Ask Slashdot: Is My IoT Device Part of a Botnet?
Posted by News Fetcher on September 26 '16 at 12:21 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's secret-swarm department:
As our DVRs, cameras, and routers join the Internet of Things, long-time Slashdot reader galgon wonders if he's already been compromised:
There has been a number of stories of IoT devices becoming part of botnets and being used in distributed denial of service attacks. If these devices are seemingly working correctly to the user, how would they ever know the device was compromised? Is there anything the average user can do to detect when they have a misbehaving device on their network?

I'm curious how many Slashdot readers are even using IoT devices -- so leave your best answers in the comments. How would you know if your IoT device is part of a botnet?

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The Problem Palace
Posted by News Fetcher on September 26 '16 at 12:11 AM
From Penny Arcade:
New Comic: The Problem Palace

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Moon Shapes
Posted by News Fetcher on September 26 '16 at 12:01 AM
By Randall Munroe from XKCD:

Whenever I see a picture of the moon where the points go more than halfway around, I assume it's being eclipsed by one of those Independence Day ships and interpret the rest of the image in light of that.

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First 15, Ep. 71: Redout
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 11:30 PM
From PATV:
Gabe and Tycho play a game for 15 minutes and then judge it accordingly. This week they play Redout.

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Which Programming Language Is Most Popular - The Final Answer?
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 08:01 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's sounds-legit department:
An anonymous Slashdot reader writes: Following a common technique among political pollsters, a technology columnist combined the results from various measures of programming language popularity for a more definitive answer about the most important languages to study. He used IEEE Spectrum's interactive list of the top programming languages, which lets you adjust the weight given to the number of job listings and number or open source projects, then combined it with the TIOBE Index (which is based on search engine results), and the PYPL Index, which checks the number of tutorials for each programming language on Google.

The results? "The top cluster contains Java, C, Python, and C++. Without a doubt, you should attain familiarity with these four languages." He points out they're not tied to a specific programming platform, unlike languages in the second cluster -- JavaScript, C#, PHP, and Swift -- while the last two languages in the top 10 were Objective-C and R. "The C-family of languages still dominates. Java, C++, C, C#, and even Objective-C are all C-based languages. If you're only going to learn one language, you should pick one of those." But his ultimate advice is to "learn multiple languages and multiple frameworks... Programming is not just an intellectual exercise. You have to actually make stuff."

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Amazon Pursues More Renewable Energy, Following Google, Apple, And Facebook
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 06:41 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's mighty-wind department:
An anonymous Slashdot reader writes:
Amazon will open a 100-turbine, 253-megawatt wind farm in Texas by the end of next year -- generating enough energy to power almost 90,000 U.S. homes. Amazon already has wind farms in Indiana, North Carolina, and Ohio (plus a solar farm in Virginia), and 40% of the power for AWS already comes from renewable sources, but Amazon's long-term plan is to raise that to 100%.

But several of the world's largest tech companies are already pursuing their own aggressive renewable energy programs, according to Fortune. Google "has said it's the largest non-utility purchaser of renewable energy in the world. Apple claims that in 2015, 93% of its energy came from renewable sources, and its data centers are already 100% run on renewables (though that claim does rely on carbon trading). Facebook, which also uses Texas wind facilities, is aiming for 50% of its data center power to come from renewables by 2018. Even slightly smaller companies like Salesforce have made big commitments to renewable energy."
Last year for the first time utilities actually bought less than half the power produced by wind farms -- because tech companies, universities, and cities had already locked it down with long-term contracts.

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What Vint Cerf Would Do Differently
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 03:51 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's 73-year-old-dreamer department:
An anonymous Slashdot reader quotes ComputerWorld:
Vint Cerf is considered a father of the internet, but that doesn't mean there aren't things he would do differently if given a fresh chance to create it all over again. "If I could have justified it, putting in a 128-bit address space would have been nice so we wouldn't have to go through this painful, 20-year process of going from IPv4 to IPv6," Cerf told an audience of journalists Thursday... For security, public key cryptography is another thing Cerf would like to have added, had it been feasible.

Trouble is, neither idea is likely to have made it into the final result at the time. "I doubt I could have gotten away with either one," said Cerf, who won a Turing Award in 2004 and is now vice president and chief internet evangelist at Google. "So today we have to retrofit... If I could go back and put in public key crypto, I probably would try."

Vint Cerf answered questions from Slashdot users back in 2011.

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'Transformer' BMW Turns Into A Giant Robot
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 03:51 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's robots-in-disguise department:
An anonymous Slashdot reader quotes Motherboard:
Real-life Transformers are apparently already a thing thanks to a Turkish company called Letvision. They can't do battle with Decepticons, but they can turn their heads from side to side and move their arms and fingers and, erm, shoot smoke from between their legs. Oh, and they can do the whole changing from a 2013 BMW to an upright robot bit [video]. That's pretty cool, too.

But of course there's a catch. Each of the four available Transformers (which Letvision gave the copyright-friendly name of "Letrons") has a functional steering wheel, but you can only "drive" them remotely because Letvision stuffed the seating spaces with the hydraulics and electronics needed for the conversion.
Letvision's demo video has the clever title "Rise of LETRONS", and shows the vehicle spontaneously beginning its transformation after a newscaster announces, "Our country is under invasion by extraterrestrials."

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Moving Beyond Flash: the Yahoo HTML5 Video Player
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 02:31 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's gone-like-a-Flash department:
Slashdot reader theweatherelectric writes: Over on Streaming Media, Amit Jain from Yahoo has written a behind-the-scenes look at the development of Yahoo's HTML5 video player. He writes, "Adobe Flash, once the de-facto standard for media playback on the web, has lost favor in the industry due to increasing concerns over security and performance. At the same time, requiring a plugin for video playback in browsers is losing favor among users as well. As a result, the industry is moving toward HTML5 for video playback...

At Yahoo, our video player uses HTML5 across all modern browsers for video playback. In this post we will describe our journey to providing an industry-leading playback experience using HTML5, lay out some of the challenges we faced, and discuss opportunities we see going forward."
Yet another brick in the wall?
YouTube and Twitch have already switched to HTML5, and last year Google started automatically converting Flash ads to HTML5.

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Strong Style: Last Stop on the road to WrestleKingdom (I swear!)
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 02:21 PM
By Soul Tsukino from Japanator:
Hello and welcome back to Strong Style, Japanator's look at New Japan Pro Wrestling on AXS TV. This week we look at a couple of matches from the last show before the Big WrestleKingdom 10 show with "Road To Tokyo Dome." This show takes place on December 19, 2015, at Korakuen Hall and was the last one for the year for New Japan. Let's get to the action!



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Google Open Sources Its Image-Captioning AI
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 01:11 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's I'm-feeling-looky department:
An anonymous Slashdot reader quotes ZDNet:
Google has open-sourced a model for its machine-learning system, called Show and Tell, which can view an image and generate accurate and original captions... The image-captioning system is available for use with TensorFlow, Google's open machine-learning framework, and boasts a 93.9 percent accuracy rate on the ImageNet classification task, inching up from previous iterations.

The code includes an improved vision model, allowing the image-captioning system to recognize different objects in images and hence generate better descriptions. An improved image model meanwhile aids the captioning system's powers of description, so that it not only identifies a dog, grass and frisbee in an image, but describes the color of grass and more contextual detail.

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Oh, sweet joy: One Punch Man gets a second season
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 01:02 PM
By Salvador G Rodiles from Japanator:
It looks like our regimen of performing 100 push-ups, 100 sit-ups, 100 squats and a 10km run everyday has finally paid off. What I'm trying to say is that the One Punch Man anime's second season is officially a thing.

The announcement was made on the show's twitter page after a One Punch Man Fall Festival that happened on Sept. 25. One of the neat parts of this event was that JAM Project, Makoto Furukawa (One Punch Man's Saitama), Kaito Ishikawa (One Punch Man's Genos), Yuki Kaji (One Punch Man's Speed of Sound Sonic), Aoi Yuki (One Punch Man's Tornado of Terror) Saori Hayami (One Punch Man's Blizzard of Hell) and Hiroko Moriguchi (One Punch Man's Ending Theme) got to appear there together. From the looks of it, this reunion sounds like it must've been amazing for the festival's attendees.

At the moment, the main thing that we know is that One Punch Man's second season is being made, and the show's Twitter page wants folks to keep tabs on the anime's official Website for any future updates. Since I loved the series' first season, I'm stoked over the fact that I'll get to see more of Saitama's antics animated soon, along with getting to know more of the title's heroes.

One that note, is everyone excited for the One Punch Man anime's second season?

[via Crunchyroll]



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Scientists Study How Non-Scientists Deny Climate Change
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 11:51 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's I'd-like-to-have-an-argument department:
A new research paper suggest climate change opponents are "simulating coherence by conspiracism".
Slashdot reader Layzej says the paper "examines this behavior at the aggregate level, but gives many examples where contradictory ideas are held by the same individual, and sometimes are presented within a single publication." From the paper:

Claims that the globe "is cooling" can coexist with claims that the "observed warming is natural" and that "the human influence does not matter because warming is good for us". Coherence between these mutually contradictory opinions can only be achieved at a highly abstract level, namely that "something must be wrong" with the scientific evidence in order to justify a political position against climate change mitigation...

In a nutshell, the opposition to greenhouse gas emission cuts is the unifying and coherent position underlying all manifestations of climate science denial... Climate science denial is therefore perhaps best understood as a rational activity that replaces a coherent body of science with an incoherent and conspiracist body of pseudo-science for political reasons and with considerable political coherence and effectiveness.

"I think that people who deny basic science will continue to do so, no matter how contradictory their arguments may be," says one of the paper's authors, who suggests that the media should be wary of self-contradicting positions.

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Microsoft Patents A User-Monitoring AI That Improves Search Results
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 11:51 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's Bing-things department:
Slashdot reader MojoKid quotes a HotHardware article about Microsoft's new patent filing for an OS "mediation component":
This is Microsoft's all-seeing-eye that monitors all textual input within apps to intelligently decipher what the user is trying to accomplish. All of this information could be gathered from apps like Word, Skype, or even Notepad by the Mediator and processed. So when the user goes to, for example, the Edge web browser to further research a topic, those contextual concepts are automatically fed into a search query.

The search engine (e.g., Bing and Cortana) uses contextual rankers to adjust the ranking of the default suggested queries to produce more relevant [results]. The operating system...tracks all textual data displayed to the user by any application, and then performs clustering to determine the user intent (contextually).
The article argues this feels "creepy and big brother-esque," and while Microsoft talks of defining a "task continuum," suggests the patent's process "would in essence keep track of everything you type and interact with in the OS and stockpile it in real-time to data-dump into Bing."

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New Transformers Books For Kids – RID and Rescue Bots
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 11:11 AM
By Silver Optimus from TFW2005:


Amazon has updated with new listings for several Transformers related books for kids. The books will hit the stores early next year. Transformers Rescue Bots: Training Academy: Sharks & Other Sea Life! (Passport to Reading Level 2) Today the Rescue Bots are going to learn about creatures that live in the ocean. They’ll swim with sharks, dolphins, turtles, and more! Ready to suit up with scuba gear and come along for the adventure? Amazon Link Transformers Rescue Bots: Meet Quickshadow (Passport to Reading Level 1) A new Rescue Bot is in town! Meet Quickshadow. She is a secret agent. Optimus » Continue Reading.

The post New Transformers Books For Kids – RID and Rescue Bots appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Transformers: Robots in Disguise: Where Crown City Comes To Life App Available Now
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 11:11 AM
By Silver Optimus from TFW2005:


Amazon has updated their listing for the upcoming book Transformers: Robots in Disguise: Where Crown City Comes To Life. The listing now contains the cover page as well as a link to download the app associated with the content. The app in question is an Augmented Reality app where the kids (and adults) can interact with the robots from the TV Show. “Watch Transformers come to life as never before! Not only will fans find out who’s who in the all-action world of Crown City, they can then bring their favorite Autobots and Decepticons to life with incredible 3D augmented-reality animations—and » Continue Reading.

The post Transformers: Robots in Disguise: Where Crown City Comes To Life App Available Now appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Images From The Buckingham Palace Set Of Transformers: The Last Knight
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 11:11 AM
By Silver Optimus from TFW2005:


Earlier today on our Transformers 5 Movie News Roundup, we mentioned that Transformers: The Last Knight is being filmed outside on the Driveway of the Buckingham Palace in London. The filming continues at the same location even today and Coming Soon got the chance to snap some photos. The Autobots do look really nice against the beautiful backdrop of the palace. And chasing Bumblebee and Hot Rod is Decepticon Barricade. We’ve mirrored several images with this news post, but check out the full gallery at ComingSoon.net.

The post Images From The Buckingham Palace Set Of Transformers: The Last Knight appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Sir Anthony Hopkins Praise Transformers Movies
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 11:11 AM
By Silver Optimus from TFW2005:


It’s not everyday Michael Bay gets a praise. Especially considering the recent controversy in England. But when you get a praise from one of the top actors in the Industry, it usually means a lot. Sir Anthony Hopkins praised director Michael Bay and his Transformers Live Action Movies while working on the London set of Transformers: The Last Knight. “Working with Michael Bay is quite an experience. He’s got the whole film up there (points to the head)… He’s in command of the whole ship… There is no political correctness. They don’t take time. They just ‘Lets do it’. » Continue Reading.

The post Sir Anthony Hopkins Praise Transformers Movies appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Ask Slashdot: Who's Building The Open Source Version of Siri?
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 10:21 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's voicing-opinions department:
We're moving to a world of voice interactions processed by AI. Now Long-time Slashdot reader jernst asks, "Will we ever be able to do that without going through somebody's proprietary silo like Amazon's or Apple's?"
A decade ago, we in the free and open-source community could build our own versions of pretty much any proprietary software system out there, and we did... But is this still true...? Where are the free and/or open-source versions of Siri, Alexa and so forth?
The trouble, of course, is not so much the code, but in the training. The best speech recognition code isn't going to be competitive unless it has been trained with about as many millions of hours of example speech as the closed engines from Apple, Google and so forth have been. How can we do that? The same problem exists with AI. There's plenty of open-source AI code, but how good is it unless it gets training and retraining with gigantic data sets?

And even with that data, Siri gets trained with a massive farm of GPUs running 24/7 -- but how can the open source community replicate that? "Who has a plan, and where can I sign up to it?" asks jernst. So leave your best answers in the comments. Who's building the open source version of Siri?

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Unpublished Dreamwave Transformers Scripts Up For Sale On eBay
Posted by News Fetcher on September 25 '16 at 09:41 AM
By Silver Optimus from TFW2005:


A new eBay listing is offering Transformers Fans a chance to grab an unpublished script from the Dreamwave run of the Transformers Comic Books. The scripts are sold and signed by Simon Furman himself, who was a storyteller of the series back in 2002. Mr. Furman stated the following on Twitter: “Anyone dying to know what happened in those Transformers Dreamwave issues that never saw print? Link to eBay.” Good Luck, everyone.

The post Unpublished Dreamwave Transformers Scripts Up For Sale On eBay appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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