mihomes - 11:28 pm on Oct 20, 2012 (gmt 0)
Articles do end with a trailing slash... all categories, sub-categories, and articles are setup virtually in a folder heirarchy with everything going through the /snews/index.php template. At some point in the code these virtual folders link to the actual location of the content for it in the sql database so as the correct content is output - this should be what that category= specifies.
Using the default setup (without the changes you noted above) live headers shows exactly how it is supposed to be (www.example.com/cat/subcat/article/. Using the changes you noted above, both versions of the rewrite rule, the request in live headers shows the same except a 404 is returned for everything other than the /news/ location.