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Submission + - Systemd Devs Fork Linux Kernel ( 3

An anonymous reader writes: Now it appears as though the systemd developers have found a solution to kernel compatibility problems and a way to extend their philosophy of placing all key operating system components in one repository. According to Ivan Gotyaovich, one of the developers working on systemd, the project intends to maintain its own fork of the Linux kernel. "There are problems, problems in collaboration, problems with compatibility across versions. Forking the kernel gives us control over these issues, gives us control over almost all key parts of the stack."

Submission + - What's a Good Modern Vision Security System for Linux?

An anonymous reader writes: There has been a rash of dog thefts in my area, with dogs being stolen out of back yards and even right out of homes. I love my rescue mutts, and would be devastated were they to suffer a similar fate. So, aside from refurbishing the antiquated alarm system in my older home (reusing the sensors with a more modern controller), I would like to install motion-sensing security cameras outside, and herein lies the rub. I live in the woods. Pretty deep in the woods. So, ideally I would like a motion-sensing vision system to be able to discern human forms from wildlife. If I'm going to be getting alerts on my phone for movement near the house, I would really like not to be desensitized by a high false alarm rate. So far my searching has proved fruitless, so here I am asking the Slashdot community: does anyone know of a vision recognition security system that can pick out human forms from a variety of wildlife? Thanks in advance.

Submission + - BBC drops WMA for Mpeg-dash (

gbjbaanb writes: The BBC has converted its legacy WMA (Windows Media Audio) streams to the "industry-wide and open source" Mpeg Dash format. whilst this has left some users of old devices unable to receive the broadcasts, the BBC has claimed the use of WMA was 'prohibitively expensive to operate' when existing licence agreements ran out.

The BBC says that they are working with "radio industry and manufacturers towards using just one standard".

Feed Google News Sci Tech: Japan's old flip-phones rise while smartphones shrink - India Gazette (

India Gazette

Japan's old flip-phones rise while smartphones shrink
India Gazette
TOKYO: Japanese shipments of traditional flip-phones rose in 2014 for the first time in seven years while smartphone shipments fell, highlighting Japanese consumers' tenacious attachment to the familiar and typically less expensive older models. Dubbed...

and more

Submission + - GCC 5 heads toward release and Fedora 22, with F23 introducing new C++11 ABI (

rhmattn writes: Fedora 22 will ship with GCC 5, which brings a whole host of enhancements, among which is a new default C++ ABI. Fedora is going to transition to that ABI over two Fedora releases F22 and F23. This article, written by some of the key players in the GCC community, explains how that will work and what it means for developers, including some useful tips for application developers and packagers.

Submission + - Spyware Developed By NSA Resides In HDD Firmware

An anonymous reader writes: The Russian computer security firm Kaspersky has uncovered spyware code buried in the firmware of common hard disk drives. The spyware kit has been customized to support all major HDD brands. Most of the infections have occurred in countries that are frequent US spying targets, such as China, Iran, Pakistan and Russia. Kaspersky declined to publicly name the country behind the spying campaign, but said it was closely linked to Stuxnet, the NSA-led cyberweapon that was used to attack Iran's uranium enrichment facility. A former NSA employee told Reuters that Kaspersky's analysis was correct, and that people still in the intelligence agency valued these spying programs as highly as Stuxnet. Another former intelligence operative confirmed that the NSA had developed the prized technique of concealing spyware in hard drives, but said he did not know which spy efforts relied on it. Kaspersky published the technical details of its research on Monday, which should help infected institutions detect the spying programs, some of which trace back as far as 2001.

Submission + - Taking a new Tack on Net Neutrality

An anonymous reader writes: I am the IT director for a large rental property company that owns approximately 15,000 apartments in college towns across America. The board of directors has tasked me with exploring whether we can "privatize" our network (we provide network access as part of rent in all of our properties) and charge certain commercial entities for access to our residents. Right now the network is more or less open, except that we block access (by court order) to certain sites at the request of various copyright holders.

Specifically, they are interested in targeting commercial providers of services directed at college students, such as textbook rental firms, online booksellers, and so on. With approximately 35,000 residents, I guess they are thinking there is a substantial profit to be made here. Personally I don't like it one bit, but I thought I would ping Slashdot for thoughtful opinions. I imagine the phones will start ringing off the hook if students suddenly lose access to places like

I think it has "bad idea" written all over it. What do you think?

Submission + - California Just Slapped Tesla In The Face

cartechboy writes: California and Tesla have been in a relationship for some time now. The automaker has its headquarters there, its factory, and most of its engineering teams. But it seems the state just slapped Tesla in the face as the California Air Resources Board (CARB) ruled the ability to swap electric-car battery packs doesn't qualify for "fast fueling" incentives. The silicon valley start up loses because it previously had been earning extra "ZEV Gold" credits for this fast-fueling ability which increased its supply of credits that it could sell to other automakers for cash. CARB is accepting public comments on the revised rules through April 18, but don't expect a reversal on this decision. To date, Tesla hasn't reacted favorably when things don't go its way, so now the only question is how will it react to this situation?

Submission + - College Club Fundraising on the Fly 1

An anonymous reader writes: As luck would have it, I was video-attending the monthly meeting of my alma mater's amateur radio club last night and learned that a local Alumnus had passed, leaving a significant amount of equipment to the club, including a "Big Bertha" tower that the club does not have a home for. This particular "Big Bertha" as it is called is a 115 foot tall, self-supporting rotatable pole that can support an enormous number of antennae. There are thought to be only a small number of them in civilian use, and this was one of them.

I also happen to be a member of the local University's amateur radio club, and our local meeting was right after the GT meeting, so upon learning of the availability I immediately informed them that this tower could be had so long as they could support the logistics of moving the tower approximately 100 miles. After discussing the logistics, and the fact that construction crews would be required on both sides, we came to the conclusion that a significant amount of money would be required, and that your typical intramural basketweaving team bake sale would not do the job.

The use case for such a tower is not difficult to make with the University, or with local emergency services who would no doubt love to have space on such a tall tower in such a prime "top of the hill" geographical location. Zoning will also not be an issue owing to the location having one other taller tower belonging to the college radio station, and a water tower on site. However, with most governments being cash-strapped and unlikely willing to contribute to the project, we need some more ideas on how to raise the needed funds.

So if you're a small University club, and need to raise $30-40K in a hurry, how do you do it? They are working on some small grants from local corporations, and also contacting the manufacturer to see if there is any goodwill there. But, many more ideas are needed. Thanks in advance.

Submission + - Mozilla Starts Hunting Down Software Bugs to Increase the Security of Firefox OS

SmartAboutThings writes: Mozilla and BlackBerry as partners? We don’t hear that too often. But this time they have joined together to develop and advance Peach, an open source tool that would allow them to discover software bugs before users are at risk. Peach has been created by Michael Eddington of Deja Vu Security and the development of a third major version has started more than eight years ago, in 2004. Mozilla has already used Peach to detect problems in essential HTML5 features like image and audio/video formats, fonts, WebGL, WebAudio and WebRTC. This means that we will get a safer Firefox browser and Firefox OS, since the mobile operating system is based on the HTML 5 structure.

Submission + - iPhone Hacked in Under 60 Seconds Using Malicious Charger (

DavidGilbert99 writes: Apple's iOs has been known as a bastion of security for many years, but three researchers have now shown iPhones and iPads can be hacked in just under 60 seconds using nothing more than a charger. OK so it's not just a charger but the Mactans charger does delete an official app (say Facebook) replacing it with an official-looking one which is actually malware which could access your contacts, messages, emails, phone calls and even capture your passwords. Apple says it will fix the flaw, but not until the release of iOS 7, the date of which hasn't been confirmed yet. So watch out for chargers left lying around.....

Submission + - Government Spying Software Used by More Countries to Monitor Dissidents (

DavidGilbert99 writes: Governmental spying software has been in the news a lot in recent months and today Citizen Lab has revealed its latest findings, showing that one of the most prolific tools in use, Finfisher, is now in use in 36 countries around the world. The report also shows that FinSpy, a tool within the FinFisher suite, makes itself look like Mozilla's Firefox to trick people into downloading it, which has led to Mozilla to issue a cease and desist letter to Gamma International which makes the software.

Submission + - Mozilla: government spyware disguising itself as Firefox (

nk497 writes: Mozilla has sent a cease-and-desist order to Gamma International, after it was revealed the controversial creator of spyware for governments was disguising itself as Firefox on PCs. "We cannot abide a software company using our name to disguise online surveillance tools that can be – and in several cases actually have been – used by Gamma’s customers to violate citizens’ human rights and online privacy," Mozilla said.

Mozilla stressed that the two software packages remained separate and that FinSpy did not affect Firefox itself or the way the browser operated. "Gamma’s software is entirely separate, and only uses our brand and trademarks to lie and mislead as one of its methods for avoiding detection and deletion," Mozilla added.

Submission + - Spying Company Gamma Possibly Violates LGPL in its FinFisher Trojan (

Voulnet writes: According to analysis and report by CitizenLab of the Gamma FinFisher trojan spyware used against dissidents in the middle east and around the world, the FinFisher codebase uses a LGPL component of the The GNU Multiple Precision Arithmetic Library, possibly without adhering to its restrictions.

This could spur an interesting avenue of fighting surveillance software used against the populations around the world, especially with Mozilla now taking legal action against the same firm, Gamma, because it distributed a Trojan with Firefox's brand and trademark.

Submission + - Cray-1 vs. AMD 7990, Then vs. Now (

EmagGeek writes: In 1976, a Cray-1 supercomputer cost $36M (in 2013 dollars) and could execute floating point math at 160 MFLOP. The supercomputer had a 5.2V power supply that delivered almost 800 amps to the circuitry. The machine was the size of a small Volkswagen and required a refrigeration system to dissipate the 4000 watts of electricity it took to run.

The fastest PC video card on the market today costs $1000 and can execute floating point math at 8,200,000 MFLOP, consumes energy at a rate of just less than 400 watts, and is about the size of a paperback book.

50,000 times faster, 1/36,000 the price, 1/10th the energy, and about 1/5,000 the volume. It's interesting how they had to solve the enormous power requirements of supercomputers at the time, and how they have continued to solve them over the years as power densities have increased.

Unix is the worst operating system; except for all others. -- Berry Kercheval