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Chrome

Chromium-Based Spinoffs Worth Trying 185

Posted by samzenpus
from the best-of-the-lot dept.
snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Serdar Yegulalp takes an in-depth look at six Chromium-based spinoffs that bring privacy, security, social networking, and other interesting twists to Google's Chrome browser. 'When is it worth ditching Chrome for a Chromium-based remix? Some of the spinoffs are little better than novelties. Some have good ideas implemented in an iffy way. But a few point toward some genuinely new directions for both Chrome and other browsers.'"
Government

Revolutionary Wants Technology To Transform Libya 117

Posted by samzenpus
from the we-can-build-it-better dept.
pbahra writes in with the story of Khaled el Mufti, the network-security engineer who was in charge of providing telecommunications for the Libyan revolution. "It isn't often you get the chance to meet a real revolutionary. It is a term cheapened by misuse, but Khaled el Mufti is a revolutionary. It is no exaggeration to say that the role he played in the Libyan uprising last year was crucial; had he and his telecoms team failed, it isn't hard to think that Col. Muammar Gadhafi might still be in power. Today, Mr. Mufti is a telecoms adviser to the interim government and heads the e-Libya initiative, a bold plan to use the transformative powers of technology to modernize the Libyan state, overturning 40 years of corruption and misrule under Gadhafi. Mr. Mufti is an unlikely revolutionary, a softly spoken network-security engineer with a degree from Imperial College in London. Almost by chance he was in his native Libya when the revolution took place, working on a project with BT in the capital, Tripoli."
Transportation

Autonomous Vehicles and the Law 417

Posted by samzenpus
from the johnny-cab dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Google's autonomous cars have demonstrated that self-driving vehicles are now largely workable and could greatly limit human error, but questions of legal liability, privacy and insurance regulation have yet to be addressed. Simple questions, like whether the police should have the right to pull over autonomous vehicles, have yet to be answered and legal scholars and government officials warn that society has only begun wrestling with laws required for autonomous vehicles. The big question remains legal liability for the designers and manufacturers as some point out that liability exemptions have been mandated for vaccines, which are believed to offer great value for the general health of the population, despite some risks. 'Why would you even put money into developing it?' says Gary E. Marchant, director of the Center for Law, Science and Innovation at the Arizona State University law school. 'I see this as a huge barrier to this technology unless there are some policy ways around it.' Congress could consider creating a comprehensive regulatory regime to govern the use of these technologies say researchers at the Rand Corporation adding that while federal preemption has important disadvantages, it might speed the development and utilization of these technologies (PDF) and should be considered, if accompanied by a comprehensive federal regulatory regime. 'This may minimize the number of inconsistent legal regimes that manufacturers face and simplify and speed the introduction of these technologies.'"
HP

HP To Open Source WebOS 137

Posted by samzenpus
from the get-it-while-it's-hot dept.
First time accepted submitter pscottdv writes "This year the artists formerly known as Palm had quite a rough few months with HP dumping the hardware side of their own webOS mobile computing platform – their most recent move, having been announced just last month, is live today: open sourced webOS for all. While the actual main product which will be known as Open webOS 1.0 will not be released until September, they've already got the Enyo piece of the pie available today."
Hardware Hacking

High School Students Send Lego Man 24 Kilometers High 115

Posted by samzenpus
from the some-science-projects-are-better-than-others dept.
First time accepted submitter AbilityLiving writes "Two high schoolers have launched a Lego Man to 80,000 feet — three times the height of a jet — in a homebrew project that involved a few Ebay-purchased cameras, a giant helium balloon and a star-ship full of ingenuity."
Security

Exploits Emerge For Linux Privilege Escalation Flaw 176

Posted by samzenpus
from the protect-ya-neck dept.
angry tapir writes "Linux vendors are rushing to patch a privilege escalation vulnerability in the Linux kernel that can be exploited by local attackers to gain root access on the system. The vulnerability, which is identified as CVE-2012-0056, was discovered by Jüri Aedla and is caused by a failure of the Linux kernel to properly restrict access to the '/proc//mem' file."
Privacy

The Web's Worst Privacy Policy 107

Posted by samzenpus
from the bottom-of-the-barrel dept.
Sparrowvsrevolution writes "With much of the web upset over about Google's latest privacy policy changes, it's helpful to remember it could be much worse: A search engine called Skipity offers the world's worst privacy policy (undoubtedly tongue-in-cheek), filled with lines like this: 'You may think of using any of our programs or services as the privacy equivalent of living in a webcam fitted glass house under the unblinking eye of Big Brother: you have no privacy with us. If we can use any of your details to legally make a profit, we probably will.' The policy gives the company the right to sell any of your data that it wants to any and all corporate customers, send you limitless spam, track your movements via GPS if possible, watch you through your webcam, and implant a chip in your body that is subject to reinstallation whenever the company chooses."
Image

Book Review: The Tangled Web 40

Posted by samzenpus
from the read-all-about-it dept.
brothke writes "In the classic poem Inferno, Dante passes through the gates of Hell, which has the inscription abandon all hope, ye who enter here above the entrance. After reading The Tangled Web: A Guide to Securing Modern Web Applications, one gets the feeling the writing secure web code is akin to Dante's experience." Read below for Ben's review.
Space

Turning the Hayden Planetarium Into a Giant Videogame 80

Posted by samzenpus
from the biggest-screen dept.
pigrabbitbear writes "Remember your first visit to the planetarium? Neil DeGrasse Tyson does — it was what inspired him to become an astrophysicist in the first place. That same planetarium, now under Tyson's direction, is currently undergoing a transformation the likes of which Neil's young self couldn't have possibly imagined: It's becoming a giant videogame."
Canada

Canadian SOPA Could Target YouTube 231

Posted by samzenpus
from the sopa-of-the-north dept.
bs0d3 writes "The music industry is seeking over a dozen changes to Canadian anti-piracy bill C-11, including website blocking, Internet termination for alleged repeat infringers, and an expansion of the "enabler" provision that is supposedly designed to target pirate sites. Meanwhile, the Entertainment Software Association of Canada also wants an expansion of the enabler provision along with further tightening of the already-restrictive digital lock rules. It's concerning that some of these expansions will create a risky situation for legitimate websites, as SOPA did in the U.S. Michael Geist outlines the legal history and complications here."
Android

Android Kinect Projector Interface 45

Posted by samzenpus
from the because-you-can dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A guy who goes by the online handle DDRBoxman decided it would be fun to blow up his Samsung Galaxy Nexus display onto the wall by connecting his phone to a projector. He then connected the whole thing to a PC and, thanks to Microsoft's open-source Kinect platform for Windows, he was able to create a custom ROM that mapped out the phone interface to the Kinect sensors. Pretty neat!"
Facebook

Federal Judges Wary of Facebook, Twitter Impact On Juries 154

Posted by samzenpus
from the no-farmville-in-the-jury-box dept.
coondoggie writes "The impact of social media such as Twitter, Facebook and Google+ and others on federal juries is a concern that judges are frequently taking steps to curb. According to a study 94% of the 508 federal judges who responded said they have specifically barred jurors from any case-connected use of social media."
Transportation

MIT Media Lab Rolls Out Folding Car 222

Posted by samzenpus
from the sub-sub-compact dept.
kkleiner writes "You think European cars are small now, wait till the Hiriko takes to the roads in Spain's northern Basque country. The two-seater is about the size of a SmartCar, but when parked, the car can actually fold. After folding, the car takes up about a third of a normal parking space. The Hiriko, Basque for 'urban car,' folds as the rear of the car slides underneath its chassis. Every square foot counts."
Firefox

Firefox Javascript Engine Becomes Single Threaded 346

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the software-engineers-hate-sharing dept.
An anonymous reader writes with news about work on Mozilla's Javascript engine. Quoting Mozilla engineer Luke Wagner's blog: "With web workers in separate runtimes, there were no significant multi-threaded runtime uses remaining. Furthermore, to achieve single-threaded compartments, the platform features that allowed JS to easily ship a closure off to another thread had been removed since closures fundamentally carry with them a reference to their original enclosing scope. Even non-Mozilla SpiderMonkey embeddings had reportedly experienced problems that pushed them toward a similar shared-nothing design. Thus, there was little reason to maintain the non-trivial complexity caused by multi-threading support. There are a lot of things that 'would be nice' but what pushed us over the edge is that a single-threaded runtime allows us to hoist a lot data currently stored per-compartment into the runtime. This provides immediate memory savings."
Cloud

States Using Cloud Based Voting System For Overseas Citizens 125

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the making-diebold-machines-seem-like-a-good-idea dept.
gManZboy writes "If a ballot was lost in the cloud, would anyone know? Several states are using an online balloting website based on Microsoft's Azure cloud-computing platform to allow U.S. voters living overseas to cast their votes via the Web in 2012 primary elections. In addition to a now complete Florida primary, Virginia and California will use the system for their primaries, and Washington state will use it for its caucus. To ensure the ballots are from legitimate voters, people use unique identifying information to access their ballots online, according to Microsoft. Once received, the signature on the ballot is matched with registration records to further verify identity."

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