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Submission + - Snowden Joins Twitter, Follows NSA (securityweek.com)

wiredmikey writes: Edward Snowden joined Twitter Tuesday, picking up more than a quarter of a million followers on the social network in just over two hours.

Snowden followed a single Twitter account: the US National Security Agency, from which he stole electronic documents revealing the agency's secret surveillance programs.

"Can you hear me now?" he asked in his first tweet, which was quickly resent by Twitter users tens of thousands of times.

In his second, Snowden noted the recent news about the planet Mars and then quipped about the difficulty he had finding asylum after the US government fingered him as the source of the NSA leaks.

"And now we have water on Mars!" he wrote. "Do you think they check passports at the border? Asking for a friend."

Medicine

Submission + - Disrupted sleep may predict Alzheimer's (nature.com)

ananyo writes: "A disturbed night's sleep might signal a future diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, according to findings presented this week at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Patients with Alzheimer’s often complain of changes in their sleep patterns during the early stages of the disease. In healthy people, for example, daytime naps usually last around 20 minutes, but they can be to 3 hours long in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.
Researchers analyzed data from around 14,600 healthy people, collected as part of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), a long-term observational study of people aged 50 and over from 12 European countries. They looked at various measures of sleep quality, and used them to produce a ‘sleep disturbance index’.
The researchers found that participants who reported sleeping restlessly, feeling tired during the day and taking sleep medication were more likely to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s within the next 2 years, and that the greater the extent of these problems, the more severe were the symptoms of the subsequent disease."

Spam

Submission + - That time someone registered a spambot with my e-mail address. 2

davewoods writes: "So this morning (About 2AM CST) I got an e-mail on my phone, grumpily I glanced at it and read the word "Penny" and something about my recent purchase. Of course, I figured it to be spam, so I did not bother reading it, and went back to sleep. When I finally did get a chance to read that e-mail, I learned that I had just registered a domain name with GoDaddy under the alias "Penny Woods". Fantastic, similar things have happened where someone used my e-mail address instead of theirs, I figured it was just a typo and I could get to the bottom of it quickly.

After "Forgetting" my username, and then "Forgetting" my password, I was logged in to the account and ready to find some contact info. Penny had set up four e-mail accounts, so I clicked through to do a web login on the first one. Lo and behold, it had sent out 31 thousand e-mails in the last seven hours, all claiming that the receiver had recently won 1.5 million dollars.

Sooooo, now I apparently own a spambot domain, and I have no idea what to do with it. The e-mail accounts have not sent out any e-mails recently, so I have not bothered to change the passwords on them or anything (Stealthy, right?). Does anyone have any suggestions as to what I should do with all of this?"
Science

Submission + - Reading Books Thins the Brain (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: We all know that reading books can make you child smarter, but new research reveals it also makes her brain thinner. Scientists have found that the level of mental stimulation a child receives in the home at age 4 predicts the thickness of two regions of the cortex in late adolescence, such that more stimulation is associated with a thinner cortex. This thinning is actually good for the brain, as it trims unneeded synaptic connections (a process known as synaptic pruning), making information processing more efficient.
Apple

Submission + - Apple To Run 'Samsung Did Not Copy iPad' Ad In UK: Loses Case Against Samsung (muktware.com) 1

sfcrazy writes: Apple has lost is appeal in a UK court against Samsung's Galaxy Tab. The court of appeals has upheld its previous judgment that Samsung did not infringe on any Apple design. According to the order Apple will have to run an ads in leading UK newspapers as well its own website stating that Samsung did not infringes its products. To ensure that the ad is visible the court also ordered that the text of the ad must not be in a font size smaller than Ariel 14. Apple will have to run the ad on its site for a period of one month.
Beer

Submission + - Beer Meets RFID (barnoldtoast.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Arnie is a modded Dixie Narco Bev Max 3 vending machine. I ripped out all of the bill validation parts and added an RFID reader and a touch screen. Also learned to interface with MDB, a vending machine protocol.

The interface is written in C++/OpenFrameworks.

His backend uses MySQL and PHP, along with a hacked version of Wordpress to handle all of our users, which now number over 400.

Oh, and he serves free beer.

Image

Supersizing the "Last Supper" Screenshot-sm 98

gandhi_2 writes "A pair of sibling scholars compared 52 artists' renditions of 'The Last Supper', and found that the size of the meal painted had grown through the years. Over the last millennium they found that entrees had increased by 70%, bread by 23%, and plate size by 65.6%. Their findings were published in the International Journal of Obesity. From the article: 'The apostles depicted during the Middle Ages appear to be the ascetics they are said to have been. But by 1498, when Leonardo da Vinci completed his masterpiece, the party was more lavishly fed. Almost a century later, the Mannerist painter Jacobo Tintoretto piled the food on the apostles' plates still higher.'"
Security

Submission + - Malware Found on Another HTC Magic Smartphone (itworld.com)

itwbennett writes: Traces of the now defunct Mariposa botnet have been found on the SD card of another HTC Magic phone from Vodafone in Spain, security company Panda wrote in a blog post on Wednesday. At the time of the original report, on March 8, a Vodafone spokesman said "it appears to be an isolated incident", and Panda's senior research adviser Pedro Bustamante thought it was an issue with a specific refurbished phone. This second occurrence is too much of a coincidence, said Bustamante. Panda also found a copy of the Win32/AutoRun worm on the phone's memory card, he said.
Google

Submission + - SPAM: Google's Nexus One comes to Sprint

IP-192.com writes: Nexus One, Google’s smart phone, will be available on the Sprint network. For Google, this is a new chance to tap into another potential customer base since sales to T-Mobile customers have so far been rather disappointing. Sprint Nextel also needs access to new technology. Sales of the Palm smart phone have failed to live up to sales expectations.

“Nexus One is a powerful device that belongs on a powerful network. This is another step in our continued partnership of innovation with Google,” said Fared Adib, Sprint vice president of product development. “While a pricing plan has not yet been determined for Nexus One, we are confident that it will be consistent with Sprint’s commitment to deliver more value than our competitors and keep pricing simple.”

Link to Original Source
United States

Submission + - High Tech Research Moving from US to China

Hugh Pickens writes: "The NY Times reports that American companies like Applied Materials are moving their research facilities and engineers to China as the country develops a high-tech economy that increasingly competes directly with the United States. Applied Materials set up its latest solar research labs in China after estimating that China would be producing two-thirds of the world’s solar panels by the end of this year and their chief technology officer, Mark R. Pinto, is the first CTO of a major American tech company to move to China. “We’re obviously not giving up on the US,” says Pinto. “China needs more electricity. It’s as simple as that.” Western companies are also attracted to China’s huge reservoirs of cheap, highly skilled engineers and the subsidies offered by many Chinese cities and regions, particularly for green energy companies. Applied Materials decided to build their new $250 million research facility in Xi’an after the city government sold them a 75-year land lease at a deep discount and is reimbursing the company for roughly a quarter of the lab complex’s operating costs for five years. Pinto says that researchers from the United States and Europe have to be ready to move to China if they want to do cutting-edge work on solar manufacturing because the new Applied Materials complex here is the only research center that can fit an entire solar panel assembly line. “This opening represents a critical breakthrough for the photovoltaic industry and China and a tremendous benefit to our customers,” says Applied Materials CEO Mike Splinter. “Establishing this center in China is an integral part of Applied’s global strategy and an important step toward the industrialization of the global solar industry.”"
Idle

Directed Energy Weapon Downs Mosquitos 428

wisebabo writes "Nathan Myhrvol demonstrated at TED a laser, built from parts scrounged from eBay, capable of shooting down not one but 50 to 100 mosquitos a second. The system is 'so precise that it can specify the species, and even the gender, of the mosquito being targeted.' Currently, for the sake of efficiency, it leaves the males alone because only females are bloodsuckers. Best of all the system could cost as little as $50. Maybe that's too expensive for use in preventing malaria in Africa but I'd buy one in a second!" We ran a story about this last year. It looks like the company has added a bit more polish, and burning mosquito footage to their marketing.
Image

Bark Beetles Hate Rush Limbaugh and Heavy Metal Screenshot-sm 220

Aryabhata writes "According to scientists, climate change and human activity have allowed bark beetle populations to soar. They decided to fight the beetles by using the 'nastiest, most offensive sounds' that they could think of. These sounds included recordings of Guns & Roses, Queen, Rush Limbaugh and manipulated versions of the insects' own sounds. The research project titled 'Beetle Mania' has concluded that acoustic stress can disrupt their feeding and even cause the beetles to kill each other."

Submission + - Honda's answer to the Segway 1

lcreech writes: "The vehicle looks like a very modern unicycle and to ride it you simply lean your weight in the direction you want to go, whether that's forward, backwards or even sideways. It maintains its own balance travelling up to 3.7MPH. Not very fast..

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1215741/Honda-unveils-Segway-style-unicycle-travels-direction-want.html#ixzz0S2lY0hSd

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1215741/Honda-unveils-Segway-style-unicycle-travels-direction-want.html"
Math

Miscalculation Invalidates LHC Safety Assurances 684

KentuckyFC writes "In a truly frightening study, physicists at the University of Oxford have identified a massive miscalculation that makes the LHC safety assurances more or less invalid (abstract). The focus of their work is not the safety of particle accelerators per se but the chances of any particular scientific argument being wrong. 'If the probability estimate given by an argument is dwarfed by the chance that the argument itself is flawed, then the estimate is suspect,' say the team. That has serious implications for the LHC, which some people worry could generate black holes that will swallow the planet. Nobody at CERN has put a figure on the chances of the LHC destroying the planet. One study simply said: 'there is no risk of any significance whatsoever from such black holes.' The danger is that this thinking could be entirely flawed, but what are the chances of this? The Oxford team say that roughly one in a thousand scientific papers have to be withdrawn because of errors but generously suppose that in particle physics, the rate is one in 10,000."

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