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+ - Disgraced Scientist is Selling His Nobel Prize

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "Nicholas St. Fleur writes at The Atlantic that in the sad final chapter to a career that traces back to racist remarks he made in 2007, James Watson, the famed molecular biologist and co-discoverer of DNA, is putting his Nobel Prize up for auction, the first Nobel laureate in history to do so. Watson, best known for his work deciphering the DNA double helix alongside Francis Crick in 1953, made an incendiary remark regarding the intelligence of black people that lost him the admiration of the scientific community in 2007 making him, in his own words, an "unperson". That year, The Sunday Times quoted Watson as saying that he felt “inherently gloomy about the prospect of Africa” because “all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours—whereas all the testing says not really.” Watson added that although some think that all humans are born equally intelligent, “people who have to deal with black employees find this not true.” Watson has a history of making racist and sexist declarations, according to Time. His insensitive off-the-cuff remarks include saying that sunlight and dark skin contribute to “Latin lover” libido, and that fat people lack ambition, which prevents them from being hired. At a science conference in 2012, Watson said of women in science, “I think having all these women around makes it more fun for the men but they’re probably less effective.” To many scientists his gravest offense was not crediting Rosalind Franklin with helping him deduce the structure of DNA.

Watson is selling his prized medallion because he has no income outside of academia, even though for years he had served on many corporate boards. The gold medal is expected to bring in between $2.5 million and $3.5 million when it goes to auction. Watson says that he will use the money to purchase art and make donations to institutions that have supported him, such as the University of Chicago and Watson says the auction will also offer him the chance to “re-enter public life.” “I’ve had a unique life that’s allowed me to do things. I was set back. It was stupid on my part,” says Watson “All you can do is nothing, except hope that people actually know what you are.”"

+ - Deutsch Telecom Upgrades T-Mobile 2G Encryption in U.S.->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "T-Mobile, a major wireless carrier in the US and subsidiary of german Deutsch Telecom, is hardening the encryption on its 2G cellular network in the US, reports the Washington Post. According to Cisco, 2G cellular calls still account for 13% of calls in the US and 68% of wireless calls worldwide. T-Mobile's upgrades will bring the encryption of older and inexpensive 2G GSM phone signals in the US up to par with that of more expensive 3G and 4G handsets. Parent company Deutsche Telecom had announced a similar upgrade of its German 2G network after last year's revelations of NSA surveillance."
Link to Original Source

+ - "Calibration" error changes Illinois touchscreen votes-> 4

Submitted by BobandMax
BobandMax (95054) writes "In a truly shocking occurrence, a Cook County, Illinois touchscreen voting device changed votes from Republican to Democrat. Voting officials removed the machine and determined that a calibration error was at fault. The voter who brought the problem to their attention, Republican state representative candidate Jim Moynihan, was later "allowed" to vote for Republicans. Some things never change, regardless technology."
Link to Original Source

Comment: It's still his parts collection, regardless. So? (Score 1) 3

by Artifex (#48043733) Attached to: Whose car is it? Bricked Model S a no go unless Tesla says so.

If the company running the auction misrepresented the car's condition, he can certainly take it up with them or their lawyers. But he has no reason to blame Tesla for his situation, at all. According to the article, they're not trying to force him into any service contract, or pay a huge fee (they even said they would waive the inspection fee). But they have got to be able to cover themselves if he does something like electrocutes himself or hits someone if a repair they weren't responsible for is insufficient.

+ - A Problem With Teacher Begfunding: $56,742 for One Class, $258 for Another 1

Submitted by theodp
theodp (442580) writes "Google's "flash-funding" of teachers' projects via DonorsChoose continues to draw kudos, this time from grateful mayors in Seattle and Los Angeles. And some of the teachers seem to be getting pretty good at playing the begfunding game. In L.A., for instance, almost 6% of the $977,281 Google and DonorsChoose awarded is being used to take 34 kids on "The Trip of a Lifetime." And while the good news over at Alliance Burton Tech Academy High School is that Google is ponying up $56,742 to send Mr. Hermosillo's 34 students to London and Paris, the sad news is that Ms. Garcia's 150 students missed the Google gravy train and will have to settle for $258.93 worth of markers and glue from the Gates Foundation and DonorsChoose."

+ - $75K prosthetic arm is bricked when paired Ipod is stolen.-> 2

Submitted by kdataman
kdataman (1687444) writes "U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Ben Eberle, who lost an arm and both legs in Afghanistan, had his Ipod Touch stolen on Friday. This particular Ipod Touch has an app on it that controls his $75,000 prosthetic arm. The robbery bricked his prosthesis:

"That is because Eberle's prosthetic hand is programmed to only work with the stolen iPod, and vice versa. Now that the iPod is gone, he said he has to get a new hand and get it reprogrammed with his prosthesis."

I see three possibilities.
1) The article is wrong, possibly to guilt the thief into returning the Ipod.
2) This is an incredibly bad design by Touch Bionics [http://www.touchbionics.com]. Why would you make a $70,000 piece of equipment permanently dependent on a specific Ipod Touch? Ipods do fail or go missing.
3) This is an intentionally bad design to generate revenue. Maybe GM should do this with car keys? "Oops, lost the keys to the corvette. Better buy a new one.""

Link to Original Source
Cloud

Sigsense is Making Interchangeable, Modular Sensors (Video) 21

Posted by Roblimo
from the someday-will-we-be-as-interchangeable-as-our-tools? dept.
Their main claim: "Sigsense Sensors are field-switchable sensing modules which replace the current generation of single purpose instruments. All Sigsense Sensors connect to the Sigsense Wireless Dock through a common interface. This portability and convenience allows workers to always carry the right instrument for the job." In other words, a technician in a food manufacturing plant doesn't need to carry a humidity-measuring tool, a multimeter, a signal strength meter, and four or five other measuring tools, to the point where he's got a backpack full of instrumentation or a rolling a cart full of measuring devices. That technician can now (in theory) carry a single, wireless sensor body, and put the sensors he needs on it as easily as you change heads on an electric hair trimmer. Check their blurb on AngelList for more about what this company is up to, and note that they are going way beyond making one measurement at a time. They're talking about collecting instrument data, along with tracking technicians, and sending all this data to the cloud, where you can do with it as you wish. But not today. The website says they will have products available "soon." (Alternate Video Link)

+ - Google patches Android against OpenSSL MITM vulnerability

Submitted by 93 Escort Wagon
93 Escort Wagon (326346) writes "Google is releasing Android 4.4.4 for certain Nexus phones and tablets. While some users hoping for a new Android release at I/O may be disappointed by the timing of this new KitKat release, it is important update since it is primarily addressing CVE-2014-0224, a significant OpenSSL man in the middle vulnerability discovered recently."

+ - New Permission System Potentially Makes Android Much Less Secure 1

Submitted by capedgirardeau
capedgirardeau (531367) writes "An update to the Google Play store now groups app permissions into collections of related permissions making them much less fine grained and potentially misleading for users. For example the SMS permissions group would allow an app access to both reading and sending SMS messages. The problem is that once an app has access to the group of permissions, it can make use of any of the allowed actions at anytime without ever informing the user. As Google explains: "It’s a good idea to review permissions groups before downloading an app. Once you’ve allowed an app to access a permissions group, the app may use any of the individual permissions that are part of that group. You won’t need to manually approve individual permissions updates that belong to a permissions group you’ve already accepted.""

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