Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

+ - California Gov Brown Vetoes Bill Requiring Warrants for Drone Surveillance->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Brown, a Democrat facing re-election in November, sided with law enforcement and said the legislation simply granted Californians privacy rights that went too far beyond existing guarantees. Sunday's veto comes as the small drones are becoming increasingly popular with business, hobbyists, and law enforcement.

"This bill prohibits law enforcement from using a drone without obtaining a search warrant, except in limited circumstances," the governor said in his veto message(PDF). "There are undoubtedly circumstances where a warrant is appropriate. The bill's exceptions, however, appear to be too narrow and could impose requirements beyond what is required by either the 4th Amendment or the privacy provisions in the California Constitution."

At least 10 other states require the police to get a court warrant to surveil with a drone. Those states include Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Montana, Oregon, Tennessee, Utah, and Wisconsin.

California's drone bill is not draconian. It includes exceptions for emergency situations, search-and-rescue efforts, traffic first responders, and inspection of wildfires. It allows other public agencies to use drones for other purposes—just not law enforcement."

Link to Original Source

+ - People willing to give up first born child for free Wifi->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes "A new report shows that people in London are willing to give up their first-born child or most beloved pet just to get access to a free Wi-Fi network, highlighting the huge security risks associated with their open networks

The experiment was conducted on the streets of London and claims that "consumers carelessly use public Wi-Fi without regard for their personal privacy." Researchers set up a number of public hotspots in locations around London, including Canary Wharf and Westminster, to see who would log onto the network and what information they were freely making available to those in control. In a 30 minute period, 250 devices connected to the hotspot, most of them probably automatically without their owner realizing it

For a short period during the experiment, a Terms & Conditions document was introduced which had to be agreed to in order to get access to the network. This included a so-called Herod Clause obligating the user " to give up their firstborn child or most beloved pet " in exchange for free access to the Wi-Fi network. In total, the researchers saw six people agreeing to the terms and conditions before the page was disabled

Of those who connected, 33 people actively sent internet traffic by carrying out web searches and sending data and email. The researchers captured 32MB of traffic and as part of their findings, the researchers found that the text of emails sent over a POP3 network could be read, as could the addresses of the sender and recipient, and even the password of the sender"

Link to Original Source

+ - Aus government spending on R&D has reached 30-year low->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes "The Australian government's investment in research and development has dropped to its lowest level in 30 years, an analysis of government figures shows. Science and innovation spending has fallen to 2.2 per cent of total budget expenditure this year, the lowest share since 1984-5

R&D investment has grown at less than half the rate of total budget expenditure over the past two decades. At an average annual rate of 2 per cent, real growth in science spending lags far behind transport (23.5 per cent), public safety (8.8 per cent) housing (6.6 per cent) and health (5.5 per cent). Total budget expenditure has increased 4.4 per cent in real terms since the mid-1990s. Budget figures also show science and innovation spending has fallen to its lowest share of GDP in 25 years. This year's expenditure of 0.56 per cent of GDP is the lowest since 1989-90

Australia ranked 18th out of 20 advanced economies — ahead of only Greece and the Slovak Republic — for government R&D spending as a share of GDP in 2013. In 2012, Australia ranked 24th out of 28 countries, according to OECD data"

Link to Original Source
Communications

LTE Upgrade Will Let Phones Connect To Nearby Devices Without Towers 79

Posted by Soulskill
from the just-yell-really-loud dept.
An anonymous reader sends this excerpt from MIT's Technology Review: A new feature being added to the LTE protocol that smartphones use to communicate with cellular towers will make it possible to bypass those towers altogether. Phones will be able to "talk" directly to other mobile devices and to beacons located in shops and other businesses. Known as LTE Direct, the wireless technology has a range of up to 500 meters, far more than either Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. It is included in update to the LTE standard slated for approval this year, and devices capable of LTE Direct could appear as soon as late 2015. ... Researchers are, for example, testing LTE Direct as a way to allow smartphones to automatically discover nearby people, businesses, and other information.

+ - LTE Upgrade Will Let Phones Connect To Nearby Devices Without Towers->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "A new feature being added to the LTE protocol that smartphones use to communicate with cellular towers will make it possible to bypass those towers altogether. Phones will be able to “talk” directly to other mobile devices and to beacons located in shops and other businesses. Known as LTE Direct, the wireless technology has a range of up to 500 meters, far more than either Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. It is included in update to the LTE standard slated for approval this year, and devices capable of LTE Direct could appear as soon as late 2015. ... Researchers are, for example, testing LTE Direct as a way to allow smartphones to automatically discover nearby people, businesses, and other information."
Link to Original Source

+ - Bringing Back Quality Science Kits->

Submitted by Harris-Educational
Harris-Educational (578170) writes "Big Box Stores and others have "science kits" but in many cases they are cheap, throw-away, with poor (if any) instructions. Most are not made in the USA. Parents will spend $50+ on a video game but what about spending $50+ on a quality and inspiring educational experience (and sharing that experience with their children). Some kids today are lucky and are able to play with micro-controllers, PC's on a chip, and 3D printers but how many of them know the basics and can troubleshoot a circuit when something goes wrong? Do they really understand their technological building blocks?

Harris Educational (a small "Maker Business") is working to change all that for the better by launching 'Reinventing Science' kits that hearken back to the great science kits of the 50's and 60's like those made by A.C. Gilbert, REMCO, and others. One example is "Reinventing Edison: Build your own Light Bulb" in which experimenters work with a vacuum chamber and build a working incandescent light bulb like Edison and Swan did. These kits won "Best in Class" and an "Editor's Choice" awards at World Maker Faire in New York last week and will be on display again on October 4th and 5th at Maker Faire Atlanta. In addition to Harris Educational's Kickstarter (also working to raise money to launch an educational maker space in Burlington NC) Harris Educational is also a finalist in the Martha Stewart American Made awards Is our society ready to invest again in quality hands-on STEM education like it did during the Space Race?"

Link to Original Source
Cloud

CloudFlare Announces Free SSL Support For All Customers 44

Posted by Soulskill
from the big-step-in-the-right-direction dept.
Z80xxc! writes: CloudFlare, a cloud service that sits between websites and the internet to provide a CDN, DDOS and other attack prevention, speed optimization, and other services announced today that SSL will now be supported for all customers, including free customers. This will add SSL support to approximately 2 million previously unprotected websites. Previously SSL was only available to customers paying at least $20/month for a "Pro" plan or higher.

Browsers connect to CloudFlare's servers and receive a certificate provided by CloudFlare. CloudFlare then connects to the website's server to retrieve the content, serving as a sort of reverse proxy. Different security levels allow CloudFlare to connect to the website host using no encryption, a self-signed certificate, or a verified certificate, depending on the administrator's preferences. CloudFlare's servers will use SNI for free accounts, which is unsupported for IE on Windows XP and older, and Android Browser on Android 2.2 and older.

Comment: Not all are in the same boat (Score 1) 134

by Taco Cowboy (#48024501) Attached to: New Research Casts Doubt On the "10,000 Hour Rule" of Expertise

I find discussion in this thread a little bit wanting as not everyone is the same

Some had an "early start" while others may be "late starter" because not everyone had their insights straight from the start

Those who had early insights can hone their mastery very early because they already had a "road path" drawn up for them (as long as they do not give up, that is), and all they need to do is to gain enough knowledge to put their insights into words, or in scientific terminology

Others may be late starters because their "insights" took quite some time to "gel"

I happened to know people from both camps. Neither camp can claim to be more smart than the other

+ - CloudFlare announces free SSL support for all customers->

Submitted by Z80xxc!
Z80xxc! (1111479) writes "CloudFlare, a cloud service that sits between websites and the internet to provide a CDN, DDOS and other attack prevention, speed optimization, and other services announced today that SSL will now be supported for all customers, including free customers. This will add SSL support to approximately 2 million previously unprotected websites. Previously SSL was only available to customers paying at least $20/month for a "Pro" plan or higher.

Browsers connect to CloudFlare's servers and receive a certificate provided by CloudFlare. CloudFlare then connects to the website's server to retrieve the content, serving as a sort of reverse proxy. Different security levels allow CloudFlare to connect to the website host using no encryption, a self-signed certificate, or a verified certificate, depending on the administrator's preferences. CloudFlare's servers will use SNI for free accounts, which is unsported for IE on Windows XP and older, and Android Browser on Android 2.2 and older."

Link to Original Source
Power

Energy Utilities Trying To Stifle Growth of Solar Power 263

Posted by Soulskill
from the fortunate-sun dept.
An anonymous reader writes: Incremental improvements have been slowly but surely pushing solar power toward mainstream viability for a few decades now. It's getting to the point where the established utilities are worried about the financial hit they're likely to take — and they're working to prevent it. "These solar households are now buying less and less electricity, but the utilities still have to manage the costs of connecting them to the grid. Indeed, a new study from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory argues that this trend could put utilities in dire financial straits. If rooftop solar were to grab 10 percent of the market over the next decade, utility earnings could decline as much as 41 percent." The utilities are throwing their weight behind political groups seeking to end subsidies for solar and make "net metering" policies go away. Studies suggest that if solar adoption continues growing at its current rate, incumbents will be forced to raise their prices, which will only persuade more people to switch to solar (PDF).

+ - Energy Utilities Trying To Stifle Growth of Solar Power-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Incremental improvements have slowly but surely pushing solar power toward mainstream viability for a few decades now. It's getting to the point where the established utilities are worried about the financial hit they're likely to take — and they're working to prevent it. "These solar households are now buying less and less electricity, but the utilities still have to manage the costs of connecting them to the grid. Indeed, a new study from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory argues that this trend could put utilities in dire financial straits. If rooftop solar were to grab 10 percent of the market over the next decade, utility earnings could decline as much as 41 percent." The utilities are throwing their weight behind political groups seeking to end subsidies for solar and make "net metering" policies go away. Studies suggest that if solar adoption continues growing at its current rate, incumbents will be forced to raise their rates, which will only persuade more people to switch to solar (PDF)."
Link to Original Source
Encryption

Tor Executive Director Hints At Firefox Integration 81

Posted by Soulskill
from the foxes-love-onions dept.
blottsie writes: Several major tech firms are in talks with Tor to include the software in products that can potentially reach over 500 million Internet users around the world. One particular firm wants to include Tor as a "private browsing mode" in a mainstream Web browser, allowing users to easily toggle connectivity to the Tor anonymity network on and off. "They very much like Tor Browser and would like to ship it to their customer base," Tor executive director Andrew Lewman wrote, explaining the discussions but declining to name the specific company. "Their product is 10-20 percent of the global market, this is of roughly 2.8 billion global Internet users." The product that best fits Lewman's description, by our estimation, is Mozilla Firefox, the third-most popular Web browser online today and home to, you guessed it, 10 to 20 percent of global Internet users.
Crime

CEO of Spyware Maker Arrested For Enabling Stalkers 136

Posted by Soulskill
from the reaping-what-you-sow dept.
An anonymous reader writes: U.S. authorities have arrested and indicted the CEO of a mobile software company for selling spyware that enables "stalkers and domestic abusers." The U.S. Department of Justice accuses the man of promoting and selling software that can "monitor calls, texts, videos and other communications on mobile phones without detection." The agency pointed out this is the first criminal case based on mobile spyware, and promised to aggressively pursue makers of similar software in the future. Here's the legal filing (PDF). The FBI, with approval from a District Court, has disabled the website hosting the software.

"The indictment alleges that StealthGenie's capabilities included the following: it recorded all incoming/outgoing voice calls; it intercepted calls on the phone to be monitored while they take place; it allowed the purchaser to call the phone and activate it at any time to monitor all surrounding conversations within a 15-foot radius; and it allowed the purchaser to monitor the user's incoming and outgoing e-mail messages and SMS messages, incoming voicemail messages, address book, calendar, photographs, and videos. All of these functions were enabled without the knowledge of the user of the phone."

16.5 feet in the Twilight Zone = 1 Rod Serling

Working...