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Greens demand State hand over Keystone docs

mdsolar (1045926) writes | 1 hour ago

0

mdsolar (1045926) writes "An environmental group is demanding the State Department fork over all of its communications over changes that were made to the final Keystone XL pipeline environmental impact review.

Friends of the Earth filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request on Monday over a correction the State Department made in its final environmental analysis on the controversial pipeline.

The change reflected a substantial increase in the number of deaths that could be caused if Keystone is rejected. The revision said that State now estimates 18 to 30 people would be killed each year from the increase in oil shipments by rail without construction of the pipeline. Earlier estimates had said six deaths but that was under a three-month period.

Friends of the Earth called the statistics "highly questionable" and wants to know what prompted the change. They are asking for all staff communications over a five-month span.

"More questionable still is what prompted the State Department to update these particular numbers while neglecting numbers that show how Keystone XL would catalyze an increase in emissions," said Luisa Abbot Galvao of Friends of the Earth.

In the final impact review, the department said Keystone XL would not significantly contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, a finding that hasn't sat well with environmentalists.

Friends of the Earth wants all records between State's staff and lobbyists or other individuals representing pipeline developer TransCanada, and Environmental Resources Management, the contractor that worked on the final environmental review.

Its request asks for all of the communication, contracts or agreements made between State and TransCanada from January to June of this year.

It also asks for documents on the oil rail analysis, greenhouse gas emissions and mitigation measures compiled in the same time period."

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Canada-to-NYC power line receives environmental approval

mdsolar (1045926) writes | 1 hour ago

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mdsolar (1045926) writes "The U.S. Department of Energy has completed its environmental review of a $2.2 billion project that will run a 330-mile electric line from Canada to New York City.

The 1,000-megawatt transmission cables will have a 5-inch diameter and run underwater or underground for the line’s entire length. The project, called the Champlain Hudson Power Express, will siphon hydro and wind-produced energy from the Canadian border to a converter station that will be built in Astoria, Queens, and feed into the Consolidated Edison system.

Transmission Developers Inc., the Albany-based company developing the project, claims the transmission line would reduce energy costs for customers by as much as $650 million per year, creating an average of 300 construction jobs over the four years it takes to build."

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Google has announced a new processor for Project Ara.

rtoz (2530056) writes | 1 hour ago

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rtoz (2530056) writes "Google has just announced a new processor for Project Ara. The mobile Rockchip SoC will function as an applications processor, without requiring a bridge chip. A prototype of the phone with the Rockchip CPU, will be available early next year.

Via Google+ post, the Project Ara team Head Paul Eremenko says “We view this Rockchip processor as a trailblazer for our vision of a modular architecture where the processor is a node on a network with a single, universal interface--free from also serving as the network hub for all of the mobile device’s peripherals.”"

Smartphone: boom holders, but few downloading app - Techsonia

feedfeeder (1749978) writes | 2 hours ago

0


Firstpost

Smartphone: boom holders, but few downloading app
Techsonia
Today there are very few people who do not have a smartphone; yet, not everyone likes to download the app. 65.5% of smartphone owners, in the USA, do not download any new apps. The figure emerges from a report of the company ComScore. The number...
Smartphone users stick to limited mobile apps: ReportTimes of India
Google dominates top 10 apps, says ComScoreUSA TODAY
Most smartphone users don't download apps; here are 5 worth snatchingLos Angeles Times
CNET-Business Standard
all 75 news articles

Link to Original Source

Securing networks in the Internet of Things era

Anonymous Coward writes | yesterday

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An anonymous reader writes "Gartner reckons that the number of connected devices will hit 26 billion by 2020, almost 30 times the number of devices connected to the IoT in 2009. This estimate doesn’t even include connected PCs, tablets and smartphones. The IoT will represent the biggest change to our relationship with the Internet since its inception. Many IoT devices themselves suffer from security limitations as a result of their minimal computing capabilities. For instance, the majority don’t support sufficiently robust mechanisms for authentication, leaving network admins with only weak alternatives or sometimes no alternatives at all. As a result, it can be difficult for organizations to provide secure network access for certain IoT devices. Yet IT teams need to set network access policies for all connected devices in order to preserve network security and make the most efficient use of available network resources."

EU rules limit vacuum cleaners to 1600W from the 1st of September

AmiMoJo (196126) writes | 2 days ago

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AmiMoJo (196126) writes "New EU rules are limiting vacuum cleaner motors to 1600W from 2014/09/01. The EU summary of the new rules explains that consumers currently equate watts with cleaning power, which is not the case. Manufacturers will be required to put ratings on packaging, including energy efficiency, cleaning efficiency on hard and carpeted floors, and dust emissions from the exhaust. In the EU vacuum cleaners use more energy than the whole of Denmark, and produce more emissions than dishwashers and washing machines."

Oregon Sues Oracle for an "Abysmal" Healthcare Website

SpzToid (869795) writes | 8 hours ago

1

SpzToid (869795) writes "The state of Oregon sued Oracle America Inc. and six of its top executives Friday, accusing the software giant of fraud for failing to deliver a working website for the Affordable Care Act program.

The 126-page lawsuit claims Oracle has commmitted fraud, lies, and "a pattern of activity that has cost the State and Cover Oregon hundreds of millions of dollars".

"Not only were Oracle's claims lies, Oracle's work was abysmal", the lawsuit said. Oregon paid Oracle about $240.3 million for a system that never worked, the suit said.

“Today’s lawsuit clearly explains how egregiously Oracle has disserved Oregonians and our state agencies”, said Oregon Atty. Gen. Ellen Rosenblum in a written statement. “Over the course of our investigation, it became abundantly clear that Oracle repeatedly lied and defrauded the state. Through this legal action, we intend to make our state whole and make sure taxpayers aren’t left holding the bag.”

Oregon’s suit, alleges that Oracle, the largest tech contractor working on the website, made falsely convinced officials to buy “hundreds of millions of dollars of Oracle products and services that failed to perform as promised.” It is seeking $200 million in damages.

Oracle issued a statement saying the suit "is a desperate attempt to deflect blame from Cover Oregon and the governor for their failures to manage a complex IT project. The complaint is a fictional account of the Oregon Healthcare Project.""

Emulator Brings x86 Linux Apps to ARM Devices

DeviceGuru (1136715) writes | yesterday

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DeviceGuru (1136715) writes "Eltechs announced a virtual machine that runs 32-bit x86 Linux applications on ARMv7 hardware. The ExaGear VM implements a virtual x86 Linux container on ARMv7 computers and is claimed to be 4.5 times faster than QEMU, according to Eltechs. The VM is based on binary translation technology and requires ARMv7, which means it should run on mini-PCs and SBCs based on Cortex-A8, A7, A9, and A15 processors — but sadly, it won’t run on the ARM11 (ARMv6) SoC found on the Raspberry Pi. It also does not support applications that require kernel modules. It currently requires Ubuntu (v12.04 or higher), but will soon support another, unnamed Linux distro, according to Eltechs, which is now accepting half price pre-orders without payment obligation."
Link to Original Source

'MythBusters' drop Kari Byron, Grant Imahara, Tory Belleci

rbrandis (735555) writes | yesterday

1

rbrandis (735555) writes "In a video announcement Thursday on Discovery Channel, "MythBusters" hosts Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman revealed that longtime co-hosts and fan favorites Kari Byron, Grant Imahara, and Tory Belleci are no longer on the show.

"This next season we're going back to our origins with just Adam and me," Hyneman said in the video, which explained that the change took hold as of the season's last episode on August 21."

Google Wants To Test Driverless Cars in a Simulation

Anonymous Coward writes | yesterday

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An anonymous reader writes "Google has been testing its autonomous vehicles on U.S. roads for a while now. In fact, they're required to, by law. "California's regulations stipulate autonomous vehicles must be tested under "controlled conditions" that mimic real-world driving as closely as possible. Usually, that has meant a private test track or temporarily closed public road." It's easy enough to test a few prototypes, but whenever autonomous cars start being produced by manufacturers, it'll become a lot more complicated. Now, Google is lobbying to change that law to allow testing via computer simulation. Safety director Ron Medford said, "Computer simulations are actually more valuable, as they allow manufacturers to test their software under far more conditions and stresses than could possibly be achieved on a test track." Google spokeswoman Katelin Jabbari said, "In a few hours, we can test thousands upon thousands of scenarios which in terms of driving all over again might take decades." Shee adds that simulator data can also easily provide information on how human behavior creeps into driving. "It's not just about the physics of avoiding a crash. It's also about the emotional expectation of passengers and other drivers." For example, when one of Google's computer-controlled cars is cut off, the software brakes harder than it needs to, because this makes the passengers feel safer. Critics say relying heavily on simulation data is flawed because it doesn't take into account how other cars react to the computer's driving."
Link to Original Source

U.S. University Restricts Network Access to Social Media, Political Content

onproton (3434437) writes | yesterday

1

onproton (3434437) writes "Northern Illinois University recently began restricting student access to webpages that contain "illegal or unethical" content which, according to University policy, includes resources used for "political activities...and the organization or participation in meetings, rallies and demonstrations." A student raised concerns after attempting to access the Wikipedia page for Westboro Baptist Church, and receiving a filter message informing him that his access of this page would likely violate the University's Acceptable Use Policy, along with a warning that "all violations would be reviewed." This has lead to questions about whether some policies that restrict student access to information are in the best interest of the primary goal of education."

Ask Slashdot: Where Can I Find Good Replacement Batteries?

Anonymous Coward writes | yesterday

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An anonymous reader writes "I have an old phone with a battery that barely works any more. My current phone's battery is mediocre — I can put up with it, but I've been thinking about getting a new one. My four-year-old ThinkPad holds less of a charge than I'd like, and less than it did when I bought it. In all these cases, the only thing holding me back from buying a new battery is that I'm not sure where to find a good one. Searching for my phone's battery on Amazon yields a dozen results, all fairly cheap. But which are reliable? They all seem to have varying reviews, ranging from "Perfect official factory replacement!" to "Garbage knock-off, worse than the battery I replaced." Part numbers don't seem to help, as the knock-offs replicate those pretty well. I ask you, Slashdot: where can I find a good replacement battery?"
Link to Original Source

Finding an ISIS Training Camp Using Google Earth

Anonymous Coward writes | yesterday

0

An anonymous reader writes "Terrorist organization ISIS has been in the news a lot lately for their hostile activities in Iraq and Syria. They've also been very active online posting propaganda on various social networking sites to try to recruit more members. Frequently, they'll have pictures of themselves in nondescript locations — but even carefully selected images give clues to their real location. Citizen journalists at Bellingcat analyzed a group of these photos, comparing buildings and bridges in the background to images from Google Earth. With very little to go on, they were able to pinpoint the location of a terrorist training camp."
Link to Original Source

Researchers find way to hack Gmail with 92 percent success rate

SternisheFan (2529412) writes | yesterday

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SternisheFan (2529412) writes "CNET reports; Researchers at the University of California Riverside Bourns College of Engineering and the University of Michigan have identified a weakness they believe to exist across Android, Windows, and iOS operating systems that could allow malicious apps to obtain personal information.

Although it was tested only on an Android phone, the team believes that the method could be used across all three operating systems because all three share a similar feature: all apps can access a mobile device's shared memory.

"The assumption has always been that these apps can't interfere with each other easily," said Zhiyun Qian, an associate professor at UC Riverside. "We show that assumption is not correct and one app can in fact significantly impact another and result in harmful consequences for the user."

To demonstrate the method of attack, first a user must download an app that appears benign, such as a wallpaper, but actually contains malicious code. Once installed, the researchers can use it to access the shared memory statistics of any process, which doesn't require any special privileges."

Link to Original Source

A Better Way to Make Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Limbs

the_newsbeagle (2532562) writes | yesterday

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the_newsbeagle (2532562) writes "To make a brain-machine interface, you need a way to capture neurons' electric signals. The most precise and most invasive way uses implants that are stuck in the gray matter. The least precise and least invasive way uses EEG sensors stuck to the scalp. But researchers at Johns Hopkins University say there's a third way that gets the best of both worlds, which is not too invasive and fairly precise. They use ECoG systems, in which a mesh of electrodes is placed under the skull, draped over the surface of the cortex.

They're testing their systems on epilepsy patients, who have these ECoG systems inserted anyway while they're waiting for surgery (the electrodes record the source of their seizures). The researchers are capturing these patients' movement commands from their brains, and using them to control robotic limbs. Someday such a system could be used by amputees to control their prosthetic limbs."

Link to Original Source

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