StealthHunter writes "It turned out that just by setting a browsers user-agent to 'xmlset_roodkcableoj28840ybtide' anyone can remotely bypass all authentication on D-Link routers. It seems that thttpd was modified by Alphanetworks who inserted the backdoor. Unfortunately, vulnerable routers can be easily identified by services like shodanHQ. At least these models may have vulnerable firmware: DIR-100, DI-524, DI-524UP, DI-604S, DI-604UP, DI-604+, TM-G5240."
Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive
rnws writes "The BBC reports that an English High Court judge has ruled that sisters aged 15 and 11 must have the MMR vaccine even though they and their mother do not want it. The High Court decision, made last month, came after the girls' father brought a case seeking vaccination. When outlining her decision in the latest case, Mrs Justice Theis emphasized it was a specific case 'only concerned with the welfare needs of these children', but lawyers say as one of a series it confirms there is no longer any debate about the benefits of the vaccine."
An anonymous reader writes "It looks like nobody is quite sure how long it will take to fix the health insurance marketplace website. '"One person familiar with the system's development said that the project was now roughly 70 percent of the way toward operating properly, but that predictions varied on when the remaining 30 percent would be done," the Times reported yesterday. "'I've heard as little as two weeks or as much as a couple of months,' that person said. Others warned that the fixes themselves were creating new problems, and said that the full extent of the problems might not be known because so many consumers had been stymied at the first step in the application process."'"
Lasrick writes "Danielle N. Lee, Ph.D, the Urban Scientist blogger at Scientific American, has been mistreated twice: once by the blog editor at biology-online.org and now by SciAm itself. The blog editor asked Dr. Lee to contribute a blog post at Biology-Online, and when she declined (presumably for lack of monetary compensation), the blog editor asked her whether she was 'an urban scientist or an urban whore.' Then, SciAm deleted her blog post, in which she wrote about the incident."
An anonymous reader writes "A citizens' group in Tokyo claims to have found elevated levels of radioactivity at 39 sporting venues earmarked for the 2020 Olympic Games. Expert and organizers are cautious about the findings but see no problem, as the levels do not pose an immediate threat to human health. From the article: '"It is difficult to have this debate unless we know for sure whether this radiation is from Fukushima or whether it is naturally occurring background radiation," said Pieter Franken, founder of the Japan office of the environmental monitoring organization Safecast."
An anonymous reader writes "People in Ohio, Michigan and 15 other states found themselves temporarily unable to use their food stamp debit-style cards on Saturday, after a routine test of backup systems by vendor Xerox Corp. resulted in a system failure. Xerox announced late in the evening that access has been restored for users in the 17 states affected by the outage, hours after the first problems were reported. 'Restarting the EBT system required time to ensure service was back at full functionality,' spokeswoman Jennifer Wasmer said in an email. An emergency voucher process was available in some of the areas while the problems were occurring, she said. U.S. Department of Agriculture spokeswoman Courtney Rowe underscored that the outage was not related to the government shutdown."
theodp writes "Among the featured attractions for the kids at the just-opened $10 million Bezos Center for Innovation in the $60 million Museum of History & Industry in Seattle is a 'Patent Tree'. The museum opening marks the end of a week for Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos that saw his personal and managerial life put on display with the release of an excerpt from The Everything Store, a new book by Brad Stone, who reveals how he found Bezos's long-lost biological father."
dryriver writes "The Guardian reports: 'Hillary Clinton has called for a "sensible adult conversation", to be held in a transparent way, about the boundaries of state surveillance highlighted by the leaking of secret NSA files by the whistleblower Edward Snowden. In a boost to Nick Clegg, the British deputy prime minister, who is planning to start conversations within government about the oversight of Britain's intelligence agencies, the former US secretary of state said it would be wrong to shut down a debate. Clinton, who is seen as a frontrunner for the 2016 US presidential election, said at Chatham House in London: "This is a very important question. On the intelligence issue, we are democracies thank goodness, both the US and the UK. We need to have a sensible adult conversation about what is necessary to be done, and how to do it, in a way that is as transparent as it can be, with as much oversight and citizens' understanding as there can be."'"
itwbennett writes "Using radio signals, MIT researchers can pinpoint someone's location — through a wall — with accuracy of +/- 10 centimeters. Fadel Adib, a Ph.D student on the project, said that gaming could be one use for the technology, but that localization is also very important. He said that Wi-Fi localization, or determining someone's position based on Wi-Fi, typically requires the user to hold a transmitter, like a smartphone for example. 'What we're doing here is localization through a wall without requiring you to hold any transmitter or receiver [and] simply by using reflections off a human body,' he said. 'What is impressive is that our accuracy is higher than even state of the art Wi-Fi localization.'"
An anonymous reader writes "Cadillac has officially unveiled its Tesla S alternative, but at $5,000 more than the Tesla, it may not be the cheaper option you've been looking for. 'Cadillac is touting the ELR's 8-inch touchscreen powered by its CUE infotainment system — which two years in is still a buggy mess — along with a range of safety and convenience features, including lane departure warning, forward collision alert, and a 24-hour concierge service to answer questions. There's also a "regen on demand" feature that allows the driver to boost the brake regeneration, slowing the vehicle and recouping energy by pulling on the flappy paddles behind the steering wheel. GM's bean counters are quick to point out that depending on what federal and state tax incentives buyers are eligible for, the net pricing could be as low as $68,495, but that's still a tough sell considering you're basically getting a Volt with more presence and less practicality.'"
mattydread23 writes "Often, the signs of eventual heart failure are there, but they consist of a lot of weak signals over a long period of time, and doctors are not trained to look for these patterns. IBM and a couple heathcare providers, Sutter Health and Geisinger Health System, just got a $2 million grant from NIH to figure out how better data analysis can help prevent heart attack. But the trick is that doctors will have to use electronic records — it also means a lot more tests. Andy Patrizio writes, 'What this means is doctors are going to have to expand the tests they do and the amount of data they keep. Otherwise, the data isn't so Big.'"
Lucas123 writes "This past week at Ft. Benning, weaponized robot prototypes from four robotics companies — Northrop Grumman, HDT Robotics, iRobot Corp. and QinetiQ — demonstrated their abilities to traverse rugged terrain, fire machine guns and take out pop-up targets from a distance of 150 meters. 'They're not just tools, but members of the squad. That's the goal,' said Lt. Col. Willie Smith, chief of Unmanned Ground Vehicles at Fort Benning. For example, the Northrup Grumman's CaMEL (Carry-all Mechanized Equipment Landrover) can run for 24 hours on three-and-a-half gallons of fuel, and can be equipped with a grenade launcher, an automatic weapon and anti-tank missiles. The CaMEL also can identify targets from three-and-a-half kilometers away, using a daylight telescope or thermal imaging. The robots have also demonstrated their ability to be air dropped behind enemy lines or into remote terrain."
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "The NYT reports that when Edward Snowden was working as a CIA technician in Geneva in 2009, his supervisor wrote a derogatory report in his personnel file, noting a distinct change in the young man's behavior and work habits, as well as a troubling suspicion that Snowden was trying to break into classified computer files to which he was not authorized to have access. But the red flags went unheeded and Snowden left the CIA to become a contractor for the NSA so that four years later he could leak thousands of classified documents. In hindsight, officials say, the report by Snowden's supervisor and the agency's suspicions might have been the first serious warnings of the disclosures to come, and the biggest missed opportunity to review Snowden's top-secret clearance or at least put his future work at the NSA under much greater scrutiny. Had Booz Allen or the NSA seen Snowden's CIA file before hiring him, it almost certainly would have affected his employment says Dashiell Bennett. 'The weakness of the system was if derogatory information came in, he could still keep his security clearance and move to another job, and the information wasn't passed on,' says a Republican lawmaker who has been briefed on Snowden's activities. It's difficult to tell what would have happened had NSA supervisors been made aware of the warning the CIA issued Snowden in what is called a 'derog' in federal personnel policy parlance."
schwit1 writes "Like something out of a Robert Heinlein novel, students at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) have built a metal rocket engine using a technique previously confined to NASA. Earlier this month, the UCSD chapter of the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS) at the Jacobs School of Engineering conducted a hot fire test for a 3D-printed metal rocket engine at the Friends of Amateur Rocketry launch site in California's Mojave Desert. This is the first such test of a printed liquid-fueled, metal rocket engine by any university in the world and the first designed and printed outside of NASA."
MojoKid writes "Over the past few years, a handful of mobile graphics companies have emerged but the top dog, by far, has been Imagination Technologies, with Qualcomm, Nvidia and ARM all picking up significant businesses of their own as well. But now, there's a new kid on the block — a company with a tiny, highly customized GPU, a number of recent design wins, and a strong product portfolio. Vivante got started in 2004 and started licensing its GPU designs in 2007. The company's early wins have been in Eastern markets, but this past year, it's begun to show up in devices intended for the West, including the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 and Google's Chromecast. Vivante has taken a different approach to core design from most of the other companies that play in this space. All modern GPUs are explicitly designed to be modular and scalable. Typically what that means is that a company like Nvidia or AMD defines a single compute unit that can be duplicated throughout the GPU design. Vivante's GPUs are modular as well, but with a much finer level of granularity. Each of the three shaded blocks (3-D Pipeline, Vector Graphics Pipeline, 2-D Pipeline) can be segmented or stacked into various configurations. A GPU core, in other words, could contain more ultra-threaded shaders, or additional vector graphics engines, up to 32 cores in total. One of the advantages of this tiny, modular architecture is that you can clock the cores like gangbusters. According to Vivante, the 28nm high performance silicon variant of the Vivante architecture can clock up to 1GHz at full speed, but fall back to 1/64th of this in power saving mode, or roughly 16MHz."
Freshly Exhumed writes "Researchers from the University of British Columbia, Cornell University and Toronto's Centre for Addiction and Mental Health report in the journal Psychological Science [abstract; press release] that a gene variant can cause individuals to perceive the negative side of every situation. UBC Prof. Rebecca Todd said the ADRA2b deletion variant influences not only emotional memory, which was previously known, but also amplifies a person's real-time perception of events, for better or for worse. 'Some individuals are predisposed to see the world more darkly than others,' Todd said. 'What we found is that a previously known genetic variation causes some individuals to perceive the world more vividly than others and, particularly, negative aspects of the world.'"