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Woman Attacked In San Francisco Bar For Wearing Google Glass
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '14 at 07:15 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's asking-for-it department:
First time accepted submitter Martin Blank writes "Sarah Slocum, an early adopter of Google Glass, was bar hopping with friends in San Francisco when a few people in the bar took issue with the eyewear when she was demonstrating it to another patron even though she wasn't recording. When she felt threatened, she informed them that she would start recording. Two of them approached her, yelling and throwing a bar rag at her, and ultimately ripping the Glass from her face and running from the bar with it. She gave chase and eventually got the Glass back, but her purse was gone when she returned to the bar. This physical level of hostility is unusual, but discomfort with Glass is common, especially among those who don't understand how it works. Given that much more hidden spy cameras are available for far less than the $1500 cost of Glass, what will it take for general acceptance to finally take hold?"

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WV Senator Calls For Ban On All Unregulated Cryptocurrencies
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '14 at 07:15 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's and-you-can't-trade-with-your-neighbors-either department:
An anonymous reader writes "Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a member of the Senate Banking Committee, has called for for heavily regulation of Bitcoin. Reached for comment, his staff confirmed Manchin is seeking a 'ban' that would apply to any cryptocurrency that's both anonymous and unregulated."

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'Obnoxious' RSA Protests, RSA Remains Mum
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '14 at 07:00 AM
By timothy from Slashdot's where-it-hurts department:
An anonymous reader writes "By 'buying out' the most obvious lunch spot nearest the RSA conference yesterday, opponents and truth-seekers regarding RSA's alleged deal with the NSA raised awareness amongst attendees in the most brutal way possible: by taking away tacos and tequila drinks. Robert Imhoff, Vegas 2.0 co-founder, says, 'RSA could begin to fix this by going on the record with a detailed response about the accusations.'" I tried to get attendees of the conference to comment on camera — even a little bit — on what they thought of the NSA spying revelations, and not a single person I approached would do so. The pained facial expressions when they refused were interesting, though, and reflect the problem with a surveillance society in a nutshell. Especially at a conference where the NSA is surrounded by vendors who sell the hardware and software that enables your "mere" metadata to be captured and sifted, plenty of the people on the floor know that the companies they work for are or might one day be seeking contracts to do all that capturing and sifting, even if they'd rather not be subject to it personally, so their don't want their face shown saying so.

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Doctors Say New Pain Pill Is "Genuinely Frightening"
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '14 at 05:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's take-your-medicine department:
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Stephanie Smith reports at CNN that a coalition of more than 40 health care, consumer and addiction treatment groups is urging the Food and Drug Administration to revoke approval of the new prescription pain drug Zohydro, a hydrocodone-based drug set to become available to patients in March. 'You're talking about a drug that's somewhere in the neighborhood of five times more potent than what we're dealing with now,' says Dr. Stephen Anderson, a Washington emergency room physician who is not part of the most recent petition to the FDA about the drug. 'I'm five times more concerned, solely based on potency.' The concerns echoed by all groups are broadly about the drug's potency and abuse potential. They say they fear that Zohydro — especially at higher doses — will amplify already-rising overdose numbers. 'In the midst of a severe drug epidemic fueled by overprescribing of opioids, the very last thing the country needs is a new, dangerous, high-dose opioid (PDF),' the coalition wrote in a letter to FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg.

< article continued at Slashdot >

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Pine Forest Vapor Particles Can Limit Climate Change
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '14 at 02:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's can-you-smell-what-aint-cooking? department:
Solo-Malee writes "New research suggests a strong link between the powerful smell of pine trees and climate change. Scientists say they've found a mechanism by which these scented vapors turn into aerosols above boreal forests. These particles promote cooling by reflecting sunlight back into space and helping clouds to form."

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ICANN Considers Using '127.0.53.53' To Tackle DNS Namespace Collisions
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '14 at 12:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's that-doesn't-look-right department:
angry tapir writes "As the number of top-level domains undergoes explosive growth, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is studying ways to reduce the risk of traffic intended for internal network destinations ending up on the Internet via the Domain Name System. Proposals in a report produced on behalf of ICANN include preventing .mail, .home and .corp ever being Internet TLDs; allowing the forcible de-delegation of some second-level domains in emergencies; and returning 127.0.53.53 as an IP address in the hopes that sysadmins will flag and Google it."

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Rolls Royce Developing Drone Cargo Ships
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 10:01 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's so-easy-the-drive-themselves department:
kc123 writes in with news that Rolls Royce is designing unmanned cargo ships."Rolls-Royce's Blue Ocean development team has set up a virtual-reality prototype at its office in Alesund, Norway, that simulates 360-degree views from a vessel's bridge. Eventually, the London-based manufacturer of engines and turbines says, captains on dry land will use similar control centers to command hundreds of crewless ships. Drone ships would be safer, cheaper and less polluting for the $375 billion shipping industry that carries 90 percent of world trade, Rolls-Royce says."

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Find Along Chilean Highway Suggests Ancient Mass Stranding of Whales
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 07:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's look-at-the-bones department:
sciencehabit writes "In 2010, workers widening a remote stretch of highway near the northwestern coast of Chile uncovered a trove of fossils, including the skeletons of at least 30 large baleen whales. The fossils—which may be up to 9 million years old—are the first definitive examples of ancient mass strandings of whales, according to a new study. The work also fingers a possible culprit."

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Inside Chris Anderson's Open-Source Drone Factory
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 06:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's free-to-fly department:
the_newsbeagle writes "The former editor of Wired is betting that the 21st century skies will be filled with drones, and not the military sort. His company, 3D Robotics, is building open-source UAVs for the civilian market, and expects its drones to catch on first in agriculture. As noted in an article about the company's grand ambitions: 'Farms are far from the city's madding crowds and so offer safe flying areas; also, the trend toward precision agriculture demands aerial monitoring of crops. Like traffic watching, it's a job tailor-made for a robot: dull, dirty, and dangerous.' Also, farmers apparently wouldn't need FAA approval for privately owned drones flying over their own property."

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Project Ara: Inside Google's Modular Smartphones
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 05:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's one-piece-at-a-time department:
harrymcc writes "Google is releasing more details on Project Ara, its effort — originally spearheaded by Motorola — to reinvent the smartphone in a form made up of hot-swappable modules that consumers can configure as they choose, then upgrade later as new technologies emerge. Google is aiming to release about a year from now."

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Ask Slashdot: Do You Still Trust Bitcoin?
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 04:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's who-can-you-trust? department:
Nerval's Lobster writes "It hasn't been a great week for Bitcoin. Cruise the Web, and you'll find stories from people who lost thousands (even millions, in some cases) of paper value when the Mt.Gox exchange went offline for still-mysterious reasons. (Rumors have circulated for days about the shutdown, ranging from an epic heist of the Bitcoins under its stewardship, to financial improprieties leading the exchange to the edge of bankruptcy.) But as one Slashdotter pointed out in a previous posting, Mt.Gox isn't Bitcoin (and vice versa), and it's likely that other exchanges will take up the burden of helping manage the currency. Even so, all currencies depend on a certain amount of stability and trust in order to survive, and Bitcoin faces something of a confidence crisis in the wake of this event. So here's the question: do you still trust Bitcoin?"

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Google Ordered To Remove Anti-Islamic Film From YouTube
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 03:31 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's for-reasons-you-might-not-expect department:
cold fjord writes "The Verge reports, 'Google and YouTube must scrub all copies of Innocence of Muslims, a low-budget anti-Islam film that drew international protest in 2012, at the behest of an actress who says she received death threats after being duped into a role. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has granted a temporary takedown order on behalf of Cindy Lee Garcia, who filed a copyright claim against Google in an attempt to purge the video from the web. While actors usually give up the right to assert copyright protection when they agree to appear in a film, Garcia says that not only was she never an employee in any meaningful sense, the finished film bore virtually no relation to the one she agreed to appear in. In a majority opinion, Judge Alex Kozinski said she was likely in the right.' — Techdirt has extensive commentary on the ruling that's worth reading. It seems likely there will be an appeal, with the distinct possibility that Google and the MPAA will be on the same side."

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The Rescue Plan That Could Have Saved Space Shuttle Columbia
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 03:00 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's if-only department:
An anonymous reader writes "In February, 2003, space shuttle Columbia was lost upon atmospheric re-entry. Afterward, NASA commissioned an exhaustive investigation to figure out what happened, and how it could be prevented in the future. However, they also figured out exactly what would have been required for a repair and rescue mission using Atlantis. Lee Hutchinson at Ars Technica went through the report and wrote a lengthy article explaining what such a mission would look like. In short: risky and terribly complex — but possible. 'In order to push Atlantis through processing in time, a number of standard checks would have to be abandoned. The expedited OPF processing would get Atlantis into the Vehicle Assembly Building in just six days, and the 24/7 prep work would then shave an additional day off the amount of time it takes to get Atlantis mated to its external tank and boosters. After only four days in the Vehicle Assembly Building, one of the two Crawler-Transporters would haul Atlantis out to Launch Complex 39, where it would stage on either Pad A or Pad B on Flight Day 15—January 30. ... Once on the pad, the final push to launch would begin. There would be no practice countdown for the astronauts chosen to fly the mission, nor would there be extra fuel leak tests. Prior to this launch, the shortest time a shuttle had spent on the launch pad was 14 days; the pad crews closing out Atlantis would have only 11 days to get it ready to fly.'"

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Will Peggy the Programmer Be the New Rosie the Riveter?
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 02:16 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's finding-more-talent department:
theodp writes "The Mercury News' Mike Cassidy reports that women are missing out on lucrative careers in computer science. 'The dearth of women in computing,' writes Cassidy, 'has the potential to slow the U.S. economy, which needs more students in the pipeline to feed its need for more programmers. It harms women by excluding them from some of the best jobs in the country. And it damages U.S. companies, which studies show would benefit from more diverse teams.' The promise of better financial results, says Anita Borg Institute Director Denise Gammal, is making diversity a business imperative. It's 'the sort of imperative that cries out for a movement,' argues Cassidy, 'maybe this time one led not by Rosie the Riveter, but by Peggy the Programmer.' So, where will Peggy the Programmer come from? Well, Google is offering $100 to girls attending U.S. public high schools who complete a Codecademy JavaScript course. 'Currently only 12% of computer science graduates are women,' explains Codecademy, 'and great tech companies like Google want to see more smart girls like you enter this awesome profession!' Google joins tech giant-backed Code.org in incentivizing teachers to bring the next generation of girls to the CS table.

< article continued at Slashdot >

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Visual Effects Artists Use MPAA's Own Words Against It
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 01:30 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's your-daily-schadenfreude department:
beltsbear sends a story about the struggles of visual effects artists against the Motion Picture Association of America. The VFX industry in the U.S. has been slowly dying because movie studios increasingly outsource the work to save money. The visual effects industry protested and fought where they could, but had little success — until the MPAA filed a seemingly innocuous legal document to the International Trade Commission two weeks ago. In it, the MPAA argues that international trade of intellectual property is just like international trade of manufactured goods, and should be afforded the same protections. This would naturally apply to visual effects work, as well. Thus:
"[E]mboldened by the MPAA’s filing, the visual effects workers are now in a position to use the big studios’ own arguments to compel the government to slap trade tariffs on those studios’ own productions in high-subsidy countries. Those arguments will be especially powerful because the MPAA made them to the very same governmental agencies that will process the visual-effects workers’ case. Additionally, the workers can now take matters into their own hands. ... If visual effects workers can show the Commerce Department and the U.S. International Trade Commission that an import is benefiting from foreign subsidies and therefore illegally undercutting a domestic industry, the federal government is obligated to automatically slap a punitive tax on that import. Such a tax would in practice erase the extra profit margins the studios are gleaning from the foreign subsidies, thereby leveling the competitive playing field for American workers and eliminating the purely economic incentive for the studios to engage in mass offshoring."

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Kepler's Alien World Count Skyrockets
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 01:30 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's good-thing-we-launched-it-with-a-skyrocket department:
astroengine writes "The number of known planets beyond the solar system took a giant leap thanks to a new technique that verifies candidate planets found by NASA's Kepler space telescope in batches rather than one-by-one. The new method adds 715 planets to Kepler's list of confirmed planets, which previously totaled 246, scientists said Wednesday. Combined with other telescopes' finds, the overall exoplanet headcount now reaches nearly 1,700. 'By moving ... to statistical studies in a "big data" fashion, Kepler has showcased the diversity and types of planets present in our galaxy,' said astronomer Sara Seager."
In other exoplanet news, a recent study found that so-called 'super earths,' planets that are bigger than Earth but smaller than gas giants like Uranus and Neptune, are unlikely to be habitable to known forms of life. The higher mass traps significantly more hydrogen during the formation of the planetary system, which results in extremely high atmospheric pressure — high enough to be hostile to known life.

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Portal 2 Beta Released For Linux
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 01:15 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's now-you're-thinking-with-betaportals department:
jones_supa writes "Yesterday Portal 2, a Source-based game that has been missing a Linux version, got a public beta release. The Steam game product page doesn't yet say the game supports Linux. To access the beta for Linux, right-click the game in Steam, select Properties and go to the Betas tab. Valve hasn't published the Linux system requirements for Portal 2 yet, but WebUpd8 tested it using Intel HD 3000 graphics under Ubuntu and it worked pretty well."

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The Emerging RadioShack/Netflix Debacle
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 12:30 PM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's you-forgot-to-run-the-jerkbag-test-case department:
New submitter DigitalParc writes "RadioShack recently launched a promotion for 6 months of free Netflix service with the purchase of a laptop, tablet, or phone. This ended up being a fantastic deal, until the shoddy redemption site they were using for the Netflix code redemption was exploited and many of the codes were stolen. 'Users on slickdeals, a deal-finding and sometimes deal-exploiting website, found that the URL of the redemption website could be changed upon trying to enter a code, resulting in a valid Netflix subscription code being generated. Within hours, many of Netflix codes that were allocated to this promotion were stolen and some were redeemed or put up for sale on eBay.'"

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Horseshoe Crabs Are Bled Alive To Create an Unparalleled Biomedical Technology
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 11:30 AM
By Soulskill from Slashdot's apparently-we're-a-race-of-vampires-to-horseshoe-crabs department:
Lasrick writes "Alexis Madrigal at the Atlantic: 'The marvelous thing about horseshoe crab blood, though, isn't the color. It's a chemical found only in the amoebocytes of its blood cells that can detect mere traces of bacterial presence and trap them in inescapable clots.' Madrigal continues, 'To take advantage of this biological idiosyncrasy, pharmaceutical companies burst the cells that contain the chemical, called coagulogen. Then, they can use the coagulogen to detect contamination in any solution that might come into contact with blood. If there are dangerous bacterial endotoxins in the liquid—even at a concentration of one part per trillion—the horseshoe crab blood extract will go to work, turning the solution into what scientist Fred Bang, who co-discovered the substance, called a "gel." ... I don't know about you, but the idea that every single person in America who has ever had an injection has been protected because we harvest the blood of a forgettable sea creature with a hidden chemical superpower makes me feel a little bit crazy. This scenario is not even sci-fi, it's postmodern technology.'"

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Supreme Court Ruling Relaxes Warrant Requirements For Home Searches
Posted by News Fetcher on February 26 '14 at 10:45 AM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's arrest-everyone-until-someone-consents department:
cold fjord writes with news that the Supreme Court has expanded the ability of police officers to search a home without needing a warrant, quoting the LA Times: "Police officers may enter and search a home without a warrant as long as one occupant consents, even if another resident has previously objected, the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday ... The 6-3 ruling ... gives authorities more leeway to search homes without obtaining a warrant, even when there is no emergency. The majority ... said police need not take the time to get a magistrate's approval before entering a home in such cases. But dissenters ... warned that the decision would erode protections against warrantless home searches."

In this case, one person objected to the search and was arrested followed by the police returning and receiving the consent of the remaining occupant.

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