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Detroit Youths Forward Action Against The Use Of Systemic Pesticides

tmw92661 (3723629) writes | about half an hour ago

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tmw92661 (3723629) writes "In Detroit, musicians in the band Pulp Culture are raising public awareness about the surmounting concerns of CCD by participating in a concert event that calls for people to sign a petition for the “Save America’s Pollinators Act.” Proceeds will be donated to Pesticide Action Network, an organization with a poignant account of scientific resources and active petitions that have been published to change the dangerous agricultural practices responsible for CCD."
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Rocket Scientist Designs 'Flare' Pot That Cooks Food 40% Faster

Anonymous Coward writes | 1 hour ago

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An anonymous reader writes "Oxford University engineering professor Dr Thomas Povey just invented a new cooking pot that heats food 40% faster. The pot is made from cast aluminum, and it features fins that direct flames across the bottom and up the sides, capturing energy that would otherwise be wasted. The pot is set to hit the market next month in the UK."
Link to Original Source

Cryptocat Secure Chat Kickstarter for Video Calls & Android App

SaltTheFries (738193) writes | 2 hours ago

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SaltTheFries (738193) writes "Cryptocat--a very accessible and secure open source chat client--is hosting a kickstarter to fund development of an android application and browser video chat to provide secure chats vs. PRISM compromised Skype and Google Hangouts. They're trying to raise CAD$ 45,000 by July 30th. You learn more about the project at https://www.crypto.cat/"
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Chinese State Media Declares iPhone A Threat To National Security

MojoKid (1002251) writes | 3 hours ago

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MojoKid (1002251) writes "When NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden came forth last year with US government spying secrets, it didn't take long to realize that some of the information revealed could bring on serious repercussions — not just for the US government, but also for US-based companies. The latest to feel the hit? None other than Apple, and in a region the company has been working hard to increase market share: China. China, via state media, has today declared that Apple's iPhone is a threat to national security — all because of its thorough tracking capabilities. It has the ability to keep track of user locations, and to the country, this could potentially reveal "state secrets" somehow. It's being noted that the iPhone will continue to track the user to some extent even if the overall feature is disabled. China's iPhone ousting comes hot on the heels of Russia's industry and trade deeming AMD and Intel processors to be untrustworthy. The nation will instead be building its own ARM-based "Baikal" processor."
Link to Original Source

FAA Intimidates Coldwell Banker, Other Realtors Into Shunning Drone Photography

mpicpp (3454017) writes | 3 hours ago

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mpicpp (3454017) writes "For months, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been investigating realtors who use drones to film their properties. Now, Forbes has learned that the FAA’s investigations have succeeded in intimidating NRT —the nation’s largest residential real estate brokerage company — into advising their members to not only cease flying drones as part of their work, but to also cease using drone footage.

This is a troubling development in an ongoing saga over the FAA’s rules which punish the safe commercial use of drones. Currently, the FAA does not prohibit the use of drones for a hobby — flying over your home and taking pictures of it for fun is allowed, but because real estate drones take pictures for a commercial purpose, the FAA prohibits their use."

Link to Original Source

DARPA Successfully Demonstrates Self-Guiding Bullets

Lucas123 (935744) writes | 4 hours ago

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Lucas123 (935744) writes "A DARPA-funded project has successfully developed a .50 caliber sniper round capable of maneuvering during flight in order to remain on target. The self-guiding EXACTO bullet, as it's being called, is optically guided by a laser that must remain on target for the bullet to track. The EXACTO round is capable of accurately tracking a target up to 1.2 miles away, DARPA stated. The technology, which is being developed by Teledyne Scientific and Imaging, is targeted at helping snipers remain at longer distances from targets as well as improving night shots. While DARPA's tracking bullet is the first to use a standard, small-arms caliber round, in 2012 Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) successfully demonstrated a prototype self-guided bullet that was more like like a four-inch dart."
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FCC Approves Plan To Spend $2B Over Next Two Years On School Wi-Fi

itwbennett (1594911) writes | 4 hours ago

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itwbennett (1594911) writes "The Federal Communications Commission, in a 3-2 party-line vote Friday, approved a plan to revamp the 17-year-old E-Rate program, which pays for telecom services for schools and libraries, by phasing out funding for voice service, Web hosting and paging services, and redirecting money to Wi-Fi. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler had proposed a $5 billion budget for Wi-Fi, but Republican commissioners and some lawmakers had questioned where the money would come from. Still, the E-Rate revamp approved Friday contemplates a $1 billion-a-year target for Wi-Fi projects 'year after year,' Wheeler said."
Link to Original Source

First release of LibreSSL portable is available.

ConstantineM (965345) writes | 5 hours ago

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ConstantineM (965345) writes "It has finally happened. Bob Beck of The OpenBSD Foundation has just announced that the first release of LibreSSL portable is now available, and can be found in the LibreSSL directory of your favourite OpenBSD mirror. libressl-2.0.0.tar.gz has been tested to build on various versions of Linux, Solaris, Mac OS X and FreeBSD. This is intended to be an initial portable release of OpenBSD's libressl to allow the community to start using it and providing feedback, and has been done to address the issue of incorrect portable versions being attempted by third-parties. Support for additional platforms will be added as time and resources permit."

Source Code Leaked for Tinba Banking Trojan

msm1267 (2804139) writes | 5 hours ago

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msm1267 (2804139) writes "The source code for Tinba, known as the smallest banker Trojan in circulation, has been posted on an underground forum. Researchers say that the files turned out to be the source code for version one of Tinba, which was identified in 2012, and is the original, privately sold version of the crimeware kit.

Tinba performs many of the same malicious functions as other banker Trojans, injecting itself into running processes on an infected machine, including the browser and explorer.exe. The malware is designed to steal financial information, including banking credentials and credit-card data and also makes each infected computer part of a botnet. Compromised machines communicate with command-and-control servers over encrypted channels. Tinba got its name from an abbreviation of “tiny banker”, and researchers say that it’s only about 20 KB in size."

Link to Original Source

A Peek Inside D-Wave's Quantum Computing Hardware

JeremyHsu (3743035) writes | 6 hours ago

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JeremyHsu (3743035) writes "A one-second delay can still seem like an eternity for a quantum computing machine capable of running calculations in mere millionths of a second. That delay represents just one of the challenges D-Wave Systems overcame in building its second-generation quantum computing machine known as D-Wave Two — a system that has been leased to customers such as Google, NASA and Lockheed Martin. D-Wave's rapid-scaling approach to quantum computing has plenty of critics, but the company's experience in building large-scale quantum computing hardware could provide valuable lessons for everyone, regardless of whether the D-Wave machines live up to quantum computing's potential by proving they can outperform classical computers. (D-Wave recently detailed the hardware design changes between its first- and second-generation quantum computing machines in the the June 2014 issue of the journal IEEE Transactions on Applied Superconductivity.)

"We were nervous about going down this path," says Jeremy Hilton, vice president of processor development at D-Wave Systems. "This architecture requires the qubits and the quantum devices to be intermingled with all these big classical objects. The threat you worry about is noise and impact of all this stuff hanging around the qubits. Traditional experiments in quantum computing have qubits in almost perfect isolation. But if you want quantum computing to be scalable, it will have to be immersed in a sea of computing complexity."

(This story is the latest in a series of quantum computing stories I've written for IEEE Spectrum.)"

Link to Original Source

The First Person Ever To Die In A Tesla Is A Guy Who Stole One

mrspoonsi (2955715) writes | 6 hours ago

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mrspoonsi (2955715) writes "Elon Musk can no longer say that no one's ever died in a Tesla automobile crash. But few people will be pointing fingers at the electric car maker for this senseless tragedy. Earlier this month, 26-year-old Joshua Slot managed to successfully ride off with a Model S he'd stolen from a Tesla service center in Los Angeles, but police quickly spotted the luxury vehicle and gave chase. According to Park Labrea News, the high-speed pursuit was eventually called off after officers were involved in a fender bender of their own, leaving the police department strained for resources and without any feasible way of catching up to Slot. Reports claim he was traveling at speeds of "nearly 100 mph," but losing the police tail apparently didn't convince Slot to hit the brakes. Instead he sped on, eventually colliding with three other vehicles and a pair of street poles. The final impact was severe enough to "split the Tesla in half" and eject Slot from the car's remains. The Tesla's front section wound up in the middle of the road and caught fire. Its rear portion flew through the air with such force that it slammed into the side of a local Jewish community center and became wedged there."

Mars (One) Needs Payloads

mbone (558574) writes | 8 hours ago

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mbone (558574) writes "Mars One has announced that their first, unmanned, lander, targeted for 2018, needs payloads. Along with their 4 experiments, and a University experiment, they have two payloads for hire :

Mars One offers two payload opportunities for paying mission contributors. Proposals can take the form of scientific experiments, technology demonstrations, marketing and publicity campaigns, or any other suggested payload. “Previously, the only payloads that have landed on Mars are those which NASA has selected,” said Bas Lansdorp, “We want to open up the opportunity to the entire world to participate in our mission to Mars by sending a certain payload to the surface of Mars.”

The formal Request for Proposals for all of this is out now as well."
Link to Original Source

Israel's Iron Dome rocket defense system is high-tech. So is the PR campaign

Lasrick (2629253) writes | 9 hours ago

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Lasrick (2629253) writes "It isn't as if real analysis of Israel's "Iron Dome" isn't available, but invariably, whenever Israel has a skirmish the media is filled with glowing reports of how well the system works, and we always find out months later that the numbers were exaggerated. John Mecklin at the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists looks at the coverage of Iron Dome in the recent exchanges between Israel and Hamas and finds the pattern is repeating itself. However, 'Ted Postol, an MIT-based missile defense expert and frequent Bulletin contributor, provided a dose of context to the Iron Dome coverage in a National Public Radio interview Wednesday. "We can tell, for sure, from video images and even photographs that the Iron Dome system is not working very well at all,"' Includes a good explanation of the differences between Iron Dome (a 'rocket defense system') and missile defense systems pushed by the US."
Link to Original Source

"Nano-Pixels" Hold Huge Potential For Flexible, Low-Power, High-Res Screens

Zothecula (1870348) writes | 10 hours ago

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Zothecula (1870348) writes "The Retina displays featured on Apple's iPhone 4 and 5 models pack a pixel density of 326 ppi, with individual pixels measuring 78 micrometers. That might seem plenty good enough given the average human eye is unable to differentiate between the individual pixels, but scientists in the UK have now developed technology that could lead to extremely high-resolution displays that put such pixel densities to shame."
Link to Original Source

Robot learn to play Angry Birds from Kids to help their rehabilitation

rtoz (2530056) writes | 10 hours ago

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rtoz (2530056) writes "The researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have paired a small humanoid robot with an Android tablet. Kids teach the Robot how to play Angry Birds.

This project is designed to serve as a rehabilitation tool and to help kids with disabilities.

The researchers see their robot-smart tablet system as a future rehabilitation tool for children with cognitive and motor-skill disabilities. A clinician could program the robot to cater to a child's needs, such as turn taking or hand-eye coordination tasks, and then send the machine home."

New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture

jfruh (300774) writes | 11 hours ago

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jfruh (300774) writes "New Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that he and his leadership team are taking "important steps to visibly change our culture" and that "nothing is off the table" on that score. While much of his declaration consists of vague and positive-sounding phrases ("crease the fluidity of information and ideas by taking actions to flatten the organization and develop leaner business processes"), he outlined his main goals for the shift: reduce time it takes to get things done by having fewer people involved in each decision; quantify outcomes for products and use that data to predict future trends; and increasing investment for employee training and development."
Link to Original Source

How a Small Developer Hacked Apple TV Gen 2/3 for Home Automation

Anonymous Coward writes | 11 hours ago

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An anonymous reader writes "Users of higher-end home automation systems want 2-way IP-based control and feedback for Apple TV, not sad little one-way IR control. The first gen Apple TV was fairly easy to hack for such purposes, but later generations not so much, thanks to no on-board hard drive and a new communications platform. Now at last we see an IP hack for Apple TV gens 2 and 3 that works with high-end remotes and home controllers from Remote Technologies Inc. Scroll to the bottom of this piece to get some tips on how the developer did it."

Insurance Claims Reveal Hidden Electronic Damage From Geomagnetic Storms

KentuckyFC (1144503) writes | 12 hours ago

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KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "On 13 March 1989, a powerful geomagnetic storm severely disrupted the Hydro-Québec high-voltage grid triggering numerous circuit breakers and blacking out much of eastern Canada and the north eastern US. Since then, Earth has been hit by numerous solar maelstroms although without such large-scale disruption. But the smaller-scale effect of these storms on low voltage transmissions line, and the equipment connected to them, has been unknown. Until now. Researchers from the Lockheed Martin Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory have analysed insurance claims for damage to industrial electrical equipment between 2000 and 2010 and found a clear correlation with geomagnetic activity. They say that the number of claims increases by up to 20 per cent on the days of highest geomagnetic activity. On this basis, they calculate that the economic impact of geomagnetic damage must amount to several billion dollars per year. That raises the question of the impact these storms are having on household electronic equipment, such as computers, smartphones and tablets, and whether domestic insurance claims might throw some light on the issue. So if your iPhone has ever been fried in mysterious circumstances, the culprit may have been the Sun."

O3b launches four more satellites to bring internet to 'Other 3 billion'

Anonymous Coward writes | 12 hours ago

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An anonymous reader writes "O3b Networks is aiming to provide internet access through satellite, to the "other three billion" people in under-served equatorial regions (Africa, the Pacific, South America). O3b launched four more satellites today, to add to the four they already have in orbit. This is a very international effort; a Russian Soyuz rocket went up from South America, carrying satellites built in France. There's a video of the rocket and payloads coming together and a video of the rocket launch. There's also an academic paper describing using the O3b system from the Cook Islands in the Pacific, giving an idea of what it does and those all-important ping times."
Link to Original Source

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