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+ - 323 Ancient Roman Concrete Is About to Revolutionize Modern Architecture-> 1

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "After 2,000 years, a long-lost secret behind the creation of one of the world’s most durable man-made creations ever—Roman concrete—has finally been discovered by an international team of scientists, and it may have a significant impact on how we build cities of the future.

Researchers have analyzed 11 harbors in the Mediterranean basin where, in many cases, 2,000-year-old (and sometimes older) headwaters constructed out of Roman concrete stand perfectly intact despite constant pounding by the sea. The most common blend of modern concrete, known as Portland cement, a formulation in use for nearly 200 years, can’t come close to matching that track record. In seawater, it has a service life of less than 50 years. After that, it begins to erode.

The secret to Roman concrete lies in its unique mineral formulation and production technique. As the researchers explain in a press release outlining their findings, “The Romans made concrete by mixing lime and volcanic rock. For underwater structures, lime and volcanic ash were mixed to form mortar, and this mortar and volcanic tuff were packed into wooden forms. The seawater instantly triggered a hot chemical reaction. The lime was hydrated—incorporating water molecules into its structure—and reacted with the ash to cement the whole mixture together.”"

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+ - 114 Software-Defined Data Centers: Seeing Through the Hype->

Submitted by Nerval's Lobster
Nerval's Lobster (2598977) writes "In case you didn’t catch it this morning, AllThingsD ran a piece endorsing the idea of the software-defined data center. That’s a venue where hordes of non-technical mid- and upper-level managers will see it and (because of the credibility of AllThingsD) will believe software-defined data centers are not only possible, but that they exist and that your company is somehow falling behind because you personally have not sketched up a topology on a napkin or brought a package of it to install. If mid-level managers in your datacenter or extended IT department have not been pinged at least once today by business-unit managers offering to tip them off to the benefits of software-defined data centers—or demand that they buy one—then someone should go check the internal phone system because not all the calls are coming through. Why was AllThingD’s piece problematic? First, because it’s a good enough publication to explain all the relevant technology terms in ways that even a non-technical audience can understand. Second, it’s also a credible source, owned by Dow Jones & Co. and spun off by The Wall Street Journal. Third, software-defined data centers are genuinely happening—but it’s in the very early stages. The true benefits of the platform won’t arrive for quite some time—and there’s too much to do in the meantime to talk about potential endpoints. Fortunately, there are a number of resources online to help tell hype from reality."
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+ - 234 Don't Panic, But We've Passed Peak Apple. And Google. And Facebook.->

Submitted by waderoush
waderoush (1271548) writes "Over the last decade, just three companies — Google, Apple, and Facebook — have generated most of the new ideas and most of the business momentum in the world of computing. (Add in Amazon, if you're feeling generous.) But it's been a long time since any of these companies introduced anything indisputably new — and there are good reasons to think they never will again. This Xconomy essay argues that the innovation engines at Google, Apple, and Facebook are out of gas (the most surprising thing about OS X Mavericks is that it's not named after a cat) and that other players will have to come up with the underpinnings for the next big cycle of advances in computing. Granted, it's not as if any of these companies will disappear. But the idea that they'll go on generating ideas as groundbreaking as the ones that landed them in the spotlight defies common sense, statistics, and the lessons of history, which show that real innovation almost always comes from small companies. Apple, Google, and Facebook aren't too big to fail — but they may be too big to keep succeeding."
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+ - 371 Draft NASA funding bill cancels asteroid mission for return to the moon->

Submitted by MarkWhittington
MarkWhittington (1084047) writes "A draft version of the 2013 NASA Authorization Bill nixes any funding for President Obama’s asteroid retrieval mission and instead directs NASA to return astronauts to the lunar surface as soon as possible, funding of course permitted.

The NASA bill is currently working its way through the House Science Committee. Thus far the Senate has not taken up NASA authorization. However the cancellation of the asteroid retrieval mission and an insistence on returning to the moon, which both President Obama and NASA Administrator Charles Bolden have opposed, would place Congress on a collision course with the White House should that version of the bill be passed by both houses of Congress."

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+ - 167 Neurofeedback at Home: Is it possible? 1

Submitted by sker
sker (467551) writes "Mind hackers, self-help junkies, even regular people have heard wild promises of the power of neurofeedback — namely the process of watching a visual representation of your own brain's activity to influence what your brain is doing. Folks are using it to cure ADHD, PTSD, or even to supposedly improve mindfulness meditation. Previously the sole domain of costly hospital and research equipment, the necessary EEG equipment is making its way into the home. From newagey Deepak Chopra-endorsed kits to the for-engineers-only OpenEEG project, the options are rapidly getting unwieldy for curious bystanders to make sense of. Have you had experience with EEG or neurofeedback at home? Do you have advice?"

+ - 297 Confirmed: CBS News Investigative Reporter Computer Compromised->

Submitted by RoccamOccam
RoccamOccam (953524) writes "Shortly after the news broke that the Department of Justice had been secretly monitoring the phones and email accounts of Associated Press and Fox News reporters (and the parents of Fox News Correspondent James Rosen), CBS News' Sharyl Attkisson said her computer seemed like it had been compromised. Turns out, it was.

'A cyber security firm hired by CBS News has determined through forensic analysis that Sharyl Attkisson’s computer was accessed by an unauthorized, external, unknown party on multiple occasions late in 2012. Evidence suggests this party performed all access remotely using Attkisson’s accounts. While no malicious code was found, forensic analysis revealed an intruder had executed commands that appeared to involve search and exfiltration of data.'"

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+ - 216 POTI, Creators of the Songbird Media Player Are Calling it Quits->

Submitted by ilikenwf
ilikenwf (1139495) writes "Pioneers of the Inevitable has announced on their blog that they will be folding on June 28. Started in 2007, the company went on to create the Songbird Desktop and mobile players, as well as the Songbird.me Facebook app. Their legacy lives on in Nightingale, an open source fork of the Songbird Desktop player that runs on Linux, Windows and Mac. No word yet on whether or not their currently closed source code will be opened up or not, but their contributions to the world of open source software are appreciated, and won't be forgotten."
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+ - 178 Robot dominates air hockey, adapts to opponents' playing style->

Submitted by colinneagle
colinneagle (2544914) writes "Researchers at Chiba University in Japan have developed a robot that could frustrate teenagers worldwide with its impressive air hockey skills. What's remarkable about this air hockey-playing robot, which is not the first of its kind, is that it can sense human opponents' playing styles and adapt to defend against them. The key is how the computer controlling the robot views its opponent — at a speed of 500 frames per second. From there, the robot uses a three-layer control system to determine motion control, when it should hit the puck, defend its goal or stay still, and a third that determines how it should react to its opponent's playing style."
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+ - 134 Flying Bicycle is real, takes first flight->

Submitted by colinneagle
colinneagle (2544914) writes "Bringing us one step closer to the hover-boards and flying cars that mid-20th century pop culture had predicted we would have by the year 2000, three Czech companies have come together to develop a functional flying bicycle. Designed by Technodat, Evektor, and Duratec, the flying bicycle weighs a little more than 187 lbs and limits its takeoff weight to about 350 lbs, according to a report from Polish bicycle news site Biketrendy. The report claims the bicycle, which is still just a prototype, is capable of staying in the air for about six minutes, although the companies working on the project hope to extend that to 50 minutes and top speeds of about 30 miles per hour. Currently, the fans propelling the bicycle are powered by a 50Ah battery."
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+ - 157 European Parliament adopts new EU open data rules->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "The European Parliament has approved European Commission introduced rules “on the re-use of public sector information”. Under these new rules administrative data published by public organizations is as per the open data principles and that it will be re-usable, unless protected by third-party copyright, for any purpose. Agencies, publishing the data, will be able to charge some amount to reproduce, provide and disseminate the information. There may be cases wherein agencies may even be able to charge other costs like interests but, they must be clear and notify the reproducers of the data on the onset about all the charges that may apply."
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+ - 131 How next-gen gaming broke the fourth wall at E3 2013->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "E3 has wrapped for another year. While the headlines concentrated on the Xbox One/PS4 price war, in amidst the new consoles, sequels and new IP, there was a discernible new trend that largely flew under the radar: games making full use of the cameras, phones and tablets plugged into our living room to break the fourth wall. From Dead Rising 3's ability to use Kinect and the sound on your side of the screen to give away your player's location to nearby zombies to Quantum Break's gameshow format, it looks like we can expect plenty more mindboggling in the years to come — not to mention lots of second screen integration."
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+ - 301 How Linux Foundation Runs Its Virtual Office->

Submitted by CowboyRobot
CowboyRobot (671517) writes "The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit that manages much of the day-to-day business behind the open source operating system, maintains a small office in San Francisco. Stop by, however, and you probably won't find anyone there. That's because the organization's 30-something employees work virtually. It's like the anti-Yahoo: Just about everyone, including Linux kernel creator Linus Torvalds, works from home. "We really wanted to have that effectiveness and nimbleness of a virtual organization," said Amanda McPherson, Linux Foundation's VP of marketing and developer programs. "You have that commitment and ownership of your job more than when you're just sitting there in that cube farm," McPherson said. "For us, if you hire the right people who are motivated by that, you just get more commitment. [You get] people who really love their jobs and like to work, but also like that they can go to the gym at 2 in the afternoon when it's not crowded. In an office, [people would say]: 'Why isn't he at his desk? It's 2. There must be something wrong.'""
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+ - 226 Intel Streaming Media Service May Face A Daunting Industry Gauntlet ->

Submitted by Lucas123
Lucas123 (935744) writes "Intel this year plans to sell a set-top box and Internet-based streaming media service that will bundle TV channels for subscribers, but cable, satellite and ISPs are likely to use every tool at their disposal to stop another IP-based competitor, according to experts. They may already be pressuring content providers to charge Intel more or not sell to it. Another scenario could be that cable and ISP providers simply favor their own streaming services with pricing models, or limit bandwidth based on where customers get their streamed content. For example, Comcast could charge more for a third-party streaming service than for its own, or it could throttle bandwidth or place caps on it to limit how much content customer receives from streaming media services as it did with BitTorrent. Meanwhile, Verizon is challenging in a D.C. circuit court the FCC's Open Internet rules that are supposed to ensure there's a level playing field."
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+ - 226 Ask Slashdot: self-hosting git repositories->

Submitted by mpol
mpol (719243) writes "We're all aware of PRISM and the NSA deals with software houses. Just today it was in the news that even Microsoft gives zero-day exploits to the NSA, who uses it to prepare themselves, but also uses the exploits to break into other systems.
At my company we use Git with some private repositories. It's easy to draw the conclusion that git-hosting in the cloud, like Github or Bitbucket, will lead to sharing the sourcecode with the NSA.
Self-hosting our Git repositories seems like a good and safe idea then.
The question then becomes, which software to use. It should be Open Source and under a Free License, that's for sure. Software like GitLab and GNU Savane seem good candidates. What other options are there, and how do they stack up against each other? What experience do people have with them?"

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+ - 242 Spikes Detected in Autorun Malware->

Submitted by msm1267
msm1267 (2804139) writes "Researchers recently have seen a major increase in the volume of autorun malware in some countries, thanks to a couple of new worms infecting those older machines. The two new worms, Worm.JS.AutoRun and Worm.Java.AutoRun, both take advantage of the autorun functionality to spread, and the JavaScript worm has other methods of propagation, as well. Researchers at Kaspersky Lab say that the volume of autorun worms has remained relatively constant over the last few months, but there was a major spike in those numbers in April and May, thanks to the distribution of the two new pieces of malware."
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+ - 223 A350XWB, the plane Airbus did not want to build, makes maiden flight->

Submitted by McGruber
McGruber (1417641) writes "The BBC reports that the Airbus A350XWB (extra wide body) has made its first flight.

Like the Boeing 787, the A350 offesr airlines the chance to combine long-range services with improved fuel efficiency. The A350's fuselage is made of carbon fibre reinforced plastic, while many other parts of the aircraft use titanium and advanced alloys to save weight. It also has state-of-the-art aerodynamics, and engine manufacturer Rolls Royce has produced a new custom-designed power unit.

Airbus claims that all of this means the A350 will use 25% less fuel than the current generation of equivalent aircraft. It also points out that noise and emissions will be well below current limits."

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+ - 145 Could your next HDTV roll up like a blind?->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "Japan's Shinoda Plasma Co. demonstrated a giant, flexible, plasma display at the Display Week 2013 conference last month in Vancouver, British Columbia, winning an award for “Best Prototype at Display Week.” It’s the latest effort to create the flexible gizmos of the future. The company calls its invention a “Luminous Array Film,” or LAFi; instead of being made from one large, flat sheet of glass, the display uses a thousand tiny glass tubes, each 1 mm in diameter and a bit more than 3 feet long. In spite of their tiny size, the tubes are hollow, and can hold the inert gas and phosphors required to make the light to create an image. Shinoda’s secret is that the display can only bend in one dimension. Consider a typical bamboo screen that you might use to cover a window, where a flexible fabric connects the relatively rigid bamboo sticks. You can roll up the screen so that all the bamboo pieces remain parallel to each other — forming a cylinder less than 4 inches across."
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+ - 103 Mozilla Launches Initiative To Adapt Scientific Practice To the Open Web->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Today Mozilla announced the Mozilla Science Lab, a project to help modernize scientific practices to make better use of the open web. "Scientists created the web — but the open web still hasn't transformed scientific practice to the same extent we've seen in other areas like media, education and business. For all of the incredible discoveries of the last century, science is still largely rooted in the "analog" age. Credit systems in science are still largely based around "papers," for example, and as a result researchers are often discouraged from sharing, learning, reusing, and adopting the type of open and collaborative learning that the web makes possible.' Hopefully this can be another step in moving away from traditional publishing practices, and encourage a new generation of scientists to make their data available in more useful ways."
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+ - 221 A Database of Brains

Submitted by aarondubrow
aarondubrow (1866212) writes "Researchers recently created OpenfMRI, a web-based, supercomputer-powered tool that makes it easier for researchers to process, share, compare and rapidly analyze fMRI brain scans from many different studies. Applying supercomputing to the fMRI analysis allows researchers to conduct larger studies, test more hypotheses, and accommodate the growing spatial and time resolution of brain scans. The ultimate goal is to collect enough brain data to develop a bottom-up understanding of brain function."

+ - 225 Volvo's Electric Roads Concept Points to Battery-Free EV Future->

Submitted by Zothecula
Zothecula (1870348) writes "While quick charging technology installed at strategic points along a planned route might be a good fit for inner city buses, it's not going to be of much use to electric vehicles that stop infrequently. Volvo sees our future long-haul trucks and buses drawing the juice they need from the road itself, making large onboard batteries a thing of the past."
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+ - 110 Steve Jobs didn't want an iBookstore until Eddy Cue convinced him->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "uring Apple's e-book price fixing case on Thursday, Apple executive Eddy Cue testified that Steve Jobs initially wasn't interested in getting into the e-book market at all.

Cue explained that when he first approached Jobs and broached the topic of getting Apple into the e-book business, Jobs wasn't on board.

"He wasn't interested," Cue explained. "Steve never felt that the Mac or the iPhone were ideal reading devices. In the case of the phone, the screen was smaller, and in the case of the Mac, you had this keyboard and device, and it didn't feel like a book."

The iPad, however, was a game changer, and with a little convincing, Jobs finally came on board"

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+ - 127 Prosecutors push for anti-phone theft measures->

Submitted by EdPbllips
EdPbllips (2951611) writes "Law enforcement officials nationwide are demanding the creation of a "kill switch" that would render smartphones inoperable after they are stolen, New York's top prosecutor said Thursday in a clear warning to the world's smartphone manufacturers. Citing statistics showing that 1 in 3 robberies nationwide involve the theft of a mobile phone, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced the formation of a coalition of law enforcement agencies devoted to stamping out what he called an "epidemic" of smartphone robberies. "All too often, these robberies turn violent," said Schneiderman, who was joined at a news conference by San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon. "There are assaults. There are murders.""
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+ - 213 Kickass Torrents' KAT.ph domain seized by Philippine authorities->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Kickass Torrents’ wasn’t accessible since about yesterday and now it has been confirmed that the domain name of the torrent website has been seized by Philippine authorities. Local record labels and the Philippine Association of the Recording Industry said that the torrent site was doing “irreparable damages” to the music industry and following a formal complaint the authorities resorted to seize of the main domain name. The torrent site hasn’t given up and is operating as usual under a new domain name. The torrent site’s main domain name KAT.ph ran into trouble yesterday and it was believed that the control of the domain name was no longer with the original owners. The Government of Philippines has confirmed that the domain name has been seized based on formal complaints and copyright grounds."
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+ - 93 MS Office Finally Gets iOS App-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "After years of rumors and months of bickering with Apple over revenue splits, Microsoft has finally released an official iOS app for Office 365 subscribers, allowing people to use Word, Excel and PowerPoint on the iPhones. According to a hands-on report with the software, the offering has basic functionality, but is missing some key productivity features. "These include: font options, text alignment, bulleted lists and, again, more color choices, all of which you can find in, say, the Google Drive app." They say it's a fairly useful addition for current subscribers, but certainly not enough to make it worth the Office 365 subscription fee on its own. "We can't tell if Microsoft deliberately handicapped Office Mobile for iPhone, or if it's simply saving some features for a later update. (A company rep declined to comment on what we can expect from future versions.) We're willing to believe Microsoft still has some unfinished items on its to-do list, but even so, it's a shame that iPhone users waited this long for an Office app, only to get something with such a minimal feature set. All told, Office Mobile represents a good enough start for Microsoft, and in some ways it's better than Google Drive, particularly where spreadsheets are concerned. Still, it's miles behind other office apps for iOS, including Apple iWork.""
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+ - 177 EA Pisses of Players. Again.->

Submitted by DeathToBill
DeathToBill (601486) writes "EA has done it again, the BBC reports. After EA took over operation of the online Scrabble brand, it introduced a "new and improved" version. Improvements include requiring manual refreshes to see other players' turns, irretrievably wiping players' game history and a switch to the Collins dictionary that has proved deeply unpopular with Scrabble fanatics. "EA was unavailable for comment.""
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+ - 195 UK government "muzzling" scientists->

Submitted by taikedz
taikedz (2782065) writes "Fiona Fox, chief executive of the Science Media Centre (SMC), has claimed that leading scientists independently advising the UK government are being actively prevented from speaking to the public and media, especially in times of crisis when scientific evidence is necessary for a fully open and educated public debate, such as the current badger culling policy, and the past volcanic eruptions and ash fallout and their effects. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), whom many of these scientists are advising, denies any such practices."
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+ - 135 Sharp develops the worlds most efficient solar cell

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Sharp has achieved the world’s highest solar cell conversion efficiency of 44.4%, using a concentrator triple-junction compound solar cell. These solar cells are used in a lens-based concentrator system that focuses sunlight on the cells to generate electricity. Sharp’s concentrator triple-junction compound solar cells use a proprietary technology that enables the efficient conversion of sunlight into electricity by means of a stack of three photo-absorption layers, the bottommost of which is made from InGaAs (indium gallium arsenide)."

+ - 189 Anonymous unleashed a "nuclear" strike on Greek Parliament

Submitted by protoporos
protoporos (900257) writes "Two days ahead of their promise, Anonymous have completed successfully a strike on the whole web infrastructure of the Greek Parliament, catching the Greek officials unprepared. According to an analysis (in Greek) of a Greek security news website, this is the biggest hit ever, managing to gain access to domain controllers and the credentials of all the congressmen and parliament officials! The emails of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras (asamaras) and second in command E. Venizelos (venizelos) seem also to have been compromised. They have even posted pictures of gmail accounts. The attack comes as a response to the recent, totalitarian close-down of the public TV network (ERT) as detailed here. A clear mention of individual targeting as a next step is clearly mentioned."

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