Jul 2, 2009 | 1
Although China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) earlier this week granted PC makers a reprieve from having to include the Green Dam-Youth Escort Internet filtering software with every PC sold in the country, the government today made it clear that it's only a matter of time before the mandate is reinstated.
Citing an anonymous MIIT official, the state-run China Daily newspaper reports that large domestic PC makers, including Lenovo Group, Tsinghua Tongfang, Founder Technology Group and Haier Group, will "install the filter as they were told." Some manufacturers have included a disclaimer with new PCs that the makers would not be responsible for damage caused by Green Dam, which has been criticized as insecure, flawed and intrusive.
Jun 18, 2009 | 3
Resistance is mounting to a controversial move by the Chinese government to require Internet filtering software be installed on every computer sold in the country starting next month. A letter sent by 19 tech and business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Semiconductor Industry Association, to China's minister of Industry and Information Technology criticizes the plan and urges the Chinese government to "reconsider implementing the requirements," the Wall Street Journal reports.
Called Green Dam-Youth Escort, the software would be used to censor pornography say officials, but others fear it will also be used to block Web sites with political content, according to the New York Times.
Jun 1, 2009 | 2
Researchers in China have dug up the oldest known pottery. How ancient is it? The late Paleolithic: 14,000 to 21,000 years old, according to a study published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The pieces were most likely made and used by early foragers in the Yangzi Basin in the Hunan Province.
Radiocarbon dating of nearby charcoal and bones has pinpointed one fragment to be about 18,000 years old. It and other findings provide "a much clearer understanding of the chronology of [the cave] and the age of the pottery found in this site, as compared to other… caves in East Asia," the authors report.
The new pieces prove to be older than pottery previously uncovered in China and Japan, but not nearly as old as early ceramic figures, such as the Czech Venus of Dolni Vestonice (25,000 to 29,000 years old).
Mar 31, 2009 | 4
It could be just another April Fool's joke, but just in case, security experts are warning Microsoft Windows users that the creators of the Conficker computer worm may launch a new campaign tomorrow to infect as many PCs as possible with their malicious software. This third generation of Conficker—the worm has been on the loose since November and has infected nearly 15 million computers—is expected to use new methods of spreading that security pros have yet to completely block.
The latest version of Conficker (which has various aliases, including Conficker.D, Conficker.C or Downadup.C) snuck onto computers already infected by one of its predecessors. According to Microsoft's Security Response Center Web page, this new version, which the company refers to as Conficker.D, does not spread by attacking new systems. Conficker.D does, however, have a new "peer-to-peer" updating capability that could enable infected systems to spread or receive instructions from those controlling the worm (it's creators remain at large) to steal info from infected computers or generate large amounts of spam e-mail that could clog the Internet and slow its performance, according to a Web posting by the Conficker Working Group (a team of computer security specialists formed by Microsoft, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), and various security software makers to keep the worm from spreading).
Feb 3, 2009 | 17
Was last year's devastating China earthquake, which killed 80,000 people and left more than 5 million homeless, really just a tragic natural event? Speculation is growing that the magnitude-7.9 quake may have actually been triggered by the tremendous water weight behind a nearby dam.
Scientists in China and the U.S. say that water behind the Zipingpu Dam, just 3.4 miles (5.5 kilometers) from the epicenter of the May 12 quake in Sichuan in southern China, may have weakened the fault that ruptured, the British Telegraph reports today.
It's "very likely" that the construction and filling of the reservoir in 2004 led to the quake, Fan Xiao, chief engineer of the Sichuan Geology and Mineral Bureau in Chengdu, told the newspaper.
Dec 22, 2008
One of the four people known to have received a partial face transplant has died, according to published reports.
Li Guoxing, 32, died in July at his home in southwestern China after taking herbal medicines instead of immune-suppressing drugs typically used to prevent recipients from rejecting donated tissue, his surgeon, Guo Shuzhong, told Agence-France Presse over the weekend. Li's death had been rumored for months on Chinese blogs, AFP notes.
Nov 26, 2008 | 13
The Food and Drug Administration has found trace amounts of the industrial poison melamine in baby formula and nutritional supplements sold in the U.S. The chemical is the same one that sickened at least 50,000 babies in China this year who drank contaminated formula.
“The levels that we are detecting are extremely low,” Stephen Sundlof, director of the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, told the Associated Press, adding that parents should not stop giving their tots formula (though they may want to check with their pediatricians). “They should not be changing the diet. If they’ve been feeding a particular product, they should continue to feed that product. That’s in the best interest of the baby.”
Oct 29, 2008 | 4
Rivals Google, Microsoft and Yahoo! have joined forces with other companies and academics to stop governments (most notably China) from suppressing freedom of expression and ordering them to betray their customers' privacy. The three software giants today announced creation of the Global Network Initiative designed to persuade oppressive governments to allow their citizens to freely express opinions, via the Web in particular, without fear of retribution.
Oct 22, 2008 | 1
India is on its way to the moon, the country’s first unmanned mission there ahead of a planned 2012 rover landing.
The Chandrayaan 1 probe blasted off atop a PSLV-C11 rocket at 6:22 local time this morning from Satish Dhawan Space Center in the southern Andrha Pradesh Province. The $79-million mission reflects an emerging, competitive Asian presence in space at a time when the U.S. shuttle fleet is nearing retirement.
“It is a historic moment,” said G. Madhavan Nair, chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization, according to Bloomberg News. “Our journey to the moon has started.”
Sep 25, 2008 | 1
China's Shenzhou 7 spacecraft is in Earth orbit, carrying a three–astronaut crew, one of whom is expected to make that country's first spacewalk this weekend.
The rocket took off from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in Ganzhou Province in Western China at 9:10 P.M. today (9:10 A.M. Eastern time), the country's third manned trip in the last five years. Its first manned mission was in 2003, and the second, two years later.
Although citizens of at least three-dozen nations have traveled into the cosmos on international missions, just three countries—the U.S., Russia and, in the last five years, China—have sent humans into space using their own spacecraft.
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