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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 7 declined, 4 accepted (11 total, 36.36% accepted)

+ - Java 6 is EOL'd by Oracle

Submitted by Tmack
Tmack (593755) writes "Not completely unexpected, Java6 has reached EOL. This tidbit shows up in Oracle's Java6 FAQ page, recommending everyone update to Java7:

Java SE 6 End of Public Updates
Oracle no longer posts updates of Java SE 6 to its public download sites. All Java 6 releases up to and including 6u45 have been moved to the Java Archive on the Oracle Technology Network, where they will remain available but not receive further updates. Oracle recommends that users migrate to Java 7 in order to continue receiving public updates and security enhancements.

Apple just pushed its update 16 which is Java6u51, likely to be one of their last Java6 updates."

Bug

+ - Leapsecond is here! Are your systems ready or going to crash?-> 1

Submitted by Tmack
Tmack (593755) writes "The last time we had a leapsecond, sysadmins were taken a bit by surprise when a random smattering of systems locked up (including Slashdot itself) due to a kernel bug causing a race condition specific to the way leapseconds are handled/notified by ntp. The vulnerable kernel versions (prior to 2.6.29) are still common amongst older versions of popular distributions (Debian Lenny, RHEL/Centos 5) and embeded/black-box style appliances (Switches, load balancers, spam filters/email gateways, NAS devices, etc). Several vendors have released patches and bulletins about the possibility of a repeat of last time. Are you/your team/company ready? Are you upgraded or are you going to bypass this by simply turning off NTP for the weekend?"
Link to Original Source
The Military

+ - Airplane based Laser weapon test fired->

Submitted by Tmack
Tmack (593755) writes "Boeing has tested its "ATL" (Advanced Tactical Laser) weapon earlier this month, acquiring and firing on a ground target from the air. It is a modified C-130H, outfitted with an oxygen-iodine laser weighing in around 12000lbs operating in the hundred-kilowatt range. The article mentions its use as having "plausible deniability" since it can be fired from long distances, silently, and invisibly. A picture is included that shows an attack plan on a convoy, showing the scary accuracy of this weapon: being able to pick off the antennas of the vehicles, destroy their tires, and even disable the guns in the soldiers hands without causing extensive collateral damage. Included also is a graphic description of the expected results of firing it on an "insurgent.""
Link to Original Source
Hardware Hacking

+ - Wiimote as multi-touch display controller->

Submitted by Tmack
Tmack (593755) writes "While hard-hacks with the Wiimote is somewhat Old News, this particular implementation is quite interesting. Using the infrared camera on the 'mote, pens with LED's instead of ink, and an LCD projector, Johnny Chung Lee of Carnegie Mellon University has created some software to use them as a cheap (relatively speaking) multi-touch display. Any surface you can project onto becomes an interactive multi-touch display, as demonstrated in the video in the page linked above. He has the software available for download from his website, along with some other neat projects."
Link to Original Source
Space

+ - Deflector shields On!

Submitted by Tmack
Tmack (593755) writes "The BBC has posted an article about their research into deflector shield technology:

British scientists are planning to see whether a Star Trek-style deflector shield could be built to protect astronauts from radiation. They argue that magnetic shields could be deployed around spacecraft and on the surfaces of planets to deflect harmful energised particles.


Complete with an awesome graphic representation of their idea."

"More software projects have gone awry for lack of calendar time than for all other causes combined." -- Fred Brooks, Jr., _The Mythical Man Month_

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