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New Attack Hijacks DNS Traffic From 300,000 Routers
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 09:30 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's something-had-to-replace-windows department:
nk497 writes "Florida-based security firm Team Cymru said it was examining a widespread compromise"of 300,000 consumer and small office/home office (SOHO) routers in Europe and Asia. The DNS server settings were changed to a pair of IP addresses, which correspond to Dutch machines that are registered to a company that lists its address in central London. The attack highlights the flaws in router firmware, the researchers said. 'It's not new as an issue to the InfoSec community but this is one of the biggest we've seen recently as it's quite insidious,' Cymru's Steve Santorelli said, adding the hack could let the attackers conduct man in the middle attacks, impersonating your bank, for example."

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Sulfur Polymers Could Enable Long-Lasting, High-Capacity Batteries
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 07:45 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's holding-out-for-an-atomic-cell-phone department:
MTorrice writes "Lithium-sulfur batteries promise to store four to five times as much energy as today's best lithium-ion batteries. But their short lifetimes have stood in the way of their commercialization. Now researchers demonstrate that a sulfur-based polymer could be the solution for lightweight, inexpensive batteries that store large amounts of energy. Battery electrodes made from the material have one of the highest energy-storage capacities ever reported"

Litihium Ion batteries should maintain capacity for about 1000 cycles, whereas Lithium-sulfur batteries traditionally went kaput after about 100. But it looks like they are getting pretty close to something feasible, from the article: "The best performing copolymer consisted of 90% sulfur by mass. Batteries using this copolymer had an initial storage capacity of 1,225 mAh per gram of material. After 100 charge-discharge cycles, the capacity dropped to 1,005 mAh/g, and after 500 cycles it fell to about 635 mAh/g. In comparison, a lithium-ion battery typically starts out with a storage capacity of 200 mAh/g but maintains it for the life of the battery, Pyun says."

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Merlin's Magic: The Inside Story of the First Mobile Game
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 05:45 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's purchase-additional-beeps-for-99-cents department:
curtwoodward writes "Long before Steve Jobs kicked off the modern mobile gaming revolution with the iPhone, a Harvard astrophysicist got kids obsessed with chasing electronic lights and sounds with their fingers. Bob Doyle was the inventor behind Merlin, and built the early versions with his wife and brother-in-law. As the more sophisticated cousin of raw memory game Simon, Merlin offered games like blackjack, tic-tac-toe, and even an early music program. Doyle, now 77, got 5 percent royalties on each sale, money that paid for the rest of his projects over the years."

Using those royalties, Bob Doyle spends his time writing things online.

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Android Beats iOS As the Top Tablet OS
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 05:30 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's gnu-feeling-left-out department:
sfcrazy writes "Linux is on a roll. After conquering the smartphone space, Android is now dominating the tablet space. According to a new study by Gartner, 'the tablet growth in 2013 was fueled by the low-end smaller screen tablet market, and first time buyers; this led Android to become the No. 1 tablet operating system (OS), with 62 percent of the market.'"

Also, everyone is buying tablets.(~200 million sold in 2013 vs ~115 million in 2012). Microsoft still only has 2% of the tablet market.

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Government Accuses Sprint of Overcharging For Wiretapping Expenses
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 04:15 PM
By Unknown Lamer from Slashdot's funding-unfunded-mandates department:
realized writes with news that the Federal government thinks Sprint overcharged them $21 million when billing for wiretaps. From the article: "Sprint, like all the nation's carriers, must comply with the Communications Assistance in Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which requires telcos to be capable of providing government-ordered wiretapping services. The act also allows carriers to recoup 'reasonable expenses' associated with those services. Sprint inflated charges approximately 58 percent between 2007 and 2010, according to a lawsuit the administration brought against the carrier today. ... The suit said that the wireless carrier breached Federal Communications Commission guidelines of 2006 that prohibited carriers from using intercept charges to recover costs of modifying 'equipment, facilities or services' to comply with the Communications Assistance in Law Enforcement Act."

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Walmart Unveils Turbine-Powered WAVE Concept Truck
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 03:30 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's corpone-brotch-approved department:
cartechboy writes "It's no secret that semi trucks use a lot of fuel. Moving that amount of mass along at highway speeds takes a lot of power. But Walmart might have just unveiled the semi truck of the future with its WAVE concept truck. This crazy looking semi features an aerodynamic cab and looks like no other truck on the road. The driver sits in the center of the cab and the steering wheel is flanked by LCD screens instead of conventional gauges. The WAVE concept is powered by a range-extended electric powertrain consisting of a Capstone micro-turbine and an electric motor. To reduce weight the entire truck including the trailer is made of carbon fiber. The 53-foot side panels on the trailer are said to be the first single pieces of carbon fiber that large ever produced. The result? A trailer that weighs around 4,000 pounds less than a conventional one. While Walmart says it has no plans to produce the WAVE concept, one has to wonder if this is a look at what semis of the future will be like."

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Scientists Revive a Giant 30,000 Year Old Virus From Ice
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 03:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's I-saw-this-movie department:
bmahersciwriter writes "It might be terrifying if we were amoebae. Instead, it's just fascinating. The virus, found in a hunk of Siberian ice, is huge, but also loosely packaged, which is strange says evolutionary biologist Jean-Michel Claverie: 'We thought it was a property of viruses that they pack DNA extremely tightly into the smallest particle possible, but this guy is 150 times less compacted than any bacteriophage [viruses that infect bacteria]. We don't understand anything anymore!'"

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The Next Keurig Will Make Your Coffee With a Dash of "DRM"
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 02:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's pirate-coffee-is-the-best-coffee department:
FuzzNugget writes "Apparently seeking to lock competitors out of the burgeoning single-serve coffee market, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, maker of the popular Keurig coffee machines, will make their new machines work with licensed pods only. GMCR's CEO confirmed this in a statement: 'The much-anticipated ‘Keurig 2.0’ single-cup brewing system with ‘interactive readability’ (that doesn’t work with unlicensed/copycat pods) will offer such “game-changing functionality” that consumers - and unlicensed players - will want to switch.'"

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IEEE Predicts 85% of Daily Tasks Will Be Games By 2020
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 02:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's hit-the-reset-button department:
cagraham writes "According to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), over 85% of daily tasks will include game elements by 2020. The organization, whose motto is 'Advancing Technology for Humanity,' looked at the growth of games in fields such as healthcare, education, and enterprise when preparing their report. Member Tom Coughlin summarized the findings, saying that 'by 2020, however many points you have at work will help determine the kind of raise you get or which office you sit in.'"

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Ask Slashdot: Modern Web Development Applied Science Associates Degree?
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 01:15 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's teach-them-well department:
First time accepted submitter campingman777 writes "I am being asked by students to develop an associates of applied science in modern web development at my community college. I proposed the curriculum to some other web forums and they were absolutely against it. Their argument was that students would not learn enough higher math, algorithms, and data structures to be viable employees when their industry changes every five years. As part of our mission is to turn out employees immediately ready for the work force, is teaching knowledge-based careers as a vocation appropriate?"

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Book Review: Threat Modeling: Designing For Security
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 01:00 PM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's read-all-about-it department:
benrothke writes "When it comes to measuring and communicating threats, perhaps the most ineffective example in recent memory was the Homeland Security Advisory System; which was a color-coded terrorism threat advisory scale. The system was rushed into use and its output of colors was not clear or intuitive. What exactly was the difference between levels such as high, guarded and elevated? From a threat perspective, which color was more severe — yellow or orange? Former DHS chairman Janet Napolitano even admitted that the color-coded system presented 'little practical information' to the public. While the DHS has never really provided meaningful threat levels, in Threat Modeling: Designing for Security, author Adam Shostack has done a remarkable job in detailing an approach that is both achievable and functional. More importantly, he details a system where organizations can obtain meaningful and actionable information, rather than vague color charts." Read below for the rest of Ben's review. Threat Modeling: Designing for Security
author Adam Shostack
pages 624
publisher Wiley
rating 10/10
reviewer Ben Rothke
ISBN 978-1118809990
summary Invaluable guide to create a formal threat modeling program

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Cops Say NDA Kept Them from Notifying Courts About Cell Phone Tracking Gadget
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 11:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's I-can't-say department:
schwit1 writes "Police in Florida have offered a startling excuse for having used a controversial 'stingray' cell phone tracking gadget 200 times without ever telling a judge: the device's manufacturer made them sign a non-disclosure agreement that they say prevented them from telling the courts. The shocking revelation, uncovered by the American Civil Liberties Union, came during an appeal over a 2008 sexual battery case in Tallahassee in which the suspect also stole the victim's cell phone. Using the stingray — which simulates a cell phone tower in order to trick nearby mobile devices into connecting to it and revealing their location — police were able to track him to an apartment."

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Apple Launches CarPlay At Geneva Show
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 11:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's drive-differently department:
An anonymous reader writes "Apple announced today a system called CarPlay, which integrates your iPhone with your car, with Siri voice control. CarPlay will be offered in Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo vehicles this year, and others 'down the road.' From the press release: 'CarPlay makes driving directions more intuitive by working with Maps to anticipate destinations based on recent trips via contacts, emails or texts, and provides routing instructions, traffic conditions and ETA. You can also simply ask Siri and receive spoken turn-by-turn directions, along with Maps, which will appear on your car’s built-in display.'

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Fujitsu Labs Develops Prototype Haptic Sensory Tablet
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 10:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's can-you-feel-that? department:
Zothecula writes "Many smartphone or tablet users will already be familiar with receiving vibration feedback when typing on a virtual keyboard, but, though better than nothing, it's not particularly convincing. There have been attempts to make sensory feedback from touchscreens more realistic using electrostatic force, for example, or even creating the sensation of physical buttons by pushing liquid into prearranged tactile pixels, but Fujitsu is claiming to break new ground with its prototype haptic sensory tablet."

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Bugatti 100P Rebuilt: The Plane That Could've Turned the Battle of Britain
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 10:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's blast-from-the-past department:
concertina226 writes "A team of engineers is working together to recreate the Bugatti Veyron (or Bugatti 100P), an art deco-era fighter plane designed for World War II that would have broken the air speed record in 1940 — only the plane was never flown. Featuring forward pitched wings, a zero-drag cooling system and automated flight control assistance, plane was capable of reaching an air speed of 500mph, which would have made it the fastest and most advanced plane of its time."

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Bugatti 100P: The Nazi Plane That Could've Won the Battle of Britain Rebuilt
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 09:15 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's blast-from-the-past department:
concertina226 writes "A team of engineers is working together to recreate the Bugatti Veyron (or Bugatti 100P), an art deco-era fighter plane designed for World War II that would have broken the air speed record in 1940 — only the plane was never flown. Featuring forward pitched wings, a zero-drag cooling system and computer-directed flight control, plane was capable of reaching an air speed of 500mph, which would have made it the fastest and most advanced plane of its time."

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"The Fat Man" George Sanger Answers Your Questions About Music and Games
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 08:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's when-the-fat-man-sings department:
A while ago you a chance to ask composer George Sanger about making music and sound effects for games, television, and film. Below you'll find "The Fat Man's" answers to those questions.

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Ouya CEO Talks Console's Tough First Year, and Ambitious "Ouya Everywhere" Plan
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 07:30 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's listen-up department:
Nerval's Lobster writes "As founder and CEO of the Ouya (pronounced "OOO-yah") game company, Julie Uhrman's mission has been to lure gamers back to their living room televisions. Touch-screen gaming on a smartphone or tablet is nice, she suggests, but a big screen, coupled with the precision of a controller with buttons and analog sticks, offers the best platform for immersive, emotionally engaging experiences. Soon enough, though, you shouldn't need an Ouya console to play Ouya games. Later this week, Uhrman plans to announce 'Ouya Everywhere,' an initiative to bring Ouya games to television sets that aren't connected to Ouya hardware. As a company, Ouya remains vague about just how Ouya Everywhere will work; but in an interview with Slashdot, Uhrman provided a rough idea of what to expect: 'It could be another set-top [box],' she said. 'It could be the TV itself. There's a number of different ways that games can be played on the television, and we're actively exploring all of them.' To be clear, Ouya isn't getting out of the hardware business. The company has promised relatively frequent hardware refreshes, and already upgraded the original Ouya's controller to address early complaints. The next version of the Ouya hardware 'at a minimum will have a higher performing chipset,' she said. 'We have done a lot of work on our controller and we feel like there is even more work to do. Those are the two big things we're focused on.' But while her company builds hardware, Uhrman insists that Ouya is 'really a software company. The largest team inside Ouya is software engineers.' (Ouya has 49 employees, 19 of them engineers.) Ouya arrived with great fanfare in 2012, after a $950,000 Kickstarter campaign met its goal in just eight hours. The fundraiser ended up raising $8.6 million, and Kickstarter backers received their consoles in March 2013."

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Russians Suspected of Uroburos Spy Malware
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 06:45 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's from-russia-with-love department:
judgecorp writes "While Russia's political activity is center stage, its cyber-espionage apparently continues. Russian intelligence is strongly suspected of being behind the Urburos malware which is targeting Western governments and commercial organizations. There are Russian-language strings in the code, and it searches its victims' systems for Agent BTZ, malware used in previous attacks believed to have been carried out by Russia."

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How Japanese Scientists Are Monitoring Fukushima Babies For Radiation Exposure
Posted by News Fetcher on March 03 '14 at 06:00 AM
By samzenpus from Slashdot's won't-somebody-please-scan-the-children department:
KentuckyFC writes "Parents in the Fukushima region of Japan are intensely worried that their children may be consuming food and water contaminated with radiation. But whole body scanners used to monitor the internal radiation levels of adults don't work for children who cannot stand up inside them. What's more, the machines are not sensitive enough to detect problematic radiation levels in children. That's because children metabolize substances faster than adults and have a lower mass to start with, so the levels of radiation in their bodies tend to be lower. For example, if each adult ingests 3 Becquerels of cesium-137 every day, the internal levels would reach an equilibrium of about 400 Bq/adult body. But a similar intake for a 1-year old child would result in an equilibrium level of about 60 Bq/body, well below the 250 Bq/body sensitivity of adult scanners. Now a team of engineers has built a whole body scanner that is sensitive enough for the job and that children can play inside for the 4 minutes necessary to scan them. And they say the results of the first 100 scans of Fukushima children (average age 4.2 years) are reassuring--none show any evidence of cesium-137. So far."

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