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Scientists May Have Discovered a New Fundamental Particle: Sterile Neutrino
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 07:41 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's surprise-findings department:
Artem Tashkinov writes: It needs more sigmas, but Fermilab boffins in America are carefully speculating that they may have seen evidence of a new fundamental particle: the sterile neutrino. The suggestion follows tests conducted by the MiniBooNE (Mini Booster Neutrino Experiment) instrument, located near Chicago. Its mission is to detect neutrino mass through their oscillations. In the Standard Model of physics, neutrinos, like all particles, are initially assumed to be massless, but some observations, like neutrino oscillation, suggest there's mass there. The experiment that possibly detected sterile neutrinos collected 15 years of data from its commissioning in 2002, and the results have only now reached pre-press outlet arXiv.

Over 15 years, MiniBooNE detected a few hundred more electron neutrinos than were predicted in Standard Model theory. The extra particles suggests there is a fourth, heavier flavor. The findings bring the MiniBooNE team tantalizingly close to a "result" -- it's a 4.8 sigma result, when "discovery" demands 5 sigma.

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tvOS 12 Brings Dolby Atmos Support, Zero Sign-In, and TV App Improvements
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 06:21 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's all-in-one department:
If you're using an Apple TV as your main streaming box, you will be happy to know several big improvements are coming to the platform. Macworld reports of what's new in tvOS 12: With tvOS 12, Dolby Atmos comes to the Apple TV 4K. All you need for full 3D immersive audio is an Atmos-supporting sound bar or receiver. This makes Apple TV 4K the only streaming media box to be certified for both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos.

One of the best features of tvOS 11 is called Single Sign-on. You add your TV provider's login information to your Apple TV device. If an app supports Single Sign-on, you can log in with your TV provider with just a few taps. It's a big step forward, but still a little bit of a pain. With tvOS 12, Apple makes the whole process totally seamless with Zero Sign-on. Here's how it works: If your TV provider is your Internet provider (a very common occurrence here in the United States), and your Apple TV is connected to the Internet through that provider, you sign in automatically to any Apple TV app your provider gives you access to. Just launch the app, and you're signed in, no passwords or configuration needed at all.

Apple's breathtaking 4K video screensavers, called "Aerials," is one of those minor delights that Apple TV 4K users can't get enough of. In tvOS 12, they get better. You can tap the remote to see the location at which the Aerial was filmed. A new set of Aerials is the star of the show, however. Called "Earth," these are stunning videos from space, taken by astronauts at the International Space Station. Furthermore, the TV app will provide live content from select TV providers; Charter Spectrum will support the app with live channels and content later this year. Apple is also now allowing third-party home control systems' remotes to control your Apple TV (including Siri).

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Zip Slip Vulnerability Affects Thousands of Projects
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 05:01 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's heads-up department:
Yhcrana writes: Considering the video in the story makes it pretty simple, this is not something I would like to have happen. Apparently it is a flaw in the libraries that are being used by Oracle, Apache, and others. The Register reports: "Booby-trapped archive files can exploit vulnerabilities in a swath of software to overwrite documents and data elsewhere on a computer's file system -- and potentially execute malicious code. Specifically, the flaws, dubbed "Zip Slip" by its discoverers at security outfit Snyk, is a path traversal flaw that can potentially be exploited to perform arbitrary code execution attacks. It affects .zip, .bz2, .tar, .xz, .war, .cpio, and .7z archives.

The bugs, according to Snyk, lie in code that unpacks compressed archives, hence the "Zip Slip" title. When software does not properly check and sanitize file names within the archive, attackers can set the destination path for an unpacked file to an existing folder or file elsewhere on a system. When that file is extracted, it will overwrite the existing data in that same path."

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Google's Lens AI Camera Is Now a Standalone App
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 05:01 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's come-and-get-it department:
Google Lens is now available as an app in the Play Store for devices with Android Marshmallow and above. The app is designed to bring up relevant information using visual analysis. Android Police reports: When you open the app, it goes right into a live viewfinder with Lens looking for things it can ID. Like the Assistant version of Lens, you can tap on items to get more information (assuming Google can figure out what they are) and copy text from documents. However, I've noticed that copying text doesn't work on the OnePlus 6 right now. It works fine with the built-in Lens version. Some users are reporting that it's not working properly on some devices, so keep that mind if you decide to give it a whirl.

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Qualcomm Unveils Snapdragon 850 Platform Targeted For Windows 10 PCs
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 03:42 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's new-and-improved department:
MojoKid writes: Qualcomm's Always-Connected Windows 10 PC initiative with Microsoft kicks into another gear this morning with the announcement of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 850 Mobile Platform for Windows 10 PCs. Based on what looks to be an optimized version of the Snapdragon 845 specifically tuned for laptops and 2-in-1 convertibles, the Snapdragon 850 promises a 30 percent boost in system-wide performance versus the previous generation Snapdragon 835 platform, while its integrated Snapdragon X20 LTE modem promises peak speeds of 1.2Gbps. When it comes to battery life, Qualcomm says that PCs running the Snapdragon 850 will be able to top 25 hours of runtime. Qualcomm also notes it will have many more OEM partners and a lot more device options to choose from (hopefully at lower price points) this time around. Couple that with Microsoft's new support for the ARM64 SDK in Windows 10, and things could get interesting for this new class of machine. No word on availability just yet, beyond the note that devices will be available in market later this year.

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Washington Sues Facebook, Google For Failure To Disclose Political Ad Spending
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 03:42 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's closed-book department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from TechCrunch: Facebook and Google were paid millions for political advertising purposes in Washington but failed for years to publish related information -- such as the advertiser's address -- as required by state law, alleges a lawsuit by the state's attorney general. Washington law requires that "political campaign and lobbying contributions and expenditures be fully disclosed to the public and that secrecy is to be avoided." Specifically, "documents and books of account" must be made available for public inspection during the campaign and for three years following; these must detail the candidate, name of advertiser, address, cost and method of payment, and description services rendered. Bob Ferguson, Washington's attorney general, filed a lawsuit yesterday alleging that both Facebook and Google "failed to obtain and maintain" this information.

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NASA Extends Juno Jupiter Mission By Three Years
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 02:21 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's great-news department:
The Juno spacecraft currently orbiting Jupiter was supposed to end its mission by crashing into the gas giant next month. Not anymore! From a report: It turns out the scientific mission will be extended through at least 2021 so it can meet its goals, as Business Insider first reported yesterday. This will delay the probe's dramatic demise for at least a few years. "NASA has approved Juno to continue through 2022 to finish all of our originally planned science," Scott Bolton, Juno's principle investigator from the Southwest Research Institute, told Gizmodo in an email. "The orbits are longer than planned, and that is why Juno needs more time to gather our planned scientific measurements." Juno departed Earth for Jupiter in 2011 and arrived at the gas giant on July 4, 2016. Since then, it's sent back a host of valuable data that has revealed new insights into Jupiter, like the depth of the red spot, three-dimensional views of the gas below its surface, and how its auroras work.

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DHS Will Use Facial Recognition To Scan Travelers at the Border
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 02:21 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's it's-here department:
An anonymous reader shares a report: Last year, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) put out a notice, saying it was looking for a facial recognition system that could work with images taken of people inside their cars. The idea was that such a system could be used to scan people entering and leaving the country through the US/Mexico border and match them to government documents like passports and visas. Now, The Verge reports that DHS will be launching a test of a system aiming to do just that. The Vehicle Face System, as it's called, is scheduled for an initial deployment in August and it will be installed at the Anzalduas border crossing. The test will take place over one year and will aim to take images of passengers in every car that enters or leaves the US through the crossing.

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FCC Emails Show Agency Spread Lies To Bolster Dubious DDoS Attack Claims: Gizmodo
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 01:01 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's body-of-lies department:
As the FCC was grappling with accusations of a fake cyberattack last spring, it intentionally misled several news organizations, choosing to feed journalists false information, while at the same time discouraging them from challenging the agency's official story, news outlet Gizmodo reported Tuesday. From the report: Internal emails reviewed by Gizmodo lay bare the agency's efforts to counter rife speculation that senior officials manufactured a cyberattack, allegedly to explain away technical problems plaguing the FCC's comment system amid its high-profile collection of public comments on a controversial and since-passed proposal to overturn federal net neutrality rules. The FCC has been unwilling or unable to produce any evidence an attack occurred -- not to the reporters who've requested and even sued over it, and not to U.S. lawmakers who've demanded to see it. Instead, the agency conducted a quiet campaign to bolster its cyberattack story with the aid of friendly and easily duped reporters, chiefly by spreading word of an earlier cyberattack that its own security staff say never happened.

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Flight-Sim Maker Threatens Legal Action Over Reddit Posts Discussing DRM
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 01:01 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's well-that-escalated-quickly department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Today's controversy begins with a Reddit thread that noted FlightSimLabs' A320 add-on installing "cmdhost.exe" files in the "system32" and "SysWOW64" folders inside the Windows directory. The strange filename and location -- which seems designed to closely match those of actual Windows system files -- made some Reddit users suspicious, especially given FlightSimLabs history of undisclosed installations. FlightSimLabs responded on Facebook last Thursday by saying that the files came from third-party e-commerce service eSellerate and were designed to "reduce the number of product activation issues people were having." This system has been acknowledged in the FlightSimLabs forums in the past, and it apparently passes all major antivirus checks.

The "controversy" over these files might well have died down after that response. But then FlightSimLabs' Simon Kelsey sent a message to the moderators of the flightsim subreddit, gently reminding them of "Reddit's obligation as a publisher... to ensure that any libelous content is taken down as soon as you become aware of it." While ostensibly welcoming "robust fair comment and opinion," the message also warns that "ANY suggestion that our current or future products pose any threat to users is absolutely false and libelous." That warning extends to the company's previous password-extractor controversy, with Kelsey writing, "ANY suggestion that any user's data was compromised during the events of February is entirely false and therefore libelous." "I would hate for lawyers to have to get involved in this, and I trust that you will take appropriate steps to ensure that no such libel is posted," Kelsey concludes. A follow-up message from Kelsey reiterated the same points and noted that FlightSimLabs has reported specific comments and demanded they be removed as libelous.

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PC Software Piracy Decreases Worldwide, But Remains Rampant
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 11:41 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's closer-look department:
An anonymous reader writes: A new report published by The Software Alliance shows that usage of pirated PC software is decreasing worldwide. While this is a positive trend for the industry, piracy remains rampant in many countries. This includes Libya, where a massive 90 percent of all software is used without permission.

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Edward Snowden: 'The People Are Still Powerless, But Now They're Aware'
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 11:41 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's Closer-look department:
Edward Snowden has no regrets
five years on from leaking the biggest cache of top-secret documents in history. He is wanted by the US. He is in exile in Russia. But he is satisfied with the way his revelations of mass surveillance have rocked governments, intelligence agencies and major internet companies. From a report Snowden, weighing up the changes, said some privacy campaigners had expressed disappointment with how things have developed, but he did not share it. "People say nothing has changed: that there is still mass surveillance. That is not how you measure change. Look back before 2013 and look at what has happened since. Everything changed." The most important change, he said, was public awareness. "The government and corporate sector preyed on our ignorance. But now we know. People are aware now. People are still powerless to stop it but we are trying. The revelations made the fight more even."

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Nvidia Says New GPUs Won't Be Available For a 'Long Time'
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 10:21 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's make-plans-accordingly department:
Nvidia chief executive Jensen Huang said this week at Computex that people should not get their hopes up for any major GPU upgrades in the company's lineup in the foreseeable future. From a report: When asked when the next-gen GeForce would arrive, Jensen quipped, "It will be a long time from now. I'll invite you, and there will be lunch." That was it for discussions of the future Turing graphics cards, but that's hardly a surprise. Nvidia doesn't announce new GPUs months in advance -- it will tell us when it's ready to launch. Indications from other sources, including graphics card manufacturers, is that the Turing GPUs will arrive in late July at the earliest, with August/September for lower tier cards and custom designs.

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Apple Deprecates OpenGL and OpenCL in macOS 10.14 Mojave
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 10:21 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's end-of-road department:
In macOS 10.14 Mojave, which Apple unveiled on Monday, the company is deprecating OpenGL and OpenCL technologies in its desktop operating system. In an announcement post to developers, the company wrote: Apps built using OpenGL and OpenCL will continue to run in macOS 10.14, but these legacy technologies are deprecated in macOS 10.14. Games and graphics-intensive apps that use OpenGL should now adopt Metal. Similarly, apps that use OpenCL for computational tasks should now adopt Metal and Metal Performance Shaders. PCGamer reports that several developers have expressed disappointment over the decision. AnandTech reports that the company is doing away with OpenGL and OpenCL in iOS and its other operating systems as well.

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The World Set a New Record For Renewable Power in 2017, But Emissions Are Still Rising
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 09:01 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's room-for-improvements department:
In 2017, the world deployed an ever-expanding amount of solar and wind power, setting a new record for renewable-power capacity added to the grid. From a report: In fact, the money spent on renewable installations was more than twice the sum spent on nuclear and fossil-fuel power, according to the annual Global Status Report published by renewables policy group REN21. Over the past 10 years, global installed renewable-power capacity, which includes hydropower, has doubled. That growth, however, isn't enough to reduce emissions. World demand for energy increased by 2.1% last year, and low-carbon sources could not keep pace. As a result, the word's energy-related carbon emissions rose by 1.7%, the first rise in four years. It's an important reminder that, despite all the talk about the growth of renewables, we still rely heavily on fossil fuels.

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MyHeritage, a DNA Testing and Ancestry Service, Announces Data Breach of Over 92 Million Account Details
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 09:01 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's security-woes department:
Joseph Cox, reporting for Motherboard: Unfortunately for customers of MyHeritage, a genealogy and DNA testing service, a researcher uncovered 92 million account details related to the company sitting on a server, according to an announcement from MyHeritage. The data relates to users who signed up to MyHeritage up to and including October 26, 2017 -- the date of the breach -- the announcement adds. Users of the Israeli-based company can create family trees and search through historical records to try and uncover their ancestry. In January 2017, Israeli media reported the company has some 35 million family trees on its website. In all, the breach impacted 92,283,889 users, according to MyHeritage's disclosure.

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The Asus Project Precog is a Pioneering Dual-Display Laptop, Due in 2019
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 07:41 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's how-about-that department:
At Computex on Tuesday, Asus unveiled the Project Precog, a concept PC formed of two shimmering sheets of glass. PCWorld: It's a vision that appears to be real: Marcel Campos, senior director of PC and phone marketing for Asus, said the company hopes to ship Project Precog in 2019. Until then, we'll have to wonder what it will cost and what its exact features will be. Precog taps into what could be a resurgence of the two-screen design trend that briefly took hold with initiatives like Project Taichi, a dual-screen device Asus showed at Computex in 2012. Precog is much larger, though, and looks more like a traditional convertible laptop that can rotate from a clamshell through tent mode and into a tablet.

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Intel Hits 50 Years and Its CPUs Hit 5.0 GHz
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 07:41 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's pushing-the-limits department:
Intel will turn 50 next month, so to celebrate that, its CPUs are hitting 5.0 GHz for the first time, it said. At Computex event in Taiwan this week, the chipmaker announced the limited edition 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8086K processor, the first-ever CPU from the company with a 5.0GHz turbo frequency. From a report: Intel, of course, is the world's biggest chip maker, and its fortunes are wedded to the success of the personal computer. "As we transition to the data-centric era, the PC remains a critical facet of Intel's business, and it's an area where we believe there are still so many opportunities ahead," Bryant said. "Today, at Computex in Taipei, I shared our vision for the future of the PC and introduced a wide range of new technologies that will help us and the broader ecosystem make this future a reality. One that transforms the PC from a simple computer into a platform that can power every person's greatest contribution."

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Apple Is Testing a Feature That Could Kill Police iPhone Unlockers
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 06:20 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's cat-and-mouse-race department:
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai, reporting for Motherboard: On Monday, at its Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple teased the upcoming release of the iPhone's operating system, iOS 12. Among its most anticipated features are group FaceTime, Animoji, and a ruler app. But iOS 12's killer feature might be something that's been rumored for a while and wasn't discussed at Apple's event. It's called USB Restricted Mode, and Apple has been including it in some of the iOS beta releases since iOS 11.3. The feature essentially forces users to unlock the iPhone with the passcode when connecting it to a USB accessory everytime the phone has not been unlocked for one hour. That includes the iPhone unlocking devices that companies such as Cellebrite or GrayShift make, which police departments all over the world use to hack into seized iPhones. "That pretty much kills [GrayShift's product] GrayKey and Cellebrite," Ryan Duff, a security researcher who has studied iPhone and is Director of Cyber Solutions at Point3 Security, told Motherboard in an online chat. "If it actually does what it says and doesn't let ANY type of data connection happen until it's unlocked, then yes. You can't exploit the device if you can't communicate with it."

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Hawaii Passes Law To Make State Carbon Neutral By 2045
Posted by News Fetcher on June 05 '18 at 06:20 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's ambitious-emissions-goals department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Fast Company: In a little less than three decades, Hawaii plans to be carbon neutral -- he most ambitious climate goal in the United States. Governor David Ige signed a bill today committing to make the state fully carbon neutral by 2045, along with a second bill that will use carbon offsets to help fund planting trees throughout Hawaii. A third bill requires new building projects to consider how high sea levels will rise in their engineering decisions. The state is especially vulnerable to climate change -- sea level rise, for example, threatens to cause $19 billion in economic losses -- and that's one of the reasons that the new laws had support.

Transportation is a challenge -- while the state is planning for a future where cars run on renewable electricity, it also relies heavily on planes and ships, which will take longer to move to electric charging, and which Hawaii can't directly control. "Those are global transportation networks that don't have easy substitutes right now," Glenn says. "That's one of the reasons why we really want to pursue the carbon offset program, because we know we're going to continue to be dependent on shipping and aviation, and if they continue to burn carbon to bring us our tourists and our goods and our supplies and our food, then we want to try to have a way to sequester the impact we're causing by importing all this stuff to our islands." The government plans to sell carbon offsets to pay to plant native trees, which can help absorb CO2 from the atmosphere as they grow. The state is also working to become more self-sufficient. The governor aims to double local food production by 2030; right now, around 90% of what residents and tourists eat in Hawaii -- 6 million pounds of food a day -- comes from somewhere else, on planes or ships.

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