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+ - 154 Defcon Researchers Build Tool To Track The Planes Of The Rich And Famous-> 1

Submitted by Sparrowvsrevolution
Sparrowvsrevolution (1926150) writes "At the Defcon security conference later this week, two security researchers will release a tool that aims to expose a little-seen list of hidden private aircraft flight plans–the so-called Block Aircraft Registration Request or BARR list, a collection of aircraft whose owners have tried to keep their whereabouts secret.

Any private jet owner can request to be taken out of the FAA's public database of flight plans. But Dustin Hoffman and Semon Rezchikov found that private flyers' whereabouts are still broadcast in air-traffic control communications. So they developed a speech-to-text system that pulls out planes' tail numbers from those communications almost in real time, often fast enough to post a plane's destination before it lands. In its proof-of-concept version, the site is focusing on Las Vegas airports, but plans to expand to other cities soon."

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Technology

+ - 148 DARPA Director Calls for Change in Tech Industry | Intel Free Press->

Submitted by
kenekaplan
kenekaplan writes "The man who oversees information innovation at the Defense Advance Research Projects Agency took to the stage in Silicon Valley and implored technology researchers to bring the world to a new era of wonder by focusing on making things and actually publish their failures."
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IOS

+ - 194 Google Warned Samsung Galaxy Tab was "too similar"->

Submitted by
tlhIngan
tlhIngan writes "Some interesting news has come out of Apple's filings against Samsung. First, Google warned Samsung that their "P1" (Galaxy Tab) and "P3" (Galaxy Tab 10.1) tablets were "too similar" to the iPad. In addition, Samsung's own Product Design Group note it was "regrettable" that the Galaxy S "looks similar" to the iPhone. Finally, how designers at a Samsung-sponsored evaluation noted the Galaxy S "copied the iPhone too much" and "innovation is needed". Of course, Samsung has some ammunition of its own, including how Apple copied Sony's designs.

In unrelated news, Judge Grewal has sanctioned Samsung for not preserving emails from automatic deletion, even after litigation has begun."

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Google

+ - 101 Scientists Uncover the Seasonal Variations of Internet Porn

Submitted by
Hugh Pickens writes
Hugh Pickens writes writes "For everything, there is a season, and a time for every purpose, under heaven as Megan Garber reports that according to a paper just published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, internet pornography — like planting, reaping and harvesting — is seasonal. Porn's peak seasons? Winter and late summer. Researchers at Villanova examined the Google trends for such commonly-searched-for terms as "porn," "xxx," "xxvideos" ... and other, more descriptive phrases and uncovered a defined cycle featuring clear peaks and valleys — recurring at discernible six-month intervals. The researchers also ran a control group consisting of Google searches for non-sexual terms and those terms demonstrated no such cyclical pattern. The researchers then looked at search terms associated with a relatively purpose-driven category of sexytime — prostitution and dating websites — and found that, for those terms ... the six-month cycle showed up again. "The findings are striking. And they suggest, above all, the power of the Internet to reveal the patterns of human emotion in a new scope, from a new angle," writes Garber. The authors note that a six-month sexual cycle has been reported before. It crops up in everything from abortion rates, to condom sales, and diagnosis of sexually transmitted infections. But why? One possibility is that it's purely a social construction driven by the fact that in Western cultures, Christmas and summer are the main holiday seasons; but it could reflect a more primitive biological cycle. "The Internet knows what we want," concludes Garber. "It knows what we do when we are alone, or think we are. And it knows all of us with the same totality of intimacy.""
Facebook

+ - 155 Zynga CEO cashed out for $200M before stock IMPLOSION ->

Submitted by
quantr
quantr writes ""Though Zynga's stock prices have plummeted since the company's earnings report on Wednesday, CEO Mark Pincus and other insiders managed to reduce their damages from the crash by dumping shares months ago.

Pincus along with other Zynga executives and investors sold a portion of their shares in April, bringing in around $516 million at $12 a share, a couple of dollars above the stock's initial IPO price,according to a report from Daily Ticker.

The company's stock has floated around the $5 mark for a few weeks now, but after Zynga reported disappointing revenues and a third-straight quarter of losses for the April-to-June period yesterday, share prices plunged to a new low of $3.

Of those insiders who sold their stocks early, Pincus made the most and brought in $200 million from the sale, but several others also took home eight-figures. They would have made a lot less if they waited until today to dump their shares like many other investors.

The fortunate timing of their cashouts — conducted in the same quarter when Zynga's's business appeared to deteriorate to the point that its share prices collapsed once investors were updated on its status — has raised a few eyebrows.

One law firm, Newman Ferrara, is already conducting an investigation into whether Zynga misrepresented or failed to provide investors information about problems with its social games, such as delayed launches or the company's dependence on Facebook's platform.

Earlier today, analysts expressed doubt that Zynga will be able to continue to dominate the social game space as it has for two years now, commenting "The bottom line is that Zynga over promised and significantly under delivered.""

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Hardware

+ - 142 Cray XK6 supercomputer used to simulate ice cream->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The processing power available inside modern supercomputers isn’t just able to help us better understand the universe we live in, develop better medicines, and model complex systems. Apparently it is also helping to make better ice cream.

Research has been carried out at the University of Edinburgh to simulate the soft matter that makes up ice cream. More specifically, scientists are trying to understand the complex interactions occurring between the many different ingredients that make up your favorite flavor of the delicious cold stuff."

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Government

+ - 213 FAA's New Flight Control System Has Security Holes: Researcher->

Submitted by gManZboy
gManZboy (721688) writes "A key component of the FAA's emerging "Next Gen" air traffic control system is fundamentally insecure and ripe for manipulation and attack, security researcher Andrei Costin said in a presentation Wednesday at Black Hat 2012. Costin outlined a series of issues related to the Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) system, a replacement to the decades-old ground radar system used to guide airplanes through the sky and on the ground at airports. Among the threats to ADS-B: The system lacks a capability for message authentication. "Any attacker can pretend to be an aircraft" by injecting a message into the system, Costin said. There's also no mechanism in ADS-B for encrypting messages. One example problem related to the lack of encryption: Costin showed a screen capture showing the location of Air Force One--or that someone had spoofed the system."
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Google

+ - 172 Google Outs 3D maps for iOS ahead of Apple->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Apple announced during WWDC 2012 that it is going to ditch Google maps and bring out its own under iOS 6. Did Google sulk? Well no! It started working and in fact raced ahead of Apple in providing 3D maps for iOS. Through a blog post, Google announced that it has now made 3D imagery available on its Google Earth for iOS app. Users of iPhone 4S, iPad 2 or new iPad, while using Google Earth for iOS app, will feel that they are virtually flying over cities.The feature, as of now, works only for 12 regions. Cities for which the 3D imagery is provided are from US with an expectation of a city in Rome. The U.S. cities include: Boulder, Colo., Boston, Charlotte, N.C., Lawrence, Kan., Long Beach, Calif., Los Angeles, Portland, Ore., San Diego, Santa Cruz, Calif., Tampa, Fla., Tucson, Ariz., and San Francisco, plus its East Bay and Peninsula neighbors notes the blog post."
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Idle

+ - 301 Termites explode to defend their colonies->

Submitted by ananyo
ananyo (2519492) writes "A species of termite found in the rainforests of French Guiana takes altruism seriously: aged workers grow sacks of toxic blue liquid that they explode onto their enemies in an act of suicidal self-sacrifice to help their colonies.
The “explosive backpacks” of Neocapritermes taracua grow throughout the lifetimes of the worker termites, filling with blue crystals secreted by a pair of glands on the insects' abdomens. Older workers carry the largest and most toxic backpacks. Those individuals also, not coincidentally, are the least able to forage and tend for the colony: their mandibles become dull and worn as the termites age, because they cannot be sharpened by moulting (abstract)."

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HP

+ - 156 HP Cloud offers up free access to OpenStack->

Submitted by
krow
krow writes "HP Cloud is offering free access to Open Stack via its public cloud. Today adoption is growing around the Open Stack APIs, and we are offering up access to push tool integration and adoption around the API's. Most recently we have been able to add support for on-demand Jenkin's orchestration via the JCloud's plugin.

API, as well as console, access is being made to the computer, object storage, and CDN interfaces. There are images being provided for different Linux distributions, and additionally images for Bitnami, ActiveState's Stackato, and Enterprise DB's Postgres images. Hopefully the access can be used to drive adoption of the Open Source alternative to Amazon's APIs."

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Businesses

+ - 158 Flight 4590 Didn't Kill the Concorde, Costs Did ->

Submitted by
pigrabbitbear
pigrabbitbear writes "If the plane were around today — which some still fantasize about — it’d be like powering a stretch Hummer with dolphin blood. The airlines couldn’t sell enough tickets on the small plane to even make up for the amount of fuel it needed to guzzle on its journeys, let alone cover maintenance for the technological marvel. (A Concorde’s taxi to the end of a runway used as much fuel as a 737’s flight from London to Amsterdam.) Customers were fine with ordinary travel times for a fraction of the airfare and the plane only took transatlantic journeys, because going over land was too disturbing. Too much noise."
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IT

+ - 140 Europe's Most Powerful Supercomputer Inaugurated->

Submitted by
Nerval's Lobster
Nerval's Lobster writes "Europe’s most powerful supercomputer—and the fourth most powerful in the world—has been officially inaugurated.

The SuperMUC, ranked fourth in the June TOP500 supercomputing listing, contains 147,456 cores using Intel Xeon 2.7-GHz, 8-core E5-2680 chips. IBM, which built the supercomputer, stated in a recent press release that the supercomputer actually includes more than 155,000 processor cores. It is located at the Leibniz-Rechenzentrum (Leibniz Supercomputing Centre) in Garching, Germany, near Munich.

According to the TOP500 list, the SuperMUC is the world’s most powerful X86-based supercomputer. The Department of Energy’s “Sequoia” supercomputer at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, Calif., the world’s most powerful, relies on 16-core, 1.6-GHz POWER BQC chips."

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AI

+ - 165 Champions Declared in AI Poker Tournament->

Submitted by the_newsbeagle
the_newsbeagle (2532562) writes "The annual computer poker competition has just wrapped up, in which artificial intelligences battled each other over the (virtual) Texas Hold 'Em table. A researcher who worked on one of the top programs, the University of Alberta's "Hyperborean" program, has blogged about this year's competition and entrants for IEEE Spectrum. His first post explains the rules of the game and why it's tougher for a computer to win at poker than at chess; his second post describes Hyperborean's strategies, and the third gives the results and takes stock of Hyperborean's performance."
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Government

+ - 188 Skype is Killing Chat Privacy to Help Law Enforcement

Submitted by derekmead
derekmead (2466858) writes "Skype has gone under a number of updates and upgrades since it was bought by Microsoft last year, mostly in a bid to improve reliability. But according to a killer report by the Washington Post, Skype has also changed its system to make chat transcripts, as well as users’ addresses and credit card numbers, more easily shared with authorities.

As we’ve already seen with Facebook and Twitter, big Internet firms aren’t digging their heels in against government requests, which shouldn’t come as a shock; pissing off the authorities is bad business. The lesson then is that, while the Internet will always retain a vestige of its Wild West days, as companies get bigger and bigger, they’re either going to play ball with governments or go the way of Kim Dotcom."

+ - 148 Interview With O'Reilly Open Source Award Winner Elizabeth Krumbach ->

Submitted by sfcrazy
sfcrazy (1542989) writes "During LinuxCon this year one of the lead Linux kernel developers, Alan Cox, pointed at the challenge the community is facing in terms of gender gap. Unlike other areas where women are in leadership positions open source is an exception. So, we are starting an interview series on Muktware 'Woman Force In Open Source' where we will feature one female developer/executive every week. We are starting this series with Elizabeth Krumbach the winner of the O'Reilly Open Source Award."
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Google

+ - 203 Google announces fiber plans, pricing->

Submitted by
Kiyyik
Kiyyik writes "Google just announced the details behind their inaugural fiber optic service in Kansas City. They're doing a set of packages including $120/month for tv plus internet, $75/month for internet alone, and regular 'conventional' internet for a one time $300 fee. Rollouts are starting in the central areas and will work their way out on a demand basis: at least ten percent of a neighborhood must sign up for the service before Google will come in and start hanging fiber."
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Security

+ - 216 Face to face with the 'human barcode'->

Submitted by silentbrad
silentbrad (1488951) writes "From the Financial Post: "Fast-evolving biometric technologies are promising to deliver the most convenient, secure connection possible between you and your bank account — using your body itself in place of all of those wallets and purses stuffed with cash, change and plastic cards. Biometrics is the science of humans’ physiological or behaviourial characteristics and it’s being used to develop technology that recognizes and matches unique patterns in human fingerprints, faces and eyes and even sweat glands and buttock pressure. Its applications in the financial realm are a potentially huge time and effort saver, but that’s just a beginning for the technology’s usefulness. ... [BIOPTid Inc.]’s One Touch cube, set to be on the market within a year, is an external device that users can hook up to their computers and mobile electronics to replace passwords for Internet logins and banking. The cube reads a personal sweat gland barcode to verify identity from the moisture on a user’s fingertip. ... “Biometrics is something that’s used by governments, it’s used by ‘Big Brother’ to keep an eye on us and we want to change that,” says Mr. McNulty. “We think biometrics is something that can be actually used by the people and it becomes their technology that they use to protect themselves.”"
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Cellphones

+ - 114 Windows Phone 8 SDK Leaked->

Submitted by mikejuk
mikejuk (1801200) writes "The SKD for the new Windows Phone 8 has been leaked via a Chinese website. What it reveals for the developer is that WP8 is a restart. You can convert your existing WP7 Silverlight apps to the new WinPRT API but you can't create or maintain existing Silverlight or XNA applications that target WP8. You can't even convert existing XNA apps except by hand.
There are also enough differences between Windows 8 WinRT apps and WP8 apps to make life difficult.
The final big shock is that JavaScript apps are not supported. So basically if you developed your Windows 8 app using JavaScript thinking that you could port it to WP8 you are out of luck.
So in one move Microsoft has upset a good range of developers. WP7 Silverlight and XNA apps are now legacy and JavaScript apps just have to wait their turn.
It probably would have been better to stick to WP7 and just make it a bit better."

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Windows

+ - 191 Ask Slashdot: The Best Linux setup to transition Windows Users 1

Submitted by Quantus347
Quantus347 (1220456) writes "I am trying to convince a number of people to give Linux a chance, arguing that it has come a long way on the road of consumer usability. Can you, oh Wise Ones of Slashdot, recommend a Lunix setup that will be as similar as possible to a Windows environment (Windows 7 or XP). These people hate and fear change, and so will latch onto nearly any noticeable differences, so I'm thinking in terms of both front end functionality and the look of the interface. It would also be very important for them to have to go to the command line as little as possible during daily use (meaning as close to never as can be managed)."
NASA

+ - 181 NASA's First New Spacesuit in 20 Years is its Own Airlock->

Submitted by Zothecula
Zothecula (1870348) writes "The current U.S. space suit used by NASA is a dinosaur. Designed in 1992, it was only ever intended to be used by crews aboard the Space Shuttle and the International Space Station (ISS). That may have been good enough in the days of 14 kps modems, but with eyes turning increasingly toward missions to the Moon, Mars and the asteroids, space explorers need something better. That’s why NASA is designing its first new suit in twenty years. Developed by NASA’s Advanced Exploration Systems (AES), the Z-1 prototype space suit currently undergoing vacuum testing at the Johnson Space Center is a wearable laboratory of new technology. And it’s a hatchback."
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