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Hardware Hacking

+ - 246 The Patents That Threaten 3-D Printing->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "We've watched patents slow down the smartphone and tablet markets. We've seen patent claims thrown against Linux, Android, and countless other software projects. Now, as 3-D printing becomes more capable and more affordable, it seems a number of patents threaten to do the same to the hobbyist and tinkerer crowd. Wired has highlighted some of the most dangerous ones, including: a patent on soluble print materials that support a structure while it's being printed; a ridiculously broad patent on distributed rapid prototyping, which could affect "every 3-D printing service that has launched in the past few years"; and an 18-year-old patent on 3-D printing using a powder and a binding material, held by MIT."
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Network

+ - 244 You Can Navigate Between Any Two Websites In 19 Clicks or Fewer->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "A study done by a Hungarian physicist found that of the billions of websites and over a trillion objects on the web, any given two are separated by no more than 19 clicks. 'Distributed across the entire web, though, are a minority of pages—search engines, indexes and aggregators—that are very highly connected and can be used to move from area of the web to another. These nodes serve as the "Kevin Bacons" of the web, allowing users to navigate from most areas to most others in less than 19 clicks. Barabási credits this “small world” of the web to human nature—the fact that we tend to group into communities, whether in real life or the virtual world. The pages of the web aren’t linked randomly, he says: They’re organized in an interconnected hierarchy of organizational themes, including region, country and subject area. Interestingly, this means that no matter how large the web grows, the same interconnectedness will rule.'"
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Communications

+ - 208 Drones still face major communications challenges getting onto US airspace->

Submitted by
coondoggie
coondoggie writes "Communications and effective system control are still big challenges unmanned aircraft developers are facing if they want unfettered access to US airspace. Those were just a couple of the conclusions described in a recent Government Accountability Office report on the status of unmanned aircraft and the national airspace. The bottom line for now seems to be that while research and development efforts are under way to mitigate obstacles to safe and routine integration of unmanned aircraft into the national airspace, these efforts cannot be completed and validated without safety, reliability, and performance standards, which have not yet been developed because of data limitations"
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+ - 270 Supreme Court Approves Search Warrants Issued by Dogs->

Submitted by
Entropy98
Entropy98 writes "Today the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled that "a court can presume" an alert by a drug-sniffing dog provides probable cause for a search.

The Supreme Court has not yet issued a ruling in Florida v. Jardines, the other drug dog case it heard last October. Jardines raises the question of whether police need a warrant to use a drug-sniffing dog at the doorstep of a home.

The police can now search anyone anywhere as long as their dog "alerts". Soon coming to your front door as well."

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Blackberry

+ - 150 BlackBerry Vulnerability Could Allow Access to Enterprise Server->

Submitted by Trailrunner7
Trailrunner7 (1100399) writes "A vulnerability exists in some components of BlackBerry mobile devices that could grant attackers access to instances of the company’s Enterprise Server (BES), according to Research in Motion (RIM), which issued an alert and released a patch for the vulnerability last week via its Knowledge Base support site. BES, the software implicated by the vulnerability, helps companies deploy BlackBerry devices.

The high severity advisory involves the way the phone views Tagged Image File Format (TIFF) files, specifically the way the phone’s Mobile Data System Connection Service and Messaging Agent processes and renders the images.

An attacker could rig a TIFF image with malware and get a user to either view the image via a specially crafted website or send it to the user via email or instant message. The last two exploit vectors could make it so the user wouldn’t have to click the link or image, or view the email or instant message, for the attack to prove successful. Once executed, an attacker could access and execute code on Blackberry’s Enterprise Server"

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NASA

+ - 150 NASA Loses Contact with Space Station Over Software Update->

Submitted by kodiaktau
kodiaktau (2351664) writes "Reports early Tuesday morning say that a software update to the Space Station caused a communication blackout with Houston control. Remediation of the update has allowed the astronauts limited communication every 90 minutes or so. It is expected that the issue will be resolved today."
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Japan

+ - 278 Sensors pick up North Korean radioactivity->

Submitted by
gbrumfiel
gbrumfiel writes "A global network of sensors has picked up faint traces of radioactive gas that probably seeped from last week's underground nuclear test by North Korea. The detection of xenon-133 in Japan and Russia provide further evidence of the nuclear nature of the test, but offer no hint as to the type of weapon used. Atmospheric modelling by the Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics in Vienna shows that the gas likely seeped from North Korea's test site on 15 February, three days after the original test. That indicates that the test was well sealed deep underground."
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Cellphones

+ - 138 Tizen 2.0 Magnolia SDK and Source Code Release->

Submitted by
jrepin
jrepin writes "Tizen 2.0 source code and SDK are now available. This release includes enhanced Web framework that provides state-of-the-art HTML5/W3C API support, and Web UI framework (including full-screen and multi-window support), Additional Tizen device APIs, such as Bluetooth and NFC support, and access to the device’s calendar, call history, and messaging subsystems are now available. Web Runtime framework supports new configuration elements for specifying the required features and privileges, and providing the basic runtime environment for NPRuntime plugins. Native framework supports full-featured application development and providing a variety of features such as background applications, IP Push, and TTS (Text-To-Speech)"
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+ - 255 Does the Higgs Boson Reveal Our Universe's Doomsday?->

Submitted by
astroengine
astroengine writes "If calculations of the newly discovered Higgs boson particle are correct, one day, tens of billions of years from now, the universe will disappear at the speed of light, replaced by a strange, alternative dimension, one theoretical physicist calls boring. "It may be that the universe we live in is inherently unstable and at some point billions of years from now it’s all going to get wiped out. This has to do with the Higgs energy field itself,” Joseph Lykken, with the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Ill., told Discovery News. "This calculation tells you that many tens of billions of years from now there’ll be a catastrophe.""
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Google

+ - 184 Oxford temporarily blocks Google Docs to fight phishing->

Submitted by
netbuzz
netbuzz writes "Fed up with phishers using Google Forms to commandeer campus email accounts as spam engines, Oxford University recently blocked access to Google Docs for two-and-a-half hours in what it called an “extreme action” designed to get the attention of both its users and Google. “Seeing multiple such incidents the other afternoon tipped things over the edge,” Oxford explains in a blog post. “We considered these to be exceptional circumstances and felt that the impact on legitimate University business by temporarily suspending access to Google Docs was outweighed by the risks to University business by not taking such action.” The move generated widespread complaints from those affected, as well as criticism from outside network professionals."
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Biotech

+ - 195 Monsanto's 'terminator' seeds set to make a comeback->

Submitted by
ananyo
ananyo writes "Monsanto and other biotechnology firms could be looking to bring back 'terminator' seed technology. The seeds are genetically engineered so that crops grown from them produce sterile seed and prompted such an outcry that, as slashdot noted, Monsanto's chief executive pledged not to commercialize them. But a case in the US Supreme Court could allow farmers to plant the progeny of GM seeds rather than buying new seeds from Monsanto, making the technology attractive to biotech companies again. Some environmentalists also see 'terminator' seeds as a way of avoiding GM crops contaminating organic/non-GM crops."
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Android

+ - 197 Firefox 19 Launches On Desktop, Android Version Has Lower CPU Requirements

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Mozilla on Tuesday officially launched Firefox 19 for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android. The improvements include a built-in PDF viewer on the desktop and theme support as well as lower CPU requirements on Google's mobile platform. You can see the official changelogs here: desktop and Android."
IT

+ - 187 Large corporations displacing aging IT workers with H1B visa workers->

Submitted by
genericmk
genericmk writes "NPR is running an interesting story about the unfortunate state of the aging programmers in the IT industry. The headline reads of aging IT workers opposing the H1B visa overhaul; the underlining reality is that large corporations claim shortage of IT talent and are bringing in large volumes of foreign staff. The staff is easier to control and demands less wage; indentured servitude is replacing higher cost labor."
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Businesses

+ - 145 Will Internet Poker Make a Comeback by Going Brick-and-Mortar?->

Submitted by
pigrabbitbear
pigrabbitbear writes "It's the most modern lament in retail: Brick-and-mortar shopping has gone the way of the dodo as everyone buys their junk online. But for the once-booming online gambling market, salvation may require a reversal of that trend. For one online gaming giant, buying a casino in Atlantic City is the first step to bring Internet poker back to the US.

In 2006, playing online poker for real cash was deemed illegal. While that didn't stop more serious players from playing, especially once the big hosts started funneling cash offshore, the FBI and DoJ's crackdown on April 15, 2011 did. The big trio of online poker–PokerStars, Full Tilt, and Absolute Poker–were all shut down, domains seized, and executives arrested on charges related to fraud, money laundering, and illegal gambling. While PokerStars and others continued operations in foreign, legal markets, the U.S. poker craze pretty much collapsed.

That doesn't mean the lucrative market has gone away. Now, the Rational Group, which owns both PokerStars and Full Tilt, may be hinting at a workaround: the company is looking to buy a struggling casino in Atlantic City. Rational faces a rather large mess of regulatory hurdles, but if it does end up acquiring the Atlantic Club Casino Hotel, it would have a huge foothold in New Jersey's young market for internet gambling."

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Operating Systems

+ - 171 Ubuntu for tablet Announced->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Keeping its promise from yesterday Ubuntu has announced an operating system for tablets dubbed ‘Ubuntu for Tablets’ that is says will work on tablets of any size. Advertised to work on both entry level tablets as well as high-end tablets with enterprise specifications, the operating system offers multitasking, safer sharing, instant launch of applications through the menu bar on the left, effortless switching between applications among other features. Canonical has put out specifications of the tablets that would be required for an entry level consumer Ubuntu tablet experience as well as High-end Ubuntu enterprise tablet experience."
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