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+ - Heartbleed: Serious OpenSSL zero day vulnerability revealed-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "ZDNet reports: New security holes are always showing up. The latest one, the so-called Heartbleed Bug in the OpenSSL cryptographic library, is an especially bad one. The flaw can potentially be used to reveal not just the contents of a secured-message, such as a credit-card transaction over HTTPS, but the primary and secondary SSL keys themselves. This data could then, in theory, be used as a skeleton keys to bypass secure servers without leaving a trace that a site had been hacked."
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Comment: Re:EC2 is scriptable (Score 3, Interesting) 80

by Salis (#45558909) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Scientific Computing Workflow For the Cloud?

The OP needs lower-priced spot instances, which are intermittently available and designed exactly for this workflow.

Here's how to utilize lower-priced spot instances for scientific computing:

1. Set up one long-running, low-cost instance (a small is fine) that creates a distributed queue using Amazon's SQS, and adds jobs to the queue corresponding to each "unit" of the relevant computational problem of interest. New jobs can be added using a command line interface, or through a web interface.

2. Create a user start-up Bash script for the spot instances that runs your main program -- I prefer using Python and boto for simplicity. The main program should connect to the SQS queue, and begin an "infinite" while loop. Inside the loop, the next job off the queue is pulled, containing the input parameters that define the "unit" of the computational problem of interest. These input parameters are fed to the main algorithm, and the resulting output is uploaded to Amazon S3. The loop continues.

3. Any time the queue is empty or the spot instance remains idle for ~5 minutes, the spot instance then auto-terminates using EC2's command line interface.

4. Finally, just write a simple Python script to pull all the results off S3, combine & analyze them, and export to another useful format.

You'll also need to set up your spot instance price threshold, and make sure the queue has jobs to run. That's it, it's fairly simple.

Comment: That OO-My-God Moment of Emergence (Score 1) 242

by Salis (#44610901) Attached to: Interviews: Q&A With Guido van Rossum

Emergent OOism -- that everything is an object, including the variable types -- can provide continual surprises of what is possible, even to veteran programmers in other languages. As you were developing and using Python, Guido, what was your favorite surprise? What was now easily possible using Python that would have been very difficult with another language (at the time, or even nowadays)?

Mine: a dictionary of lambda functions for parsing text, and writing a custom MapReduce capability for AWS in 372 lines.

+ - Google Formally Puts Palestine on Virtual Map->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Google has indirectly walked right into one of Middle East's most obstinate conflict by putting Palestine as an independent nation wiping off the term Palestinian Territories and replacing it with Palestine in its localized search page. Google’s move is more or less in line with the UN’s decision October to name Palestine as a non-member observer state. The status given to Palestine will allow the state to join UN debates as well as global bodies such as the International Criminal Court, in theory atleast. Up until May 1, anyone visiting http://www.google.ps were shown the phrase Palestinian Territories, which has now been replaced with the word Palestine. This change is definitely not a huge one but, it has attracted criticism from politicians in Israel. They have slammed Google for invading and getting involved in a complex issue that has not been resolved yet."
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Security

Did the Spamhaus DDoS Really Slow Down Global Internet Access? 70

Posted by samzenpus
from the what's-to-blame dept.
CowboyRobot writes "Despite the headlines, the big denial of service attack may not have slowed the Internet after all. The argument against the original claim include the fact that reports of Internet users seeing slowdowns came not from service providers, but the DDoS mitigation service CloudFlare, which signed up Spamhaus as a customer last week. Also, multiple service providers and Internet watchers have now publicly stated that while the DDoS attacks against Spamhaus could theoretically have led to slowdowns, they've seen no evidence that this occurred for general Internet users. And while some users may have noticed a slowdown, the undersea cable cuts discovered by Egyptian sailors had more of an impact than the DDoS."
Digital

+ - The iPhone As Camera... Where To Now?->

Submitted by
BWJones
BWJones writes "Many non-photographers and even photographers, particularly the working professional photographers are accustomed to looking down their nose at cell phones as cameras, but if you look at the market, all of the innovation in photography has been happening with smart phones in the last couple of years. Sure, camera sensors have gotten better and less noisy, but convergent technologies are primarily happening in the smart phone market, not the camera market. On top of that, statistics show that the most common cameras are now cell phone cameras, the iPhone in particular. Flickr reports that as of this posting, the Apple iPhone 4s is the most popular camera in the Flickr Community. If you add in the iPhone 4 and then the large upswing in the newly available iPhone 5 and the now waning iPhone 3GS, you have in the iPhone platform a huge lead in the number of cameras people are using to post to Flickr."
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Comment: Re:Not vision (Score 1) 52

by BWJones (#41189093) Attached to: Bionic Eye Lets Blind Woman Experience Vision

[sigh].... do not feed the troll.... do not feed the troll...

OK, I'll feed the troll. Yes, I am acutely aware of Paul Bach-y-Rita's work. You however apparently do not understand the concepts that you are invoking. There is plasticity in neural systems, yes. Plasticity is important in vision, sure. Nobody, *anywhere* has demonstrated that they can generate coherent "visual percepts" in a coordinated fashion with any kind of stimulus. Its far more complicated than hooking up electrodes and stimulating until someone "learns" what the stimulus means.

btw, the tongue thing is very, very cool. Its not vision and does not even map to vision, but those lingual electrodes can easily map topographic data, sonar data, relief data, contrast data onto the high resolution innervation of the tongue and allow people to interpret those stimulii as a map to be followed. The technology was originally developed for US Navy SEALS to navigate complex 3D environments at night, with no light and it works. It works incredibly well with very little training necessary. I would like to see more effort and funds put into techniques like that to help people live more independent lives.

Comment: Re:Not vision (Score 1) 52

by BWJones (#41189007) Attached to: Bionic Eye Lets Blind Woman Experience Vision

I am familiar with Nirenberg's work. What Nirenberg seems to be missing is that the programming outflow of the retina is altered in retinal disease. ON and OFF channels are substantially altered in retinal disease and the whole programming substrate is altered because the circuitry and programming down to the molecular levels is altered.

Its not all pessimism though as we will need to understand how the normal retina signals and I find her work to be interesting and compelling. Though she is not addressing *which channels* of information outflow are being encoded. There are 14-16 separate outflow channels in the retina that project to different areas of cortex and sub cortex and she is not addressing how to separate those channels and what those separate channels mean in terms of the "visual world".

"Look! There! Evil!.. pure and simple, total evil from the Eighth Dimension!" -- Buckaroo Banzai

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