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+ - Everest avalanche kills privacy-focused Google engineer Dan Fredinburg->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: Dan Fredinburg, an engineer who worked on many of Google's most exciting projects during his 8 years with the company, died over the weekend in an avalanche on Mount Everest triggered by Nepal's devastating earthquake. The 33-year-old worked on projects such as Google Loon, the company's balloon-based Internet access effort and self-driving car. He also was involved in Google Street View Everest, leading expeditions to gather imagery of the Khumbu region around Mt. Everest. Fredinburg's career began in a much less glamorous fashion as a "dock rat" and as a farm hand in Arkansas.
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+ - Random generator parodies vapid startup websites->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: A pair of Georgia Tech computer science students have created a Random Startup Website Generator http://tiffzhang.com/startup/ that spits out a different jargon-laden startup website every time you click on the URL. Mike Bradley and Tiffany Zhang's random startup website generator "serves as a parody of startups that have websites full of vague praise and little information about their actual business, often because they have little to show in that regard."
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+ - Why the journey to IPv6 is still the road less traveled->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: The writing’s on the wall about the short supply of IPv4 addresses, and IPv6 has been around since 1999. Then why does the new protocol still make up just a fraction of the Internet? Though IPv6 is finished technology that works, rolling it out may be either a simple process or a complicated and risky one, depending on what role you play on the Internet. And the rewards for doing so aren’t always obvious. For one thing, making your site or service available via IPv6 only helps the relatively small number of users who are already set up with the protocol, creating a nagging chicken-and-egg problem.
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+ - Meet the new leader of Debian open source project->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: Neil McGovern is the new leader of the Debian open source/free software project after defeating two rival contenders in a vote held among developers that closed on Wednesday. McGovern, who lives in England, is an engineering manager at open-source consultancy and development firm Collabora, and has been a Debian developer since 2005. He ran unsuccessfully for project leader last year.
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+ - MIT celebrates 10 years of SCIgen bogus CompSci paper generator with new tool->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: Three MIT grads this week are celebrating the 10th anniversary of their clever SCIgen http://pdos.csail.mit.edu/scig... program, which randomly generates computer science papers realistic enough to get accepted by sketchy technical conferences and publishers, with a brand new tool designed to poke even more fun at such outfits. Just a bit late for April Fool’s Day, the new SCIpher http://pdos.csail.mit.edu/scig... program from the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab alums enables users to hide messages inside randomly-generated calls for papers from phony conferences whose names are so ridiculous that they sound legit. An MIT spokesman says the new tool is really just a way for geeky friends to mess with each other, whereas SCIgen pointed out major flaws in the worlds of scientific journals and conferences.
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+ - Boston Marathon runners warned not to share bib numbers on social media->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: The Boston Athletic Association has warned participants in next Monday's Boston Marathon against posting their bib numbers on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, or risk having their results wiped out. The warning stems from incidents last year in which some runners made copies of legitimate bib numbers seen on social sites, then were found out when officially registered runners went to look up their photos online after the race — only to find other people wearing their numbers. Among the culprits, the wife of social site Foursquare's owner (when she was found out, Foursquare's Dennis Crowley issued a public apology on her behalf).
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+ - Schneier on 'really bad' IoT security: 'It's going to come crashing down'->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: Security expert Bruce Schneier has looked at and written about difficulties the Internet of Things presents — such as the fact that the “things” are by and large insecure and enable unwanted surveillance– and concludes that it’s a problem that’s going to get worse before it gets better. After a recent briefing with him at Resilient Systems headquarters in Cambridge, Mass., where he is CTO, he answered a few questions about the IoT and what corporate security executives ought to be doing about it right now.
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+ - IBM, Fujifilm show tape storage still has a long future->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: IBM and Fujifilm have figured out how to fit 220TB of data on a standard-size tape that fits in your hand, flexing the technology’s strengths as a long-term storage medium. The prototype Fujifilm tape and accompanying drive technology from IBM labs packs 88 times as much data onto a tape as industry-standard LTO-6 systems using the same size cartridge, IBM says. LTO6 tape can hold 2.5TB, uncompressed, on a cartridge about 4 by 4 inches across and 2 centimeters thick. The new technologies won’t come out in products for several years.
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+ - What's behind Microsoft's not-so-crazy spending spree->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: Microsoft so far this year has been the most acquisitive company in enterprise IT, snapping up at least four firms on top of four others that it bought in the last two months of 2014. And while the buyouts might at first glance appear scattershot – we’re talking text analysis, calendaring and digital pen startups among others — there does seem to be a grand plan here. Industry watchers and investors credit CEO Satya Nadella and his “new” Microsoft for heading aggressively down the acquisition path. One investor says: "One major theme that ties together many of these acquisitions is a newfound respect for the ecosystem that surrounds the company's software and hardware products. "
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+ - OpenStack company Nebula shutters->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: One of the first casualties of the OpenStack world is Nebula, a company founded by a pioneer of the open source cloud computing movement (former NASA CTO). Analysts say the move is not indicative of larger problems within the OpenStack community, but rather reflects the difficulties startups will have in competing with large name-brand vendors who are able to commit the resources needed over a long period of time to this still maturing market.
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+ - Stanford crypto expert Dan Boneh wins $175K computer science award->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: Stanford University computer science professor Dan Boneh has been named as the recipient of the 2014 ACM-Infosys Foundation Award in Computing Sciences http://awards.acm.org/infosys/... his work in cryptography. The award, which includes a $175,000 prize, The award citation formally acknowledges Boneh "For ground-breaking contributions to the development of pairing-based cryptography and its application in identity-based encryption."
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+ - Many password strength meters are downright weak, researchers say->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: Website password strength meters often tell you only what you want to hear rather than what you need to hear. That’s the finding from researchers at Concordia University in Montreal, who examined the usefulness of those ubiquitous red-yellow-green password strength testers on websites run by big names such as Google, Yahoo, Twitter and Microsoft/Skype. The researchers used algorithms to send millions of “not-so-good” passwords through these meters, as well as through the meters of password management services such as LastPass and 1Password, and were largely underwhelmed by what they termed wildly inconsistent results.
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+ - Meet the White House's new open source-happy IT director->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: The White House has plucked 28-year-old David Recordon, engineering director at Facebook, as its first IT Director. https://www.whitehouse.gov/blo... A strong open source advocate (OpenID, Open Web Foundation, etc.) with a decidedly non-button-down appearance, Recordon will be charged with modernizing the White House’s technology. Here’s a closer look at one of our newest public servants
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+ - Stallman joins Internet, talks net neutrality, patents and more

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: According to Richard Stallman, godfather of the free software movement, Facebook is a “monstrous surveillance engine,” tech companies working for patent reform aren’t going nearly far enough, and parents must lobby their children’s schools to keep data private and provide free software alternatives. The free software guru touched on a host of topics in his keynote Saturday at the LibrePlanet conference, a Free Software Foundation gathering at the Scala Center at MIT.

+ - To avoid NSA, Cisco gear gets delivered to strange addresses->

Submitted by alphadogg
alphadogg writes: One of the most successful U.S. National Security Agency spying programs involved intercepting IT equipment en route to customers and modifying it. It was one of many revelations about the NSA that caused widespread suspicion that U.S. technology products shouldn’t be trusted, even if companies strenuously denied helping the agency. And it appears some Cisco Systems customers have since taken steps to prevent NSA tampering. For example, one Cisco executive said the company has shipped equipment to addresses that are unrelated to a customer to make it harder for the NSA to target an individual company and scoop up their package.
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In 1750 Issac Newton became discouraged when he fell up a flight of stairs.

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