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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 72 declined, 51 accepted (123 total, 41.46% accepted)

+ - Beer Price Crisis on the Horizon

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "The aficionados of beer and distilled spirits could be in for a major price-shock, if proposals by the Food and Drug Administration come to pass. Currently, breweries are allowed to sell unprocessed brewing by-products to feed farm animals. Farmers prize the nutritious, low-cost feed. But, new rules proposed by the FDA could force brewers to implement costly processing facilities or dump the by-products as waste. As one brewer put it, "Beer prices would go up for everybody to cover the cost of the equipment and installation.”"

+ - Lying Eyes: Cyborg Glasses Simulate Eye Expressions

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "A researcher in Japan has taken what is, perhaps, the next step after Google Glass: Glasses which produce animated images of the user's eyes to simulate emotional responses. They are intended to aid workers in emotionally-intensive environments. As the researcher explains, '... they allowed others to feel they were "cared" about ...' Really? Or do they just give creepy a whole new dimension?"

+ - NSA Infiltrated RSA Deeper Than Imagined 1

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Reuters is reporting that the U.S. National Security Agency managed to have security firm RSA adopt not just one, but two security tools, further facilitating NSA eavesdropping on Internet communications

The newly discovered software is dubbed 'Extended Random', and is intended to facilitate the use of the already known 'Dual Elliptic Curve' encryption software's back door. Researchers from several U.S. universities discovered Extended Random and assert it could help crack Dual Elliptic Curve encrypted communications 'tens of thousands of times faster'."

+ - Mt. Gox Questioned by Employees for at Least 2-years

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Reuters reports that Mt. Gox employees began to question the handling of funds at least two years ago. Although only CEO Mark Karpeles had full access to financial records, a group of a half-dozen employees began to suspect client funds were being diverted to cover operating costs, which included Karpeles' toys, such as 'racing version of the Honda Civic imported from Britain'. Employees confronted Karpeles in early 2012, only to be given vague assurances with a "pay no attention to the man behind the curtain" ring. Unfortunately, since Mt. Gox was not regulated as a financial institution under Japanese law, it is unclear what recourse might be gained in pursuing this question."

+ - Wisdom of Crows Demonstrates Wisdom of Aesop 1

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Using New Caledonian crows captured from the wild, scientists have demonstrated the corvids' ability to master the task of retrieving food by displacing water, inspired by the classic Aesop fable of the "Crow and the Pitcher". Per the researchers: 'In their understanding of physics — how objects displace water — the crows were comparable to 5-to-7-year-old children ...' Reuters provides an approachable summation of the news, here."

+ - Computer Spots Fakers Better Than People Do

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Using sophisticated pattern matching software, researchers have had substantially better success with a computer, than was obtained with human subjects, in spotting faked facial expressions of pain. [Original, paywalled article in Current Biology] From the Reuters piece: '... human subjects did no better than chance — about 50 percent ...', 'The computer was right 85 percent of the time.'"

+ - Earth Barely Dodged Solar Blast in 2012

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Coronal mass ejections, with severity comparable to the 1859 Carrington event, missed Earth by only 9 days, in 2012, according to researchers. The Carrington event caused widespread damage to the telegraph system in the U. S., and a similar occurrence would be devastating to modern electronics, it is thought. NASA's STEREO A spacecraft is responsible for detecting the event. From the Reuters article, 'Had it hit Earth, it probably would have been like the big one in 1859, but the effect today, with our modern technologies, would have been tremendous.' The potential global cost for such damage is pegged at $2.6 trillion."

+ - Cosmic Expansion Marker Find Hailed 1

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Evidence for the Big Bang has received a remarkable boost from the apparent finding of the B-mode polarisation of the Cosmic Microwave Background radiation. This event traces the origins of the universe's expansion back to "... first trillionth, of a trillionth of a trillionth of a second," of its existence. From the BBC article: "'Detecting this signal is one of the most important goals in cosmology today. A lot of work by a lot of people has led up to this point,' said Prof John Kovac of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and a leader of the BICEP2 collaboration."

Already there is talk of a Nobel for this research."

+ - Power Cables' UV Flashes Apparently Frighten Animals

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Ultraviolet light flashes, or "corona", may be scaring animals and altering behavior. An international scientific team, first studying behavioral anomalies in reindeer near power lines, have found that sporadic flashes of UV from the lines are probably responsible. As most mammals can see into the UV spectrum, this has broad implications for the disruption of animal behavior. From the BBC article: "Since, as the researchers added, coronas 'happen on all power lines everywhere', the avoidance of the flashes could be having a global impact on wildlife.""

+ - Insurers Sceptical of Energy Industry Safeguards 1

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "The BBC reports that insurers are denying coverage to energy producers because of weak defenses against cyber attack. Lloyd's of London reports a 'huge increase' in demand for such policies, but audits they commissioned found 'protections were inadequate'. To quote Ed Skoudis 'War games' expert, '... it's surprising no big incident has happened given how weak the infrastructure is. It's very hackable.'"

+ - Thinking With Your Gut: Can Bacteria Make You Smarter? 1

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "John Cryan, a researcher at the University College Cork, explains the relationship between the bacteria in your gut and your intelligence. It seems the flora in your intestines can influence brain development as well as aspects of health and nutrition which affect such things as hormones and neurotransmitters.

Note: Please hold the George W. Bush jokes until after the break."

"The greatest warriors are the ones who fight for peace." -- Holly Near

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