Thursday, May 6, 2010

Underwater Ocean Kites To Harvest Tidal Energy

Posted by timothy on Thursday May 06, @02:40PM
from the best-use-for-string dept.
eldavojohn writes"A Swedish startup has acquired funding for beginning scale model trials of underwater kites, which would be secured to a turbine to harness tidal energy for power. The company reports that the kite device allows the attached turbine to harvest energy at 10 times the speed of the actual tidal current. With a 12-meter wingspan on the kite, the company says they could harvest 500 kilowatts while it's operational. This novel new design is one of many in which a startup or university hope to turn the ocean into a renewable energy source."

Hacker Develops ATM Rootkit

Posted by CmdrTaco on Thursday May 06, @08:48AM
from the well-that-doesn't-make-me-feel-better dept.
alphadogg writes"One year after his Black Hat talk on automated teller machine security vulnerabilities was yanked by his employer, security researcher Barnaby Jack plans to deliver the talk and disclose a new ATM rootkitat the computer security conference. He plans to give the talk, entitled "Jackpotting Automated Teller Machines," at the Black Hat Las Vegas conference, held July 28 and 29. Jack will demonstrate several ways of attacking ATM machines, including remote, network-based attacks."

Estimating Game Piracy More Accurately

Posted by Soulskill on Thursday May 06, @05:52AM
from the arrrrbitrary-numbers dept.
An anonymous reader tips a post up at the Wolfire blog that attempts to pin down a reasonable figure for the amount of sales a game company loses due to piracy. We've commonly heard claims of piracy ratesas high as 80-90%, but that clearly doesn't translate directly into lost sales. The article explains a better metric: going on a per-pirate basis rather than a per-download basis. Quoting:"iPhone game developers have also found that around 80% of their users are running pirated copies of their game (using jailbroken phones). This immediately struck me as odd — I suspected that most iPhone users had never even heard of 'jailbreaking.' I did a bit more research and found that my intuition was correct — only 5% of iPhones in the US are jailbroken. World-wide, the jailbreak statistics are highest in poor countries — but, unsurprisingly, iPhones are also much less common there. The highest estimate I've seen is that 10% of worldwide iPhones are jailbroken. Given that there are so few jailbroken phones, how can we explain that 80% of game copies are pirated? The answer is simple — the average pirate downloads a lot more games than the average customer buys. This means that even though games see that 80% of their copies are pirated, only 10% of their potential customers are pirates, which means they are losing at most 10% of their sales."

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Google Chrome: faster than a flying potato

By Donald Melanson posted May 5th 2010 4:36PM

Google's never been shy to make claims that Chrome is the fastest browser on the planet, but it's truly pulled out all the stops to drive that point home for its latest beta. Rather than rely on some simple benchmarks, Google decided to test Chome against some other things that are fast -- namely, a potato cannon, sound waves, and lightning. We won't spoil all the surprise for you, but you can rest assured that Chrome comes out looking pretty good, and that everything else gets a little messy. Head on past the break to check out the speed tests for yourself, as well as the requisite making-of video.

Sociologists Weigh In On Obesity Increasing The Length Of Hospital Stays

January 1, 2009 — Sociologists found a direct relationship between obesity and duration and frequency of hospital stays. Researchers found that, on average, obese persons stayed one and a half days longer than those with normal weight. Sociologists attribute the connection to disease--46 percent of obese adults have high blood pressure. Obesity is also linked to an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke and other illnesses. The researchers also note that the longer a person has been obese, the more likely their hospital stay is lengthened.

Managing the Emotions Behind Eating

ScienceDaily (May 5, 2010) — How many times have you, after a particularly hard day, reached for some chocolate or ice cream? It's common for many people, but for those trying to lose weight, it can be detrimental to their long term success, and most weight-loss programs never even address it.

Storing Green Electricity as Natural Gas

ScienceDaily (May 5, 2010) — Renewable electricity can be transformed into a substitute for natural gas. Until now, electricity was generated from gas. Now, a German-Austrian cooperation wants to go in the opposite direction. In the future, these researchers and entrepreneurs would like to store surplus electricity -- such as from wind power or solar energy -- as climate-neutral methane, and store it in existing gas storage facilities and the natural gas network.

Study Shows Trend of Increasing Obesity in Pregnant Moms Contributing to Higher Body Fat in Newborns

ScienceDaily (May 4, 2010) — A new study has found for the first time that as Americans are gaining more body fat, so are their babies. The research, which reviewed data from more than 74,000 births, found that a key measure of body fat composition in newborns increased significantly over a 15-year period, mirroring similar increases among pregnant mothers.

Spider-Man Foils Comic Book Thief

Posted by samzenpus on Wednesday May 05, @01:33PM
from the is-that-the-spidey-sense-or-indegestion dept.
chebucto writes"The BBC reports that 'A comic book shop owner in Australia became a real-life superhero when he caught a robber red-handed. Michael Baulderstone, who was dressed as Spider-Man for a promotional event, spied a customer behaving suspiciously during an International Free Comic Day celebration. CCTV footage shows him "leap" into action and confront the would-be shoplifter who had slipped a AU$160 (£97) X-Men book into his bag. ... He said a group of Jedi knights blocked the door to prevent the thief from escaping, as The Flash looked on.'"



Tuesday, May 4, 2010

US Air Force Launches Secret Flying Twinkie

Posted by CmdrTaco on Tuesday May 04, @01:27PM
from the thats-one-big-twinkie dept.
Spectrummag writes"One of the most secretive US Air Force spaceflights in decades, launched this month, is keeping aficionados guessing as to the nature of the secret. The 6000-kilogram, 8-meter X-37B, nicknamed the flying Twinkie because of its stubby-winged shape, is supposed to orbit Earth for several weeks, maneuver in orbit, then glide home. What's it for? Space expert James Oberg tracks the possibilities."