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Australia

+ - 231 Amazon to launch Sydney data centre->

Submitted by schliz
schliz (994115) writes "Amazon Web Services will unveil its first Australian data centres on Tuesday, ending more than a year of speculation. The move is expected to address enterprises' data soverignty and latency concerns, although local cloud providers argue that data held by US company Amazon would still be subject to the Patriot Act."
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The Military

+ - 194 Naval Seals Disciplined for Revealing Secrets As Consultants on Video Game

Submitted by
Hugh Pickens writes
Hugh Pickens writes writes "CBS reports that seven active duty members of SEAL Team Six, best known for killing Osama bin Laden, have been disciplined for revealing secrets working as paid consultants on a video game, "Medal of Honor: Warfighter." The game does not recreate the bin Laden raid, but it does portray realistic missions, such as an attack on a pirates' den in Somalia. Electronic Arts boasts that real commandos, both active duty and retired, help make its games as realistic as possible. EA says "Medal of Honor Warfighter" was "written by actual U.S. Tier 1 Operators while deployed overseas," and that it "features a dotted line to real world events and provides players a view into globally recognized threats and situations letting them experience the action as it might have unfolded." It is unclear what secrets members of SEAL Team Six gave away, but while serving as consultants for the game, they used classified material which had been given to them by the Navy and also violated the unwritten code that SEALs are silent warriors who shun the spotlight. "We do not tolerate deviations from the policies that govern who we are and what we do as Sailors in the United States Navy," says Deputy Commander of Naval Special Warfare, Rear Admiral Garry Bonelli. "The non-judicial punishment decisions made today send a clear message throughout our Force that we are and will be held to a high standard of accountability.""
Canada

+ - 208 Canada's Supreme Court Tosses Viagra Patent For Vagueness

Submitted by Freshly Exhumed
Freshly Exhumed (105597) writes "In a 7-to-0 decision, the Supreme Court Of Canada has ruled that Pfizer Canada Inc.'s patent on well-known erectile dysfunction remedy Viagra is now invalid due to insufficient information in Pfizer's patent application. The upshot is that competitors can now manufacture cheaper, generic versions of Viagra for sale in Canada. A problem with spreading this news item is that many email filters will not allow the topic, so cheers to /."

+ - 169 NY AG Subpoena's Craigslist for Post-Sandy Price Gougers->

Submitted by TheSync
TheSync (5291) writes "In the wake of Hurrican Sandy, the New York State Attorney General has subpoenaed Craigslist, demanding that the site identify more than 100 sellers whose prices on post-Sandy gas, generators and other supplies were of an “unconscionably excessive price” during an emergency. AG Eric Schneiderman said: “Our office has zero tolerance for price gouging [and] will do everything we can to stop unscrupulous individuals from taking advantage of New Yorkers trying to rebuild their lives.""
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+ - 255 Ask Slashdot: Which virtual machine software for a beginner 3

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "I am getting ready to start trying out / learning the use of virtual machines. This is for personal use.

It would be good to run both Windows vms and linux vms. Early use would be maintaining multiple Windows installs using only one desktop computer with plenty of cores and memory. I would be starting with a Windows host, but probably later switching to a linux host after i learn more about linux.

Free is good, but reliability and ease of use are better.

What is the current Slashdot choice for a vm beginner:
vmware, zen, virtual box, etc. ???"
Australia

+ - 237 Bank puts 1b transaction records behind analytics site->

Submitted by schliz
schliz (994115) writes "Australia's UBank has put a billion real-world transaction records behind a website that allows users to compare their spending habits with others of the same gender, in the same age/income range, neighborhood and living situation. The 'PeopleLikeU' tool surfaces favorite shops and restaurants surprisingly accurately — because it's based on real customers' transactions, it lists places like good takeout joints that wouldn't normally come to mind when you think of a favorite place to eat. The bank says all data was 'deidentified' and it consulted with privacy authorities."
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Microsoft

+ - 227 Bungled Mobile Bet Will Be Ballmer's Swan Song->

Submitted by snydeq
snydeq (1272828) writes "'If Windows 8 and the Surface tablet flop, you'll see a shareholder revolt that will send Steve Ballmer packing by this time next year,' writes InfoWorld's Bill Snyder. 'InfoWorld and I have been dumping on Windows 8 so much I'm not going to repeat the arguments. Maybe we're wrong, and buyers will decide that the new OS and the Microsoft's first serious venture into hardware are what they want. It would be a huge boost for the industry if it happens, but I'm not optimistic. ... There's been a string of bad quarters, and the stock has been frozen for nine years. At some point — I think we're getting really close — investors are going to demand a shakeup. When they do, it's going to be good-bye, Ballmer.'"
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+ - 113 Collapse of Mayans Associated with Climate Change->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The collapse of the Mayan civilization within decades after 1000 CE was probably triggered by climate change
in the form of centuries-long droughts that resulted in mass starvation and destruction of the king's ritual authority, according to researchers from Pennsylvania State University attempting to assemble the historical climate record by examining stalagmites in a cave in Belize. While this earlier climate change would have been produced by natural, cyclic causes, the study notes that the effects on the Mayas (a civilization that flourished from c. 2000 BCE to 900 CE) were exacerbated by overpopulation and intensive farming. Lead author Douglas Kennett notes possible parallels with the effects of today's climate change on regions such as Africa and Europe. Meanwhile, Dec 21, 2012 is only a few weeks away."

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+ - 217 "Why the hell does this mouse need to connect to the Internet?"->

Submitted by
jbrodkin
jbrodkin writes "In this hyper-connected, networked world, many more of our devices are getting linked to the cloud, whether we want them to or not. That's sometimes good, and sometimes bad, so when a basic device like a mouse requires a user to go online and set up an account to activate all of its functionality, people are understandably going to ask why? The latest entry in the saga of "Why the hell does this thing need to connect to the Internet?" comes from Razer, which has caused an uproar by asking users to register gaming mice on the Internet. While it's mainly for syncing settings across devices, gamers are complaining that certain functionality might not be available unless you create an online account for your mouse. Razer has responded to the controversy, but its answers aren't entirely satisfactory."
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Security

+ - 217 Telcos declare SMS unsafe for bank transactions->

Submitted by littlekorea
littlekorea (1656839) writes "Australia's telcos have declared that SMS technology should not be used by banks to verify identities for online banking transactions, in a bid to wash their hands of culpability for phone porting hacks. But three of Australia's largest four banks insist they will continue to use SMS messages to carry authentication codes for transactions."
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+ - 132 Cisco VP to memo leaker: Finding you now 'my hobby'->

Submitted by
netbuzz
netbuzz writes "A Cisco vice president, who happens to have been a CIA operations officer in the 1980s, believes that the employee who recently leaked an internal company memo to a blogger committed corporate treason and violated a “family” trust. In an email sent to Cisco employees, the executive invites the anonymous leaker to come clean, concedes that’s unlikely, and adds, “so I will now make (finding) you my hobby. Ask around (and) you will find out that I like to work on my hobbies.” That email got leaked and published as well. The tempest was sparked by a series of stories in Network World examining a host of bidding and contract questions involving the California higher education system"
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Government

+ - 150 Romney Campain Accidentally Launches Transition Web Site->

Submitted by stevegee58
stevegee58 (1179505) writes "The Mitt Romney presidential campain accidentally launched a transition web site the day after the election. Sporting a "President Elect" seal and a catchy new tagline ("Smaller, Simpler, Smarter") , the site was up briefly before the gaffe was discovered and the site taken down.

Fortunately an alert blogger, Taegan Goddard, found the errant site and published some screen shots."

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Businesses

+ - 98 Europe surpasses its plastic recycling aims->

Submitted by apcox
apcox (2543946) writes "European countries recycled 33.6% of all its plastics packaging waste in 2011, surpassing the EU’s minimum requirement of 22.5%, according to a new report. The report `Plastics – The Facts 2012’ says European Union members, as well as Norway and Sweden, recovered 66.8% of plastic packaging waste last year. Some 5.246m tonnes (33.6%) was recycled and 33.2% went to energy recovery processes."
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Intel

+ - 137 Intel's Eight-Core, Heavily-Updated Poulson Itanium Processor Unveiled->

Submitted by MojoKid
MojoKid (1002251) writes "Intel's Itanium 9500 family, codenamed Poulson, was announced today and it's the most significant refresh Intel has ever done on the Itanium family. Just moving from 65nm to 32nm technology would've substantially reduced power consumption and increased clock speeds, but Santa Clara has overhauled virtually every aspect of the CPU. Poulson can issue 11 instructions per cycle compared to Tukwila's six. It adds execution units and rebalances those units to favor server workloads over HPC and workstation capabilities. Its multi-threading capabilities have been overhauled and it uses faster QPI links between the CPUs. The L3 cache design has also changed. Previous Itanium 9300 processors had a dedicated L3 cache for each core. Poulson, in contrast, has a unified L3 that's attached to all its cores by a common ring bus."
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Data Storage

+ - 160 A year after Thailand flooding, hard drive prices remain high-> 1

Submitted by
crookedvulture
crookedvulture writes "Last October, Thailand was hit by massive flooding that put much of the world's hard drive industry under water. Production slowed to a crawl as drive makers and their suppliers mopped up the damage, and prices predictably skyrocketed. One year later, production has rebounded, with the industry expected to ship more drives in 2012 than it did in 2011. For the most part, though, hard drive prices haven't returned to pre-flood levels. Although 2.5" notebook drives are a little cheaper now than before the flood, the average price of 3.5" desktop drives is up 35% from a year ago. Prices have certainly fallen dramatically from their post-flood peaks, but the rate of decline has slowed substantially in recent months, suggesting that higher prices are the new norm for desktop drives."
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Intel

+ - 184 Cray Unveils XC30 Supercomputer->

Submitted by
Nerval's Lobster
Nerval's Lobster writes "Cray has unveiled a XC30 supercomputer capable of high-performance computing (HPC) workloads of more than 100 petaflops. Originally code-named “Cascade,” the system relies on Intel Xeon processors and Aries interconnect chipset technology, paired with Cray’s integrated software environment. Cray touts the XC30’s ability to utilize a wide variety of processor types; future versions of the platform will apparently feature Intel Xeon Phi and Nvidia Tesla GPUs based on the Kepler GPU computing architecture. Cray leveraged its work with DARPA’s High Productivity Computing Systems program in order to design and build the XC30.

Cray’s XC30 isn’t the only supercomputer aiming for that 100-petaflop crown. China’s Guangzhou Supercomputing Center recently announced the development of a Tianhe-2 supercomputer theoretically capable of 100 petaflops, but that system isn’t due to launch until 2015. Cray also faces significant competition in the realm of super-computer makers: it only built 5.4 percent of the systems on the Top500 list, compared to IBM with 42.6 percent and Hewlett-Packard with 27.6 percent. However, Cray also leads Appro (3.6 percent) and SGI and Bull (3.2 percent each)."

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Space

+ - 102 Just how do you find an exoplanet?->

Submitted by bdking
bdking (1938328) writes "Astronomers continue to discover planets outside our solar system, with the latest being located in the constellation Pictor, about 42 light years from Earth. This comes two weeks after an exoplanet was found "just" 4.4 light years from our planet. What are the various techniques scientists use to identify exoplanets?"
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+ - 126 City of Paris Loses Domain Hijacking Case->

Submitted by jollyrgr3
jollyrgr3 (1025506) writes "This story comes from domainnamewire.com

A U.S. federal district court has ordered Ville de Paris (City of Paris) to pay $100,000 for reverse domain name hijacking and tortious interference.

Judge Melinda Harmon also ordered the city to pay $26,830 in attorney’s fees and costs.

The judgment stems from a UDRP the city of Paris filed against the owner of Parvi.org in 2009. In that case, panelist Andrew Christie decided to give the domain name to Paris despite determining that the domain name was not originally registered in bad faith.

The domain owner sued to stop the transfer. His lawsuit asked for a determination that he wasn’t cybersquatting and that Paris was attempting reverse domain name hijacking.

When Paris filed the UDRP with World Intellectual Property Organization it agreed to court jurisdiction in the location of the domain registrar, which was Texas. Yet, despite agreeing to this jurisdiction, the city decided not to show up to fight the charges. (This isn’t the first time Paris has run away from U.S. jurisdiction after picking a fight.)

The judge entered a default judgment against Ville de Paris. She issued the final judgment with damages on Friday.

This is the second Texas court I’m aware of that has awarded six figure damages for reverse domain name hijacking.

Will Parvi.org’s owner ever collect the judgment? It won’t be easy. But keep in mind that the defendant here is applying for the .paris top level domain name. It won’t be disqualified from getting the TLD just because it’s guilty of reverse domain name hijacking (the guidebook allows three such rulings before you’re disqualified). But it’s possible .paris will be an asset in the United States, which might give Parvi.org’s owner something to go after.

The plaintiff’s attorneys in the case were Travis Crabtree, Paul Keating, and John Berryhill."

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Hardware

+ - 148 Open Compute Wants to Make Biodegradable Servers->

Submitted by 1sockchuck
1sockchuck (826398) writes "The Open Compute Project has challenged students at Purdue University to develop a biodegradable server chassis. Although the steel used in most server chassis can be recycled, the OCP says it wants to "explore designs that retain the needed resiliency but push the boundaries of sustainability,” even allowing a chassis to be composted. The project aligns with Facebook's goal of separating the technology refresh cycle for CPUs and other components from the surrounding chassis and racks. The Purdue students will tackle this issue next semester, but Slashdot readers can brainstorm the issue now. Is a biodegradable server chassis viable? If so, can it be affordable?"
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