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+ - Big IT vendors mostly mum on commercial drone plans->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Word that the Federal Aviation Administration might take a very hard line on commercial drone use has those with designs on such activity nervous. But as for big enterprise IT vendors, it's really hard to tell what they think because they're keeping any plans in this field very hush-hush. More consumer oriented companies like Amazon, Facebook and Google are active, but companies like IBM and HP are quiet, while Microsoft affirms it has nothing doing. A former FAA lawyer says sitting on the sidelines even during this unsure regulatory period is probably not a great idea. "I have a hard time believing they don't have some sort of programs in place," attorney Mark Dombroff says."
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+ - Debian devs vote down anti-systemd measure, sponsor steps down->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Debian developers voted down a proposal that would have weakened the Linux distribution’s integration with a controversial system software package on Tuesday, in a victory for systemd supporters. The proposal, promulgated by former Debian project leader Ian Jackson, called for all Debian software to be effectively init-system-agnostic – the aim being to limit just how tightly bound to and dependent upon systemd Debian could become."
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+ - The 10 mightiest supercomputers on the planet->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "It was a familiar top 10 released today by the authors of the twice-annual Top500 ranking of world supercomputers, http://www.top500.org/blog/blo... most entries largely unchanged from this summer’s list. China retains top spot for fourth consecutive Top500 list as the annual SuperComputing conference kicks off in New Orleans."
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+ - Google quadruples Nobel Prize in Computing to $1M->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "The Association for Computing Machinery has announced that its annual A.M. Turing Award, sometimes called the Nobel Prize in Computing, will now come with a $1M award courtesy of Google. Previously, the award came with a $250K prize funded by Google and Intel. The award, which goes to "an individual selected for contributions of a technical nature made to the computing community," is generally doled out in February or March. This past March, the winner was Microsoft Research principal Leslie Lambert. The ACM says the bigger prize should raise the award's visibility."
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+ - U.S. government issues alert about Apple iOS "Masque Attack" threat->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Three days after security company FireEye warned of an iPhone/iPad threat dubbed "Masque Attack", the U.S. government has issued a warning of its own about this new risk by malicious third-party apps to Apple iOS devices. US-CERT warned: https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/a... "This attack works by luring users to install an app from a source other than the iOS App Store or their organizations’ provisioning system. In order for the attack to succeed, a user must install an untrusted app, such as one delivered through a phishing link." Revelations of Masque came on the heels of a related exploit (that also threatens Macs) called WireLurker."
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+ - Cisco rival Juniper ousts CEO Kheradpir->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Juniper Networks has replaced recently appointed CEO Shaygan Kheradpir with Executive Vice President Rami Rahim effective immediately. Kheradpir was removed by the Juniper board following a review of “his leadership and his conduct in connection with a particular negotiation with a customer,” the company said in a statement. An internal memo from the company Chairman, obtained by Network World, states that the company had doubters when it came to industry leadership."
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+ - Mapping the ultimate Halloween candy haul route: Sweetest use of Big Data ever?->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "A North Carolina computer scientist and his son joined forces to collect data during this year's trick-or-treating that will be used to create a map for an optimized route for next year. It's gets a bit creepy, in the spirit of Halloween, in that they were able to figure out which houses to avoid, which to target based on everything from political affiliations to home value to the number of daughters in the house."
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+ - Apple was warned about WireLurker months ago, Georgia Tech researcher says->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "The WireLurker malware that may have infected hundreds of thousands of Mac OS and iOS devices is exactly similar to a proof-of-concept attack Apple was warned about at the beginning of this year, according to the researcher who first publicly described such attacks. The malware can siphon off data from iOS devices when they sync up with computers or are charged by computers via USB cables, but the potential for this type of attack can be much broader, says Tielei Wang, a researcher at Georgia Institute of Technology who presented a paper https://www.usenix.org/system/... about such attacks at USENIX Security Symposium in August."
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+ - After criticizing it, Cisco joins Open Compute->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Cisco has joined the Open Compute Project, a Facebook-driven effort to develop open source servers and switches, 16 months after criticizing it. At that time, Cisco CEO John Chambers said OCP has “weaknesses” that Cisco can exploit. Chambers said efforts like Facebook’s to commoditize and wring cost out of hardware purchases will open up opportunities for Cisco to provide solutions that are better tailored to specific customer needs."
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+ - Popular messaging apps fail EFF's security review->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Some of the most widely used messaging apps in the world, including Google Hangouts, Facebook chat, Yahoo Messenger and Snapchat, flunked a best-practices security test by advocacy group the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). The organization evaluated 39 messaging products based on seven criteria it believes such tools should meet in order to ensure the privacy and security of digital communications. The reviewed products included mobile texting apps, instant messaging clients, voice and video calling software and email services. The results were published Tuesday under the form of a Secure Messaging Scorecard.https://www.eff.org/secure-messaging-scorecard"
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+ - Why this reporter will live with an NFC chip implant for a year->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "A reporter got chipped together with nine other volunteers during an IT Innovation Day organized by IDG Netherlands. The volunteers will spend the next 12 months testing the use of an NFC chip in their daily lives to see whether having the chip implanted in their bodies is more useful than using a chip embedded on a card or in a smartphone."
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+ - Researchers launch CheckCell debugger for Excel spreadsheets->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "University of Massachusetts Amherst researchers have released a tool designed to spot all-too-common errors in Microsoft Excel spreadsheets that could lead to big problems. CheckCell, available as a free Excel software plug-in on GitHub, https://github.com/plasma-umas... is the brainchild of a computer science team whose approach uses "a threshold of unusualness" in which questionable data points are marked for spreadsheet designers to double check."
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+ - Secretive funding fuels ongoing net neutrality astroturfing controversy->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "he contentious debate about net neutrality in the U.S. has sparked controversy over a lack of funding transparency for advocacy groups and think tanks, which critics say subverts the political process. News stories from a handful of publications in recent months have accused some think tanks and advocacy groups of "astroturfing" — quietly shilling for large broadband carriers. In a handful of cases, those criticisms appear to have some merit, although the term is so overused by people looking to discredit political opponents that it has nearly lost its original meaning. An IDG News Service investigation found that major groups opposing U.S. Federal Communications Commission reclassification and regulation of broadband as a public utility tend to be less transparent about their funding than the other side. Still, some big-name advocates of strong net neutrality rules also have limited transparency mechanisms in place."
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+ - RiteAid blocks Apple Pay, Google Wallet->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg (971356) writes "Days after the launch of Apple Pay, Rite Aid has stopped accepting the payment system at 4,600 stores across the United States. The company, which is one of the biggest drug store chains in the country, said it is currently not accepting Apple Pay or the competing Google Wallet. Posts from customers on Twitter indicated that Apple Pay worked successfully when the system launched on Monday, but it was subsequently disabled by the retailer later in the week."
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