Submission + - CollegeBoard: Analyses of CS Study Benefits Shouldn't be Interpreted as Causal

theodp writes: Code.org, backed by some of tech's wealthiest individuals and their companies, is this close to getting computer science declared a 'core subject' in K-12 public schools. So, when the non-profit recently asked CollegeBoard for more evidence that learning computer science is linked to improved learning in other subjects, it must have been disheartened by the study results. "The purpose of this brief note," wrote the CollegeBoard, "is to document some exploratory analyses linking participation in AP Computer Science to subsequent performance in SAT Mathematics and AP Calculus and Statistics. None of these analyses should be interpreted as causal. Although there appears to be a relationship between AP CS participation and subsequent outcomes, it is highly likely that this is the result of one or more omitted and confounding characteristics of students that are not able to be controlled for given this research design."

Submission + - US Department of Defense shuns open source medical records in $4.3B contract 1 1

dmr001 writes: The US Department of Defense opted not to use the Department of Veterans Affairs' open source popular VistA electronic health record in its project to overhaul its legacy systems, instead opting for a consortium of Cerner, Leidos and Accenture. The initial $4.3 billion implementation is expected to be the first part of a $9 billion dollar project. The Under Secretary for Acquisition stated they wanted a system with minimum modifications and interoperability with private sector systems, though much of what passes for inter-vendor operability in the marketplace is more aspirational than operable. The DoD aims to start implementation at 8 sites in the Pacific Northwest by the end of 2016, noting that "legacy systems are eating us alive in terms of support and maintenance," consuming 95% of the Military Health Systems IT budget.

Submission + - China to Impose Export Control on High Tech Drones and Supercomputers->

hackingbear writes: Following similar hi-tect export restriction policies in the U.S. (or perhaps in response to the U.S. ban on China,) China will impose export control on some drones and high performance computers starting on August 15th, according to an announcement published on Friday by China's Ministry of Commerce and the General Administration of Customs. The ban includes (official documents in Chinese) drone that can take off in wind speed exceeding 46.4km/hour or can continuously fly for over 1 hour as well as electronic components specifically designed or modified for supercomputers with speed over 8 petaflops. Companies must acquire specific permits before exporting such items. Drones and supercomputers are the two areas where China is the leader or among the top players. China is using its rapidly expanding defense budget to make impressive advances in (military) drone technology, prompting some to worry that the United States' global dominance in the market could soon be challenged. The tightening of regulations comes two weeks after an incident in disputed Kashmir in which the Pakistani army claimed to have shot down an Indian "spy drone", reportedly Chinese-made. China's 33-petaflops Tianhe-2, currently the fastest supercomputer in the world, while still using Intel Xeon processors, takes use of the home-grown interconnect, arguably the most important component of modern supercomputers.
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Submission + - MORPHs Roam The Park Looking For Children To Play ->

mikejuk writes: Robots, taken at the widest interpretation of an active mechanism with some computer control, are getting cheaper all the time. This means you can start to think of using them for non-essential things like — fun and art. The MORPH — Mobile Reconfigurable Polyhedron — an octahedral robot has twelve actuated struts and moves by changing their length so as to overtopple in a determined direction. Let loose in a park a morph is free to roam around finding people to play with it. It resembles a mobile climbing frame and the idea that it might pursue small children and insist that they play with it is both amusing and spooky. Just wait until it manages to trap a small child in its actuators! See the video of it roaming a London park.
The current prototype is around 1.5 meters high and can withstand an imposed load of 30 kilograms and there are plans for a bigger version at twice the height. Now that will really be an autonomous roving climbing frame!
Let us hope it doesn't go rogue.
Just in case — I, for one, welcome our robotic climbing frame overlords...

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Submission + - Want to fight climate change? Stop cows from burping->

sciencehabit writes: A simple supplement to a cow’s feed could substantially decrease a major source of methane, a planet-warming greenhouse gas, a new study suggests. Each year worldwide, the methane produced by cud-chewing livestock warms Earth’s climate by the same amount as 2.1 billion tons of carbon dioxide, a little more than 4% of the greenhouse gas emissions related to human activity. That makes cows tempting targets for methane reduction efforts. In a new study, researchers added the chemical 3-nitrooxypropanol, also known as 3NOP, to the corn-and-alfalfa-based feed of 84 milk-producing Holsteins and monitored their methane production for 12 weeks—the largest and longest such trial of its type in lactating cows, the scientists say. For cows whose feed included 3NOP, methane emissions dropped, on average, by 30%.
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Submission + - Unicode consortium looks at symbols for allergies

AmiMoJo writes: A new preliminary proposal submitted to the Unicode Consortium suggests that specific emoji for food allergies should be added to the standard. The proposal (PDF), submitted by a Google engineer, is under discussion and may not be added to the standard at all but offers a peek into some useful new emoji. It suggests the addition of peanuts, soybeans, buckwheat, sesame seeds, kiwi fruit, celery, lupin beans, mustard, tree nuts, eggs, milk products and gluten to help those with allergies express them in shorthand.

Submission + - New telemetry suggests shot-down drone was higher than alleged

AmiMoJo writes: The pilot of the drone shot down Sunday evening over a Kentucky property has now come forward with video seemingly showing that the drone wasn't nearly as close as the property owner made it out to be. The data also shows that it was well over 200 feet above the ground before the fatal shots fired. The shooter, meanwhile, continues to maintain that the drone flew 20 feet over a neighbour's house before ascending to "60 to 80 [feet] above me."

Submission + - can a blind programmer use modelling projects visual studio->

StarTrekCafe writes: hi. can blind people use accessible modelling tools for visual studio? probably not! as screen readers cannot read text inside images or graphics or diagrams. so i need to do a modelling project for my programming course via http://www.upskilled.edu.au./ I use a screen reader Jaws For Windows from http://www.freedomscientific.c... Now, what are my options. Did try plant uml, but that is java based. So any ideas, need to do state, use, case, class and sequence diagrams from a couple of projects i have done already. A C# and a SQL Database project. Will ryno 3d do the job with accessibility? So what accessible tools, can i use? need to convey this information to my lectuer. Will it read the content in visual studio 2013 or 2015?
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Submission + - Samsung Woos Developers as It Eyes Tizen Expansion Beyond Smartphones->

Manish Singh writes: Why is Samsung, the South Korean technology conglomerate which has the tentpole position in Android becoming increasing focused on its homegrown operating system Tizen? At its annual developer summit this week, the company announces new SDKs for smartwatches, smart TVs, and smartphones and also shares its future roadmap.
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Submission + - Non-invasive spinal cord stimulation gets paralyzed legs moving again->

schwit1 writes: Five men with complete motor paralysis have regained the ability to move their legs voluntarily and produce step-like movements after being treated with a non-invasive form of spinal cord stimulation. The new treatment builds on prior work to generate voluntary movements in paralyzed people through electrical stimulation â" in particular, two studies (one completed in 2011, the other in 2014) that involved surgically implanting an electrode array on the spinal cord. This time, however, the researchers found success without performing any invasive surgery.

The new treatment uses a technique called transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, which involves strategically placing electrodes on the skin of the lower back. While receiving stimulation, the men's legs were supported by braces that hung from the ceiling. At first their legs only moved involuntarily, if at all. But they soon found they could voluntarily extend the distance their legs moved during stimulation. They doubled their range of voluntary motion after four treatment sessions.

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Submission + - FireChat Weaves Smartphones Into an Alternative Internet->

schwit1 writes: What do people in Manila watching the Pope give Mass, Russian and Hong Kong protesters, and U.S. festivalgoers have in common? They have all turned to FireChat, an app that creates hyperlocal chat rooms that work even when cell networks are down by connecting phones within Wi-Fi range of one another (see "The Latest Chat App for the iPhone Needs No Internet Connection").

An upgrade to FireChat released today could make the app much more useful and powerful. It makes it possible to communicate with other FireChat users beyond the roughly 70 meters that your device can reach with Wi-Fi. Private and public messages can now travel longer distances by hopping between FireChat users until they get to the intended recipient-an approach known as mesh networking. Messages are encrypted as they travel through intermediate devices.

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Submission + - One In Four Indiana Residents Lost Data in Electronic Records Firm Hack->

chicksdaddy writes: Four million patients of more than 230 hospitals, doctors offices and clinics had patient data exposed in a May hack of the Fort Wayne, Indiana firm Medical Informatics Engineering (MIE), which makes the NoMoreClipBoard electronic health records system, according to the Indiana Attorney General.(http://goo.gl/KdCbRX) The breach affected 3.9 million people. But it hit MIE's home state of Indiana especially hard. In all, 1.5 million Hoosiers had data exposed in the hack, almost a quarter of the state's population, the Security Ledger reports. (https://securityledger.com/2015/07/doctors-still-in-the-dark-after-electronics-records-hack-exposes-data-on-4-million/)

But the breach affects healthcare organizations from across the country, with healthcare providers ranging from prominent hospitals to individual physicians’ offices and clinics are among 195 customers of the NoMoreClipboard product that had patient information exposed in the breach. And, more than a month after the breach was discovered, some healthcare organizations whose patients were affected are still waiting for data from EMI on how many and which patients had information exposed.

“We have received no information from MIE regarding that,” said a spokeswoman for Fort Wayne Radiology Association (http://www.fwradiology.com/), one of hundreds of healthcare organizations whose information was compromised in the attack on MIE.

According to MIE’s statement, released on July 24, individuals who received services from Fort Wayne Radiology Association and a variety of other imaging and MRI centers were also compromised when a database relating to the healthcare providers was breached in the incident, MIE said. That contained data going back more 17 years and involved another 44 healthcare organizations in three states: Indiana, Ohio and Michigan.

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Submission + - Answering Elon Musk on the dangers of Artificial Intelligence->

Lasrick writes: Stanford's Edward Moore Geist takes apart the recent panic over superintelligent machines in a terrific, thorough piece of analysis: 'Superintelligence is propounding a solution that will not work to a problem that probably does not exist, but Bostrom and Musk are right that now is the time to take the ethical and policy implications of artificial intelligence seriously. The extraordinary claim that machines can become so intelligent as to gain demonic powers requires extraordinary evidence, particularly since artificial intelligence (AI) researchers have struggled to create machines that show much evidence of intelligence at all.'
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Submission + - Research Scientists to Use Network Much Faster Than Internet->

nickweller writes: A series of ultra-high-speed fiber-optic cables will weave a cluster of West Coast university laboratories and supercomputer centers into a network called the Pacific Research Platform as part of a five-year $5 million dollar grant from the National Science Foundation.
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Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Can you permanently disable Windows 10 privacy invading features?

An anonymous reader writes: I really want to upgrade to Windows 10, but have begun seeing stories come out about the new Terms and how they affect your privacy. It looks like the default Windows 10 system puts copies of your data out on the "cloud", gives your passwords out, and targets advertising to you. The main reason I am looking to upgrade is that Bitlocker is not available on Windows 7 Pro, but is on Windows 10 Pro, and Microsoft no longer offers Anytime Upgrades to Windows 7 Ultimate. However, I don't want to give away my privacy for security. The other option is to wait until October to see what the Windows 10 Enterprise version offers, but it may not be available through retail. Are the privacy minded Slashdot readers not going with Windows 10?

For reference, I am referring to these articles:
http://www.theguardian.com/tec...
http://betanews.com/2015/07/31...