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Biological Supercomputers Powered By ATP Could Be A Reality Some Day
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 07:11 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's molecular-motor-propelled-agents-in-nanofabricated-networks department:
hypnosec writes: Our cells are powered by Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and according to a new study, they could be a power source for the next generation of biological supercomputers capable of processing information very quickly and accurately using parallel networks in the same way that massive electronic super computers do. Published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), the paper describes a model of biological computer that is effectively a very complex network in a very small area, and is based on a combination of geometrical modeling and engineering know-how (on the nano scale). Researchers involved with the study claim that it is the first step in showing that this kind of biological supercomputer can actually work.

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Microsoft Unhappy With Beta Testers, Demands Answers
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 04:31 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's not-my-gumdrop-buttons department:
Freshly Exhumed writes: Microsoft has mandated that the feedback functionality built into Windows Insider Preview beta be switched on -- a change from earlier when testers could block questions from the company about what users thought of specific features. Starting with Build 14271 and newer, the frequency in which Windows 10 will ask for your feedback will be locked to 'Automatically (Recommended)' in the Settings app. This would seem to disrupt what has traditionally been seen as a tacit understanding between corporations and their beta testers/sandboxers in that the latter would volunteer their time, effort, CPU cycles, possible hardware failures/breakage, and more as part of a bargain to receive feedback or to test fly the beta OS with internal software environments in private. Microsoft would now seem to be altering that relationship.

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IoT Devices Are Secretly Phoning Home
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 03:11 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's fear-the-internet department:
An anonymous reader writes: A popular internet-enabled security camera "secretly and constantly connects into a vast peer-to-peer network run by the Chinese manufacturer of the hardware," according to security blogger Brian Krebs. While the device is not necessarily sharing video from your camera, it is punching through firewalls to connect with other devices. Even if the user discovers it, it's still extremely hard to turn off. Krebs notes that the same behavior has been detected in DVRs and smart plugs -- they're secretly connecting to the same IP address in China, apparently without any mention of this in the product's packaging. One security researcher told Krebs the behavior is an "insanely bad idea," and that it opens an attack vector into home networks.

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Chinese ISPs Caught Injecting Ads And Malware In Their Network Traffic
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 01:51 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's Great-Firewall-of-China department:
Chinese Internet Service Providers (ISPs) have been caught red-handed for injecting advertisements as well as malware through their network traffic. Three Israeli researchers uncovered that the major Chinese-based ISPs named China Telecom and China Unicom, two of Asia's largest network operators, have been engaged in an illegal practice of content injection in network traffic. Chinese ISPs had set up many proxy servers to pollute the client's network traffic not only with insignificant advertisements but also malware links, in some cases, inside the websites they visit. If an Internet user tries to access a domain that resides under these Chinese ISPs, the forged packet redirects the user's browser to parse the rogue network routes. As a result, the client's legitimate traffic will be redirected to malicious sites/ads, benefiting the ISPs.

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Rubio, Cruz Try To Kill Neutrality On 1 Year Rule Anniversary
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 01:51 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's happy-anniversary department:
An anonymous reader writes: Presidential hopefuls Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz have joined six other Senators in pushing the new Restoring Internet Freedom Act, which would dismantle the rules, walk-back the FCC's Title II reclassification of ISPs as common carriers, and prevent the FCC from trying to pass net neutrality rules in the future. In a statement posted to the Rubio website, the Presidential hopeful states the new law is necessary because the FCC's "burdensome" net neutrality rules are destroying innovation, diversity, and network investment. "Through burdensome regulations and tight control like the net neutrality rule, the government only hinders accessibility and the diversity of content," said Rubio. "Consumers should be driving the market, and we can help by encouraging innovation, incentivizing investment, and promoting the competitive environment this industry needs."

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Are CEOs Overpaid? Not Compared With College Presidents
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 12:32 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's spare-some-change department:
schwit1 writes: For outrageous executive earnings, don't look to Wall Street -- look to academia. High pay for CEOs attracts annual attention and recitations about the immorality of capitalism, but when the focus is on average CEO pay, they make less than half the annual earnings of college presidents, according to CBS News. The average CEO earns $176,840 annually, an amount that would make a university president into a pauper. In academia, college presidents earn $377,261 annually. Americans outraged and indebted by high college costs will be quick to draw the parallel between a college president's pay and their tuition bill. Correlation, though, doesn't imply causation. College presidents aren't always the highest-paid college employees -- athletic coaches often earn more. Regardless, college presidents "are well into the 99th percentile of compensation for wage earners in the United States," Peter L. Hinrichs and Anne Chen noted for the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.

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Airbus Patents Adjustable Seats, In-Seat Storage For Aircarft
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 11:01 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's packed-like-sardines department:
AmiMoJo writes: Airbus, a leading aircraft manufacturer, has recently applied for a pair of airplane seat patents that simultaneously look to increase customer comfort while stripping away what little room remains. The first patent is for a "Re-Configurable Passenger Bench Seat," which allows seat belts and arm rests to be moved to accommodate different size passengers (e.g. two large adults, or two small adults and two small children in a row). The second patent places a storage box under each seat, which is accessed by raising the seat cushion. Of course, this means there wouldn't be room for your feet under the seat in front of you.

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John McAfee: NSA's Back Door Has Given Every US Secret To Enemies
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 11:01 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's weaponized-software department:
John McAfee, American computer programmer and contributing editor of Business Insider, explains how the NSA's back door has given every U.S. secret to its enemies. He begins by mentioning the importance of software, specifically meta- software, which contains a high level set of principles designed to help a nation survive in a cyberwar. Such software must not contain any back doors under any circumstances, otherwise it can and may very likely allow perceived enemies of the U.S. to have access to top-secret information. For example, the Chinese used the NSA's back door to hack the Defense Department last year and steal 5.6 million fingerprints of critical personnel. "Whatever gains the NSA has made through the use of their back door, it cannot possibly counterbalance the harm done to our nation by everyone else's use of that same back door." McAfee believes the U.S. has failed to grasp the subtle implications of technology and, as a result, is 20 years behind the Chinese, and by association, the Russians as well.

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Pentagon Research Could Make 'Brain Modem' A Reality
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 09:41 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's nanobots department:
schwit1 writes: The Pentagon is attempting what was, until recently, an impossible technological feat -- developing a high-bandwidth neural interface that would allow people to beam data from their minds to external devices and back. That's right -- a brain modem. One that could allow a soldier to, for example, control a drone with his mind. On Feb. 8, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) -- the US military's fringe-science wing -- announced the first successful tests, on animal subjects, of a tiny sensor that travels through blood vessels, lodges in the brain and records neural activity. The so-called "stentrode," a combination stent and electrode, is the size of a paperclip and flexible. The tiny, injectable machine -- the invention of neurologist Tom Oxley and his team at the University of Melbourne in Australia -- could help researchers solve one of the most vexing problems with the brain modem: how to insert a transmitter into the brain without also drilling a hole in the user's head, a risky procedure under any circumstances.

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Disney Asking Employees To Help Fund Copyright Lobbying
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 09:41 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's help-me-help-you department:
NormalVisual writes: Disney is now asking its employees to chip in to promote the company's copyright agenda via the company's political action committee, DisneyPAC. CEO Bob Iger has sent a letter to the company's employees lauding the company's success with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement and the recent Supreme Court decision regarding the video service Aereo -- an Internet service claiming the right to retransmit [Disney's] broadcast signals without paying copyright or retransmission consent fees. Iger also expresses the company's hope that DisneyPAC will be able to influence Congress in regards to lowering corporate tax rates. Not surprisingly, the company refuses to comment on the initiative.

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Apple Lawyer Ted Olson: Creating Unlock Tool Would Lead To 'Orwellian' Society
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 08:22 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's big-brother-is-watching-you department:
Apple's lawyer, Ted Olson, explained in an interview with CNN that what the government is asking Apple to do is "limitless." Olson explained that if the tool that the government wants is created, any judge anywhere could essentially order to list to any customer's conversation, track location, and much more. The lawyer likened it to an Orwellian "big brother" type society. When pressed about how Apple could potentially help fight terrorism by creating a tool to access locked devices, Olson explained that while Apple will help the government defeat terrorism in every way that it can, it can't be done by breaking the Constitution.

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Anonymous Goes After Miami Police Officer Who Doxed An Innocent Woman
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 07:01 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's an-eye-for-an-eye department:
An anonymous reader writes: After Miami resident, Claudia Castillo, noticed a cop speeding down the freeway without a siren, she pulled him over and told him to stop going so fast. The cop's police union chief, Javier Ortiz, decided to take the woman's private details and put them on his Facebook account, asking friends to call her and give her a piece of their mind. Of course, harassment ensued. Now, Anonymous hackers have decided to return the favor and dox the police union chief as payback. For once, these hacktivists did something useful.

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Red Hat And FCC CIOs On the Future Of Tech
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 07:01 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's industrial-age-to-the-information-age department:
StewBeans writes: At Evanta's recent CIO Executive Summit in Washington, D.C., two Enterprisers took the stage to discuss how CIOs can influence the future of business at the "tipping point" of technology and innovation today. David Bray, CIO of the U.S. Federal Communications Commission, began the talk: "2013 was the year there was the same number of network devices on the face of the planet as there were humans -- seven billion network devices on the face of the planet, seven billion humans. Now 2015, just two years later, we're at 14 billion network devices on the face of the planet." This set the stage for a conversation on the future of technology that touched on everything from Moore's Law to the consumerization of technology, global connectivity, and mass personalization. Bray and co-presenter Lee Congdon, CIO of Red Hat, shared their predictions and insights into how all businesses will need to evolve and adapt to a future in which they have less control.

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Tackling The Future Of Digital Trust -- While It Still Exists
Posted by News Fetcher on February 28 '16 at 02:51 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's real-world-scenarios department:
Tekla Perry writes: Last week at Berkeley's Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity, cybersecurity mavens from the industry, academia, government, and media considered a futuristic scenario in which traditional forms of identification and databases that use them -- drivers licenses, voting records, social security numbers, medical records, and bank accounts -- had been compromised. The challenge was to use the scenario to figure out how to establish a new means of verifying one's identity and to rebuild trust in the electronic records system in the case of such an imaginary crisis. Furthermore, they were then challenged to take the conclusions and develop policies that could prevent such a massive breach of digital trust from ever happening in the first place.

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'Moth Eye' Graphene Breakthrough Could Create Indoor Solar Cells
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '16 at 11:52 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's endless-possibilities department:
A scientific breakthrough with the "wonder material" graphene has opened up the possibility of indoor solar cells that capture energy from indirect sunlight, as well as ambient energy from household devices. Researchers from the University of Surrey in the U.K. studied the eyes of moths to create sheets of graphene that they claim is the most light-absorbent material ever created. "We realized that the moth's eye works in a particular way that traps electromagnetic waves very efficiently," Professor Ravi Silva, head of the Advanced Technology Institute at the University of Surrey, tells Newsweek. "As a result of our studies, we've been able to mimic the surface of a moth's eye and create an amazingly thin, efficient, light-absorbent material made of graphene."

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IBM Added 70,000 People To Its Ranks In 2015, And Lost That Many, Too
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '16 at 07:52 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's look-at-the-numbers department:
walterbyrd writes: IBM is very particular in hiring for the hot new skills where IBM is expanding like machine learning, big data, mobile, and security. However, even with adding 70,000 people to their payroll in 2015, IBM actually ended the year with a slightly lower headcount than when it started, according to a SEC filing. IBM is always very careful when talking about its global headcount, which has been going through major shifts for years. It won't say how many people it lays off each year, or how old they are or in what areas they work. It only talks only about "resource actions" or "workforce rebalancing" in terms of the total amount of money it spends on them. It spent $587 million on such things in 2015 (and nearly $1.5 billion in 2014), it said.

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Cloud Security Startup ProtectWise Creates Network DVR To Analyze Threats
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '16 at 06:31 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's into-the-matrix department:
MojoKid writes: A Denver-based security startup called ProtectWise has a rather interesting twist on a security as a service platform that also incorporates an innovative threat detection and management user interface. The ProtectWise security platform runs on a cloud-based infrastructure that currently utilizes Amazon AWS for storage and processing. ProtectWise is an all software solution comprised of a "Cloud Network DVR" platform made-up of virtual cameras in the cloud that record all traffic on the network. The sensors (12MB install package) record all network traffic wherever they're installed and stream it up to the ProtectWise platform where it is securely stored and the threat analysis is performed. The sensors can be configured with profiles to capture just light metadata like netflow or headers (source, destination etc.) all the way to the full payload. You can then playback the traffic from the ProtectWise cloud analytics platform, going months back if needed, and analyze the data for threats. You can go back in time and see if, where and how you've been compromised retrospectively. There's also a ProtectWise HUD that visualizes and renders network threat location and progression, allowing you to make better use of all the data recorded. It has a 'KillBox' that visually shows attack event progression across the network area. The only question has to do with compliance for financial applications since it is cloud-based. Currently, ProtectWise has 100 or so deployments of its product in the market with customers like Netflix, Hulu, Expedia, Pandora and Universal Music.

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Google Unveils Neural Network With Ability To Determine Location of Any Image
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '16 at 03:53 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's neural-networking department:
schwit1 writes: Here's a tricky task. Pick a photograph from the web at random. Now try to work out where it was taken using only the image itself. If the image shows a famous building or landmark, such as the Eiffel Tower or Niagara Falls, the task is straightforward. But the job becomes significantly harder when the image lacks specific location cues or is taken indoors or shows a pet or food or some other detail. Nevertheless, humans are surprisingly good at this task. To help, they bring to bear all kinds of knowledge about the world such as the type and language of signs on display, the types of vegetation, architectural styles, the direction of traffic, and so on. Humans spend a lifetime picking up these kinds of geolocation cues. So it's easy to think that machines would struggle with this task. And indeed, they have. Today, that changes thanks to the work of Tobias Weyand, a computer vision specialist at Google, and a couple of pals. These guys have trained a deep-learning machine to work out the location of almost any photo using only the pixels it contains.

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Scientists Plot Sea Levels Using GPS Satellites
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '16 at 03:53 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's measurement-of-oceans department:
A team from the UK's National Oceanography Centre (NOC), University of Michigan and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory have discovered a new way to accurately measure the sea level. The technique is called GNSS-R, and involves bouncing low-powered signals from GPS satellites off of the ocean's surface and measuring the reflected signal with a GNSS-R receiver. The team used a research satellite launched last year as a GNSS-R receiver, but it will be able to tap a new constellation of receivers that NASA is launching this year as part of CYGNSS. That mission will make accurate measurements of surface winds using GPS satellites, but NOC scientists will be able to use them to measure ocean levels, too, yielding a thirty-fold increase in such data.

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Valve's SteamOS Now Supports Vulkan, The Cross-Platform Alternative To DirectX 12
Posted by News Fetcher on February 27 '16 at 02:32 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's live-long-and-prosper department:
SteamOS just gained support for Vulkan, the cross-platform alternative to Microsoft's DirectX 12 and Apple's Metal. This should make it easier for developers to write and optimize games for SteamOS, closing the performance gap with Windows and encouraging more developers to support Linux. This feature arrived in SteamOS Brewmaster version 2.63. Valve added version 355 of the Linux Nvidia driver, which means SteamOS offers Vulkan support when used alongside Nvidia hardware. Intel's graphics hardware should also support Vulkan on SteamOS in the near future. AMD is still working on its new driver, known as AMDGPU, that will replace the current fglrx driver for SteamOS and other Linux-based platforms. If you use Linux distribution besides SteamOS, you can download Nvidia's Vulkan-ready Linux driver or an experimental version of Intel's Vulkan-enabled graphics driver.

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