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Government

+ - 144 New executive order potentially grants .gov control of all communication systems-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "President Obama has issued a new executive order: "Assignment of National Security and Emergency Preparedness Communications Functions", http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/07/06/executive-order-assignment-national-security-and-emergency-preparedness-

EPIC reports: "The Executive Order grants new powers to the Department of Homeland Security, including the ability to collect certain public communications information. Under the Executive Order the White House has also granted the Department the authority to seize private facilities when necessary, effectively shutting down or limiting civilian communications."

A few key excerpts from the exec order:
"The views of all levels of government, the private and nonprofit sectors, and the public must inform the development of national security and emergency preparedness (NS/EP) [National Security/Emergency Preparedness] communications policies, programs, and capabilities."

"Sec. 5.2. The Secretary of Homeland Security shall:
(a) oversee the development, testing, implementation, and sustainment of NS/EP communications, including: communications that support Continuity of Government; Federal, State, local, territorial, and tribal emergency preparedness and response communications; non-military executive branch communications systems; critical infrastructure protection networks; and non-military communications networks, particularly with respect to prioritization and restoration; ......

(e) satisfy priority communications requirements through the use of commercial, Government, and privately owned communications resources, when appropriate;""

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Nintendo

+ - 131 Ouya (pronounced OOO-yah) is developing an under-$100 video game system->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "From USA Today..
Upstart technology firm Ouya (pronounced OOO-yah) is developing an under-$100 video game system that connects to the TV, a $16 billion market that has traditionally been owned by Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony and the big-budget titles designed for their consoles.
Its new game console, which will use a customized, open Android-based operating system for high-definition video games, could provide the first direct-to-market pathway for independent developers to bring the next Angry Birds and Temple Run to the TV.

The sub-$100 price could perhaps drive Microsoft and Sony to drop prices on their systems..."

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Linux

+ - 174 Linux.org Quietly Comes Back To Life->

Submitted by
jfruh
jfruh writes "The venerable Linux.org site quietly relaunched some weeks ago, offering much of the original useful content on Linux as well as some new articles. The site is still associated with Michael McLagen, a somewhat controversial figure due to the fights around the Linux Standards Assocation back in the late '90s. McLagen has not responded to requests for comments on the relaunched site."
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The Almighty Buck

+ - 124 Xerox's outsourcing one year later: layoffs->

Submitted by dcblogs
dcblogs (1096431) writes "About a year ago, Xerox told some 600 employees, many of them product engineers, that their jobs were being transferred to an India-based IT services firm, HCL Technologies. How has that worked out? A Xerox employee who was transferred, and who is part of a Xerox IT group of 150 people (a subset of the overall larger number of those transferred.), says his group is now down to about 50 who work on the Xerox account. About 30 have been laid off; 20 recently, and 10 some months earlier. The others who aren't working on the Xerox account have been moved to other projects or left through attrition. Xerox's CEO, Ursula Burns, is playing a prominent advisory role in the Obama administration as the vice chair of the President's Export Council as well as serving on the President's Jobs Council. In 2011, Xerox employed 139,700 globally, and 80,500 in the U.S. Xerox's workforce at the end of the first quarter of this year was 138,300 globally, with 78,600 in the U.S."
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Blackberry

+ - 200 BlackBerry CEO on What Went Wrong->

Submitted by
AZA43
AZA43 writes "After releasing some very ugly financial numbers in late June, BlackBerry-maker RIM went on a media blitz to downplay the significance of its latest earnings and counter increasingly negative media attention. Its CEO even published a bit of desperate corporate cheerleading in the Globe and Mail. But a new Q&A with BlackBerry chief Thorsten Heins offers a unique take on what exactly went wrong at RIM—Heins blames the company's downfall on LTE in the US—and he actually seems genuine in his answers."
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Android

+ - 105 Android Trojan Attacks European Banks

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Recently Trusteer discovered the first Tatanga-based man in the mobile (MITMO) attack as well as new SPITMO configurations which are targeting Android mobile banking users in Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain. Like previous attacks, both variants target Windows users on the web and use a web injection in the desktop browser to lure them into installing a fake security application on their phones. The fraudsters claim this application is required by the bank as a new layer of protection, and that 15 million bank customers around the world are already using it. n most attacks, if the victim is using an operating system other than Android the malware informs the user that no further action is required. However, for all Android users, the desktop component of the MITMO attack requests the victim’s phone number and notifies them that a link for downloading the security application has been sent (via SMS) to their mobile device."
China

+ - 94 NSA Director Says Cybercrime is 'Greatest Transfer of Wealth in History'->

Submitted by Trailrunner7
Trailrunner7 (1100399) writes "The general in charge of the National Security Agency on Monday said the lack of national cybersecurity leglislation is costing us big and amounting to what he believes is "the greatest transfer of wealth in history."

U.S. Army Gen. Keith B. Alexander urged politicians to stop stalling on approving a much-needed cybersecurity law — of which various versions currently are circulating in Congress. At the same time, he implored private companies to better cooperate with government agencies, many of whom remain mum because of privacy concerns.

"We can do the protection of civil liberties and privacy and cybersecurity as a nation. Not only that we can, but I believe it's something that we must do," Army Gen. Keith B. Alexander told an audience at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C."

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Games

+ - 131 Ouya: The $99, Android-Powered TV Game Console->

Submitted by rodrigoandrade
rodrigoandrade (713371) writes "Ouya is a new Android-based home console that promises to bring to the living room the $0.99 games business model that has worked so well for Apple. Admittedly, its vaporware so far, but it could turn the industry on its head, effectively putting an end to the things we all hate about modern console gaming ($60 games, DLC, DRM, endless sequels, movie tie-ins, etc.)"
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Chrome

+ - 136 Chrome Apps Can Access Webcam Without A Plugin -> 1

Submitted by sfcrazy
sfcrazy (1542989) writes "Google Chrome team has made life easier for web developers and users. Google has implemented getUserMedia API in the beta channel of Chrome browser which allows users to grant web apps access to their camera and microphone right within the browser, without a plug-in. It opens doors to immense possibilities for developers to create 'open' and standard based apps which can use your webcam and microphone."
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+ - 129 Higgs Boson May Be An Imposter->

Submitted by Dupple
Dupple (1016592) writes "At least two other particles could be masquerading as the God particle, according to a new analysis of the data from CERN

The news coming out of CERN in recent weeks has been hard to miss. At first, there was a dripfeed of gossip which turned into a firehose of 'Higgsteria'. Finally, last Wednesday, CERN announced that it had found a new particle that is "consistent with the long-sought Higgs boson".

Note the phrasing. CERN has been careful not to claim that the new particle is the Higgs, only that it could be.

But if not the Higgs, what else might it be?"

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The Internet

+ - 124 Printed electronics to bring sensing and wireless communication to packaging->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "A Norwegian company Thinfilm is developing a printed sensor platform for the packaging market. As a result of this, there will be a new category of packaging that can collect and wirelessly communicate stored sensor information. This is a commercial breakthrough in printed electronics."
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+ - 147 SOPA coming again in pieces...even worse->

Submitted by
bricko
bricko writes "Lamar Smith Looking To Sneak Through SOPA In Bits & Pieces, Starting With Expanding Hollywood's Global Police

While it didn't get nearly as much attention as other parts of SOPA, one section in the bill that greatly concerned us was the massive expansion of the diplomatic corp.'s "IP attaches." If you're unfamiliar with the program, basically IP attaches are "diplomats" (and I use the term loosely) who go around the globe pushing a copyright maximalist position on pretty much every other country. Their role is not to support more effective or more reasonable IP policy. It is solely to increase expansion, and basically act as Hollywood's personal thugs pressuring other countries to do the will of the major studios and labels."

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Businesses

+ - 251 Microsoft Buys MultiTouch Pioneer Perceptive Pixel

Submitted by theodp
theodp (442580) writes "Back in 2006, a post on Jeff Han's multi-touch screen technology — a real TED crowd-pleaser — gave Slashdot readers a taste of the iPhone and iPad future. Han spun off his NYU Research into a company called Perceptive Pixel which, among other things, gave the world CNN’s Amazing Magic Wall. On Monday, Steve Ballmer announced that Microsoft is acquiring Perceptive Pixel, which not only means you'll be able to run Windows 8 on an 82-inch touchscreen, but that the Apple v,. Motorola Mobility lawsuit is about to get more interesting!"
Technology

+ - 157 Cloned Horses ok to compete in Olympics->

Submitted by wisebabo
wisebabo (638845) writes "Of course they'll still be restricted to the equestrian events (ha ha).

One wonders if they'll be allowed to do the same in say horse or dog racing. It'll then just come down to the ability of the jockeys I guess (or training).

I wonder why they don't make all Olympic athletes use the same exact "equipment" as their competitors. That would get rid of situations like with those super efficient swimsuits that were banned. Of course they really should return to the spirit of the original Games and compete NAKED. That would really improve ratings! (But it would make the winter games rather hazardous.)

When do you think cloning ATHELETES will become legal? That's something I wouldn't put past the old USSR/East European Block. Remember the "women" atheletes they sent?"

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+ - 161 Anarchists Terrorists attacking Scientists->

Submitted by
bricko
bricko writes "Leftist Anarchists are shooting and attacking Scientists.

Self-proclaimed anarchists are waging a violent campaign against science and technology. What do they want?

ROBERTO ADINOLFI had just left for work when the gunman struck, shooting him in the leg before fleeing on a motorbike.

Four days later, in a rambling and often cryptic letter to an Italian newspaper, a group calling itself the Olga Cell of the Informal Anarchist Federation claimed responsibility for the attack. It described Adinolfi, head of the nuclear energy company Ansaldo Nucleare, as "one of so many sorcerers of the atom" and warned: "With this action of ours we return to you a tiny part of the suffering that you, man of science, are pouring into the world." The cell has threatened to carry out more attacks.

The non-fatal shooting in Genoa in May was the latest in a series of alleged anarchist attacks on scientists and engineers, including the attempted bombing of nanotechnology labs in Switzerland and Mexico. This wave of politically motivated violence has raised the question: why do anarchists hate science? Beyond the unsubtle threat of brute force, there are deeper issues that merit attention."

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Microsoft

+ - 102 Kogan.com mysteriously disappears from Microsoft Search Engines->

Submitted by wirelessduck
wirelessduck (2581819) writes "Microsoft has hit back at Kogan over its ‘Internet Explorer 7 tax’ stunt last month, according to the outspoken boss of the online retailer, removing it from Bing’s search results. In a blog post, CEO and founder Ruslan Kogan wrote that the tax was not an attack on Microsoft, but rather a simple encouragement for people to upgrade their browsers. “We never waged war against Microsoft over IE7, we simply wanted people to upgrade their web browsers – we even mentioned many times in the media how the latest versions of Internet Explorer comply with the latest web standards and are suitable browsers.”"
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Television

+ - 108 What's Wrong with American Ninja Warrior

Submitted by thomst
thomst (1640045) writes "What’s Wrong with American Ninja Warrior

by Thom Stark

I’ve been a fan of the program the G4 channel calls “Ninja Warrior” since I first encountered it in mid-2005. For those who are unfamiliar with the show, it’s a re-edited-for-American-TV version of a Japanese show called “Sasuke”, with often-snarky English commentary and graphics overlaid on the Japanese original. “Ninja Warrior” is a fast-paced, wildly-entertaining program in which 100 contestants of varying skill levels pit themselves against a 4-stage obstacle course that grows ever more fiendishly difficult with each passing season. There’ve been 27 such seasons to date, and the most current incarnation is has become so incredibly taxing that Batman himself would have trouble completing it.

Now G4 has teamed up with its corporate parent, NBCUniversal to bring the world’s toughest obstacle course to America, and the resulting show, “American Ninja Warrior” turns out to be distinctly inferior to its Japanese progenitor. Tonight, July 9, 2012, is the final broadcast in a series that has run for six previous weekly installments, with segments on both G4 and NBC; and I thought it was fitting that I mark the occasion with a critique of what I believe to be “American Ninja Warrior”’s fatal philosophical and production missteps, and contrast them with the original pitch-perfect product.

First, it’s important to understand that the Japanese program’s name has nothing to do with either ninjas or warriors. “Sasuke” means something like “excellence” in Japanese. It has much the same flavor as the Greek concept of arete, the pursuit of excellence as a defining life goal. G4's marketeers clearly decided that their ADHD-addled core audience of video gamers was unlikely to find a show called “Excellence” compelling enough to warrant paying attention, so they decided to jazz it up by invoking ninjas, instead. Oh, and warriors, too, to make it more appealing to the World of Warcraft fanatics. And that was fine, as far as it went, because G4 had the good sense not to mess with the program content itself (other than poorly to translate much of the Japanese-language commentary, again in an apparent attempt to inject some good ol’ American zazz).

As a side note, commentary is not the only translational sin of which G4 is guilty. The competition takes place at Midoriyama, a Japanese place name that G4 insists on referring to as “Mount Midoriyama”. The problem with that is that “yama” is a Japanese suffix meaning “mountain”. Thus, “Fujiyama” means “Mount Fuji” and “Midoriyama” means “Mount Midori” — which, in turn, means that G4's translation is not only redundant, with its repeating of the word “mountain” in both English and Japanese, it’s wildly inaccurate, because the Japanese word means “Mount Midori”.

But I digress.

“American Ninja Warrior” — the strictly-domestic production — suffers badly from human interest bloat. The Japanese program (at least as it is presented on G4) frequently features mini-portraits of the competitors, but these segments are very short — typically under 20 seconds — and they help to put a human face on the often-superhuman efforts of the program’s contenders. In “American Ninja Warrior”, the corresponding segments too often are near-epic mini-documentaries that run a minute or longer, and they seriously impair the program’s flow — especially because there are so flinkin’ many of them. The producers badly need to rein in their out-of-control bathos machinery and reduce both the number and the running time of their athlete portraiture.

But the worst mistake that the brainiacs behind “American Ninja Warrior” have made is to Americanize the competition. The most endearing philosophical quality of “Sasuke” is that the participants compete, not against each other, but individually against the course itself. There is no zero-sum in the game of Sasuke. Should more than one contestant complete the nigh-impossible series of obstacles (an outcome that has never yet occurred on “Sasuke”), both would be equally celebrated, both would be equally entitled to claim the title of “winner”, and the accomplishment of one would in no way diminish the glory of the other. To the contrary, such an event would be cause for national celebration, since winners of “Sasuke” are considered national heroes in Japan.

By contrast, not only have the American producers chosen to have the participants compete against each other in regional qualifying events for a spot in the “finals” competition in Las Vegas (not an unreasonable choice, given that they needed to whittle the field down to a managable number of contestants for the trials at the actual Mount Midori course), but they’ve made it a zero-sum game. Like the Highlander, there can be only one American Ninja Warrior — which reduces the exalted pursuit of excellence to just another athletic competition, with the top prize of half-a-million dollars going to the one contestant who not only completes the course, but does so in the fastest time. Anyone else who makes it to the top of Mount Midori is, basically, just another chump. An also-ran. A footnote.

And that’s what’s really wrong with “American Ninja Warrior”."

+ - 96 Hans Reiser sued by own kids for $15 million-> 1

Submitted by haruchai
haruchai (17472) writes "The Reiser kids, now aged 12 and 11 have had a lawsuit filed against the former Linux developer, inventor of ReiserFS and convicted murderer of the mother of his children, to the tune of $15 million.
It's believed he may have hidden assets and a judgment is sought so a search for these can be conducted."

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