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Submission + - Ask Slashdot - Multilayer cryptography (github.com)

jupiter126 writes: Not knowing which vendors/protocols have been compromised, I figured that my best option was to set a few layers of them.
I thus started to throw together a bash script, that would use many different algorithms and vendors to crypt a file.
What became interesting is that while encrypting, the script generates a decryption script as a key — rather than a monotonous key.
I dug a bit further, and put this bash code together, I'd love to have some feedback on the concept and it's implementation!
Thanks ;)

Submission + - Experiments Reveal That Deformed Rubber Sheet Is Not Like Spacetime (medium.com) 1

KentuckyFC writes: General relativity is mathematically challenging and yet widely appreciated by the public. This state of affairs is almost entirely the result of one the most famous analogies in science: that the warping of spacetime to produce gravity is like the deformation of a rubber sheet by a central mass. Now physicists have tested this idea theoretically and experimentally and say it doesn't hold water. It turns out that a marble rolling on deformed rubber sheet does not follow the same trajectory as a planet orbiting a star and that the marble's equations of motion lead to a strangely twisted version of Kepler's third law of planetary motion. And experiments with a real marble rolling on a spandex sheet show that the mass of the sheet itself creates a distortion that further complicates matters. Indeed, the physicists say that a rubber sheet deformed by a central mass can never produce the same motion of planet orbiting a star in spacetime. So the analogy is fundamentally flawed. Shame!

Submission + - Australian team working on engines without piston rings

JabrTheHut writes: An Australian team is seeking funding for bringing an interesting idea to market: cylinder engines without piston rings. The idea is to use small groves that create a pressure wave that acts as a seal for the piston, eliminating the piston ring and the associated friction. Engines will then run cooler, can be more energy efficient and may even burn fuel more efficiently, at least according to the story at http://www.motoring.com.au/news/2013/aussie-invention-eliminates-piston-rings-40773. Mind you, they haven't even built a working prototype yet. If it works I'd love to fit this into an older car...

Submission + - Risk of supervolcano eruption big enough to 'affect the world' far greater than (independent.co.uk)

rbrandis writes: The eruption of a “supervolcano” hundreds of times more powerful than conventional volcanoes – with the potential to wipe out civilisation as we know it – is more likely than previously thought, a study has found. An analysis of the molten rock within the dormant supervolcano beneath Yellowstone National Park in the United States has revealed that an eruption is possible without any external trigger, scientists said.

Submission + - Nvidia announces 192 core Tegra K1 chips at CES, bets on Android (muktware.com)

sfcrazy writes: Nvidia just announced Tegra K1, it’s first 192-core processor. NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang made the announcement at CES 2014. He also said that Android will be the most important platform for gaming consoles. “Why wouldn’t you want to be open, connected to your TV and have access to your photos, music, gaming. It’s just a matter of time before Android disrupts game consoles,” said Huang.

Submission + - Is Earth Weighed Down by Dark Matter? (slashdot.org) 1

Nerval's Lobster writes: There may be a giant ring of dark matter invisibly encircling the Earth, increasing its mass and pulling much harder on orbiting satellites than anything invisible should pull, according to preliminary research from a scientist specializing the physics of GPS signaling and satellite engineering. The dark-matter belt around the Earth could represent the beginning of a radically new understanding of how dark matter works and how it affects the human universe, or it could be something perfectly valid but less exciting despite having been written up by New Scientist and spreading to the rest of the geek universe on the basis of a single oral presentation of preliminary research at a meeting of the American Geophysical Union in December. The presentation came from telecom- and GPS satellite expert Ben Harris, an assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at the University of Texas- Arlington, who based his conclusion on nine months’ worth of data that could indicate Earth’s gravity was pulling harder on its ring of geostationary GPS satellites than the accepted mass of the Earth would normally allow. Since planets can’t gain weight over the holidays like the rest of us, Harris’ conclusion was that something else was adding to the mass and gravitational power of Earth – something that would have to be pretty massive but almost completely undetectable, which would sound crazy if predominant theories about the composition of the universe didn’t assume 80 percent of it was made up of invisible dark matter. Harris calculated that the increase in gravity could have come from dark matter, but would have had to be an unexpectedly thick collection of it – one ringing the earth in a band 120 miles thick and 45,000 miles wide. Making elaborate claims in oral presentations, without nailing down all the variables that could keep a set of results from being twisted into something more interesting than the truth is a red flag for any scientific presentation, let alone one making audacious claims about the way dark matter behaves or weight of the Earth, according to an exasperated counterargument from Matthew R. Francis, who earned a Ph.D. in physics and astronomy from Rutgers in 2005, held visiting and assistant professorships at several Northeastern universities and whose science writing has appeared in Ars Technica, The New Yorker, Nautilus, BBC Future and others including his own science blog at Galileo’s Pendulum.

Submission + - The county sheriff who keylogged his wife (arstechnica.com) 3

SternisheFan writes: From Ars Technica:

On April 22, 2013, Miles J. Stark of Clay County, West Virginia made a bad decision. Stark was going through a divorce at the time and had grown concerned about his wife's relationship with an "unnamed individual." So he entered his wife's workplace after normal business hours, located her PC, and installed a tiny keylogger between her keyboard cable and her computer. The keylogger would record his wife's e-mails and her instant messaging chats as she typed them out letter by letter, along with the usernames and passwords she used for various online services. Stark left the office without getting caught.

Installing hardware keyloggers can be risky even in low-security circumstances, but Stark had made his offense far worse by installing the device on a computer belonging to the West Virginia Supreme Court. Stark's wife worked for the Clay County Magistrate Court and often had occasion to enter the financial details of defendants convicted in court—including the credit cards they used to pay their fines. Stark's bid to spy on his wife's e-mails was also vacuuming up private court information, which the government was bound to take extremely seriously if it found out.

Making the whole situation just that much worse was the fact that Stark was a cop. Not just any cop, either; Stark was the county sheriff. He had served as a Clay County deputy sheriff for 16 years and in November 2012 won an election to become the chief law enforcement officer in all of Clay County. At the time of the keylogger job, Stark had been in office only three months, and if the device were ever found, Stark stood to lose his career.

It took less than three weeks. On May 6, a Supreme Court technician was out at the magistrate office doing a scheduled replacement of many of the machines; he noticed the keylogger and reported it. When the West Virginia State Police questioned Stark about the matter, the sheriff "pretended not to know what a keystroke logger was," according to a later government court filing, "a response unworthy of a law enforcement officer."

Stark held out for several months before resigning, but eventually quit his job and pleaded guilty to a federal charge of wiretapping. Federal prosecutors, outraged that a county sheriff was essentially wiretapping the judiciary, wanted a tough sentence. Anything more modest "would erroneously equate this offense with the wiretap of a private citizen by a private citizen." But Stark argued that, stupid as his scheme was, the goal had only been his wife's information—not the court's. He asked for probation.

On December 19, Stark was sentenced to two years of probation and a $1,000 fine. "You have lost your position as sheriff, lost your career in law enforcement... That alone is enough," said Judge John Copenhaver, according to the Charleston Gazette. Stark's ex-wife requested leniency and hugged Stark after the ruling.

Original Charleston Gazette story here: http://www.wvgazette.com/News/201312190019

Submission + - Computer Scientists Invents Game-Developing Computer AI (hothardware.com)

MojoKid writes: Over the past few years, short game writing "jams" have become a popular way to bring developers together in a conference with a single overarching theme. These competitions are typically 24-48 hours long and involve a great deal of caffeine, frantic coding, and creative design. The 28th Ludum Dare conference from held from December 13 — 16 of this past year was one such game jam — but in this case, it had an unusual participant: Angelina. Angelina is a computer AI designed by Mike Cook of Goldsmiths, London University. His long-term goal is to discover whether an AI can complete tasks that are generally perceived as creative. The long-term goal is to create an AI that can "design meaningful, intelligent and enjoyable games completely autonomously." Angelina's entry into Ludum Dare, dubbed "To That Sect," is a simple 3D title that looks like it hails from the Wolfenstein era. Angelina's initial game is simple, but in reality Angelina is an AI that can understand the use of metaphor and build thematically appropriate content, which is pretty impressive. As future versions of the AI improve, the end result could be an artificial intelligence that "understands" human storytelling in a way no species on Earth can match.

Submission + - High-Fiber Diet May Ward Off Asthma (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: The fiber consumed in fruits and vegetables seems to help quiet the overzealous immune system activity that leads to such conditions as irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn's disease, and possibly even colon cancer. Now it appears that a diet rich in fiber may also fend off asthma, an inflammatory condition that constricts the airways of the lung, by changing the way some immune cells are produced in the bone marrow.

Submission + - Ancient Pompeii Diet Consisted Of Giraffe And Other 'Exotic' Delicacies (ibtimes.com)

Philip Ross writes: New research into Pompeiians' daily lives is broadening our understanding of this ancient Roman culture, particularly their eating habits, before Mt. Vesuvius brought it all crumbling down nearly 2,000 years ago. Over the past decade, archaeologists excavating a row of building plots discovered remnants of food that would have been widely available and inexpensive in ancient Italy, like grains, fruits, olives, lentils, local fish, nuts and chicken eggs. They also uncovered evidence that Pompeiians enjoyed a variety of exotic foods, some of which would have been imported from outside Italy, including sea urchins, flamingos and even the butchered leg joint of a giraffe.

Submission + - Why Everybody Seems to Have Cancer 1

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes: George Johnson writes in the NYT that cancer is on the verge of overtaking heart disease as the No. 1 cause of death and although cancer mortality has actually been decreasing bit by bit in recent decades, the decline has been modest compared with other threats. The diseases that once killed earlier in life — bubonic plague, smallpox, influenza, tuberculosis — were easier obstacles. For each there was a single infectious agent, a precise cause that could be confronted. But there are reasons to believe that cancer will remain much more resistant because it is not so much a disease as a phenomenon, the result of a basic evolutionary compromise. As a body lives and grows, its cells are constantly dividing, copying their DNA — this vast genetic library — and bequeathing it to the daughter cells. They in turn pass it to their own progeny: copies of copies of copies. Along the way, errors inevitably occur. Some are caused by carcinogens but most are random misprints. Mutations are the engine of evolution. Without them we never would have evolved. The trade-off is that every so often a certain combination will give an individual cell too much power. It begins to evolve independently of the rest of the body and like a new species thriving in an ecosystem, it grows into a cancerous tumor. "Given a long enough life, cancer will eventually kill you — unless you die first of something else (PDF). That would be true even in a world free from carcinogens and equipped with the most powerful medical technology," concludes Johnson. "Maybe someday some of us will live to be 200. But barring an elixir for immortality, a body will come to a point where it has outwitted every peril life has thrown at it. And for each added year, more mutations will have accumulated. If the heart holds out, then waiting at the end will be cancer."

Submission + - CES: Laser headlights edge closer to real-world highways

jeffb (2.718) writes: Audi will display laser-headlight technology on a concept car at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show, joining BMW, whose plug-in hybrid should reach production in 2014. A November article on optics.org describes the technology in more detail. This approach does not scan or project a "laser beam" from the car; instead, it uses blue lasers as highly efficient light emitters, and focuses their light onto a yellow phosphor, producing an extremely intense and compact white light source and then forming that light into a conventional headlamp beam. The beam isn't coherent or point-sourced, so it won't produce the "speckling" interference effects of direct laser illumination, and it won't pose specular-reflection hazards. It's just a very bright and very well-controlled beam of normal white light.

HOWEVER, if multi-watt blue laser emitters go into mass production for the automotive market, it's likely to drive down their prices in other applications — for example, grey-market multi-watt "laser pointers". If you're looking for a tool to burn holes in the tires of drivers who offend you, this technology may indirectly help to fulfill your wish.

Submission + - Federal judge rules NSA data collection legal (foxnews.com) 2

CheezburgerBrown . writes: A federal judge in New York has ruled the National Security Agency's massive data collection program is legal, one week after another federal judge ruled the opposite.

The conflicting rulings increase the likelihood that the challenges could someday end up before the Supreme Court.

The ruling on Friday came from District Judge William H. Pauley III, in the case of the ACLU vs. James Clapper, the director of national intelligence. The judge agreed with the federal government's request to dismiss the court.

copy and pasted from fox news

Submission + - Planet Earth Has 18.5 Million Developers (drdobbs.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Dr. Dobbs refers to a study by the International Data Corporation which pegs the number of developers in the world at 18.5 million. This includes professional and hobbyists. "IDC's analysis shows that the United States accounts for 19% of worldwide software developers, both professional and hobbyists, followed by China with 10% and India with 9.8%. The United States also accounts for 22% of worldwide ICT-skilled workers, followed by India with 10.4% and China with 7.6%."

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