Death by Cell Phone

November 28, 2007

What’s the Korean equivalent of an X-File?
clipped from www.physorg.com
An exploding cell phone battery is suspected by police in the death of a South Korean worker Wednesday, though the phone’s manufacturer said it was highly unlikely.

The man, identified only by his family name Suh, was found dead at his workplace in a quarry Wednesday morning and his mobile phone battery was melted in his shirt pocket, a police official in Cheongwon told The Associated Press.

“We presume that the cell phone battery exploded,” the police official said on condition of anonymity because the investigation was still under way.
Kim Hoon, a doctor who examined the body, agreed.
“He sustained an injury that is similar to a burn in the left chest and his ribs and spine were broken,” Yonhap news agency quoted Kim as saying. “It is presumed that pressure caused by the explosion damaged his heart and lungs, leading to his death.”
An LG official confirmed its product was involved in the accident but said
such a fatal explosion would be virtually impossible.
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The Virus Aquarium

November 28, 2007

This is one of my favorites
clipped from xkcd.com

Network
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clipped from blog.wired.com

Green_googleHaving gained a certain degree of expertise in developing and designing its own energy efficient data centers, Google thinks it’s in a position to help spur on the adoption of even more renewable energy sources.

The Mountain View company announced on Tuesday a new research and development group whose aim will be to continue to develop electricity from renewable energy sources much cheaper (and cleaner) than coal. The new initiative, dubbed Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal, will initially target energy sources like advanced solar thermal power, wind power technologies and enhanced geothermal

The company says it will be also be looking to hire engineers, and partner with various entrepreneurs and technologists with expertise in a broad range of areas, including: materials science, physics, chemistry, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, land acquisition and management, power transmission and substations, construction, and (of course) regulatory issues.

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Nothing like the Onion to start a holiday morning. Happy Thanksgiving, hockey fan(s).
clipped from www.theonion.com
After a decades-long decline in fan interest that reached its nadir with the loss of an entire season to labor strife, the National Hockey League was rescued by the efforts of reigning MVP Sidney Crosby, whose goal and two assists against the New Jersey Devils restored the league to the heights of its former glory.
“What a truly momentous day for the rejuvenation of the great sport of ice hockey,” Commissioner Gary Bettman said of Crosby’s transcendent performance in a point-grabbing overtime that brought the Penguins within striking distance of fourth place.
Bettman also acknowledged single-goal, two-assist performances from 13 other NHL players including Chris Chelios, Dany Heatley, and Todd White, but emphasized that, unlike Crosby, they had not saved the NHL.
Hockey is surely saved now.
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These ought to be good (and effective) viewing when they are released today
clipped from www.guardian.co.uk

Sean Penn
Sean Penn is among the A-list actors appearing in internet download spots.

Some of the biggest actors in Hollywood are to support striking writers in a series of internet downloads due to debut today.

The cast list for the 21 spots, which range in length from a few seconds to several minutes, reads like a who’s who of liberal Hollywood. Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Susan Sarandon, Harvey Keitel, Martin Sheen and Ed Asner have all been filmed, and are joined by members of the casts of hit TV shows including Desperate Housewives and Ugly Betty.

Titled Speechless, the short spots echo Warhol’s famous Screen Tests, which featured iconic figures of the late 60s filmed in black and white simply doing nothing. The inactivity of Warhol’s subjects, who ranged from Salvador Dalí to Susan Sontag, accentuated the intimacy of film and, in some cases, the discomfort of the subject.

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I’m anxious to see what constitutes a jury of peers, if lawyers manage to get this case moved to the venue where the alleged crimes took place.
clipped from www.webpronews.com

Virtual Furniture Thief Arrested

 The question of who has metaphysical jurisdiction in virtual worlds is not one so carefully addressed in Amsterdam as police have arrested a virtual criminal. In the Netherlands, at least, theft is theft and has real-world consequences.

In this case, it’s the arrest of a 17-year-old and the questioning of four 15-year-old accomplices.

They’re crime: Stealing virtual furniture and putting it in their own virtual pads at the Habbo Hotel.

Just like in Second Life, Habbo has its own virtual economy, and the furniture was worth nearly $6,000, according to a Reuters report.

And teenagers being teenagers are especially likely to misunderstand the concept of consequences, real world or virtual. Sulake, the parent company of Habbo Hotel boasts 80 million users, all trading in virtual currency that can be traded for “real” money.

But one thing’s for certain, the Dutch police aren’t wasting time debating lofty concepts like metaphysical jurisdiction. These teenagers are facing real penalties. 

Virtual Furniture Thief Arrested

Virtual Furniture Thief Arrested
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It won’t happen this century, but academics are interested in starting this project
clipped from www.guardian.co.uk

Captain Kirk and his crew may someday be followed on their travels across the universe at warp speed by the rest of us. If scientists meeting for a one-day international conference next week have their way, the starship Enterprise’s warp drive will no longer be the stuff of science fiction but a viable means of travelling vast distances at faster than the speed of light.

The theory behind travelling at warp speed is that you bend the fabric of space and time in a small region around a space craft by creating an anti-gravitational field. This causes space behind the warp bubble to expand away from the vehicle. In front space collapses like in a black hole. This theoretically allows you to move your craft across enormous distances at a faster spped than light.
Next Thursday, the British Interplanetary Society is bringing together physicists for a conference entitled Faster than Light: Breaking the Interstellar Distance Barrier.
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