWorld tried to interview Richard Stallman, who runs the Free Software Foundation that created and manages the GPL, on this issue, but he demanded control of what we published, so we declined. ]
"China's fast-growing population of Internet users has risen to 298 million after passing the United States last year to become the world's largest, a government-sanctioned research group said Tuesday.
The latest figure represents a 42 percent increase compared with a year earlier, the China Internet Network Information Center said in a report.
China's Internet use is growing at explosive rates despite government efforts to block access to material deemed subversive or pornographic. Regulators are in the midst of a crackdown on sites accused of carrying sexually explicit material.... China is preparing to launch third-generation mobile phone service, which supports wireless Web surfing. That is expected to set off a new surge in Internet use and development of new services." top
jggimi (1279324) writes "The Detroit Free Press reports that Chrysler is expected to announce Thursday that most '09 vehicles will have WiFi Access Point capability as an option. "The wireless Internet will come as a dealer-installed option and will work over cellular telephone links." The article doesn't mention if a barista is also available as an option. I guess we'll have to wait for tomorrow's announcement."