Submission + - Giant Magellan Telescope set to revolutionize ground-based astronomy

StartsWithABang writes: If you want to see farther, deeper and at higher resolution than ever before into the Universe, you need four things: the largest aperture possible, the best-quality optical systems and cameras/CCDs, the least interference from the atmosphere, and the analytical techniques and power to make the most of every photon. While the last three have improved tremendously over the past 25 years, telescope size hasn’t increased at all. That’s all about to change over the next decade, as three telescopes — the Giant Magellan Telescope, the Thirty Meter Telescope and the European Extremely Large Telescope — are set to take us from 8-10 meter class astronomy to 25-40 meter class. While the latter two are fighting over funding, construction rights and other political concerns, the Giant Magellan Telescope is already under construction, and is poised to be the first in line to begin the future of ground-based astronomy.

Submission + - The Pirate Bay Now Let You Stream All Its Movies And TV Shows

An anonymous reader writes: On Tuesday, a new simple solution for streaming torrents directly in your browser showed up on the Web. By Friday, infamous torrent site The Pirate Bay had already adopted it. The Pirate Bay now features “Stream It!” links next to all its video torrents. As a result, you can play movies, TV shows, and any other video content directly in the same window you use to browse the torrent site.

Submission + - Another Cop Treats Sexting Teens Like Child Pornographers (techdirt.com)

An anonymous reader writes: More sexting stupidity, this time in Michigan.

        A Three Rivers, Michigan, teenager is both the victim and perpetrator of a sex crime. He might land on the sex offender registry, and face criminal charges, all because he took an inappropriate photo—of himself.

        The boy is unnamed in local news reporters, which note that he is under 15 years of age. He allegedly took a nude photo of himself on a girl’s cell phone. That girl sent the picture to another girl, who sent it to another. Preliminary charges are pending for all three—the boy was charged with manufacturing child porn, and the girls with distributing it. A prosecutor is still weighing whether to pursue the charges.

Hopefully, the prosecutor will realize that pursuing the suggested charges could ruin a few teens' lives. The police detective working the case seems to want to destroy these kids' lives for the good of other teens, or something.

Submission + - Neutrino Exploit Kit Has A New Way To Detect Security Researchers (csoonline.com) 1

itwbennett writes: Neutrino is using passive OS fingerprinting to detect visiting Linux machines, according to Trustwave researchers who found that computers they were using for research couldn't make a connection with servers that delivered Neutrino. Daniel Chechik, senior security researcher at Trustwave's SpiderLabs division wrote that they tried changing IP addresses and Web browsers to avoid whatever was causing the Neutrino server to not respond, but it didn't work. But by fiddling with some data traffic that Trustwave's computers were sending to the Neutrino server, they figured out what was going on.

Submission + - NASA announces that Pluto has icebergs floating on glaciers of nitrogen ice (blastingnews.com)

MarkWhittington writes: The most recent finding from New Horizons show that ice bergs have broken off from the hills surrounding the Sputnik Planum, a glacier of nitrogen ice, and are floating slowly across its surface, eventually to cluster together in places like the Challenger Colles, informally named after the crew of the space shuttle Challenger, which was lost just over 30 years ago. The feature is an especially high concentration of icebergs, measuring 37 by 22 miles. The icebergs float on the nitrogen ice plain because water ice is less dense than nitrogen ice.

Submission + - Apollo astronaut Edgar Mitchell, the sixth man to walk on the moon, dies at 85 (examiner.com)

MarkWhittington writes: According to a story in the Palm Beach Post, Edgar Mitchell, the sixth man to walk on the moon, has died at the age of 85. He flew as lunar module pilot on board Apollo 14, which flew to and from the moon between January 31, 1971 and February 9, 1971. His crewmates were Alan Shepard and Stuart Roosa. Apollo 14 was the return to flight for the moon landing program after the near disaster of Apollo 13 in April 1970 and explored the Fra Mauro highlands on the lunar surface

Submission + - Some Reversible USB-C Cables/Adapters Could Cause Irreversible Damage

TheRealHocusLocus writes: Three Decembers ago I lauded the impending death of the trapezoid. Celebration of the rectangle might be premature however, because in the rush-to-market an appalling number of chargers, cables and legacy adapters have been discovered to be non-compliant. There have been performance issues with bad USB implementation all along, but now — with improved conductors USB-C offers to negotiate up to 3A in addition the 900ma base, so use of a non-compliant adapter may result in damage. Google engineer and hero Benson Leung has been waging a one-man compliance campaign of Amazon reviews to warn of dodgy devices and praise the good. Reddit user bmcclure937 offers a spreadsheet summary of the reviews. It's a jungle out there, don't get fried.

Submission + - No I don't confirm your stupid permissions (medium.com)

hanifbbz writes: I have a confession to make. Back in 2011 I came across PhoneGap (now Cordova) and made an app with it while learning it. I forgot to edit the permission file which basically requested all possible permissions by default. I published it. Hundreds of users installed it!
This proves that a lot of people don’t read the permission list (or their lust of installing the app prevails the need to protect their privacy).

Submission + - Bethesda To Unleash The Hounds Of Hell On May 13th, Doom Release Date Confirmed (hothardware.com)

MojoKid writes: Bethesda and id Software are in the process rebooting the Doom franchise and it seems like it's been in development for ages. When we last visited the upcoming Doom remake, Bethesda had posted a giblet-filled trailer which showed some pretty impressive gameplay visuals, killer hand-to-hand combat and plenty of head stomping. Today, Bethesda clued gamers in on something that Doom fans have been anticipating for years, an actual release date. http://hothardware.com/news/be...">Mark your calendars for May 13th, because that's when Doom will be available for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and of course, the PC platform. Bethesda also dropped a new http://hothardware.com/news/be...">campaign trailer for you to ogle.

Submission + - Windows 10 TH2 (v1511) Console Host Enhancements (nivot.org)

x0n writes: As of Windows 10 TH2 (10.0.1058), the core console subsystem has support for a large amount of ANSI and VT100 escape sequences. This is likely to prepare for full Open SSH server/client integration, which is already underway over on github. It looks like xterm is finally coming to Windows.

OpenSSH was previously announced last year by the very forward looking PowerShell team: https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.c...

Submission + - Email stokes rumor that gravitational waves have been spotted (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: t's just a rumor, but if specificity is any measure of credibility, it might just be right. For weeks, gossip has spread around the Internet that researchers with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) have spotted gravitational waves—ripples in space itself set off by violent astrophysical events. In particular, rumor has it that LIGO physicists have seen two black holes spiraling into each other and merging. But now, an email message that ended up on Twitter adds some specific numbers to those rumors. The author says he got the details from people who have seen the manuscript of the LIGO paper that will describe the discovery.

Submission + - Avast SafeZone Browser Lets Attackers Access Your Filesystem (softpedia.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Just two days after Comodo's Chromodo browser was publicly shamed by Google Project Zero security researcher Tavis Ormandy, it's now Avast's turn to be publicly scorned for failing to provide a "secure" browser for its users.

Called SafeZone, and also known as Avastium, Avast's custom browser is offered as a bundled download for all who purchase or upgrade to a paid version of Avast Antivirus 2016. This poor excuse of a browser was allowing attackers to access files on the user's filesystem just by clicking on malicious links. The browser wouldn't even have to be opened, and the malicious link could be clicked in "any" browser.

Submission + - The Performance Of Ubuntu Linux Over The Past 10 Years (phoronix.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Tests were carried out at phoronix of all Ubuntu Long-Term Support releases from the 6.06 "Dapper Drake" to 16.04 "Xenial Xerus" for looking at the long-term performance of (Ubuntu) Linux using a dual-socket AMD Opteron server. Their benchmarks of Ubuntu's LTS releases over 10 years found that the Radeon graphics performance improved substantially, the disk performance was similar while taking into account the switch from EXT3 to EXT4, and that the CPU performance had overall improved for many workloads thanks to the continued evolution of the GCC compiler.

Submission + - The Pentagon's secret pre-crime program to know your thoughts, predict your futu (medium.com)

Striek writes: New Pentagon documents released over the past few months give a preview into their goals for stunningly creepy analysis of group behaviour to predict future crimes and civil unrest. Essentially, pre-crime.

The US Department of Defense (DoD) wants contractors to mine your social media posts to develop new ways for the US government to infer what you’re really thinking and feeling—and to predict what you’ll do next.

Pentagon documents released over the last few months identify ongoing classified research in this area that the federal government plans to expand, by investing millions more dollars.

The unclassified documents, which call on external scientists, institutions and companies to submit proposals for research projects, not only catalogue how far US military capabilities have come, but also reveal the Pentagon’s goals: building the US intelligence community’s capacity to forecast population behavior at home and abroad, especially groups involved in political activism.

They throw light on the extent to which the Pentagon’s classified pre-crime R&D has advanced, and how the US military intends to deploy it in operations around the world.

Their asprations don't stop there, however:

...will help the Department of Defense better understand what drives individuals and groups to mobilize for change and the mechanisms of that mobilization, particularly when violent tactics are adopted. This research will inform understanding of where organized violence may erupt, what factors might explain its spread, and how one might mitigate its effects.

-snip-

Ultimately, then, this is not simply about predicting the behavior of diverse populations and social groups.

The Pentagon wants the ability to use this predictive capacity to manipulate human behavior, and thereby win wars.


Submission + - Scareware Signed with Apple Cert Targets OS X Machines (threatpost.com)

msm1267 writes: A unique scareware campaign targeting Mac OS X machines has been discovered, and it’s likely the developer behind the malware has been at it a while since the installer that drops the scareware is signed with a legitimate Apple developer certificate.

“Sadly, this particular developer certificate (assigned to a Maksim Noskov) has been used for probably two years in similar attacks,” said Johannes Ullrich, dean of research of the SANS Institute’s Internet Storm Center, which on Thursday publicly disclosed the campaign. “So far, it apparently hasn’t been revoked by Apple.”

Submission + - Study Finds Sleep Deprivation Increases Compulsive Facebook Usage (thestack.com)

An anonymous reader writes: A study at UC Irvine has taken a reverse approach to the customary interest in the relationship between technology and tiredness, finding that people who make themselves tired through excessive use of social media such as Facebook are considerably more likely to continue compulsive use of it and deepen their exhaustion. Lead researcher Gloria Mark says "If you’re being distracted, what do you do? You go to Facebook. It’s lightweight, it’s easy, and you’re tired."

Submission + - A Bot That Drives Robocallers Insane

Trailrunner7 writes: Robocalls are among the more annoying modern inventions, and consumers and businesses have tried just about every strategy for defeating them over the years, with little success. But one man has come up with a bot of his own that sends robocallers into a maddening hall of mirrors designed to frustrate them into surrender.

The bot is called the Jolly Roger Telephone Company, and it’s the work of Roger Anderson, a veteran of the phone industry himself who had grown tired of the repeated harassment from telemarketers and robocallers. Anderson started out by building a system that sat in front of his home landlines and would tell human callers to press a key to ring through to his actual phone line; robocallers were routed directly to an answering system. He would then white-list the numbers of humans who got through.

Sometimes the Jolly Roger bot will press buttons to be transferred to a human agent and other times it will just talk back if a human is on the other end of the line to begin with.

Submission + - Grandma's Phone, DSL, and the Copper They Share (hackaday.com)

szczys writes: DSL is high-speed Internet that uses the same twisted pair of copper wire that still works with your Grandmother's wall-mounted telephone. How is that possible? The short answer is that the telephone company is cheating. But the long answer delves into the work of Claude Shannon, who figured out how much data could be reliably transferred using a given medium. His work, combined with that of Harry Nyquist and Ralph Hartley (pioneers of channel capacity and the role noise plays in these systems), brings the Internet Age to many homes on an infrastructure that has been in use for more than a hundred years.

Submission + - Microsoft's Xiaoice May Be The Largest Turing Test Ever, And The Most Successful (thestack.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Microsoft's chatbot Xiaoice ('Little Bing'), launched on WeChat in China last year, has gained 40 million users, many of whom report that they did not realise they were talking with an AI until ten minutes into the conversation. Xiaoice is now considered by Microsoft to have entered a self-learning and self-growing loop, and differs from standard Turing Test candidates in interesting ways, mainly by focusing on the conversation itself in a more human and abstract fashion instead of concentrating on task completion, as well as noting and remembering the emotional states of its correspondents. While he considers Xiaoice a great success, project leader Dr. Hsiao-Wuen Hon says that there are currently no plans to export it to other languages.

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