The Oatmeal's call to raise funds for a museum celebrating Nikola Tesla seems to have electrified enough people. From Digital Trends: "The Oatmeal has raised over $1 million on IndieGoGo in an effort to secure Wardenclyffe, the site of Tesla's final laboratory, to build a museum dedicated to Tesla. ... [Oatmeal founder and artist Matthew] Inman’s original goal of $850,000 would buy just half of the cost of the property, but the state of New York has agreed to match contributions, bringing total funds up to $1.7 million. Raising the capital to build a museum from the property will be another cost, but from the looks of it, with 36 days left and having already surpassed the $1 million mark, there should be funds to spare."
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After a few years of rumors and hints, All Things Digital says that a smaller iPad will debut in October. And Amazon may be trying to steal their thunder with a revamped Kindle tablet: Nerval's Lobster writes with a report at SlashCloud that "Amazon could be readying a new set of Kindle tablets for unveiling in early September. That's the widespread speculation following the online retailer's invitations to media for a Sept. 6 event in Santa Monica, Calif. Even by the coy standards of most tech companies' event invitations, Amazon's is notably bereft of detail. It will take place at 10:30 AM PST at Barker Hangar, a noted (and quite large) event space. But the timing of the event is auspicious: with Apple rumored to be unveiling a smaller iPad in the near future, and the holiday shopping season a few months away, early September could prove the ideal time for Amazon to whip back the curtain from a new tablet and dominate the media conversation, at least for a few days."
CIStud writes "A new poll conducted of IT industry executives and integrators shows a divided and unsure industry regarding which presidential candidate is better for Information Technology to prosper. The poll, conducted by JZ Analytics on behalf of CompTIA, shows 'Not Sure' winning in four out of five areas. President Obama holds and edge over Mitt Romney in every category, including which person is best for the IT industry in terms of tax policy (remarkably), access to capital, tech exports, education and privacy."
New submitter wermske writes "Ars Technica and ZDNet report the Location Privacy Act of 2012 (SB-1434) was passed by the California legislature on Wednesday. The California Location Privacy Act, co-sponsored by the ACLU of California and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, updates California privacy law to reflect the modern mobile world by providing needed protection against warrantless government access to a person's location information. Recent reports indicate that cell phone tracking is routine and few agencies obtain warrants for such surveillance. The need for this protection resurfaced last week when warrantless GPS tracking appeared again in the national news — a federal appeals court ruled that law enforcement is allowed to track the GPS signal coming from a suspect's prepaid phone without a warrant. The scope of the Location Privacy Act would include gathering GPS or other location-tracking data from cell phones, tablets, computers, automobiles, etc. The next stop is the governor's desk; however, there is concern that Governor Jerry Brown may not sign this act into law. In 2011, Gov. Brown vetoed an attempt at enforcing stricter privacy rules."
An anonymous reader points out an ExtremeTech article that begins: "Historic car races might seem like the last place you'd find modern auto technology. The cars are lovingly restored to their full, authentic racing glory, and care is taken not to allow modern tweaks to improve their performance. Surprisingly, though, both the pits and the cars are crammed with modern technology to help drivers improve their performance. Long-term benefits from tech at the race track isn't confined to racers, though. Researchers are hoping to use what they find by monitoring drivers' bodies and brains, along with the cars, to build better and safer cars for all of us."
CowboyNeal writes "Controversial patent-holding company Intellectual Ventures has been covered on Slashdot before, but a recent CNET article takes a look inside the company, at how they work, and what they have planned for the future. Read below to find out if they are merely a patent-troll, or if their shrewd tactics belie a more noble master plan?"
hypnosec writes "Ex-Lulzsec-head and hacker Hector Xavier Monsegur a.k.a. Sabu has managed to get his court case delayed by six months – thanks to his cooperation with the US Federal authorities in getting other Lulzsec members behind bars. This news came to light after a court document appeared online, which was filed by the US Government as a request to the US district Attorney. The US Gov put forward an adjournment request "in light of the defendant's ongoing cooperation with the Government." The request has been accepted and now the case has been adjourned till 22 February, 2013."
crookedvulture writes "For years, PC hardware sites have maintained that CPUs have little impact on gaming performance; all you need is a decent graphics card. That position is largely supported by FPS averages, but the FPS metric doesn't tell the whole story. Examining individual frame latencies better exposes the brief moments of stuttering that can disrupt otherwise smooth gameplay. Those methods have now been used to quantify the gaming performance of 18 CPUs spanning three generations. The results illustrate a clear advantage for Intel, whose CPUs enjoy lower frame latencies than comparable offerings from AMD. While the newer Intel processors perform better than their predecessors, the opposite tends to be true for the latest AMD chips. Turns out AMD's Phenom II X4 980, which is over a year old, offers lower frame latencies than the most recent FX processors."
An anonymous reader writes "In the tech industry, as the economy continues its downturn, IT folks in my circles who were either laid off or let go are turning to contract work to pay their bills. Layoffs and a decline in tech jobs has affected older IT workers the most. Many of us find it more lucrative and enjoyable in the long run and leave the world of cubicles forever. However, there is much to be said for working for a large company or corporation, and health insurance is one of the benefits we value most. But what happens to those who find themselves in this position at mid-career or later in life? Hopefully they have accumulated enough savings or have enough money in an HSA to survive a major medical emergency. Unfortunately, many do not and some find themselves in dire straits with their lives depending on others for help. I have been working IT contracts mostly now for the past 11 years and I've done very well. I belong to a group insurance plan and the coverage is decent, but as I get older, premiums and copays go up and coverage goes down. If you work contracts exclusively, what do you think is the best plan for insurance? Any preferences?"
kgeiger writes "Intellectual Ventures has spun out Kymeta to develop and mass-produce their mTenna product line. mTennas are based on metamaterials like the invisibility cloaks discussed on Slashdot and elsewhere. Metamaterials enable beam-steering that ensures an mTenna remains in contact with satellites even during motion. Kymeta will use 'established lithographic techniques' to make them. IMHO, these antennas may be as big a leap for mobile computing and remote communications as the invention of fractal antennas was for mobile phones."
First time accepted submitter dangthill writes "On August 21, eBay updated its end-user agreement by adding a binding arbritration clause. By accepting the new agreement, users forfeit their right to join class action lawsuits and instead must submit to arbitration. However, users may opt-out by mailing eBay a signed notice. eBay joins Microsoft, Sony, Electronic Arts, Valve and other companies attempting to prevent class actions after the Supreme Court of the United States ruled such tactics valid."
jcatcw writes "While a tech camping event might sound like an oxymoron, hackers, makers, breakers and shakers assembled at the northwestern tip of the USA for ToorCamp and dispelled the notion that all hackers avoid sunshine and the great outdoors. As you would expect from a hacker conference, there were workshops like the one for lock picking and a plethora of presentations from "hacking computers to brain hacking, from brewing soda to fighting robots, from civil rights to lightning guns." Then unique aspects of this cool hacker camp get more bizarre . . like the laser that was so bright it required FAA clearance to deploy it, the ShadyTel community 'payphone,' the Temple of Robotron, an RFID implantation station, bike jousting, dancing robots and of course campfires. Need an even stranger adventure that's also in the ToorCon family of hacking conferences? There's the upcoming WorldToor, the first ever hacker conference in Antarctica."
Qedward writes with this excerpt from Techworld: "A new television format that has 16 times the resolution of current High Definition TV has been approved by an international standards body, Japanese sources said earlier today. UHDTV, or Ultra High Definition Television, allows for programming and broadcasts at resolutions of up to 7680 by 4320, along with frame refresh rates of up to 120Hz, double that of most current HDTV broadcasts. The format also calls for a broader palette of colours that can be displayed on screen. The video format was approved earlier this month by member nations of the International Telecommunication Union, a standards and regulatory body agency of the United Nations, according to an official at NHK, Japan's public broadcasting station, and another at the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. Both spoke on condition of anonymity."
Trailrunner7 writes "Google, which has come under fire for years for its privacy practices and recently settled a privacy related case with the Federal Trade Commission that resulted in a $22.5 million fine, is building out a privacy 'red team,' a group of people charged with finding and resolving privacy risks in the company's products. The concept of a red team is one that's been used in security for decades, with small teams of experts trying to break a given software application, get into a network or circumvent a security system as part of a penetration test or a similar engagement. The idea is sometimes applied in the real world as well, in the form of people attempting to gain entry to a secure facility or other restricted area."
Zothecula writes "Videos released by California-based tech research company Aerofex appear to show successful test flights of a prototype hover bike that gains lift from two large ducted rotors. Aeroflex claims its hover bike allows the pilot intuitive control over pitch, roll and yaw without need of artificial intelligence, flight software or electronics of any kind."