Submission + - Reuters Hacked, Fake News Posted

An anonymous reader writes: Thomson Reuters was hacked on Friday. The publication's blogging platform was breached and a false story about an alleged interview with a Syrian rebel leader was posted, the company has confirmed. " was a target of a hack on Friday," the company said in a statement. "Our blogging platform was compromised and fabricated blog posts were falsely attributed to several Reuters journalists. Reuters did not carry out such an interview and the posting has been deleted."

Submission + - Radio Shack's TRS-80 turns 35 (

harrymcc writes: "On August 3, 1977, Radio Shack announced its TRS-80 microcomputer at an event in New York City. For the next several years, it was the world's most popular PC--but it never got the respect it deserved. (I still wince when I hear "Trash-80.") Over at, I'm celebrating the anniversary with some reflections on the machine and why it was so underappreciated."

Submission + - Researchers turn Home Wi-Fi Router into Spy Device (

hypnosec writes: Researchers at University college of London have applied principles of radar used in defense and designed a detector using home based Wi-Fi router to spy on people across walls. Using the principles behind the Doppler effect, wherein radio wave reflects off a moving object, Karl Woodbridge and Kevin Chetty, at University College London, have built a prototype unit that uses Wi-Fi signals and recognizes frequency changes to detect moving objects. The size of the prototype unit is more or less the size of a suitcase. The unit contains a radio receiver comprising of two antennas and a signal-processing unit. The duo carried out test runs and the results were interesting. They managed to determine a person’s location, speed and direction and that too even through a one-foot-thick brick wall. The device can be used to spot intruders, monitor children or the elderly, and can even be used in military.
The Media

Submission + - Today Everybody's a Fact Checker

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "David Zweig writes that since the beginning of the republic politicians have resorted to half-truths and bald-faced lies and while tenacious reporters and informed citizens have tracked these falsehoods over the years, until now they've lacked the interconnectivity and real-time capabilities of the Web to amplify their findings. Today sites like the Washington Post's Fact-Check column and the Annenberg Foundation Public Policy Center's, which draws hundreds of thousands of unique visitors each month, often provide fodder for public fascination with fact-checking and in a meta fact-check, Snopes, the grandaddy of online truth-telling, clarifies rumors on everything from Rush Limbaugh's draft avoidance to the notion that Lady Gaga's perfume contains blood and semen (not true). But perhaps the biggest and easiest target for IEEs (Internet Error Exposers) are period piece television shows and films where blogs like Prochronisms, look "at historical changes in language by algorithmically checking historical TV shows and movies" utilizing tools like Google Ngram viewer to bust Mad Men for example for using terms or phrases in dialogue didn't yet exist yet like an actress getting a "callback," a term that wasn't popularized until years after the show's depicted era. Then there's sports where Charley Casserly, a member of the NFL's competition committee, says he voted against releasing All-22 footage because he worried that if fans had access, it would open players and teams up to a level of criticism far beyond the current hum of talk radio. "Perhaps the masses don't care about inaccuracies. Many Democrats and Republicans alike will believe what they want and ignore or disregard the truth," writes Zweig. "But there are enough experts within a variety of fields rabidly conversing about errors that content-creators—be they politicians, journalists, or filmmakers—are now forced to be on their toes in a way they never have been before. And that's a good thing.""

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Should Valve Start Their Own Steam Distro?

Duggeek writes: There's been a lot of discussion lately about Valve, Steam and the uncertain future of the Windows platform.

While the effect is unmistakably gigundus, it begs a specific question. Would Valve consider putting out its own Linux distro? One advantage of such a thing would be tighter control over kernel drivers, storage, init processes and managing display(s), but would it be worth all the upstream bickering? Would it be better to start anew, or ride on a mature foundation like Fedora or Debian? Might that be a better option than addressing the myriad differences of today's increasingly fracturing distro-scape? Discuss.

Submission + - Scientists Have Made the World's First Quantum Router (

Diggester writes: While people get excited about future internets being powered by quantum particles, nobody really knows how that's going to work yet. But Chinese physicists have taken a step in the right direction, by creating the world's first quantum router.

If it can be made to work on a large scale, quantum information will transform the way we send data: instead of sending just the 0s and 1s of digital code, quantum communication can send information in a superposition of states that represent both 0s and 1s at the same time. It's cool, and it's crazy.


Submission + - India set to launch Mars mission in 2013 ( 3

susmit writes: A 320-tonne Indian Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle rocket will be used to carry the orbiter spaceship, blasting off from the ISRO launch site at Sriharikota in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh.

Another senior official at ISRO, requesting anonymity, estimated the cost of the mission at 4.0-5.0 billion rupees ($70-90 million dollars).

Open Source

Submission + - Adafruit Raspberry Pi Educational Linux Distro (

ptorrone writes: "Open-source hardware company Adafruit released a Linux Raspberry Pi distro for hardware hackers and teaching electronics. This distro comes with SPI, I2C, & OneWire WiFi. It also has some things to make overall hacking easier such sshd on startup (with key generation on first boot) andBonjour (so you can simply ssh raspberrypi.local from any computer on the local network. It's called Occidentalis v0.1. Rubus occidentalis(the black raspberry) derived fromRaspbian Wheezy and available for download here."

Submission + - Cortana: IRC-style Scripting for Armitage and Metasploit (

An anonymous reader writes: I'm the developer of Armitage, a Metasploit Framework GUI that allows a team of hackers to collaborate on an engagement. Inspired by my days on IRC in the 1990s, I wondered what would happen if I added bots to this collaborative hacking setup. At DEFCON 20, I announced Cortana, a scripting language to write red team bots and extend Armitage with new features. Cortana is a glue language for security practitioners. With Cortana, you may automate the use of Metasploit Framework modules, integrate external tools, respond to events, and modify the Armitage user interface to reflect your hacking process. I look forward to seeing what the community does with this.

Submission + - Apple comes clean, admits to doing market research (

colinneagle writes: In an interview with Fortune a few years ago, Steve Jobs explained that Apple never does market research. Rather, they simply preoccupy themselves with creating great products.

On Monday, Apple's Greg Joswiak — the company's VP of Product Marketing — submitted a declaration to the Court explaining why documents relating to Apple's market research and strategy should be sealed.

Every month, Apple surveys iPhone buyers and Joswiak explains what Apple is able to glean from these surveys. And as you might expect, Apple conducts similar surveys with iPad buyers.

Apple wants all of these tracking studies sealed. Joswiak explains that if a competitor were to find out what drives iPhone purchases — whether it be FaceTime, battery life, or Siri — it would serve as an unfair competitive edge to rival companies. Further, competitors, as it stands today, have to guess as to which demographics are most satisfied with Apple products.

The Internet

Submission + - United Nations Argue for Control over Internet (

sl4shd0rk writes: At present, several non-profit US bodies oversee the Internet's specification as well as DNS. The Unitied Nations however, has expressed an interest in relinquishing control of the Internet from the United States. The UN's Dr Toure says any change to governance of the internet must be supported by all countries. The USA has refused, arguing that "existing multi-stakeholder institutions, incorporating industry and civil society" will continue to oversee the "health and growth of the interenet and all it's benefits". According to The Russia Today news service, the push is backed not only by Russia, but China, Brazil and India as well.

Submission + - Rob Pike on the Origin of Dot Files ( 1

Nerdfest writes: From Rob Pike's Google+ post: I'm pretty sure the concept of a hidden file was an unintended consequence. It was certainly a mistake.

How many bugs and wasted CPU cycles and instances of human frustration (not to mention bad design) have resulted from that one small shortcut about 40 years ago?

Keep that in mind next time you want to cut a corner in your code.


Submission + - Why Intel should buy Nokia (

An anonymous reader writes: There's a lot of talk about which company, if any, should buy Nokia: Lenovo was the latest company rumoured to be interested (until a Lenovo executive dismissed the idea as 'a joke').

But, for me, there's one firm that would be a more natural fit than any of the others being rumoured as potential new owners of Nokia: Intel.

Of course, there's been no suggestion that such a thought has ever occurred to either Nokia or Intel, and no suggestion from either that such an acquisition is ever likely to happen — but the way the mobile market is developing right now, there's no denying an alliance between the pair would make a lot of sense.

Firstly, Intel is desperate to get its chips into the smartphone market in a big way, as the introduction of the first handsets to use the Intel Atom Z2460 processor (previously codenamed Medfield) showed.

However, right now, Intel clearly needs...(read more)


Submission + - Ask Slashdot: best way to take notes in the modern classroom? 3

Krau Ming writes: After about 8 years spent in research, I've made the decision to go back to school... medical school. When I last spent the bulk of my days sitting in lectures, I took notes with paper, and if the professor wasn't technologically impaired, he/she would have posted powerpoint slides as a pdf online for us to print and make our notes on. Since it has been so long, I am looking for some options other than the ol' pen and paper. Is there an effective way of taking notes with a laptop? What about tablet options? Are there note-taking programs that can handle a variety of file types (eg: electronic textbooks, powerpoint slides, pdfs)? Or should I just sleep in and get the lectures posted online and delay learning the course material until the exam (kidding)? Thanks Slashdot!
The Internet

Submission + - US will Oppose Bid to Hand Control of Internet to United Nations (

hypnosec writes: The United States has said that it is going to oppose and reject any proposal that might seek handing over control of the internet to the United Nations at the upcoming World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) convened by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) from December 3 to 14, 2012. United States is going to submit first group of proposals about changes to the International Telecommunications Regulations (ITRs) treaty today, which hasn’t been revised since the 1988. The treaty is due for revision not only because it needs a modern touch but because fundamentally there have been major changes in the telecommunications world like adoption of packet switching over circuit switching, cellular roaming and broadening of the Internet. Many nations, as per leaked proposals, are of the view point that control of the internet's technical specifications should be relinquished from a select group of non-profit US companies and be given to UN's International Telecommunications Union (ITU). This hasn’t gone down well with the United States and Terry Kramer, head of the US delegation to the WCIT, believes that the current multi-stakeholder structure is working well and is effectively maintaining the health of the Internet. "The United States believes that the existing multi-stakeholder institutions, incorporating industry and civil society, have functioned effectively and will continue to ensure the health and growth of the internet and all of its benefits," he said.

Submission + - The Myth Of That $1 Trillion Cybercrime Figure (

wiredmikey writes: A recent article on ProPublica dissected two commonly quoted figures about cybersecurity: $1 Trillion in losses due to cybercrime itself and $388 million in IP losses for American companies. Both figures, have been scrutinized and challenged by many, and viewed as typical security vendor FUD.

NSA Director General Keith Alexander has recently been using the $1 Trillion figure in speeches, as has Senators Leiberman and Collins, whose Cybersecurity Act of 2012 failed to be passed by the Senate this week.

The $1 Trillion figure is attributed to anti-virus vendor McAfee, while the $388 million in IP losses number belongs to Symantec's Norton division. According to ProPublica, "The report was not actually researched by Norton employees; it was outsourced to a market research firm, StrategyOne, which is owned by the public relations giant Edelman."

The problem with both of these figures — $1Trillion and $388 million — is, as Microsoft researchers pointed out earlier this year in a report report fittingly titled "Sex, Lies, and Cybercrime", they are studded with outliers. In one example they cite that a single individual who claims $50,000 losses, in an N = 1000 person survey, is enough to extrapolate a $10 billion loss over the population. In another, one unverified claim of $7,500 in phishing losses translates into $1.5 billion over the population.

The Microsoft researchers concluded: "Are we really producing cyber-crime estimates where 75% of the estimate comes from the unverified self-reported answers of one or two people? Unfortunately, it appears so. Can any faith whatever be placed in the surveys we have? No, it appears not."


Submission + - RIM CEO says company 'seriously' considered switch to Android (

zacharye writes: RIM CEO Thorsten Heins’s interview with the Telegraph on Thursday made headlines for his admission that the company can’t keep up with Apple and Samsung without outside help. But there’s another interesting nugget buried within the interview that didn’t get quite as much attention: Heins says that RIM took a long, hard look at migrating to Android before deciding to plow forward with BlackBerry 10...

Submission + - Google+ Account Suspended? You Won't Find Out Why (

jfruh writes: "Dan Tynan is a tech writer and blogger who discovered, while trying to post links to his writing on his Google+ profile, that his account had been suspended. This despite the fact that he used his real name and didn't violate the terms of service in any other way. Upon appeal his account was reinstated, just as mysteriously as it was shut down, but along the way he discovered a rash of people with suspended Google+ accounts who can't figure out what they did to anger the Google gods."
Your Rights Online

Submission + - 'Wi-Fi police' stalk Olympic Games (

schwit1 writes: BT is the "official communications services provider" for the Olympics and has 1500 Wi-Fi hotspots at Olympic sites, with prices starting from £5.99 for 90 minutes. It's the largest single Wi-Fi venue installation in Britain, according to BT. ... the London Olympics organising committee, has banned "personal/private wireless access points and 3G hubs" from Olympic venues. This includes smartphone hotspots.

The absurdities don't end there. According to Britain's Daily Telegraph, Fish and chip stalls have been advised they are not allowed to serve chips on their own without fish as McDonald's is the official chip maker of the Games. The Independent reported that the ban on chips extended to 800 retailers at the 40 Olympic venues.