A homeless man trying to leave town in a stolen plane crashed the single-engine aircraft on a municipal airport runway without ever leaving the ground, police said.Full Story
Monday, December 28, 2009
"Illinois River silver carp jump after being disturbed by boats earlier this month." Image credit:HoumaToday
Mid-Westerners are so desperate to halt a threatened Great Lakes invasion by the aggressive and ecologically destructive Asian Carp, a.k.a. the 'flying'or 'silver' carp, that the US State of Michigan is suing Illinois, pushing for permanent navigation lock closure; and, a downtown Chicago segment of the Illinois River was recently poisoned with rotenone, killing all gill breathers, so as to prevent the flying carp's passage into Lake Michigan. Expensive and unproven solutions, they are; but, all we've got. Enter from stage South, an LSU AgCenter video series which proclaims the culinary virtues of the Gengis Khan of bottom feeders.
That's an Eastern Pacific black ghostshark, native to the coast of southern California.
It's one of 94 new species the California Academy of Sciences documented in 2009. Ghostsharks (or chimaeras) are, unsurprisingly, related to sharks, but only distantly. Their evolutionary path branched away from their better-known cousins some 400 million years ago. What makes them different? Among other things, retractable sexual appendages on the foreheads of the males.
This time-lapse video (you'll have to follow the link to watch) shows a far more spectacular display over the Ringebu Fjell in southern Norway, captured by photographer Bernd Proschold. The moment when the clouds clear away, and the lights burst into view is absolutely breathtaking.
The World At Night: A Glimpse of the Far North
"We do think from our preliminary review there are a number of issues for appeal," said Ira Rothken, attorney for popular torrent search engine ISO Hunt, the defendant in the case.
The long-awaited decision, while not unexpected, was the first in the United States in which a federal judge found that BitTorrent search engines are an unlawful avenue (.pdf) to free movies, music, videogames and software. A contrary ruling likely would have sparked a gold rush of BitTorrent prospectors in the United States.
Targeted in the case was Gary Fung,[pictured] a Canadian who operates ISO Hunt and other torrent search engines. Among other things, he argued that U.S. laws did not attach to him, and if they did, that his websites were protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
In a lawsuit brought by the Motion Picture Association of America, U.S. District Judge Stephen Wilson in Los Angeles ruled: “Defendants’ technology is nothing more than old wine in a new bottle.”
Fung’s “intent to induce infringement is overwhelming and beyond reasonable dispute.”
In terms of infringement, the judge said ISO Hunt was no different than Napster and Grokster. But he said the BitTorrent technology was far superior and “obviously increases the potential for copyright infringement.”
The judge wrote that, instead of having to log into a proprietary network to download copyright files from each others’ computers, “users access defendants’ generally accessible website in order to download those files. And instead of downloading content files directly through defendants’ website, defendants’ users download dot-torrent files that automatically trigger the downloading of content files. These technological details are, at their core, indistinguishable from the previous technologies.”
The MPAA has sued dozens of similar sites in the United States, resulting in settlements or default judgments. the industry group won an $111 million default judgment against TorrentSpy last year after a federal judge concluded the now-shuttered tracker hid evidence.
That case is on appeal, but Judge Wilson’s ruling marks the first time that the legal merits of torrenting have been squarely addressed in the United States.
“The court’s decision establishes a powerful precedent that makes clear, once again, that website operators must respect the rights of content owners and control infringement on their websites, or face liability for their actions,” MPAA vice president Daniel Mandil said in a statement.
Fung, in an e-mail, said his sites should be protected by safe-harbor provisions of the copyright law, which immunize search engines from infringement liability if they promptly remove works when a rights-holder notifies them to take down infringing content.
“We are considering all options,” Fung said.
Among other things, the judge said Fung has not “acted expeditiously to remove, or disable access to, the infringing material.”
The judge said Fung’s sites — including ISO Hunt, Torrentbox and Podtropolis — garner about 10 million hits monthly. Wilson noted that metadata for the sites included “warez” to alert search engines of the site’s nature ,and that Fung was “fostering a community that encouraged — indeed, celebrated — copyright infringement.”
But both Fung and Rothken said the judge got it wrong, that the site has removed thousands of infringing files upon proper request. “This alone, among other reasons, contradicts allegations that we willfully induce infringements,” Fung said.
The decision came eight months after a Stockholm court ruled similarly in the movie studios and Swedish government’s case against The Pirate Bay, the world’s largest BitTorrent site. That case, a blend of a civil and a criminal trial, is on appeal.
That April decision calls for the jailing of the Swedish site’s four co-founders. Despite a Stockholm court’s orders, the site remains functional.
Fung does not face any prison time. The judge did not order Fung to shutter his sites or pay monetary damages. A hearing on those matters is scheduled Jan. 11 in Los Angeles.
In California, a tree that appears to have survived for 13,000 years has been discovered on top of a small hill growing amongst a pile of boulders in a suburban Riverside County neighborhood, reports MSNBC.
Tree Older Than Dirt Survives 13,000 Years
Times Square crystal ball to feature Celtic knot
Yemen arrests 29 al Qaeda suspects after raids
If you listen to certain customer service representatives, it's because "New York is not ready for the iPhone."
It may not be all that cut and dried, however.
photo via ruby-sapphire
Britain's The Mail is running a story this morning with new details on the hacked email scandal, known as Climategate. The paper reports that the stolen emails from some of the world's top climate scientists were funneled through computers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to a server in Russia, where they were displayed on an FTP. They also say that they have evidence that the hackers were Chinese, putting a new twist on the evolving story.
Rare Antarctic coral is one of the organisms photographed by researchers. All photos via BAS / P. Bucktrout
Beneath the icy waters of Antarctica, in a place that seems so inhospitable, live amongst the rarest and most beautiful creatures on earth. Recently, a team of international researchers traveled to study marine life there, where ocean temperatures are rising more rapidly than anywhere else in the world. What they brought back are some of the most fascinating photographs of Antarctic sea life ever seen--portraits of organisms on the front-line of global climate change.
More pictures after the jump...
Yesterday was a holy day in the country, but that didn't prevent Iranian officials from gunning down protesters.
Police officers in Iran opened fire into crowds of protesters on Sunday, killing at least 10 people, witnesses and opposition Web sites said, in a day of chaotic street battles that threatened to deepen the country’s civil unrest.
The protests, during the holiday commemorating the death of Imam Hussein, Shiite Islam’s holiest martyr, were the bloodiest and among the largest since the uprisings that followed the disputed presidential election last June, witnesses said.
Mr. Moussavi was first run over by a sport utility vehicle outside his home, Mr. Makhmalbaf wrote on his Web site. Five men then emerged from the car, and one of them shot Mr. Moussavi. Government officials took the body late Sunday and warned the family not to hold a funeral, Mr. Makhmalbaf wrote.
Mourning his death will precipitate another round of protests.
The turmoil revealed an opposition movement that is becoming bolder and more direct in its challenge to Iran’s governing authorities. Protesters deliberately blended their political message with the day’s religious one on Sunday, alternating anti-government slogans with ancient cries of mourning for Imam Hussein.
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Milton Keynes, England, United Kingdom
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
London, England, United Kingdom
Faro, Faro, Portugal
Kristinehamn, Varmlands Lan, Sweden
Gent, Oost-Vlaanderen, Belgium
Waterford, Waterford, Ireland
as well as Poland, Denmark, and the United States
Your ideas are certainly commendable, but are they too complicated for most people to understand?
If you work in a technical field or have a particularly intellectual hobby, don't expect your friends and relatives to know automatically what you're talking about today.
You may have to go into much more detail than you normally would -- but you don't mind, especially when it's for a good cause.
Dumb it down ... got it.