ananyo writes "The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has released its long-anticipated draft guidance for drug makers interested in making generic forms of biological drugs such as enzymes and antibodies. The move could open the door for cheaper versions of some of medicine's most expensive drugs, but it is still unclear how many companies will be willing to tackle the challenges and uncertainties of making 'biosimilar' drugs. Copying biological molecules is a stickier proposition than making ordinary generic medicines because proteins are typically much larger and more complex than small molecule drugs. They are also often produced in cell cultures, and even small variations in how the cells are grown can change the properties of the protein produced."
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coondoggie writes "A former Internal Revenue Service employee this week got 105 months in prison for pleading guilty to theft of government property and aggravated identity theft in a case where the guy tried to get away with nearly $8 million in fraudulent tax returns. The U.S. Department of Justice said Thomas Richardson used his inside knowledge of IRS operations to commit his crime, which was pretty audacious. According to the DOJ, Richardson admitted that within a two-day period, April 15 to April 17, 2006, he filed or caused to be filed 29 fraudulent 2005 individual income tax returns totaling $7,922,657."
New submitter rackeer writes "Exchanging research results is at the heart of the scientific method. However, there are concerns about whether investigations of pandemics, which possibly constitute a threat to the whole population of earth, should be shared. The debate about research on the avian flu was discussed on Slashdot before. Now the main parties have their own two cents to say. On-line at the journal Science are commentaries both by authors of the paper in question, who went ahead with the publication, and by the national advisory board for biosecurity, which advised against publishing."
An anonymous reader writes "A new smart camera technology not only takes a picture but also assays chemical composition, allowing photographers to tell whether that hand-rolled cigarette contains tobacco or marijuana. Designed to speed industrial inspection systems — such as detecting whether food is spoiled — the new smart camera includes spectral filters that make images of corn fields appear differently from hemp. Spectral cameras have been available for decades, but this microchip version should be cheap enough for almost any application."
alphadogg writes "The Federal Communications Commission has released a map showing which counties across the U.S. lacked coverage from either 3G or 4G networks and found that wide swaths of the western half of the country were 3G wastelands, particularly in mountainous states such as Idaho and Nevada. This isn't particularly surprising since it's much more difficult for carriers to afford building out mobile data networks in sparsely populated mountainous regions, but it does underscore how large stretches of the United States lack access to mobile data services that people in the Northeast, South and Midwest now take for granted."
First time accepted submitter rolakyng writes "I got a call from a recruiter looking for software test engineer. I'm a software engineer and my job is development and testing. I know I mentioned testing but I'm pretty sure it's totally different from professional testing practices. Can anyone shed light on what a software test engineer's day to day responsibilities are? They said they'll call me back for a screening and I want to be ready for it. Any tips?"
An anonymous reader writes "In the Stanford Law Review Online, authors Frankel, Brookover & Satterfield discuss an ongoing lawsuit against Facebook where plaintiffs claimed the social network's 'Sponsored Stories,' displaying advertisements on Facebook including 'the names and pictures of users who have "Liked" a product,' violated the law. Facebook responded by asserting that '(1) Plaintiffs are "public figures" to their friends, and (2) "expressions of consumer opinion" are generally newsworthy.' The authors discuss the substantial impact this case might have on online privacy going forward: 'The implications are significant and potentially far-reaching. The notion that every person is famous to his or her "friends" would effectively convert recognizable figures within any community or sphere, however small, into individuals whose lives may be fair game for the ever-expanding (social) media. If courts are willing to find that nontraditional subjects (such as Facebook users) are public figures in novel contexts (such as social media websites), First Amendment and newsworthiness protections likely will become more vigorous as individual privacy rights weaken. Warren and Brandeis's model of privacy rights, intended to prevent media attention to all but the most public figures, will have little application to all but the most private individuals.'"
An anonymous reader writes "A skin cancer drug may rapidly reverse pathological, cognitive and memory deterioration associated with Alzheimer's disease, according to new research published on Thursday. Bexarotene, a drug that is currently used to combat T cell lymphoma, appeared to reverse plaque buildup and improve memory in the brains of mice with Alzheimer's disease by reducing levels of beta-amyloid plaques in the brain that cause mental deficits in Alzheimer's disease."
New submitter linjaaho writes "I work as lecturer in a polytechnic. I think traditional exams are not measuring the problem-solving skills of engineering students, because in normal job you can access the internet and literature when solving problems. And it is frustrating to make equation collections and things like that. It would be much easier and more practical to just let the students use the internet to find information for solving problems. The problem: how can I let the students access the internet and at same time make sure that it is hard enough to cheat, e.g. ask for ready solution for a problem from a site like Openstudy, or help via IRC or similar tool from another student taking the exam? Of course, it is impossible to make it impossible to cheat, but how to make cheating as hard as in traditional exams?"
thecarchik writes "The new, all-electric Tesla Model X crossover, which was introduced on stage by Tesla CEO Elon Musk (also the man behind SpaceX), isn't exactly a step toward the mass market. But it does take on premium utility vehicles with three rows of seating for up to seven, better maneuverability than a Mini Cooper, and a 0-60 mph time of just 4.4 seconds—that's faster than a Porsche 911, Musk jeered. But the real oohs and ahs of the evening came when Musk showed the Model X's much-anticipated 'falcon doors' — essentially gullwing rear doors, behind normal hinged front doors." The expected price before tax-credit shenanigans? $60,000-$90,000.
itwbennett writes "As details about new features in Windows 8 started to be discussed in the Building 8 blog and bandied about in Linux/Windows forums, Linux users were quick to chime in with a hearty 'Linux had that first' — even for things that were just a natural evolution, like native support for USB 3.0. So ask not 'did Linux have this first', but 'does Windows 8 do it better?'"
Sparrowvsrevolution writes "Ahead of the anniversary of Iran's revolution, the country's government has locked down its already-censored Internet, blocking access to many services and in some cases cutting off all encrypted traffic on the Web of the kind used by secure email, social networking and banking sites. In response, the information-freedom-focused Tor Project is testing a new tool it's calling 'obfsproxy,' or obfuscated proxy, which aims to make SSL or TLS traffic appear to be unencrypted traffic like HTTP or instant messaging data. While the tool currently only disguises SSL as the SOCKS protocol, in future versions it will aim to disguise encrypted traffic as any protocol the user chooses. Tor executive director Andrew Lewman says the idea is to 'make your Ferrari look like a Toyota by putting an actual Toyota shell over the Ferrari.'" Reader bonch adds: "A thread on Hacker News provides first-hand accounts as well as workarounds."
lukehopewell1 writes "IMAX Sydney has replaced its screen — the largest in the world — at a cost of $250,000. Weighing over 800 kilograms, painting the screen took over 12 days and 350 kilograms of paint. Lifting the massive screen and installing it took a year of planning and 31 riggers. A neat photo gallery is included so you can get an idea of just how big a job this was."