The General News Thread

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The General News Thread

Unread postby Rhiannon » Tue May 27, 2003 7:43 pm

You can use this thread to discuss small news which, in your view, probably doesn't warrant a dedicated topic. As a general rule of thumb this would be non-controvercial informative events which won't spark a lot of discussion. If the event would spark some worthwhile discussion, or if it is controversial (which means it will spark discussion), please feel free to assign it a dedicated topic.
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Unread postby Rhiannon » Tue May 27, 2003 7:47 pm

Earthquake in Tokyo -- originally postedby Jackie Chan

Strong Earthquake Shakes Northeast Japan
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Unread postby Rhiannon » Tue May 27, 2003 7:51 pm

Earthquake in Algeria -- originally postedby Bilge Khaghan

Bilge Khaghan wrote:There was an earthquake in Algeria three days ago... The number of dead is high, something like 1600something the last time I heard... I'm very soory for the ones who lost their lives :cry:

The earthquake was in a town 60-70 kms. East of Algiers. The quake also caused the internet cables in the Western Mediterrenean to malfunction; it's because of this that I have a very slow connection. Many countries around the Mediterrenean suffer from this; but the problem will be fixed tomorrow or two days later.
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Unread postby Kül Tigin » Wed May 28, 2003 9:46 am

The toll in Algerian quake is 2176 (IIRC). Yesterday, there was another small quake 50 km.s East of Algiers which killed three people and damaged several buildings.

The internet connection is still very slow here; I can't visit most of the forums like AllEmpires or SMQ :cry:
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Unread postby English_Druid » Tue Jul 29, 2003 8:29 pm

Arsonist start fire in southern France killing four People. Inc 2 Brits, one a OAP the other a 15 year old girl.
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Oh no! It's the T. Rex!

Unread postby Emily » Sat Aug 02, 2003 12:27 am

I didn't know whether I should put this in World History or Current Affairs, but since part of this thread's title was 'Discoveries' I decided here was best.

First of all, I should mention that as a child, I was a total dinosaur nut. Actually, I don't think that I've ever really gotten over that. I still find them fascinating- hence my decision to share this with you. (I'll summarize the article.)

Famed paleontologist John Horner- one of the premier names in the field- has publicly announced his belief that the Tyrannosaurus Rex was actually a scavenger- as opposed to the fierce hunter that he had once been thought to be. (Similar to the T. Rex in the novel and movie Jurassic Park.)

From studying the fossil remains, he's decided that T. Rex would have been too slow to hunt, his arms too small to catch anything, and would have had poor vision. (The article doesn't sepcifically say, but I'm assuming that he arrived at the last conclusion by studying the shape of brain case.)

However- like a vulture- the animal had a powerful sense of smell, and his teeth and jaws were shaped for crushing bone (and not for tearing flesh.)

Not everyone totally agrees- like Angela Milner of the Natural History Museum. She believes that T. Rex was a combination of scavenger and hunter. According to her- the animal could have caught slower creatures that were weakened or older, but would have been in danger of falling over while running, which- due to it's size- might have been fatal.

Here's a link to the article on ... index.html
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Unread postby James » Wed Aug 13, 2003 9:42 am

Is Zip coming undone?

“New versions of software based on a popular file-compression technology could create headaches for users through their use of incompatible formats.

“For more than a decade, Zip has been the most common format for shrinking files in order to more easily store them or transmit them over the Internet. Dozen of software programs, including tools built into recent versions of Microsoft's Windows operating system, can read and decompress any file bearing the .zip extension. [...]”

Read the rest of the article as well. Thanks to morons, the standard compression format .zip may soon have some serious compatibility issues. The company behind PKZip is seeking patents on the new proprietary technology they wish to use, which will only serve to cause serious problems. Competitor WinZip is adding similar security features, but is making their steps open to all.

WinZip is the leader in the market, according to rankings on CNET, a sister site of CNET The site tallied more than 100 million downloads in nine months for the last version of WinZip, compared with 1.6 million in five months for PKZip.

What does this all mean? PKZip is trying to ruin a common compression format we all use and enjoy by making it proprietary to their program (and probably by allowing others to use it at a cost). Why bring this up? Don’t use PKZip anymore, if you use that program, because the .zip files you create will not be cross platform compatible, and they won’t be compatible with WinZip either. In fact, avoid these new technologies if you wish to share with other computer users at all. WinZip is used by around six times as many people, so that is your winner program.
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Unread postby Kong Wen » Wed Aug 13, 2003 10:32 am

I'm sure many of you have heard of that MBlast worm that is going around, but, if not, here is some very basic information. If you have Win NT, 2000, XP (home or pro) or Win Server, you are at risk. The worm can infect your system through simple netsurfing, and can cause system shutdown and eventual system damage. It also prevents you from downloading the patch from Windows Update that protects against it! If you're not already protected, the following site contains some information about the worm and the download for the patch:

It's supposed to be an easy worm to pick up, so it's better to err on the side of caution.

And... sorry if this classifies as spam. Some of the guys at work were talking about the worm, and it seemed like it might be relevent.
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Unread postby Gan Ning 27 » Wed Oct 29, 2003 7:42 pm

Didn't want to start a new topic, and was waiting for one to pop up, then saw this thread.

Southern California fires. I have no links to give you because, well, I don't need any myself. I was in them over the weekend. If anyone has any links to share, please do so. As of now, the fires have been burning for 5 days I believe, and Southern California has become isolated. Not only is it difficult to move around in So Cal, but it's almost impossible to get in or out right now. And the smoke can be seen from NASA satellites.
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Unread postby Ma Liang » Wed Oct 29, 2003 7:48 pm

I have seen that satelite photo, that is amazing. GN27, you live in Simi Valley, right? Have you been evacuated, or is it voluntary evac? I'm over in Santa Clarita, and the flames are looming over the hill. They have already reached Stevenson's Ranch, and almost where my mom works. But, thankfully, there is a fire station next door, so it should be ok. I just looked out the window to see my *future* car covered in ashes, and it's pretty bad. I'm not even allowed to go outside without a resperator/dust mask because of athsmatic conditions. That's how bad this thing is, I hope you guys do ok in Simi though.
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