Daily Archives: March 14, 2008

Science News Tidbits

Some Viruses Come Pre-Installed from PhysOrg.com
(AP) — From iPods to navigation systems, some of today’s hottest gadgets are landing on store shelves with some unwanted extras from the factory – pre-installed viruses that steal passwords, open doors for hackers and make computers spew spam.[]

Grand Canyon Still Grand but Older

Coming upon the Grand Canyon long ago, an old prospector is supposed to have said in amazement, “Something awful happened here.”The something appears to have started happening 17 million years ago, geologists concluded in a study in the journal Science on Friday. If correct, this is at least 11 million years earlier than previous estimates.By dating mineral deposits inside caves up and down the canyon walls, the geologists said they determined the water levels over time as erosion carved out the mile-deep canyon as it is known today. They concluded that the canyon started from the west, then another formed from the east, and the two broke through and met as a single majestic rent in the earth some six million years ago.

…. Continue reading Science News Tidbits

Play Windows Games on your Linux

i-d9d37398dbf53f1b7789157c377c4427-playonlinux.jpgPlay On Linux is a script written in bash that helps you to manage Wine on your Linux box.

After using Wine we realised that it sometimes needs complex commands. PlayOnLinux helps you to soften the processn making your life even easier in the Linux world.More, some people who care about the games they own won’t come to Linux simply because they want to be able to play them again. Our script will help them to move on Linux.

Continue reading Play Windows Games on your Linux

What’s a four letter word for a programming language or a kind of necklace (var)?

i-8223a807dee5d950c293026addb2606c-linux_xword.jpgWhat do Linux and Santa have in common? What is the name of Murdock’s Linux Distribution? Give me a three letter word for a Unix Mail Client. How about a 5 letter word for a Linux Distro for Martini Lovers?If you know ANY of these, you can start filling out this Linux Crossword Puzzle. Continue reading What’s a four letter word for a programming language or a kind of necklace (var)?

Craig Venter: On the verge of creating synthetic life

“Can we create new life out of our digital universe?” asks Craig Venter. And his answer is, yes, and pretty soon. He walks the TED2008 audience through his latest research into “fourth-generation fuels” — biologically created fuels with CO2 as their feedstock. His talk covers the details of creating brand-new chromosomes using digital technology, the reasons why we would want to do this, and the bioethics of synthetic life. A fascinating Q&A with TED’s Chris Anderson follows (two words: suicide genes).

Continue reading Craig Venter: On the verge of creating synthetic life

Spitzer Makes Remarkable Bounceback

Governor Spitzer, only recently deposed for committing the crime of being a Democrat on the Republican Hit List, has already launched a new career as a Telescope:

Spitzer Finds Organics and Water Where New Planets May Grow from PhysOrg.com
Researchers using NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope have discovered large amounts of simple organic gases and water vapor in a possible planet-forming region around an infant star, along with evidence that these molecules were created there. They’ve also found water in the same zone around two other young stars.[]

Robots Plan To Take Over Moon

NASA Robots are planning a takeover of the Moon.

NASA has selected 24 scientists to initiate new investigations and assist with planned measurements to be conducted by the agency’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO). Scheduled for launch later this year, LRO represents NASA’s first step toward returning humans to the moon.The orbiter will conduct a one-year primary mission exploring the moon, taking measurements to identify future robotic and human landing sites. In addition, it will study lunar resources and how the moon’s environment will affect humans. The mission also will involve a spacecraft called the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS), which will impact the lunar south pole to search for evidence of polar water frost.”LRO is a phenomenal mission for NASA. It has dual use, both for exploration and for science,” said Alan Stern, associate administrator, NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Washington. “With the selection of these new investigators the LRO science team is bulked up and ready for flight, and interest in lunar science is building again at a rapid pace.”

More here.

Bat-Like Spy Robot Under Development

i-b57ce981b2fbd57e760ed763db1db0ed-COM-BAT.jpgKnown as COM-BAT, This is a tiny flying robot, about six inches long, that would fly like a bat, gathering information primarily, it is claimed, in urban combat zones. Among other things, it will be able to detect sights, sounds, and smells.

Low-power miniaturized radar and a very sensitive navigation system would help the bat find its way at night. Energy scavenging from solar, wind, vibration and other sources would recharge the bat’s lithium battery. The aircraft would use radio to send signals back to troops.”These are all concepts, and many of them are the next generation of devices we have already developed. We’re trying to push the edge of our technologies to achieve functionality that was not possible before,” said Kamal Sarabandi, the COM-BAT director and a professor in the U-M Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.COM-BAT also involves the University of California at Berkeley and the University of New Mexico. It is one of four centers the Army launched as a collaborative effort among industry, academia and the Army Research Laboratory to work toward this vision of a small, robotic aircraft that could sense and communicate. Each of the four centers is charged with developing a different subsystem of the bat, a self-directed sensor inspired by the real thing.