Thursday, January 31, 2008

Paid for your website's traffic

How does it sound to be paid JUST for the traffic on your website?
I think it sounds great.
Your website is your Capital which produces interests, just being there.
This service goes under the name of PayPerPlay.
It is the newest and fastest growing way of advertising.
How does it work?
You have to submit your website and let a relevant audio (lasting 5 seconds) on it.
The ads play only on the web pages where the website owner has placed the PPP code.
Of course the audio will be related to the text placed on the website.
It will play as soon as the visitor arrives and won't need any action from the visitor.
Of course the PPP ad must be placed in an appropriate web page.
But Net Audio Ads are not all.
What makes this way lucrative is the possibility to join an affiliate program that will last till February 1st, 2008.
After this date, the program will convert into a "Host only".
That means you'll be able to make money just with the revenue from the ads posted on your website.
But if you SIGN UP now, you can still sharing the affiliate revenues also after February 1st, 2008.
With this you can be paid for:
1) Ads on your website
2) Ads on referred websites
3) Ads on indirect referred websites

So, coming to a conclusion, you have to register before February 1st, 2008.
Easy, isn't it?

How to be "green" in spite of using the computer 24 hours a day

We all know that turning off your computer when it’s not in use is a smart way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and help fight against the effects of climate change.

In fact, if you leave your computer on 24 hours a day, it could be responsible for releasing up to 1,500 pounds of CO2 into the atmosphere every year. The flying-toaster screen saver is cool…but is it that cool?

But if you have to leave your computer on, here's a way you can make up for it: By joining a distributed computing network that models the effects of climate change.

Distributed computing networks harness the unused power of thousands of personal computers to perform complicated tasks.

For instance, is a distributed network run by Oxford University and other partners that helps climate scientists run climate models on networked computers when those computers are on, but are not running at full capacity.

Once you join the network, you will be asked to download a climate model from the website. It will then run automatically in the background whenever your computer is switched on. When the climate model is finished running, the results are automatically sent back to the site over the Internet for analysis.

Users are invited to watch the climate model process if they like, and are provided with a summary of the model’s results through Or you could simply let the model run and never think about it again.

Full Article

Who wouldn't like to pay less for a domain registration?

Let's be honest, sometimes registering a domain is almost like registering a dream.
Never like today was so easy and fast to begin a business, and, since some realize the dream of their life, why shouldn't you.
The first step is registering your own domain, something that can express your business and what you do and what you're aiming at.
Not easy to find something new, which somebody else didn't think before, but that makes it even more interesting.
You can come out with something very unusual, if you just dig a little bit in the dictionary.
Today is even easier and cheaper if you go to the right website, like Pay Less domain registration. As the name says you pay less the domain and you can also enjoy:

24/7 Customer Support
FREE Email Hosting
FREE URL Forwarding
FREE Management Tools
FREE Domain Name Parking
FREE Member Account
FREE Renewal Reminders
FAST Domain Approval

So, it pays off to pay a visit...

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

"Bionic eyes"

A new contact lens embedded with electronic circuits could be the seed for "bionic eyes" that can see displays overlaid on a person's field of view, researchers say.

The minute circuitry could aid the vision-impaired or could be used to create tiny but discernible readouts offering data such as driving directions or on-the-go Web surfing.

Researchers at the University of Washington created the flexible, biologically safe lens—the first of its kind—using nano-scale manufacturing techniques.

The results were presented January 17 at a meeting of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers in Tucson, Arizona.

"If it works, it would be fabulous," said Blair MacIntyre, who heads the Georgia Institute of Technology's Augmented Environments Lab.

MacIntyre, who was not involved in the new research, works on so-called augmented reality—techniques to overlay visual data using external devices such as headsets.

But a contact lens, he said, could eliminate the need for these bulkier viewing techniques.

Full Article

Tips to make simpler house cleaning

It’s a rare person among us who looks forward to cleaning the house. I certainly don’t, but a clean house is something I enjoy perhaps too much.

I love a clean, uncluttered house, and I’m not afraid to admit it.

So how does a person like me — a clean freak — get the house nice and clean without too much work? I’m sure you know by now that if I can keep things simple, I’m happy.

I constantly experiment with ways to simplify my house-cleaning routine, and what follows are some options I’ve experimented with or am trying out now. Not all methods will appeal to everyone, but I’m hoping that at least a few of the ideas will have some use to you, and perhaps inspire a simpler routine in your life.

Guiding Rule: Simplify, Simplify
Thoreau, of course, had three simplifys in his famous quote, but I’ve simplified that rule even further. :)

To keep a house clean with minimal effort, the guiding rule is to simplify as much as possible. The less you have, the less you have to keep clean and put away. Some examples:

An uncluttered room, with only furniture on the floor, is extremely easy to clean. See below. But if you have all kinds of stuff in the room, you double or triple your cleaning time (or worse).
Fewer clothes means you have fewer things to put away and to wash. Sure,if you have lots of clothes, you can go longer without having to wash, letting the clothes pile up into a huge Fuji-like mountain. But who wants to face that mountain when you run out of clothes to wear?
Fewer things on your kitchen counter means cleaning the counter is a snap - just give it a quick wipe with a washcloth and you’re done. No straightening things out, cleaning in between or under things, putting things away.

Full Article

The pill that induces temporary autism

Need to finish that work project, and wish you had the mental intensity to do it? Just take a synapse-regulating inhibitor, induce temporary autism, and you'll want to ignore your friends and do nothing but number-crunching for days. Autism-inducers could become as popular as Provigil among the geek set by 2020. Last night, in fact, a group German researchers announced they'd perfected the method for inducing autism. (They can also cure it.)

Over the past year, researchers have demonstrated several times that they can turn mice autistic by messing with brain chemistry -- and then "cure" them using the same techniques. The discoveries could lead to a scenario similar to the one in Vernor Vinge's novel A Deepness in the Sky, where people are given a brain treatment called "focusing" that essentially turns them autistic and makes them obsessive, detail-oriented workers.

It might also lead to recreational autism, where people who want to take a break from having messy emotions about other people decide to unplug and enter a state where human relationships are no more important than inanimate objects.

In Norway P2P is official

"As one of many ways to reach people with our content we have decided to do an experiment and make one of our most popular television series available through BitTorrent.This technology makes it possible for us to make our content available in a very high quality without having to invest in large server farms and expensive bandwidth."

The very popular series called “Nordkalotten 365″ has been aired on traditional TV in Norway. Over 900 000 of Norway’s 4,6 million watched the show in average, and the marketshare was close to 50%! “Nordkalotten 365″ is now made available for download. In this series the experienced hiker Lars Monsen has traveled alone through the north of Scandinavia for one year. The first episode is already published and the next episodes will be made available as they are encoded.

The files are MPEG4 H.264, 1024×576 25fps, 3 Mbit/s. No DRM.

So far the experiment has been a huge success. After one day roughly 8000 people have downloaded the torrent file. Because of the limited statistics reporting from the Amazon S3 tracker we are using we don’t have exact numbers from the tracker itself. Taking into account that Norway is a small country with only 4,5 million people this number is above expectations. The file has been out there for one day, and at this point only the first episode of the series is available. The bittorrent technology seems to work especially well for completely legal and high quality downloads. People happily seed the file and the download speeds achieved are reported to several megabits/s. The whole 600 MB file downloading in minutes or even seconds for the people with fast connections.

Full Article

LED: the future in energy saving

What is in absolute the cheapest light?
And talking about cheap, less energy consuming, is something everybody is interested in.
But not everybody knows that the cheapest lights are the LEDS lights.
LED (name for light-emitting diode) is a diode that emits narrow spectrum light, forming what is called electroluminescence.
It is a small area source, and it is used mostly as indicator lights on electronic devices, but could be used also in higher power applications.
That means they could be used as regular household light source.
That is a very good news, because they consume very little electricity and saving, when it comes to energy, is never too much...
The colors are dependent from the wavelength of the light emitted, and they have succeeded in making a variety of colors with even shorter wavelengths.
A combination of red, green and blue LEDs can produce the impression of white light, though white LEDs today are rarely used.
One of the widely used application is for Christmas Lights.
That is because they consume 90% less energy, have a long life, and are safer.
At you can find a big assortment of beautiful colors and shape.
They are UL and Energy Star Approved ,they have Lifetime warranty, and 30 Day No Questions Asked Return Policy.
They also have a Christmas light recycling program, a new line of wedding lights, and of course precious suggestions about the many uses of their LED lights.

Plants more resistant to stress? A gene is responsible

A University of Saskatchewan team of scientists has isolated a gene that has never before been identified in helping plants to resist stress.
Sponsored Links (Ads by Google)

The study—published this month in the top-ranked plant journal The Plant Cell—could pave the way for development of agricultural and forestry crops that are more tolerant to environmental stresses such as ultra-violet light and other types of radiation.

“Our next step is to see if plant genes we’ve isolated also play a similar role in fighting infections,” said U of S microbiologist Wei Xiao. “In previous research, our team and others have shown that similar genes in human and animal cells play an important role in protection against both viral and bacterial infections.”

In an unusual collaboration, Xiao teamed up with U of S biochemist Hong Wang, two post-doctoral fellows and three graduate students on the study. Doctoral student Rui Wen is the lead author on the paper.

Full Article

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

To know the Past and the Present to be able to know the Future

How come there are people, better investors, that no matter how the Market is going, ALWAYS manage to come out with a profit?
Very simple: because they know when to buy and when to sell.
They know when to hurry and when to wait.
In a few words: they know and you don't.
That is why I was quite positively impressed knowing that there is a website where you can to track the activities of professional investment directors down to the minute/share/trade.
And of course that is the best way to learn how to.
Just doing.
And doing it the best way, without risking and with a very good teacher.
In principle knowledge is nothing else than studying what people did before you, learning what to do and what NOT to do.
If you can follow proven investment strategies, see the results and copy them, you have good chances to be successful.
" Being a member of Vestopia has allowed me to manage my portfolio like a seasoned Wall Street veteran - it saves me a whole lot of time, and money."
Not only saving.
You can actually learn how to make profits when most people don't, and see that hard times can also be good times.
"In my opinion, these types of sell-offs, where the good is taken down with the bad offer investors a great opportunity to add to high conviction positions at less expensive prices and to also look in the marketplace for other opportunities which have become attractive. "
That's it. That is the secret most of us would like to know.
When, how and WHAT.
Tell me the future and I'll make you a rich man.
Well, they won't tell you the future, but since "History magistra vitae" it is worth to know about it...

Monday, January 28, 2008

If TV Shows Had Truthful Titles

If TV Shows Had Truthful Titles would be tremendously boring and would get a very low rating.
You have to show normal people in unnormal situations.
For example a crippled who can uncripple himself with the power of his mind.
Or a housewife who is in love with her husband in spite of...or a husband who cheats his wife, but regrets it...or a thief who steals but then gives back what he stole.
Especially near Christmas.
You must show that yes we can...if we look good (even if we are not).
You can tell the most incredible lies and still be believed, the important is that they are feasible.

Free and Legal Music Download

The long-delayed but much-anticipated service from Qtrax is finally going to launch - supposedly going live this Sunday at 12:00 am Eastern. Qtrax, in case you haven't heard, is a P2P file sharing network that has been in the works for eight years. However, it's not just any P2P file-sharing network - it's the world's first free and legal P2P file-sharing network that has the support of all four major record labels (EMI, SonyBMG, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group).

Why Qtrax?
According to a recent study by Jupiter Research, for each song sold, 100 more were stolen. The study also reported that 94% of online music consumers were unwilling to pay for music. The record labels finally got the hint: the Napster Generation thinks music should be free, and they will find a way to get it for free, despite laws or lawsuits. When the record companies realized all their attempts to make up for lost revenue from CD sales had failed, they knew that they now had no alternative but to offer free music to the online masses.

They call it RDF, I call it brainwashing

I’m OK now, but on January 15h, I got caught up in "Steve Jobs Reality-Distortion Field."

That was the day that Jobs spoke at the Macworld Expo, announcing a new lightweight notebook machine, along with a movie rental service and some updates to the iPhone and iPod touch.

Well-known among Apple watchers, the phrase “reality-distortion field” was first uttered 26 years ago, according to Andy Hertzfield. On, he credits Bud Tribble, Hertzfield's manager at Apple at the time, with creating the phrase in 1981 to describe how Jobs can "convince anyone of practically anything."

The term now has its own acronym, RDF, and a listing on Wikipedia, which defines RDF as "the idea that Steve Jobs is able to convince people to believe almost anything with a mix of charm, charisma, bluster, exaggeration and marketing. RDF is said to distort an audience's sense of proportion or scale. Small advances are applauded as breakthroughs. Interesting developments become turning points, or huge leaps forward."

Great Lakes lower water levels

Power plants have been forced to extend pipes that draw in cooling water, former wetlands have dried up, and docks have led to muck rather than water thanks to lower water levels in the Great Lakes. Driving the drying is a decrease in ice cover every winter, according to the Washington Post.

September saw Lake Superior reach its lowest level since record-keeping began in 1926 thanks to ice cover that extends to a thin sheet of ice or a few isolated floes. This, in turn, has led to ships running aground.

Warmer air and water temperatures share the blame for the lack of ice, which is driving the long-term trend of lower lake levels. And because only 1 percent of Great Lakes water is replaced every year, significant lost water may be impossible to replace.

Full Article

Intelligent Cell Phones

Cell phones might soon have the ability to predict when they’ll be plugged in and could even intelligently estimate how many calls a user is likely to make over a period of time, based on findings in a paper[pdf] by researchers at Intel and Rutgers University. They would then use that information to provide better battery life.

The devised system, dubbed CABMAN (for context-aware battery management architecture
for mobile devices*), would be based on three main principles:

- The availability of crucial applications should not be compromised by non-important ones
- Opportunities for charging should be predicted to allow devices to determine how much energy they can expect to have, instead of simply going by the battery level
- Context, such as location information, can be used to predict charging opportunities

CABMAN would predict where it can be charged by learning which towers are nearby when it’s plugged in. Then, by tracking location and processing call logs, the system knows when to alert a user to plug the cell phone in or to stop using battery intensive applications (or not do anything at all if it thinks the phone will be plugged in soon). This, for example, could know when to turn off a phone’s music player on an airplane if the phone won’t be able to make any calls soon.

A prototype was tested using data from another project. The software was on average 12 minutes away from predicting charging opportunities - a great result. The future call time prediction didn’t work as well, so more time is needed to perfect that aspect.

Full Article

Our brains are terrible at assessing modern risks

Is your gym locker room crawling with drug-resistant bacteria? Is the guy with the bulging backpack a suicide bomber? And what about that innocent-looking arugula: Will pesticide residue cause cancer, or do the leaves themselves harbor E. coli? But wait! Not eating enough vegetables is also potentially deadly.

These days, it seems like everything is risky, and worry itself is bad for your health. The more we learn, the less we seem to know—and if anything makes us anxious, it's uncertainty. At the same time, we're living longer, healthier lives. So why does it feel like even the lettuce is out to get us?

The human brain is exquisitely adapted to respond to risk—uncertainty about the outcome of actions. Faced with a precipice or a predator, the brain is biased to make certain decisions. Our biases reflect the choices that kept our ancestors alive. But we have yet to evolve similarly effective responses to statistics, media coverage, and fear-mongering politicians. For most of human existence, 24-hour news channels didn't exist, so we don't have cognitive shortcuts to deal with novel uncertainties.

Still, uncertainty unbalances us, pitching us into anxiety and producing an array of cognitive distortions. Even minor dilemmas like deciding whether to get a cell phone (brain cancer vs. dying on the road because you can't call for help?) can be intolerable for some people. And though emotions are themselves critical to making rational decisions, they were designed for a world in which dangers took the form of predators, not pollutants. Our emotions push us to make snap judgments that once were sensible—but may not be anymore.

Full Article

Sunday, January 27, 2008

House Plans

Who never dreamed to own a Log House?
May be one of those handcrafted, with logs that have been peeled but are essentially unchanged from their original natural appearance?
A stylish, beautiful home? May be with a nice big loft, a huge kitchen where to dine with all the family, with beamed ceiling, wall of windows and a fireplace?
The dream can become reality with the right Log Home Plans.
Or do you dream about a Ranch home, like those Spanish-American style homes of the 19th century?
Also for that you can find beautiful Ranch house plans.
They can faithfully reproduce the vaulted great living room with the big fireplace, a covered porch with the breakfast area, and look exactly like the original.
Or do you prefer the simpler bungalow style?
Also for this you can have detailed bungalow house Plans.
They are simple, but with an artistic touch, with the living room at the center of the house, giving a touch of warmth and coziness.
For every dream there is a reality around the corner, better, on the House Plans And website.

How Indirect Web Links Could Get You Investigated -- or Worse

Just to prove yet again that witch hunts in the U.S.
aren't restricted to 1692 Salem, we have the sophomoric story of a Florida Middle School resource officer under police and state attorney general investigation because "friends" linked from his MySpace page had themselves linked to pornographic sites. The details are illuminating, and more than a little distressing for anyone who cares about free speech.

And golly, it looks like the school involved has its own indirect link contents problems, too. Gulf Middle School's "Resources"
page links to a variety of clip art sites, and they link to ...
well ... let's just say that the entire Internet opens up at
that stage

I'm curious as to why the authorities in Florida are so quick to investigate a school employee for indirect link contents, while obviously the school itself -- which has a "We can accept no responsibility for content on any pages linked" notice on their resources page -- presumably feels that it should be immune to such investigations related to their own official Web site.

If authorities start applying "safe for children" standards to everyone whose Web page links to other pages that themselves at some point and in some fashion link to "inappropriate" material, the entire Internet will be on the chopping block in a "degrees of separation" accusation orgy.

Lauren Weinstein

School Site Shut Down Due to Porn Link

Yesterday I discussed the case of a Florida Middle School resource officer who was under dual investigations due to his MySpace page being linked to "friends" who in some cases themselves were found to be linked to porn sites.

I expressed strong concerns regarding this sort of indirect responsibility being implied. After all, you can only control your own site, and directly linked pages can change without your knowledge or control at any time. When we're talking about indirect (links to links) pages, the situation is even more ludicrous.

I also noted yesterday that the school's own Resources page was problematic when viewed from the standpoint of indirect links, and suggested that a double standard was perhaps being applied.

Today comes word that the school's Web site has apparently been shut down (and as I type this, it continues to be inaccessible), reportedly due to the presence of a direct gay porn link on their resources page.

I'm told that the school currently has no explanation for this link.

However, even giving them the benefit of the doubt and assuming that they were hacked in some manner, this incident certainly emphasizes the dangerous folly of trying to assign responsibility to a Web site or its author for linked pages that aren't their own, and the even more gross insanity of trying to extend such responsibility to indirectly linked pages.

Employing the usually dubious concept of "guilt by association" when evaluating Web links -- particularly indirect ones -- is a sure fire way not only to drag the Internet into a litigation firestorm, but also to decimate the concepts of justice and free speech on the Net.

Lauren Weinstein

Danger from the Sky

Defunct Spy Satellite Falling From Orbit

Could the "hazardous materials" be plutonium? It has been used to power space devices in lieu of solar.
The satellite, which no longer can be controlled, could contain hazardous materials, and it is unknown where on the planet it might come down, they said. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the information is classified as secret.

"Appropriate government agencies are monitoring the situation," said Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council.
"Numerous satellites over the years have come out of orbit and fallen harmlessly. We are looking at potential options to mitigate any possible damage this satellite may cause."

He would not comment on whether it is possible for the satellite to be perhaps shot down by a missile. He said it would be inappropriate to discuss any specifics at this time.

A senior government official said that lawmakers and other nations are being kept apprised of the situation.

Eileen Sullivan

Reached 10 Million Peers

Today, The Pirate Bay reached another milestone, as they broke the 1 million torrents and 10 million peers barrier. The largest BitTorrent tracker just keeps growing and growing, and there is no sign that this will be put to a halt soon.

Last month we reported that The Pirate Bay had doubled the number of torrents and peers on their tracker in 2007. Brokep, one of the co-founders of the popular BitTorrent tracker told us at the time that he expected the tracker to hit 10 million peers during the next big holiday.

It turns out that they didn’t even need a holiday, because the number of peers jumped from 8 million to 10 million in little over a month. The Bay now now tracks over a million torrents and 10 million peers at any given point in time.

Brokep told TorrentFreak that the statistics reported on the frontpage may fluctuate a bit because one of the trackers is too loaded to report its share. However, he assured us that The Pirate Bay indeed tracks over 10 million peers, and more than a million torrents.

In order to keep up with the continuous growth, The Pirate Bay has been upgrading hardware over the past few months. In addition, they moved from Anakata’s Hypercube to the open source Opentracker software, to improve the performance of their trackers.

Full Article

Less Global Warming Less Atlantic Hurricanes

Global warming could reduce how many hurricanes hit the United States, according to a new federal study that clashes with other research.

The new study is the latest in a contentious scientific debate over how man-made global warming may affect the intensity and number of hurricanes.

In it, researchers link warming waters, especially in the Indian and Pacific oceans, to increased vertical wind shear in the Atlantic Ocean near the United States.

Wind shear — a change in wind speed or direction — makes it hard for hurricanes to form, strengthen and stay alive.

So that means "global warming may decrease the likelihood of hurricanes making landfall in the United States," according to researchers at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Miami Lab and the University of Miami.

With every degree Celsius that the oceans warm, the wind shear increases by up to 10 mph, weakening storm formation, said study author Chunzai Wang, a research oceanographer at NOAA.

Winds forming over the Pacific and Indian oceans have global effects, much like El Nino does, he said.

Wang said he based his study on observations instead of computer models and records of landfall hurricanes through more than 100 years.

His study is to be published Wednesday in Geophysical Research Letters.

Critics say Wang's study is based on poor data that was rejected by scientists on the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Full Article

Electric pickup truck built by 16 year-old

We all know the major manufacturers are saying it can’t be done, so I guess it’s up to the youth!

Andrew Angelloti, an Ecomodder forum member, converted his very own 1988 Mazda pickup to run on electricity last year, using $6,000 he had saved up from his part time job as a life guard. He built his truck using 20 flooded lead acid batteries to create 120 volts, which he couples to a 60 HP 9” electric motor.

How does it perform? Reaches a top speed of 55mph, has an acceleration of “not too bad…,” and can get up to 40 miles on a charge (which is more than enough to get him to work and back, and coincidentally, will be something similar to what the Chevy Volt is supposed to be able to do).

What’s even more amazing is that Andrew is now working on a second EV conversion. This time he’s doing the same with a 1992 Toyota Tercel, but with a much bigger motor for a lot more speed. He’s hoping to use a 120HP motor to have the top speed up to 80 MPH with a bit of sacrifice of the range.

I wish Andrew the best of luck, as he is certainly going out there and doing it on his own, without waiting for the major manufacturers to do it for him.

For more information on both of the conversions, please visitAndrew’s blog.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

U.S. government’s belief in its ownership of the world

Noam Chomsky is a noted linguist, author, and foreign policy expert. On January 15, Michael Shank interviewed him on the latest developments in U.S. policy toward Iraq, Iran, and Pakistan. In the first part of this two-part interview, Chomsky also discussed how the U.S. government’s belief in its ownership of the world shapes its foreign policy.

Michael Shank: Is the leading Democrats’ policy vis-à-vis Iraq at all different from the Bush administration’s policy?

Noam Chomsky: It’s somewhat different. The situation is very similar to Vietnam. The opposition to the war today in elite sectors, including every viable candidate, is pure cynicism, completely unprincipled: “If we can get away with it, it’s fine. If it costs us too much, it’s bad.” That’s the way the Vietnam opposition was in the elite sectors.

Take, say, Anthony Lewis, who’s about as far to the critical extreme as you can find in the media. In his final words evaluating the war in The New York Times in 1975, he said the war began with “blundering efforts to do good” but by 1969, namely a year after the American business community had turned against the war, it was clear that the United States “could not impose a solution except at a price too costly to itself,” so therefore it was a “disastrous mistake.” Nazi generals could have said the same thing after Stalingrad and probably did. That’s the extreme position in the left liberal spectrum. Or take the distinguished historian and Kennedy advisor Arthur Schlesinger. When the war was going sour under LBJ, he wrote that “we all pray” that the hawks are right and that more troops will lead to victory. And he knew what victory meant. He said we’re leaving “a land of ruin and wreck,” but “we all pray” that escalation will succeed and if it does “we may all be saluting the wisdom and statesmanship of the American government.” But probably the hawks are wrong, so escalation is a bad idea.

You can translate the rhetoric almost word by word into the elite, including political elite, opposition to the Iraq war.

It’s based on two principles. The first principle is: “we totally reject American ideals.” The only people who accept American ideals are Iraqis. The United States totally rejects them. What American ideals? The principles of the Nuremburg decision. The Nuremburg tribunal, which is basically American, expressed high ideals, which we profess. Namely, of all the war crimes, aggression is the supreme international crime, which encompasses within it all of the evil that follows. It’s obvious that the Iraq invasion is a pure case of aggression and therefore, according to our ideals, it encompasses all the evil that follows, like sectarian warfare, al-Qaeda Iraq, Abu Ghraib, and everything else.

Full Article

Ethanol for $1 a Gallon

A biofuel startup in Illinois can make ethanol from just about anything organic for less than $1 per gallon, and it wouldn't interfere with food supplies, company officials said.

Coskata, which is backed by General Motors and other investors, uses bacteria to convert almost any organic material, from corn husks (but not the corn itself) to municipal trash, into ethanol.

"It's not five years away, it's not 10 years away. It's affordable, and it's now," said Wes Bolsen, the company's vice president of business development.

The discovery underscores the rapid innovation under way in the race to make cellulosic ethanol cheaply. With the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 requiring an almost five-fold increase in ethanol production to 36 billion gallons annually by 2022, scientists are working quickly to reach that breakthrough.

"It signals just how hot the competition is right now," said David Friedman, research director of the clean vehicles program at the Union of Concerned Scientists. "There are a lot of people diving into this right now, trying to figure out how to crack the nut. This increases my confidence that someone will do it."

Besides cutting production costs to fire sale prices, the process avoids some key drawbacks of making ethanol from corn, company officials said. It wouldn't impact the food supply, and its net energy balance is high because the technique works almost anywhere using almost anything with great efficiency. The end result will be E85 sold at the pump for about a dollar cheaper per gallon than gasoline, according to the company.

Full Article

Estonia's war against Russian's cyber war

A 20-year-old ethnic Russian man is the first person to be convicted for taking part in a "cyber war" against Estonia.

Dmitri Galushkevich was fined 17,500 kroons (£830) for an attack which blocked the website of the Reform Party of Prime Minister Andrus Ansip.

The assault, between 25 April and 4 May 2007, was one of a series by hackers on Estonian institutions and businesses.

At the time, Estonia accused the Russian government of orchestrating the attacks. Moscow denied any involvement.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the BBC in May 2007 that the allegations were "completely untrue".

Minority attacks

The attacks took place against a backdrop of riots by ethnic Russian Estonians prompted by the removal of a Soviet war memorial from the centre of Tallinn.

Pirate message which appeared on Estonian Reform Party's website (image: Russian news website

During the unrest, one person was killed and more than 150 injured.

Moving the so-called Bronze Soldier was seen as an affront to the memory of Russian soldiers who died during World War II.

Prosecutors said Mr Galushkevich, a student, had claimed the attack was an act of protest against Mr Ansip, who became a hate figure for Estonia's Russian minority.

Ethnic Russians make up about a quarter of Estonia's population of 1.3 million.

Full Article

NANO Future

Could nanotechnology help squeeze more oil and gas out of the ground? That's the hope of a consortium of energy companies that is putting millions of dollars into the development of new micro- and nanosensor technologies.

The seven companies that make up the Advanced Energy Consortium (AEC), which includes Halliburton Energy Services, BP America, and ConocoPhilips, will put up $21 million in total to fund the research. The aim is to develop subsurface sensors that can be used to improve both the discovery and the recovery of hydrocarbons.

"It's been a long time coming," says Wade Adams, director of the Richard E. Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology at Rice University, in Houston, a technical partner to the consortium. "It's the first time the energy companies have got together to fund this kind of research, so it really is a big deal," he says.

Currently, even with the most advanced recovery techniques, only about 40 percent of the oil and gas in reservoirs can be recovered. The hope is that by injecting novel sensors into these reservoirs, it will be possible to more accurately map them in 3-D, increase the amount of fuel extracted, and minimize the environmental impact.

The financial investment--equivalent to $1 million per year from each company for three years--is "a very good sign," says Kris Pister, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of California, Berkeley, who has spent several years developing distributed sensors known as smart dust. It means that the energy companies now understand the potential of small-scale distributed-sensors technologies, he says.

"There is good reason to suspect that this technology could help," says Pister. Distributed wireless sensor technologies are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and now even have their own wireless standard: the highway addressable remote transducer, or HART.

Right now, the only way to find these reservoirs and gauge their precise size and capacity is through seismic means, or by simply drilling down. "But you don't get much information," says Adams. Surface and down-hole seismic techniques have limited resolution, while drilling can only take readings for the two-foot region surrounding the drill bore, he says.

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The computer is 35,000 year old

The history of computing spans thousands of years - from the primitive notched bones found in Africa, to the invention of abacus in 2400 BC, to Charles Babbage’s Difference Engine in 1883, to the rise of the popularity of Personal Computers (PCs) in the 1970s. For the most part, this timeline is marked by devices that bear little or no resemblance to present-day machines both in form and capabilities.

We’ve had many posts on Neatorama about the newest and greatest in computers and technology. But for this article, let’s go back - way back - and take a look at the wonderful world of early computing.
Lebombo and Ishango Bones

The Lebombo bone is a 35,000-year-old baboon fibula discovered in a cave in the Lebombo mountains in Swaziland. The bone has a series of 29 notches that were deliberately cut to help ancient bushmen calculate numbers and perhaps also measure the passage of time. It is considered the oldest known mathematical artifact.
he unusual groupings of the notches on the Ishango bone (see above), discovered in what was then the Belgian Congo, suggested that it was some sort of a stone age calculation tool. The 20,000-year-old bone revealed that early civilization had mastered arithmetic series and even the concept of prime numbers.

Today, abacus is mostly synonymous with the Chinese suanpan version, but in actuality it had been used in Babylon as early as 2400 BC. The abacus was also found in ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome. Even the Aztecs had their own version.

The Roman pocket abacus was the first portable calculating device, presumably invented to help tax collectors do math while on the go!

Antikythera Mechanism

In 1900, a Greek sponge diver spotted a shipwreck off the coast of the tiny island of Antikythera. Little did he know that amongst the jewelry and statues recovered from the wreck, the most precious item would be a lump of green rock with gears sticking out of it.
The "rock" turned out to be the earliest example of analog computer: an intricate mechanism with more than 30 gears and writings that scientists thought was used to calculate the motion of the sun and the moon against a background of fixed stars.

The Antikythera Mechanism, as the device was named, was dated from around 100 BC. It would take about another 1,000 years for the appearance of similar levels of technical sophistication in the West. Who built the machine and why the technology was lost remained a mystery.
Napier’s Bones

In 1614, Scottish mathematician John Napier proposed a radical idea called logarithm that made calculations by hand much easier and quicker. (That wasn’t his only contribution to math: Napier was a big proponent of the decimal point, which wasn’t much in use until he came around.)

He also created a device, called Napier’s bones, that let people perform multiplications by doing a series of additions (which was a lot easier to do) and divisions as a series of subtraction. It could even do square and cube roots! This invention may seem trivial to you and me, but it
was a significant advancement in computing at the time.
Wilhelm Schickard’s Calculating Clock

In 1623, Wilhelm Schickard of the University of Tübingen, Württemberg (now part of Germany), invented the first mechanical calculator. Schickard’s contemporaries called the machine the Speeding Clock or the Calculating Clock.

Schickard’s calculator, which was built 20 years before Blaise Pascal and Gottfried Leibniz’s machines, could add and subtract six-digit numbers (with a bell as an overflow alarm!). This invention was used by his friend, astronomer Johannes Kepler, to calculate astronomical tables, which was a big leap for astronomy at the time. For this, Wilhelm Schickard was considered by some to be the "Father of Computer Age."

Wilhelm Schickard died of the Bubonic Plague in 1635, thirteen years after inventing the world’s first mechanical calculator. The prototype and plans for the calculator was lost to history until the 20th century, when the machine’s design was discovered among Kepler’s papers.

In 1960, mathematician Bruno Von Freytag constructed a working model of Schickard Calculator from the plans. (Image: Institut für Astronomie und Astrophysik, Universität Tübingen)
Blaise Pascal’s Pascaline

The second mechanical calculator, called the Pascaline or the Arithmetique, was invented in 1645 by Blaise Pascal. Pascal started working on his calculator when he was just 19 years old, out of boredom. He created a device to help his father, a tax collector, to crunch numbers.

In 1649, Pascal received a Royal Privilege giving him the exclusive right to make and sell calculating machines in France. However, because of the complexity of his machine and its limitation (the Pascaline could only add and subtract, and frequently jammed), he managed to sell just a little over a dozen.
The basic mechanism of the Pascaline is a series of gears - when the first gear with ten teeth made one rotation (one to ten), it shifts a second gear until it rotated ten times (one hundred). The second gear shifted a third one (thousands) and so on. This mechanism is still in use today in car odometers, electricity meters and at the gas pumps.

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How to achieve a blessed sleep

Blessed sleep -- the holy grail of health. Lack of sleep can send your blood sugar levels skyrocketing, contribute to weight gain, lead to depression, put you at risk for diabetes, and cause brain damage.

That's just the warm-up. Sleep deprivation can alter your levels of thyroid and stress hormones, potentially affecting everything from your memory to your immune system, heart, and metabolism. Of course, lack of sleep can kill you instantly -- as when you run your car off the road because you've dozed at the wheel (an estimated 71,000 people are injured in fall-asleep crashes each year). In fact, studies find that if you've been awake through the night, it's as if you had a performance impairment equal to .10 percent blood alcohol content, more than enough to get you arrested for drunk driving in most states.

Given the evidence, you'd think we'd all be hitting the pillow as soon as the sun dropped below the horizon. Ha! Today Americans get 25 percent less sleep than they did a century ago. Nearly 4 out of 10 don't get the minimum 7 hours of sleep necessary for optimal health and daytime functioning, while 15 percent get less than 6 hours most nights.

Since we're all in agreement that a good night's sleep is one of the best things you can do for your health and mood, pick three of these tips to follow each night until you get the night's sleep you so desperately crave.

1. Create a transition routine. This is something you do every night before bed. It could be as simple as letting the cat out, turning out the lights, turning down the heat, washing your face, and brushing your teeth. Or it could be a series of yoga or meditation exercises. Regardless, it should be consistent to the point that you do it without even thinking about it. As you begin to move into your "nightly routine," your mind will get the signal that it's time to chill out and tune down, dialing down stress hormones and physiologically preparing you for sleep.

2. Figure out your body cycle. Ever find that you get really sleepy at 10 p.m., that the sleepiness passes, and that by the time the late news comes on, you're wide-awake? Some experts believe sleepiness comes in cycles. Push past a period of sleepiness and you likely won't be able to fall asleep very easily for a while. If you've noticed these kinds of rhythms in your own body clock, use them to your advantage. When sleepiness comes, get to bed. Otherwise, it might be a long time until you are ready to fall asleep again.

3. Sprinkle just-washed sheets and pillowcases with lavender water and iron them before making up your bed. The scent is scientifically proven to promote relaxation, and the repetition and mindlessness of ironing will soothe you. Or, instead of ironing your sheets, do the next best thing: Put lavender water in a perfume atomizer and spray above your bed just before climbing in.

4. Hide your clock under your bed or on the bottom shelf of your night stand, where its glow won't disturb you. That way, if you do wake in the middle of the night or have problems sleeping, you won't fret over how late it is and how much sleep you're missing.

5. Switch your pillow. If you're constantly pounding it, turning it over and upside down, the poor pillow deserves a break. Find a fresh new pillow from the linen closet, put a sweet-smelling case on it, and try again.

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DNA display telepathy

DNA molecules can display what almost seems like telepathy, research now reveals.

Double helixes of DNA can recognize matching molecules from a distance and then gather together, all seemingly without help from any other molecules, scientists find. Previously, under the classic understanding of DNA, scientists had no reason to suspect that double helixes of the molecule could sort themselves by type, let alone seek each other out.

The spiraling structure of DNA includes strings of molecules called bases. Each of its four bases, commonly known by the letters A, T, C and G, is chemically attracted to a specific partner — A likes binding to T, and C to G. The scheme binds paired strands of DNA into the double helix the molecule is famous for.

Scientists investigated double-stranded DNA tagged with fluorescent compounds. These molecules were placed in saltwater that contained no proteins or other material that could interfere with the experiment or help the DNA molecules communicate.

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Friday, January 25, 2008

"To hear with eyes belongs to love's fine wit."

What do I mean if I say I miss you?
I feel an empty space close to me.
I need to see you, I need to talk to you, I need somebody to live my everyday life for and with.
I miss a big part of my world, the part that makes my every thought, action, care, worth of.
What is life if you do not share it?
What is a happy moment if you cannot live it with someone else, if you have nobody to tell, to explain, to live it with?
Life is communication, life is sharing, life is loving.
What is the most romantic thought?
I used to love reading Shakespeare's sonnets.
He is the one who can really explain what love is.
My favorite is the one that ends:

"O, learn to read what silent love hath writ:
To hear with eyes belongs to love's fine wit."

Yes, to hear with eyes is the essence of love.

The new fronteer of transplant: No anti-rejection drugs

In what's being called a major advance in organ transplants, doctors say they have developed a technique that could free many patients from having to take anti-rejection drugs for the rest of their lives.
The treatment involved weakening the patient's immune system, then giving the recipient bone marrow from the person who donated the organ. In one experiment, four of five kidney recipients were off immune-suppressing medicines up to five years later.

"There's reason to hope these patients will be off drugs for the rest of their lives," said Dr. David Sachs of Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, who led the research published in Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine.

Since the world's first transplant more than 50 years ago, scientists have searched for ways to trick the body to accept a foreign organ as its own. Immune-suppressing drugs that prevent organ rejection came into wide use in the 1980s. But they raise the risk of cancer, kidney failure and many other problems. And they have unpleasant side effects such as excessive hair growth, bloating and tremors.

Eliminating the need for anti-rejection drugs is "a huge advance," said Dr. Suzanne Ildstad, a University of Louisville immunology specialist who had no role in the work.

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Special Marijuana Vending Machines

Holy crap, what country is LA in? I mean, last time I was there I was surprised enough at the billboards offering medicinal marijuana cards, but this is insane. Starting on Monday, people who have medical conditions such as glaucoma, cancer, and the deadly not-stoned-enough virus can start getting their fat buds from special "AVMs."

These electronic drug dealers won't be out on the street next to a Pepsi machine, of course. No, they'll be "housed in standalone rooms, abutting two dispensaries and protected by round-the-clock security guards." To use them, you'll need to go with a prescription in hand, get fingerprinted and get a prepaid credit card that's loaded up with your dosage and what strain of weed you want. Yeah, no joke, the pharmacists in LA give you a choice between OG Kush and Granddaddy Purple. In the future, the machines may also be outfitted to sell other popular drugs such as Viagra, Vicodin and Propecia. Combine all four for a really interesting night that'll also slowly grow your hair back!

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What recession really looks like

As the US economy inches ever closer to a recession, it might provide a little perspective to look at what a real economic crisis looks like. Plagued by hyperinflation of over 50,000% a year, Zimbabwe's central bank recently decided to issue $10 million notes-- believed to be the highest denomination of currency in the world today. The bill, worth less than US$4, is barely enough to purchase a hamburger. One writer illustrates the rampant inflation:

"The bill is exactly the same color, layout and design as a $20 bill I've been carrying in my wallet since my trip to Zimbabwe 15 months ago... When I wrote about that $20, it was worth about $0.025 USD - a silly amount of money to represent with a bill, but still a functional piece of currency. At the moment, that bill is worth $0.00000005 cents, or 5 hundred-millionths of a cent."

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If you want tips for eBay's Feedbacks

POSITIVE: Item shipped quickly, have been having erotic dreams about seller. Thanks!

POSITIVE: Thanks for great Rainbow Brite lunchbox. Should shrunken head be inside?

NEUTRAL: Excellent communication, but should've poked holes in box before shipping the kitten. Refunded.

NEGATIVE: Despite indication in listing, I could not fit item into any of my body cavities.

NEGATIVE: Honda R-Type sticker did not add horsepower as advertised.

NEUTRAL: Item shipped promptly and in good condition, but I should not have to bid on birthday presents from my parents.

POSITIVE: I don't really remember what I ordered. But I've been sitting in the box it came in all day, and it's great!

NEGATIVE: Product didn't work, possibly broken. I woke up this morning and was disappointed to find I still believe in Jesus Christ our Savior. :(

POSITIVE: Excellent Buyer. A++++++. Thrilled by the quartz movement of the "Rolex". HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

NEGATIVE: Should have been clearer that seller only accepts payment in Bhats via Eastern Union Moneygram.

POSITIVE: Plain brown packaging seemed to fool my wife. Thanks!

NEGATIVE: The dog won't hunt.

NEGATIVE: Very nice monkey mascot costume, but it's a size 34, not a 63 as advertised.

NEGATIVE: Lederhosen not as pink as the picture led me to believe.

POSITIVE: A+++++. Items are exactly as described. Best case of kalashnikovs I've ever bought. Allah Akbar!

NEGATIVE: This is clearly the ninth, NOT THE SIXTH, repackaging of Mad Super Special #24.

POSITIVE: One of the scents mixed in with the packing peanuts remind me of a passionate weekend in Rio... was that you?

POSITIVE: The way you wrote my zip-code makes me weak in the knees. Such smooth strokes. A+!

NEGATIVE: Though you did nothing wrong, I am giving you this negative feedback to teach you that the universe is arbitrary and unfair.

NEGATIVE: Buying this Space 1999 Lunchbox did not fill the void in my empty life for as long as I'd hoped.

Music isn't dying, it's changing

An anecdote in a recent Economist perfectly summed up the problems facing the major music labels. After EMI, the smallest of the Big Four, invited a teen focus group to its London headquarters in 2006, it wanted to give the teens something for their time. The response is worth quoting in full.

At the end of the session the EMI bosses thanked them for their comments and told them to help themselves to a big pile of CDs sitting on a table. But none of the teens took any of the CDs, even though they were free. "That was the moment we realised the game was completely up," says a person who was there.

Given the years of declining revenues at the major labels and the constant stream of stories in the mainstream press about music's decline, you'd be forgiven for thinking that the music industry's pallbearers are already lined up and waiting in the hallway. But music isn't on its deathbed yet; in fact, people are listening to more artists than ever before, on more white earbuds than ever before, in more places than ever before. They're just not paying as much.

Don't put all the blame on file-swapping, either, or chalk the problems up to an inability to "compete with free." Digital music sales soared in 2007, and in fact, the total number of "units" moved during the year increased over 2006. eMusic, the number two music download service in the US behind iTunes, doubled its own projections for the Christmas season, pushed out 10 million tracks in the month of December, and added 50,000 new paying customers in the last six months.

And all of this happened without the four major labels even offering DRM-free tracks online. Now that Sony BMG has finally capitulated, 2008 is poised to be the year digital goes so mainstream that even your parents use it.

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Recession: free fall?

Many economists are predicting a short, shallow recession. But there's also a significant risk of a more serious economic decline.

Mark Zandi, Chief Economist of Moody's says that policy makers need to be more aggressive to stimulate the economy.

A bear market and fears of a recession are wearing on small investors who are focused on the long term.

The sputtering U.S. economy has gotten everyone from the financial markets to the Federal Reserve to Congress in a panic.

But here's a disheartening message for those already worried about economic growth -- it could get much worse.

Most economists who believe a recession is already here or at least near are looking for a relatively short and mild downturn, perhaps lasting only two or three quarters.

But many of those same economists say they also can envision a worst-case scenario where spending by consumers and businesses falls off sharply, unemployment heads higher than normal during a typical recession and housing and credit market problems worsen.

"I can easily imagine [the economy] going into a free fall," said Dean Baker, the chief economist for the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "The danger is that housing prices continue to tumble and accelerate, people's ability to pull out equity will evaporate, and you'll see a serious downturn in consumption."

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100.000 years but it doesn't look his age

An almost complete human skull dating back 80,000 to 100,000 years has been unearthed in central China, state media reported Wednesday.

The skull, consisting of 16 pieces, was dug up last month after two years of excavation at a site in Xuchang in Henan province, the China Daily said.

The pieces were fossilised because they were buried near the mouth of a spring whose water had a high calcium content, the report said.

The People's Daily newspaper said the skull was expected to provide "direct evidence" concerning the origins of human beings in east Asia, as very few human fossils dating back to about 100,000 years ago had ever been found outside Africa.

The China Daily said that the skull, with protruding bones over the eye sockets and a small forehead, was "the greatest discovery in China after the Peking Man and Upper Cave Man skulls were found in Beijing early last century".

However, experts contacted by AFP said the importance of the discovery appeared to be over-stated in the reports.

"It is far from the greatest judging from points such as the completeness, the time, and the significance of problems it can explain," said Wu Xinzhi, a professor and academician at the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

"So far, it just can prove that there were human beings living in Henan about 80,000 to 100,000 years ago and the shape of their heads was roughly what the skull shows."

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Those healthy discussions...

Fighting with your spouse can actually be good for your health with people who bottle it all up found to die earlier, a new study shows.

Researchers at the University of Michigan School of Public Health and its Psychology Department released preliminary findings after 17 years of following 192 couples.

The couples fell into four categories: where both partners expressed anger when they felt unfairly attacked, where neither partner expressed their anger, and one category each for where the wife suppressed her feelings and where the husband did so.

"I would say that if you don't express your feelings to your partner and tell them what the problem is when you're unfairly attacked, then you're in trouble," said Ernest Harburg, lead author of the study, in an interview.

The study found that those who kept their anger in were twice as likely to die earlier than those who don't.

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Thursday, January 24, 2008

Best office supplies

One way to increase profits, especially if you own a small business, is to lower expenses.
But of course without losing quality and quantity of your needs.
To achieve that you should scour the Internet no stop or having somebody to do it all day long.
And you would save on one side and lose on the other.
So, what's the solution?
To trust people who do that, searching the Internet for new promotional codes, and updating their site daily to offer you the best deals and Office Depot promotions possible.
You can easily save a lot on Inkjets, Office Furniture,getting discount coupons up to 20%.
And of course you can have all the possible discounts for office furniture, equipment, supplies, computers and inkjet cartridges.
Besides, you also find tips and suggestion to transform your home in a comfortable office, avoiding the hassle of kids shouting or other domestical distractions.
You'll find out that it is really possible to be creative and productive at home, providing you adopt certain procedures, like setting a schedule, trying to be professional, setting rules and keeping distractions to a minimum.
And of course using the right furniture and the right tools to assist you in your job.
Everything gets easier if you have good instruments like the right printer or the right computer, of course at the right price...

The top 10 dead (or dying) computer skills

The harder you try to declare a technology dead, it seems, the more you turn up evidence of its continuing existence. Nevertheless, after speaking with several industry stalwarts, we've compiled a list of skills and technologies that, while not dead, can perhaps be said to be in the process of dying. Or as Stewart Padveen, Internet entrepreneur and currently founder of AdPickles Inc., says, "Obsolescence is a relative -- not absolute -- term in the world of technology."

1. Cobol
Y2k was like a second gold rush for Cobol programmers who were seeing dwindling need for their skills. But six-and-a-half years later, there's no savior in sight for this fading language. At the same time, while there's little curriculum coverage anymore at universities teaching computer science, "when you talk to practitioners, they'll say there are applications in thousands of organizations that have to be maintained," says Heikki Topi, chair of computer information services at Bentley
College in Waltham, Mass., and a member of the education board for the Association for Computing Machinery.

And for those who want to help do that, you can actually learn Cobol at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, which according to Mary Sumner, a professor there, still offers a Cobol course. "Two of the major employers in the area still use Cobol, and for many of their entry-level jobs, they want to see that on the transcript," she says.
"Until that changes, we'd be doing the students a disservice by not offering it." (see also: "Cobol Coders: Going, Going, Gone? ")

2. Nonrelational DBMS
In the 1980s, there were two major database management systems approaches: hierarchical systems, such as IBM's IMS and SAS Institute Inc.'s System 2000, and network DBMS, such as CA's IDMS and Oracle Corp.'s DBMS, formerly the VAX DBMS. Today, however, both have been replaced by the relational DBMS approach, embodied by SQL databases such as DB2, Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server, says Topi. "The others are rarely covered anymore in database curricula," he says.

3. Non-IP networks
TCP/IP has largely taken over the networking world, and as a result, there's less demand than ever for IBM Systems Network Architecture (SNA) skills. "It's worth virtually nothing on the market," says David Foote, president of Foote Partners LLC in New Canaan, Conn. Foote tracks market pay for individual IT skills, which companies usually pay as a lump sum or a percentage of workers' base pay, either as a bonus or an adjustment to their base salary. SNA, Foote says, commands less than 1% premium pay. "It's like a penny from 1922 -- there has to be someone who wants
to buy it."

Despite the fact that many banks, insurance firms and other companies still have large investments in SNA networks, the educational offerings in this area are also rare, according to Topi. "The dominant model of protocols is TCP/IP and the Internet technologies," he says.

4. cc:Mail
This store-and-forward LAN-based e-mail system from the 1980s was once used by about 20 million people. However, as e-mail was integrated into more-complex systems such as Lotus Notes and Microsoft Exchange, its popularity waned, and in 2000, it was withdrawn from the market.
According to Foote, "cc:Mail is a bygone era. Now e-mail is tied into everything else, and cc:Mail didn't make that leap." Just the same, the product continues to be commercially supported by Global System Services Corp. in Mountain View, Calif.

5. ColdFusion
This once-popular Web programming language -- released in the mid-1990s by Allaire Corp. (which was later purchased by Macromedia Inc., which itself was acquired by Adobe Systems Inc.) -- has since been superseded by other development platforms, including Microsoft Corp.'s Active Server Pages and .Net, as well as Java, Ruby on Rails, Python, PHP and other open-source languages.

Debates continue over whether ColdFusion is as robust and scalable as its competitors, but nevertheless, premiums paid for ColdFusion programmers have dropped way off, according to Foote. "It was really popular at one time, but the market is now crowded with other products," he says.

6. C programming
As the Web takes over, C languages are also becoming less relevant, according to Padveen. "C++ and C Sharp are still alive and kicking, but try to find a basic C-only programmer today, and you'll likely find a guy that's unemployed and/or training for a new skill," he says. (see also: "Hot Skills, Cold Skills ")

7. PowerBuilder
Recruiters that have been around since the 1990s, such as David Hayes, president of HireMinds LLC in Cambridge, Mass., remember when PowerBuilder programmers were "hot, hot, hot," as he says. Developed by Powersoft Inc., this client/server development tool in 1994 was bought by Sybase Inc., which was once a strong Oracle competitor.

Today, PowerBuilder developers are at the very bottom of the list of in-demand application development and platform skills, with pay about equal to Cobol programmers, according to Foote. Nevertheless, the product keeps on trucking, with PowerBuilder 11 expected this year, which has the ability to generate .Net code. (see also: "35 Technologies that shaped the industry ")

8. Certified NetWare Engineers
In the early 1990s, it was all the rage to become a Certified NetWare Engineer, especially with Novell Inc. enjoying 90% market share for PC-based servers. Today, however, you don't have to look far to find CNEs retraining themselves with other skills to stay marketable. "It seems like it happened overnight," Hayes says. "Everyone had Novell, and within a two-year period, they'd all switched to NT." Novell says it will continue supporting NetWare 6.5 through at least 2015; however, it has also retired several of its NetWare certifications, including Master
CNE and NetWare 5 CNE, and it plans to retire NetWare 6 CNE. "Companies are still paying skill premiums for CNEs, but they're losing value," Foote says.

9. PC network administrators
With the accelerating move to consolidate Windows servers, some see substantially less demand for PC network administrators. "You see the evidence for that in the demise of those programs at the technical and two-year schools and the loss of instructors," says Nate Viall, president of Nate Viall & Associates, an AS/400 (iSeries) recruiting company.

10. OS/2
A rough translation of OS/2 could be "wrong horse." Initially created by Microsoft and IBM and released with great fanfare in 1987, the collaboration soon unraveled, and after repeated rumors of its demise, IBM finally discontinued sales in 2005. OS/2 still has a dedicated community, however, and a company called Serenity Systems International still sells the operating system under the name eComStation. (see also:
"IBM, Bankers at Odds Over OS/2 Migration Path ")


Modern economists have assumed that people in auctions behave
rationally. Then came eBay.

In Rome, they called it calor licitantis, or "bidder's heat." If you got swept up in the passion of an auction and paid way too much for something, you could plead a form of temporary insanity, and the judges might step in and let you off the hook (and get you your money back).

Good luck finding that kind of help the next time you overbid on that used iPod on eBay. You bid for it, you pressed the button, you bought it.

The Romans knew something that modern economists lost sight of at some point: Auctions lead people to do weird things. For a long time, economists have explored and even reveled in the supposed purity of auctions, viewing them as uncannily efficient means of moving goods into the hands of people who value them the most.

In fact, studying auctions has long been a fertile subfield within economics. The late economist William Vickrey won a Nobel in economic science, in part for his work in auctions. A 1961 paper of Vickrey's detailed the elegance of so-called sealed-bid, second-price auctions, in which the winner pays the price submitted by the second-place bidder. (Among other advantages, such auctions reduce the likelihood
that a bidder will overpay for an item.) This spring, Harvard's Susan Athey, who helped British Columbia design timber auctions crucial to its economy, won the John Bates Clark Medal, given to the most accomplished economist under 40.

Now, however, economists and other social scientists are as likely to be interested in the quirks and inefficiencies of auctions -- and the irrationality of bidders -- as in their elegance. And since eBay, the hugely successful online auction site, offers a mountain of data about sellers and bidders every day, its glazed-eyed devotees are the guinea pigs for this new wave of research.

The new work -- call it "eBay studies" -- highlights the degree to which human psychological quirks, and not just supply and demand, drive auctions. Studies of eBay might ultimately help economists ensure that high-stakes auctions, like those through which the US government distributes the electromagnetic spectrum, are as efficient and fair as possible. But understanding eBay, with its $6 billion in
revenues last year, is itself no small matter.

By Christopher Shea

A look into the world of bottled water

"Thirty years ago, bottled water barely existed as a business in the United States. Last year, we spent more on Poland Spring, Fiji Water, Evian, Aquafina, and Dasani than we spent on iPods or movie tickets-- $15 billion. It will be $16 billion this year."

"We're moving 1 billion bottles of water around a week in ships, trains, and trucks in the United States alone. That's a weekly convoy equivalent to 37,800 18-wheelers delivering water. (Water weighs 81/3 pounds a gallon. It's so heavy you can't fill an 18-wheeler with bottled water--you have to leave empty space.)"

"And in Fiji, a state-of-the-art factory spins out more than a million bottles a day of the hippest bottled water on the U.S. market today, while more than half the people in Fiji do not have safe, reliable drinking water. Which means it is easier for the typical American in Beverly Hills or Baltimore to get a drink of safe, pure, refreshing Fiji water than it is for most people in Fiji."

Sunil Garg

The Net gets Pink

It's arrived: the feminisation of the net

Forget the 20-something man playing online fantasy football and selling motorbike parts on eBay. The internet has a new user.

For years cyberspace has been tailored to an audience of mainly young men but for the first time women webusers have taken the lead in key age groups. At the same time an army of silver surfers has emerged and the over 65s are spending more hours online than any other age group.

The latest snapshot of Britain's communications market by regulator Ofcom turns the established assumptions about web users upside down. It also shows all of us spending more time online and on our mobiles than ever before.

Watching television, surfing the web, making phone calls and listening to the radio now take up an average 50 hours a week. While TV watching, radio listening and home phone use have all fallen since 2002, our daily minutes on the web have doubled.

The UK has the most active internet population in Europe thanks to widely available broadband connections that are getting cheaper every year.

The boom in web use is nothing new. But what website owners such as newspapers, TV companies and travel agents have to get to grips with is a new type of surfer.

One significant trend that stands out is an apparent feminisation of the internet. "Ever since it kicked off in the early 90s the web has been male-dominated. For the first time this year women are spending more time on the internet than men," says Peter Phillips, strategy and market developments partner at Ofcom, referring to web users in the 25 to 49 age bracket. "It's a big shift and has implications for the kind of content that content providers want to have on the internet."

Among 25- to 34-year-olds, women now spend more time using the internet than men, according to the Ofcom report published today. Although men account for the majority of web time in most other age groups, women have also taken a slight but significant lead in the 35-49 bracket.
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Key trends

· Britons are the most active web users in Europe and spend an average 36 minutes each online every day, up from 14 minutes in 2002. · Three-quarters of 11 year-olds have their own TV, games console and mobile. · Two-thirds of children do not believe they could easily live without a mobile and the internet. · Some 15% of UK households have a digital video recorder and 78% use it to fast-forward through adverts. · Some 16% of over-65s use the web. They surf for 42 hours every month, more than any other age group. One quarter of UK web users are over 50. · Two-thirds of phone owners use its alarm function instead of a clock.

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P2P responsible for as much as 90 percent of all 'Net traffic

P2P traffic is dominating the Internet these days, according to a new survey from ipoque, a German traffic management and analysis firm.
ipoque's "preliminary results" show that P2P applications account from anywhere between 50 percent and 90 percent of all Internet traffic. The final survey results are not yet available and willpresented at the Emerging Technology Conference at MIT.

If you plan to break traffic laws, let your cell phone home

Here's a frightening but real proposition: if you are caught breaking certain traffic laws, not only do police have the right to search you—they can go through all your electronic data as well—your text messages, call histories, browsing history, downloaded emails and photos. In a recent academic paper, South Texas Assistant Professor Adam Gershowitz explains that because many traffic violations are arrestable offenses, just as a cop could search your pockets for drugs, said cop can also search your pockets for a smartphone and go through all its contents. The same is true for any standard arrest, and given the amount of data in current smartphones, it's a scary proposition (even for law-abiding citizens like us).

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P2P: the downloader is an IP address, not a person...

A South Carolina woman sued by the record labels for file-sharing is fighting the RIAA's attempt to amend its original complaint is arguing that the RIAA's proposed amended complaint contradicts the testimony of an expert witness that testified for the labels in the Jammie Thomas trial.

Related StoriesExonerated RIAA defendant scores double victory in court
Exonerated defendant sues RIAA for malicious prosecution
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RIAA versus Grandma, Part II: the showdown that wasn't
At issue is the boilerplate complaint used by the RIAA in its nearly 30,000 file-sharing lawsuits until last fall. The RIAA's standard language has come under fire in a handful of cases for its lack of specificity. One of those cases is Atlantic Records v. Catherine Njuguna, a case Ars last covered in September.

"Plaintiffs are informed and believe that Defendant, without the permission or consent of Plaintiffs, has used, and continues to use, an online media distribution system to download the Copyrighted Recordings, to distribute the Copyrighted Recordings to the public, and/or to make the Copyrighted Recordings available for distribution to others," reads the critical part of the complaint.

In Interscope v. Rodriguez, the judge refused to grant the labels a judgment in a case where the defendant failed to appear in court to fight the complaint. Judge Rudi M. Brewster wrote that the complaint used by the labels presents "no facts that would indicate that this allegation is anything more than speculation," and is "simply a boilerplate listing of the elements of copyright infringement without any facts pertaining specifically to the instant Defendant."

Since that ruling, the RIAA has altered its complaints to include more details about alleged infringements, including the date and time that the its investigators detected file-sharing activity and the IP address identified. In Atlantic v. Njuguna, the RIAA wants leave to amend its complaint to provide details of Njuguna's alleged infringement.

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Bye, Bye good, old (expensive) PayPal

If you sell anything online, whether physical goods or services, you’re probably keenly aware of the 2-3% (plus $0.30) lost through transactional fees every time someone makes a purchase with their credit card. This fee rears its ugly head whether you use PayPal, Google Checkout, or Amazon Flexible Payment Service since those companies are largely just passing on the fees imposed on them by credit card companies.

Noca, a startup founded by ex-Visa employees, is attempting to virtually eliminate transaction feeds by bypassing the credit card companies altogether with its own online payment service. Since $5 billion goes towards online transaction fees every year in the United States alone, and since online vendors have particularly slim profit margins, the company thinks that the near elimination of transaction feeds would be a huge boon for online vendors. Concurrently, Noca seeks to provide consumers with a more rewarding and more secure purchasing experience, thereby making its service appealing to both actors involved in a transaction.

While Noca aims to eventually facilitate online payments for purchases of all sizes, it begins with a focus on micro-payments, and on micro-payments made through Facebook in particular. It has launched two Facebook applications to test its payments system out: OneClick Pay and HelpYourWorld.

The former provides a simple way to send money to friends. As you can see in the screenshot above, the idea is to send someone a digital check; you actually enter your routing and account numbers into the application instead of using a credit card. This poses a significant obstacle to adoption (who remembers these numbers or carries around a check in their pocket?). But the company insists that using checking information rather than credit card information increases security and reduces the chances of identity theft. Plus, Noca is working to provide functionality that would allow you to enter your online banking credentials in lieu of your checking information.

The latter Facebook application, HelpYourWorld, provides a good use case for Noca’s micro-payment system. Since the application solicits $1-at-a-time donations for a series of causes, it benefits greatly from Noca’s lack of transaction fees (especially the standard fixed one of $0.30). Noca hopes that many other Facebook applications with similar micro-payment needs will use its APIs to implement its payment service.

As for the benefits to the consumer, Noca promises to provide strong and flexible incentives through cash back schemes, frequent flier miles, and the ability to designate a part of your payment to a charity of choice. The company also insists that its service will be substantially easier to use than others like PayPal, and that consumers will gain access to a much more comprehensive transaction history than they would get elsewhere.

In the longer term, Noca will become much more like a credit card company itself, providing credit to users through direct partnerships with banks. In doing so, it will be able to provide users with the same benefits of buying things on credit without charging vendors standard transaction fees, which it considers mostly oligopolistic fat. To make money, Noca will also attempt to leverage its user data to target them with tailored advertising and product deals.


When wearing the wrong suit can be dangerous

CLAYTON, Del. (AP) - January 23, 2008 -- New Castle County police are confirming that officers mistakenly identified a 19-year-old Clayton man as the suspect in an alleged gunpoint rape.

The man, Derrick Morris, was stunned with a Taser gun and bitten by a police dog when he was arrested last week near his home.
Police spokesman Cpl. Trinidad Navarro says police were searching for an armed sex offender and Morris was wearing clothing that resembled the assailant. According to police, Morris ignored police commands.

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Losses due to piracy not so huge, after all...

MPAA admits college piracy numbers grossly inflated

After commissioning a 2005 study from LEK Consulting that showed collegiate file-swappers were responsible for 44 percent of movie studio "losses" to piracy, the MPAA then used the report it bought to bludgeon Congress into considering legislation to address this massive problem. Now the MPAA admits that the report's conclusions weren't even close to being right; collegiate piracy accounts for only 15 percent of "losses." Oops. And that's assuming you believe the rest of the data.

The Associated Press broke the news today; apparently, the MPAA is busy notifying government and education officials about the blunder, which may explain why it's too busy to post a mea culpa to its web site. The group blames "human error" for the calculation problem.

Of course, human error can and does happen to the best of us, and at least the MPAA finally owned up to a mistake that no one else would have noticed—even if it took over two years. Of course, the reason no one else would have noticed it is because the group kept the 2005 report and its methodology under wraps. But even the summaries that it published were enough for us to express some potent skepticism of the numbers back in 2006 and to argue that "the contours and effects of piracy are quite open to debate, and as a result, the best ways to address the problem are up for debate, too."

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Don't be a guitarist, be an artist

Playing is the expression of oneself. And an artist is the one who can express himself in the best way.
Do you like to play the guitar?
Don't think of yourself as a guitarist, think of being a musician. Music is your medium (of artistic expression) and the guitar your instrument.
It's the way you see yourself that effects the results you will get.
And it is also the passion you put in learning and improving how you play that will MAKE THE DIFFERENCE.
Do you love playing the guitar, bass or drum?
This post is for you.
There is a website where you can find ALL bass tabs, not only, also drum tabs and guitar's.
You just need to click over the name of your instrument and selecting the first letter of the artist's name, or just the search bar and: VOILA' here they are.
All the tablatures you are looking for.
They have more than 140.000 tablatures and new ones are coming every day.
The tablatures you'll find are ear transcriptions of songs, and represent the authors' creative interpretation.
So, if you ever dreamed to be an artist and play how nobody played, it pays to try all possible tablatures and give your PERSONAL interpretation of them.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The War of the Future will be a Robots' War

Israel has been hit in recent years by thousands and thousands of rockets, mortar shells, and missiles.
And that could be just a preview of the onslaught Iran may one day unleash. So Israeli military leaders have begun early planning for a new, robotic defense system, armed with enough artificial intelligence that it "could take over completely" from flesh-and-blood operators.
"It will be designed for... autonomous operations,' Brig. Gen. Daniel Milo, commander of Israel's air defense forces, tells Defense News' Barbara Opall-Rome. And in the event of a "doomsday" strike, Opall-Rome notes, the system could handle "attacks that exceed physiological limits of human command."

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The site of the dating personals' sites

Still a single?
The reasons can be many.
Either you are just a single, or you are again a single.
This status, thanks to the Internet, now a days doesn't last long.
It is enough you want to change it and it's done.
I do not believe there are many people who enjoy being alone, giving them the chance to find the right other one.
And the chance, better the chances are really huge.
There are so many dating, single, personals, websites that choosing sometimes is quite difficult.
The best would be choosing the one that the person you would like to meet chooses.
Something like a place where somebody who has your same interests, your same view of life, same lifestyle, same tastes is looking for somebody just like you.
Nothing easier.
You have to browse in the best online dating services and matchmaking sites, choose the one you think fits you and beginning the procedures like email, name, likes and dislikes and so on.
The one I like best is
May be because I am a pharmacist and I have this view of a chemistry ruled world.
But also Perfect promises a lot.
The sign in is the unavoidable boring side of an online dating site, that is why I am on the opinion that is better done once and forever.
The only thing you have to do is to read carefully what they say about every dating site, choose the best option that matches your desires, personality, and dating goals and: Good Luck!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

PBR: the place to ride THE BULL

Horseback riding was my favorite sport for long.
I loved horses of course and I enjoyed riding in the countryside, but I guess what really intrigued me was the fought against my fears.
Who ever tried show jumping can understand what I say.
It is not the sport in itself, it is the determination and will of success, the pride you feel when you are able to overcome your fears, the feeling of being able to if you really want.
That is why I enjoy being at the Professional Bull Rider show.
Because it is a daring and dangerous sport and the cowboys who practice it are certainly true athletes and brave men.
Every ride is a test of man versus beast, besides being a test of real skill.
The professional Bull Riders World Finals will be held in Las Vegas Beginning on October 31st 2008.
That is the place to ride THE BULL, not just any bull...
There they come from all over the World, both riders and public.
Where to find the PBR tickets Las Vegas?
At Team One you can purchase PBR Tickets Las Vegas as well as PBR tickets for the entire PBR schedule including all PBR Bull Riding events.
There you can also find the Final Schedule and leave your email to receive the free newsletter that will keep you informed on upcoming events.
If you are looking for a sensational, fierce, rough and grueling show this will surely be the one you have to attend.

Early-stage cloned human embryos, but not stem cells.

Scientists at Stemagen, a small biotechnology company in La Jolla, CA, reported yesterday that they have for the first time generated cloned human blastocysts--early-stage embryos--from adult skin cells. This is the first step in generating stem cell lines matched to individuals, which are crucial for creating new cellular models of disease and potentially important for future tissue replacement therapies. (See "Next Steps for Stem Cells" and "The Real Stem Cell Hope".) The new findings also confirm that access to fresh eggs from healthy young donors is a key part of successful cloning. Lack of access to human eggs has been the major barrier in the field. (See "Human Therapeutic Cloning at a Standstill".)

Cloned blastocysts have been generated before, but from embryonic stem cells rather than from adult cells. Scientists theorize that embryonic stem cells are easier to turn into blastocysts because of their earlier developmental stage.

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Natural Supplements Can Also Fight Cholesterol

The recent study questioning the efficacy of two popular prescription drugs in reducing disease-causing cholesterol has triggered a strong response by their makers Schering-Plough Corp and Merck & Co. Full page ads in Sunday’s New York Times from the companies attest to the effectiveness of both Zetia and Vytorin.

While big pharma scrambles, adherents of natural remedies are talking about a new-old dietary supplement that even the Mayo Clinic says has impressive evidence of effectiveness. It’s something called red yeast rice. And in China it’s been used for its benefits to the circulatory system since 800 A.D.

Red yeast rice is named for a red or purple substance released by a fungus grown on fermented rice. It is marketed as a more natural and less expensive alternative to statin drugs such as Lipitor. Available in capsules in health food stores and over the Internet, red yeast rice actually creates the same monacolin-K, or lovastatin, that is the main ingredient in the generic version of the prescription drug Mevacor.

According to the Mayo Clinic’s website, red yeast rice has the benefit of “strong” scientific evidence, stating that “..since the 1970s, human studies have reported that red yeast rice lowers blood levels of total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein/LDL ("bad cholesterol"), and triglyceride levels.”

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Pregnant? Avoid too much coffeee

Pregnant women who drink two or more cups of coffee a day have twice the risk of having a miscarriage as those who avoid caffeine, U.S. researchers said on Monday.

They said the study provides strong evidence that high doses of caffeine during pregnancy -- 200 milligrams or more per day or the equivalent of two cups of coffee -- significantly increase the risk of miscarriage.

And they said the research may finally put to rest conflicting reports about the link between caffeine consumption and miscarriage.

"Women who are pregnant or are actively seeking to become pregnant should stop drinking coffee for three months or hopefully throughout pregnancy," said Dr. De-Kun Li of Kaiser Permanente Division of Research, whose study appears in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

"There has been a lot of uncertainty about this," Li said in a telephone interview. "There was no firm advice from professional societies to say what a pregnant woman should do about caffeine intake."

Li said anywhere from 15 to 18 studies have found a link between caffeine use during pregnancy and miscarriage. But that association has been clouded by the fact that many pregnant women avoid caffeine because it makes them nauseated, which could skew the results.

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