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+ - China smartphone maker Xiaomi apologizes for unauthorized data access 1

Submitted by SpzToid
SpzToid (869795) writes "Following up an earlier story here on Slashdot, now Xiaomi has apologized for collecting private data from its customers.

Xiaomi Inc said it had upgraded its operating system to ensure users knew it was collecting data from their address books after a report by a computer security firm said the Chinese budget smartphone maker was taking personal data without permission. The privately held company said it had fixed a loophole in its cloud messaging system that had triggered the unauthorized data transfer and that the operating system upgrade had been rolled out on Sunday. The issue was highlighted last week in a blog post by security firm F-Secure Oyg. In a lengthy blogpost on Google Plus, Xiaomi Vice President Hugo Barra apologized for the unauthorized data collection and said the company only collects phone numbers in users' address books to see if the users are online.

"

+ - Online Tool Flagged Ebola Outbreak Before Formal WHO Announcement-> 1

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes "Nine days before the announcement from WHO regarding the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, an online tool had the incident flagged

HealthMap, a team of 45 researchers, epidemiologists and software developers at Boston Children's Hospital founded in 2006, hosting an online tool that uses algorithms to scour tens of thousands of social media sites, local news, government websites, infectious-disease physicians' social networks and other sources to detect and track disease outbreaks. Sophisticated software filters irrelevant data, classifies the relevant information, identifies diseases and maps their locations with the help of experts

The tool was introduced in 2006 with a core audience of public health specialists, but that changed as the system evolved and the public became increasingly hungry for information during the swine flu pandemic.

To get a feel of how HealthMap works, in the case of the Ebola outbreak, go to http://healthmap.org/ebola/"

Link to Original Source

+ - Has radar technology caught up with steath technology?->

Submitted by AbrasiveCat
AbrasiveCat (999190) writes "In the continuing game of cat and mouse between offensive and defensive technologies of war, the technology of radar stealth may have been matched by new multiple frequency radar systems. U.S Naval Institute News (http://news.usni.org/2014/07/29/chinese-russian-radars-track-see-u-s-stealth) reports the Chinese and Russians maybe developing such systems. The present radar systems use high frequency waves for accurately locating an incoming target. Stealth aircraft are designed to adsorb or reflect these wave away from the receiver. It turns out longer wave radars can see the stealth aircraft. The longer wave radar lacks the precision of the high frequency radar, but when the two are combined, as the Russians, Chinese (and US) are doing, you can produce accurate targeting radar. The F117 may have been in a golden age for stealth technology, it will be interesting to see if the F35 arrives to late to be effective against other countries with advanced radar systems."
Link to Original Source

+ - Paint dust covers the upper layer of the world's oceans->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "Even when the sea looks clean, its surface can be flecked with tiny fragments of paint and fiberglass. That’s the finding from a study that looked for plastic pollution in the uppermost millimeter of ocean. The microscopic fragments come from the decks and hulls of boats, and they could pose a threat to tiny creatures called zooplankton, which are an important part of the marine food web."
Link to Original Source

+ - 'Unparticles' May Hold The Key To Superconductivity, Say Physicists

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "One curious property of massless particles like photons is that their energy or momentum can take any value across many orders of magnitude, a property that physicists call scale invariance. By contrast, massive particles like electrons always have the same mass regardless of their energy or momentum. So massive particles are not scale invariant. The concept of unparticles is the idea that some “stuff” may have mass, energy and momentum and yet also be scale invariant. This stuff must be profoundly different from ordinary particles, hence the name: unparticles. Nobody has ever seen an unparticle but now physicists are suggesting that unparticles may hold the key to understanding unconventional superconductivity. Their thinking is that at very low temperatures, ordinary particles can sometimes behave like unparticles. In other words, their properties become independent of the scale at which they're observed. So if an unparticle moves without resistance on a tiny scale, then it must also move without resistance at every scale, hence the phenomenon of superconductivity. That could provide some important insights into unconventional superconductivity which has puzzled physicists since it was discovered in the 1980s."

+ - Microsoft to drop support for older versions of Internet Explorer ->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "After January 12, 2016, only the most recent version of Internet Explorer available for a supported operating system will receive technical support and security updates. For example, customers using Internet Explorer 8, Internet Explorer 9, or Internet Explorer 10 on Windows 7 SP1 should migrate to Internet Explorer 11 to continue receiving security updates and technical support."
Link to Original Source
Microsoft

Satya Nadella At Six Months: Grading Microsoft's New CEO 151

Posted by samzenpus
from the making-the-grade dept.
snydeq writes The future emerging for Microsoft under Nadella is a mixed bag of hope and turmoil, writes Woody Leonhard in his review of Nadella's first fix months at the helm of Microsoft. "When Nadella took over, Microsoft was mired in the aftermath of a lengthy and ultimately unpopular reign by longtime CEO — and Microsoft majority shareholder — Steve Ballmer. Given the constraint of that checkered past, some might argue that Nadella hasn't had enough time to make his imprint on every aspect of Microsoft. Yet there have been many changes already under Nadella's watch, and patterns are certainly emerging as to the kind of company Microsoft will be in the years ahead." Leadership, product lines, financials — Nadella's scorecard shows strong strategic leadership, particularly around the cloud, but Windows and devices are murky at best, with Microsoft employees "taking it in the shorts, and not only in Finland."
Science

More Quantum Strangeness: Particles Separated From Their Properties 144

Posted by Soulskill
from the superposition-of-cat-metaphors dept.
Dupple sends word of new quantum mechanical research in which a neutron is sent along a different path from one of its characteristics. First, a neutron beam is split into two parts in a neutron interferometer. Then the spins of the two beams are shifted into different directions: The upper neutron beam has a spin parallel to the neutrons’ trajectory, the spin of the lower beam points into the opposite direction. After the two beams have been recombined, only those neutrons are chosen which have a spin parallel to their direction of motion. All the others are just ignored. ... These neutrons, which are found to have a spin parallel to its direction of motion, must clearly have travelled along the upper path — only there do the neutrons have this spin state. This can be shown in the experiment. If the lower beam is sent through a filter which absorbs some of the neutrons, then the number of the neutrons with spin parallel to their trajectory stays the same. If the upper beam is sent through a filter, than the number of these neutrons is reduced.

Things get tricky when the system is used to measure where the neutron spin is located: the spin can be slightly changed using a magnetic field. When the two beams are recombined appropriately, they can amplify or cancel each other. This is exactly what can be seen in the measurement, if the magnetic field is applied at the lower beam – but that is the path which the neutrons considered in the experiment are actually never supposed to take. A magnetic field applied to the upper beam, on the other hand, does not have any effect.

+ - Observation of a quantum Cheshire Cat in a matter-wave interferometer experiment->

Submitted by Dupple
Dupple (1016592) writes "From its very beginning, quantum theory has been revealing extraordinary and counter-intuitive phenomena, such as wave-particle duality, Schrödinger cats and quantum non-locality. Another paradoxical phenomenon found within the framework of quantum mechanics is the ‘quantum Cheshire Cat’: if a quantum system is subject to a certain pre- and postselection, it can behave as if a particle and its property are spatially separated. It has been suggested to employ weak measurements in order to explore the Cheshire Cat’s nature. Here we report an experiment in which we send neutrons through a perfect silicon crystal interferometer and perform weak measurements to probe the location of the particle and its magnetic moment."
Link to Original Source

+ - Almost 1 in 10 Android Apps Are Now Malware

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Cheetah Mobile Threat Research Labs analyzed trends in mobile viruses for Q1 and Q2 of 2014. Pulling 24.4 million sample files they found that 2.2 million files had viruses, roughly 9% of the total. Compared to previous years, this is a 153% increase from the number of infected files in 2013. Asia and select parts of Western Europe have undoubtedly had the highest rates of infection during the past six months. This is due in part to the prevalence of third party app stores in these regions, which have very lax checks to ensure that applications do not contain viruses."

+ - Google, CNN Leaders in "Advertising Pollution" 1

Submitted by theodp
theodp (442580) writes ""Everyone gets that advertising is what powers the internet, and that our favorite sites wouldn't exist without it," writes longtime ad guy Ken Segall in The Relentless (and annoying) Pursuit of Eyeballs. "Unfortunately, for some this is simply license to abuse. Let's call it what it is: advertising pollution." CNN's in-your-face, your-video-will-play-in-00:25-seconds approach, once unthinkable, has become the norm. "Google," Segall adds, "is a leader in advertising pollution, with YouTube being a showcase for intrusive advertising. Many YouTube videos start with a mandatory ad, others start with an ad that can be dismissed only after the first 10 seconds. Even more annoying are the ad overlays that actually appear on top of the video you're trying to watch. It won't go away until you click the X. If you want to see the entire video unobstructed, you must drag the playhead back to start over. Annoying. And disrespectful." Google proposed using cap and trade penalties to penalize traditional polluters — how about for those who pollute the Internet?"

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