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Obama Presses China on Global Warming

HughPickens.com (3830033) writes | 15 minutes ago

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HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "The NYT reports that President Obama spoke at the United Nations Climate Change Summit and challenged China to make the same effort to reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions and join a worldwide campaign to curb global warming. Obama's words were directly focused on putting the onus on China, an essential partner of the United States if a global climate treaty is to be negotiated by 2015. The United States and China bear a “special responsibility to lead,” said Obama, “That’s what big nations have to do.” The United States, Obama said, would meet a pledge to reduce its carbon emissions by 17 percent, from 2005 levels, by 2020 — a goal that is in large part expected to be met through proposed EPA regulation.

There were indications that China might be ready with its own plan, although many experts say they will be skeptical until Chinese officials reveal the details. A senior Chinese official said his country would try to reach a peak level of carbon emissions “as early as possible.” That suggested that the Chinese government, struggling with air pollution so extreme that it has threatened economic growth, regularly kept millions of children indoors and ignited street protests, was determined to show faster progress in curbing emissions. In recent years, the Chinese government has sent other signals about addressing carbon pollution, some of them encouraging to environmental experts. “Five years ago, it was almost unimaginable to discuss China putting a cap on carbon, but now that is happening,” said Lo Sze Ping, chief executive officer of the World Wildlife Fund’s office in Beijing. “Chinese leaders have seen that it is imperative to move toward a low-carbon economy.”"

Users Report Warping Of Apple's iPhone 6 Plus And It's Not A "Feature"

MojoKid (1002251) writes | about an hour ago

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MojoKid (1002251) writes "Apple's iPhone 6 Plus packs a bevy of improvements into its phablet-sized frame — its battery life dwarfs all previous iPhones, its screen quality and resolution are excellent, it's just six ounces, and a scant 7.1mm thick. As an added bonus, according to a number of users, it has a hidden feature — it bends! And no, we don't mean it bends in a "Hey, what an awesome feature!" sort of way. More like a "Hey, the entire phone is near to snapping" kind of way. What's even more troubling is that many of the users who are reporting bent devices also claim that they were carrying it in front pockets or in a normal fashion as opposed to sitting on it directly. Either some of the iPhone 6 Plus hardware is defective (the vastly preferable option) or it's because the tests run by other venues are putting different kinds of stress on the chassis.It's not clear what the story is. Hopefully Apple will clarify in the very short term."
Link to Original Source

Stanford Explains Government Surveillance

Anonymous Coward writes | 2 hours ago

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An anonymous reader writes "Since the Snowden leaks last summer, there's been a deluge of news and lawsuits about government surveillance. It's tough to keep up, let alone understand. Stanford is now jumping in, with a lecture series that explains the law and technology of government surveillance. Topics include hacking Tor users, Stingray devices, and of course, the NSA. 'Hackers,' the authors proclaim, 'are welcome.'"

Dying brain cells cue new brain cells to grow in songbird

vinces99 (2792707) writes | 2 hours ago

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vinces99 (2792707) writes "Brain cells that multiply to help birds sing their best during breeding season are known to die back naturally later in the year. For the first time researchers have described the series of events that cues new neuron growth each spring, and it all appears to start with a signal from the expiring cells the previous fall that primes the brain to start producing stem cells.

If scientists can further tap into the process and understand how those signals work, it might lead to ways to exploit these signals and encourage replacement of cells in human brains that have lost neurons naturally because of aging, severe depression or Alzheimer’s disease, said Tracy Larson, a University of Washington doctoral student in biology. She’s lead author of a paper in the Sept. 23 Journal of Neuroscience on brain cell birth that follows natural brain cell death.

Neuroscientists have long known that new neurons are generated in the adult brains of many animals, but the birth of new neurons – or neurogenesis – appears to be limited in mammals and humans, especially where new neurons are generated after there’s been a blow to the head, stroke or some other physical loss of brain cells, Larson said. That process, referred to as “regenerative” neurogenesis, has been studied in mammals since the 1990s. This is the first published study to examine the brain’s ability to replace cells that have been lost naturally, Larson said."

South Australia Hits 33% Renewal Energy Target 6 Years Early

ferrisoxide.com (1935296) writes | 3 hours ago

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ferrisoxide.com (1935296) writes "South Australia has hit its target of 33% renewable energy by 2020 6 years earlier than expected, delivering clean power to the state through investment in wind, solar and geothermal energy — mothballing one coal-fired power station in the process.

Not resting on their laurels though, the SA government has now announced a new "stretch" target of 50% by 2025.

South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill declared that despite initial upfront costs to renewable energy generators such as wind farms, the 50 per cent target will not add one extra dollar to energy prices."

'Space bubbles' may have led to deadly battle in Afghanistan

sciencehabit (1205606) writes | 4 hours ago

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sciencehabit (1205606) writes "A new study reveals that one of the bloodiest battles for U.S. forces in Afghanistan may have been caused by "space bubbles". In early 2002, a rescue mission went awry because a U.S. command post was unable to radio one of its helicopters about mistaken coordinates. The chopper ended up being shot down by the same al-Qaida forces that necessitated the rescue mission in the first place. Now scientists say that turbulent pockets of ionized gas may have deflected the military satellite radio signals enough to cause temporary communications blackouts in the region--and thus prevented the warning from getting to the rescue helicopter. The mission turned into a 17-hour firefight, costing seven lives."
Link to Original Source

Smallest possible diamonds form ultra-thin nanothread

drcosquared (1720540) writes | 5 hours ago

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drcosquared (1720540) writes "Researchers in the Badding Lab at Penn State University have made diamond nanothreads through the compression of benzene molecules."These nanothreads promise extraordinary properties such as strength and stiffness higher than that of sp2 carbon nanotubes or conven tional high-strength polymers15. They may be the first member of a new class of ordered sp3 nanomaterials synthesized by kinetic control of high-pressure solid-state reactions." Nature Materials"
Link to Original Source

Lotus creator Ray Ozzie is back -- with Talko

alphadogg (971356) writes | 5 hours ago

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alphadogg (971356) writes "Ray Ozzie, the man who created Lotus Notes and later went on to become Microsoft's chief software architect after selling the company his collaboration company called Groove, is back with a startup called Talko that on Tuesday introduced its first product — an iPhone app designed to encourage people to start using their cellphones again for voice conversations. The app mixes text and voice messaging, voice calling, image sharing and more, and is designed for delivering more meaningful group conversations."
Link to Original Source

bentgate, a new issue Phone 6 users?

mrspoonsi (2955715) writes | 5 hours ago

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mrspoonsi (2955715) writes "First, there was 'Antennagate', as iPhone 4 users found a noticeable drop in signal strength when touching the lower-left corner of their handset, leading Apple to tell its customers that they were holding the device the wrong way. Then came 'Scuffgate', as iPhone 5 users complained that it was all too easy to scratch that device's aluminium bodywork. Now, with the launch of Apple's latest handsets, comes 'Bentgate'. A handful of users — so far, at least — have complained that their iPhone 6 Plus handsets are 'bending', without significant force being exerted upon them. Several of these reports have come from users on the MacRumors forums. One user, 'hanzoh', said that his handset had been in his front trouser pocket for much of the day, which involved sitting while on a long drive and at a wedding, where he also danced. By the end of the day, when he placed his 6 Plus on his coffee table, he noticed that the device had bent slightly towards the top."

Octopus-Inspired Robot Matches Real Octopus For Speed

KentuckyFC (1144503) writes | 5 hours ago

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KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "Underwater vehicles have never matched the extraordinary agility of marine creatures. While many types of fish can travel at speeds of up to 10 body lengths per second, a nuclear sub can manage a less than half a body length per second. Now a team of researchers has copied a trick used by octopuses to build an underwater robot capable of matching the agility of marine creatures. This trick is the way an octopus expands the size of its head as it fills with water and then squirts it out to generate propulsion. The team copied this by building a robot with a flexible membrane that also expands as it fills with water. The fluid then squirts out through a rear-facing nozzle as the membrane contracts. To the team's surprise, the robot reached speeds of 10 body lengths per second with a peak acceleration of 14 body lengths per second squared. That's unprecedented in an underwater vehicle of this kind. What's more, the peak force experienced by the robot was 30 per cent greater than the thrust generated by the jet. The team think they know why and say the new technique could be used to design bigger subs capable of even more impressive octopus-like feats."

Stanford Promises Not to Use Google Money for Privacy Research

Anonymous Coward writes | 6 hours ago

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An anonymous reader writes "Stanford University has pledged not to use money from Google to fund privacy research at its Center for Internet and Society — a move that critics claim poses a threat to academic freedom.

The center has long been generously funded by Google but its privacy research has proved damaging to the search giant as of late. Just two years ago, a researcher at the center helped uncover Google privacy violations that led to the company paying a record $22.5 million fine. In 2011-2012, the center's privacy director helped lead a project to create a "Do Not Track" standard. The effort, not supported by Google, would have made it harder for advertisers to track what people do online, and likely would have cut into Google's ad revenue.

Both Stanford and Google say the change in funding was unrelated to the previous research."

Link to Original Source

Best crowd funding source for science or education projects?

Donald Philip (3847667) writes | 6 hours ago

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Donald Philip (3847667) writes "I work with a research group that is building a set of analytic tools to analyze students postings in online learning environments. We already have the tools, but need money to build the software bridges that would allow our system to interoperate with systems like Blackboard or Moodle. Does anyone know which crowd funding source might be the best for such a project? The URL below is to the research group to which I refer."
Link to Original Source

Apple's TouchID Fingerprint Scanner: Still Hackable

electronic convict (3600551) writes | 7 hours ago

1

electronic convict (3600551) writes "A year ago, security researcher Marc Rogers demonstrated how to spoof the TouchID sensor in the iPhone 5S using some Elmer's glue and glycerol — oh, and a high resolution camera and a laser printer.

Has TouchID security improved at all on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus? Not really, Rogers reports in his latest post, in which he again hacks the latest TouchID sensors using the same method as before. 'Fake fingerprints created using my previous technique were able to readily fool both devices,' he reports.

Rogers, however, says there's no reason to panic, as the attack requires substantial skill, patience and a good clear fingerprint. . As he writes: 'We use locks on our doors to keep criminals out not because they are perfect, but because they are both convenient and effective enough to meet most traditional threats.'"

Link to Original Source

How to keep Student's Passwords Secure?

bigal123 (709270) writes | 7 hours ago

2

bigal123 (709270) writes "My son's school is moving more and more to online and is even assigning Chromebooks or iPads to students (depending on the grade). In some cases they may have books, but the books stay home and they have user names and passwords to the various text book sites. Then hey also have user names/passwords to several other school resources. Most all the sites are 3rd party site. So each child may have many user names (various formats) and passwords. They emphasized how these elementary kids needed to keep their passwords safe and not share them with other kids. However when asked about the kids remembering all the user names and passwords the school said they are going to have the kids write them down in a notebook. This seemed like a very bad practice for a class room and to/from home situation. Do others have good password management suggestions or suggestions for a single sign-on process (no/minimal cost) for kids in school accessing school provisioned resources?"

Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million in 4 Months

mdsolar (1045926) writes | 7 hours ago

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mdsolar (1045926) writes "Yet another set of ominous projections about the Ebola epidemic in West Africa was released Tuesday, in a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that gave worst- and best-case estimates for Liberia and Sierra Leone based on computer modeling.

In the worst-case scenario, Liberia and Sierra Leone could have 21,000 cases of Ebola by Sept. 30 and 1.4 million cases by Jan. 20 if the disease keeps spreading without effective methods to contain it. These figures take into account the fact that many cases go undetected, and estimate that there are actually 2.5 times as many as reported.

The report does not include figures for Guinea because case counts there have gone up and down in ways that cannot be reliably modeled.

In the best-case model — which assumes that the dead are buried safely and that 70 percent of patients are treated in settings that reduce the risk of transmission — the epidemic in both countries would be “almost ended” by Jan. 20, the report said. It showed the proportion of patients now in such settings as about 18 percent in Liberia and 40 percent in Sierra Leone."

Link to Original Source

PayPal Integrates Bitcoin Processors BitPay, Coinbase And GoCoin

Anonymous Coward writes | 7 hours ago

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An anonymous reader writes "PayPal today announced partnerships with three leading Bitcoin payment processors: BitPay, Coinbase and GoCoin. The eBay-owned company wants to help digital goods merchants accept Bitcoin payments, although it is starting with those located in the US and Canada first ("We are considering expanding to other markets," a PayPal spokesperson told TNW. "Stay tuned.")

PayPal says it chose to integrate the third-party functionality directly in the PayPal Payments Hub because the aformentioned trio already offers its customers protections when dealing with the virtual currency. The company envisions anything that can be obtained digitally, such as video games and music, being sold in Bitcoin."

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