Sunday, January 31, 2010

Welcome to 2010!

It's been a busy couple of months what with moving house in November and of course Christmas and New Year. Finally I have made time to publish all those links that I saved. So here a summary of what I thought were notable events around the turn of the new decade.

First off, a public protest at the weak security of Facebook. I don't have an account on it because I find it far too easy to profile me and then there's the duty of updating your status and checking your "wall". Maybe I'm just anti-social in its most literal form, but it could be worse; I could be using Twitter. In any case Facebook got hacked in November to prove a point.
So, after that the Iranian cyber army had a go at Twitter in December. Gory details here.

Intel and AMD settled up in November. There has always been rivalry between the two, especially since AMD needs rights from Intel to be able to do anything with the common or garden x86 PC architecture. But Intel have been hit some anti-trust litigation and shown to have played some dirty tricks to maintain their market lead.

Copier paper could be the future of battery technology according to the BBC. One advantage is that being lighter than traditional materials, it is an ideal applications in electric cars.

For the James Bond wannabes, the CIA have published a manual on their tricks of deception.

Octopus have one of the largest brains in the marine world. This article from the BBC shows how they pick up coconut shells and carry them off, using them as a protective cover.

A novel use for an old red phone box; a village public library.

The genetic code of cancer has been cracked according to the BBC. Smokers trigger a gene mutation every 15 cigarettes and it is hoped that by tracking gene mutations caused by cancer, it will be possible to prevent and maybe even cure some types in the future.

However metal god Ronnie James Dio was diagnosed with stomach cancer. Let's hope he's up and running again soon.

In the run up to Christmas it was revealed that the Vatican did not provides its full cooperation with regard to child abuse cases in Ireland.

"Poor Joseph. God was a hard act to follow". A New Zealand billboard caused a stir shortly before christmas, as described in this BBC article.

A vocal protest at the British royal family outside a premiere in London. Whether you agree or not with the sentiment, at least it shows there is some freedom of speech in the UK. You'd probably be arrested for this in US.

The Italian police managed to prang their prize Lambo.

"Arbeit Macht Frei". The Auschwitz sign got nicked by a couple of Poles in December. Luckily the sign was later tracked down although it had been cut into three sections. To me that's as bad as desecrating a grave.

Risky domain names sees Cameron (.cm) at the top of the list, followed by China (.cn) and Samoa (.ws).

Marilyn Monroe liked the odd bit of pot according to the BBC.

The LHC has finally done its first bit of sub-atomic smashing - hurray! Then we had another power failure in December - boo! Though in related news, it probably won't hit the carts but a song has been recorded about the LHC in celebration of the Higgs boson. The intention is to promote and inspire science to the younger generation.

As The World Turns, one of the longest running soaps ever has finally been terminated.

This happened above Norway, sparking all kinds of UFO fears or the second coming. It was probably a Russian missile outside the Earths atmosphere that went awry, but it paints a pretty picture.

Christmas Day had just been and gone when Turkey demanded they wanted the bones of St. Nicholas back. Perfect timing.

A Spanish MP was used as the basis for a digital photo fit of Osama Bin Laden. The FBI used the photo without the MPs permission. Think twice about that mugshot they take when you cross the US border.

RIP Otto, who at over 20 years old was officially the world's oldest dog. Also RIP Lucky, the worlds oldest sheep at 23 years old.

Gunsights with biblical references inscribed on them. Fuel to the fire for those who think the current conflict in Afghanistan isn't in some way regligiously motivated.

Old computers illustrates how much has changed in such a short time. Ideal for those who understand the bits and bytes and are looking for a trip down memory lane.

Humunculus. Rotting fruit has never been so scary.

A an environmentally friendly "cloud" tower above London is one architects dream for the Olympic village.

Tactical Nuclear Penguin is at 32% the world's strongest beer.

Oink, the membership driven site where you could access your MP3s from anywhere has finally been cleared of all piracy charges.

Men respond to the smell of ovulating women, from an article in Science daily. However claiming prior art, this looks very similar to a 2007 IgNoble involving lap dancers.

And finally, as the result of a Chinese hacking incident involving Google and an Internet Explorer exploit, Microsoft have finally declared IE6 officially dead. Now that is a resounding start to the New Year!