coondoggie writes "In its annual look at what challenges NASA faces in the coming year, the agency's Office of the Inspector General (OIG) this year outlined nine key areas it says will cause the most angina. Leading the way in pain is money. NASA's current money story starts off bad and just gets worse."Link to Original Source
astroengine writes "Astronomers scoping-out the vicinity of the famous star Fomalhaut have discovered that its mysterious stellar sister is also sporting a rather attractive ring of comets. Located 25 light-years away in the constellation Piscis Austrinus, Fomalhaut A is one of the brightest stars in Southern Hemisphere skies. The bright blue giant is notable in that it hosts a gigantic ring of cometary debris and dust. Fomalhaut C is a red dwarf star and was only confirmed to be gravitationally bound Fomalhaut A and Fomalhaut B in October. Fomalhaut is therefore a triple, or trinary, star system. The small red dwarf star may be the proverbial runt of the Fomalhaut stellar litter, but it appears to share some common ground with its larger sibling. “It’s very rare to find two comet belts in one system, and with the two stars 2.5 light years apart this is one of the most widely separated star systems we know of,” said astronomer Grant Kennedy, of the University of Cambridge and lead researcher of this work. “It made us wonder why both Fomalhaut A and C have comet belts, and whether the belts are related in some way.” One of the reasons why Fomalhaut A's cometary disk is so bright is down to the presence of its exoplanet, stirring up comet collisions. Fomalhaut C may be experiencing the same mechanism."Link to Original Source
kthreadd writes "In their research paper titled RSA Key Extraction via Low-Bandwidth Acoustic Cryptanalysis Daniel Genkin, Adi Shamir and Eran Tromer et. all. present a method for extracting decryption keys from the GnuPG security suite using an interesting side-channel attack. By analysing the acoustic sound made by the CPU they were able to extract a 4096 bit RSA key in about an hour. A modern mobile phone placed next to the computer is sufficient to carry out the attack, but up to four meters have been successfully tested using specially designed microphones."Link to Original Source
Rambo Tribble writes "The BBC reports on research that points to the possibility of using inkjet technology to print retinal ganglion and glial cells. While the research is preliminary, it is thought to hold great promise for treating certain kinds of eye problems."
cartechboy writes "The state of California will give Tesla Motors a $34.7 million tax break to expand the company’s production capacity for electric cars, state officials announced yesterday. Basically, Tesla won’t have to pay sales taxes on new manufacturing equipment worth up to $415 million. The added equipment will help Tesla more than double the number of Model S sedans it builds, as well as assemble more electric powertrains for other car makers. In addition to continued Model S production, Tesla plans to introduce the Model X electric crossover in late 2014, as well as a sub-$40,000 car--tentatively called Model E--that could debut as soon as the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. It turns out California is one of the few states to tax the purchase of manufacturing equipment--but the state grants exemptions for 'clean-tech' companies. California estimates this expansion by Tesla will add 112 permanent jobs."
hessian writes ""Computers were first designed to be precise calculators that solved problems where they were expected to produce an exact numerical value. However, the demand for computing today is driven by very different applications. Mobile and embedded devices need to process richer media, and are getting smarter – understanding us, being more context-aware and having more natural user interfaces. On the other hand, there is an explosion in digital data searched, interpreted, and mined by data centers."
(Hessian's note: what is interesting here is that this is how our brains work. There's an intelligent design and/or radical Darwinism argument in there somewhere.)"Link to Original Source
schwit1 writes "Pennsylvania police this week were pulling people to the side of the road, quizzing them on their driving habits, and asking if they’d like to provide a cheek swap or a blood sample — the latest in a federally contracted operation that’s touted as making roads safer.
The same operation took place last month at a community in Texas. Then, drivers were randomly told to pull off the road into a parking lot, where white-coated researchers asked if they’d like to provide DNA samples for a project that determines what percentage of drivers are operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol at given times.
With uniformed police in the background, the researchers also offered the motorists money — up to $50 or so — for the blood or saliva samples."Link to Original Source
CowboyRobot writes "The Software Inferno is a tale that parallels The Inferno, Part One of The Divine Comedy written by Dante Alighieri in the early 1300s. That literary masterpiece describes the condemnation and punishment faced by a variety of sinners in their hell-spent afterlives as recompense for atrocities committed during their earthly existences. The Software Inferno is a similar account, describing a journey where "sinners against software" are encountered amidst their torment, within their assigned areas of eternal condemnation, and paying their penance.
"CANTO 2 — LUST: As the countess and I approached the Inferno's second circle, pine we did for the relative comfort of the circle we had just departed, as the inundating and blinding light emanating from the circle ahead bothered our eyes. It originally appeared as if the glow ahead was born of a single source, but our ever-growing nearness showed that it was actually an assemblage of many individual light beams, each specifically focused on a single one of the circle's many inhabitants.""Link to Original Source