Daily TIPs; Green Car Competition, Questions for Candidates, What You Watched on YouTube, & More

7/3/08

Japan Challenges Detroit on Green Cars

General Motors is working hard at putting its electric car, the Volt, on the streets by 2010. But Business Week wonders if Detroit will be able to catch up to Japan’s lead on green cars. Toyota, for instance, is planning to double its sale of hybrids in the early part of the next decade.

14 Science Questions for Would-Be Presidents

A group called Science Debate 2008 continues to push candidates John McCain and Barack Obama to have a debate solely on science. To that end, they’ve sent the presidential contenders a list of 14 questions they’d like such a debate to cover. Wired prints the questions, which cover subjects from energy to stem cells to space exploration.

Public Cares About Science, Poll Shows

The vast majority of people polled by the group Scientists and Engineers for America said that it’s important to base policy decisions on topics such as health care and global warming on science, says Discover Magazine. But the magazine’s blog wonders whether the public would be as enthusiastic about science if they were asked questions about paying taxes to fund it.

Groups Sue Government Over Cell Phone Tracking

The American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation are suing the Department of Justice for access to records about the agency’s tracking of cell phone users. The New York Times reports that the groups filed suit this week in U.S. District Court in Washington. The ACLU had filed a Freedom of Information Act request last November, but Justice has not yet delivered the documents.

Solar Plant Moratorium Reversed

After an outcry from the solar power industry, the federal Bureau of Land Management has lifted its recently announced ban on new solar energy projects on public lands. The BLM had placed a two-year moratorium on such projects so it could study their impact. CNET News says the bureau reversed course on Wednesday.

Order on YouTube Records Raises Privacy Worries

A court order to Google to release massive amounts of data about YouTube users has privacy advocates concerned, according to TechCrunch. The order came in a lawsuit between Viacom and Google, in which Viacom contends that YouTube violated its copyrights. The order seeks the name and IP address of every YouTube user, along with a list of the videos that person has watched.

Will Hydrogen Push Aside Gasoline?

Hydrogen is being touted as the transportation fuel of the future, powering cars without polluting the atmosphere or entangling the U.S. with foreign countries. But Scientific American, reviewing the issues surrounding hydrogen, says the jury is still out on whether hydrogen can actually replace gasoline. The big question: Can hydrogen be generated and stored on a practical scale?

Demand for High-Speed Internet Slows Down

With 55 percent of adult Americans already having high-speed broadband at home, new demand for broadband Internet access has slowed to a crawl, reports GigaOm. Citing a recent study from Pew Internet, the site also says low-income groups are cutting back on their broadband spending.

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