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+ - Schmidt Says Attack on Google Prompted Encryption Changes

Submitted by Trailrunner7
Trailrunner7 writes: Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google, said that the changes to Android's encryption model, which have angered law enforcement officials, should have come as no surprise to law enforcement and government agencies, given the events of the last couple of years.

“The people who are criticizing this should’ve expected this. After Google was attacked by the British version of the NSA we were annoyed to no end,” Schmidt said. “We put in encryption end to end, at rest and in transit. Law enforcement has many many ways to get this information without doing this.”

After the details of Apple’s and Google’s encryption changes became public, some in the law enforcement community have suggested that the companies should include a backdoor in their devices. Both Sen. Ron Wyden and Schmidt dismissed this suggestion out of hand.

“U.S. companies shouldn’t be forced to build backdoors into their products,” Wyden said.

+ - Multitasking Damages Your Brain And Career->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 writes: You’ve likely heard that multitasking is problematic, but new studies show that it kills your performance and may even damage your brain.

Research conducted at Stanford University found that multitasking is less productive than doing a single thing at a time. The researchers also found that people who are regularly bombarded with several streams of electronic information cannot pay attention, recall information, or switch from one job to another as well as those who complete one task at a time.

A Special Skill?

But what if some people have a special gift for multitasking? The Stanford researchers compared groups of people based on their tendency to multitask and their belief that it helps their performance. They found that heavy multitaskers—those who multitask a lot and feel that it boosts their performance—were actually worse at multitasking than those who like to do a single thing at a time. The frequent multitaskers performed worse because they had more trouble organizing their thoughts and filtering out irrelevant information, and they were slower at switching from one task to another. Ouch.

Multitasking reduces your efficiency and performance because your brain can only focus on one thing at a time. When you try to do two things at once, your brain lacks the capacity to perform both tasks successfully.

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:They did not pass "aversion" to their grandkids (Score 1) 118

by belphegore (#45579817) Attached to: Scientists Find Olfactory "Memory" Passed Between Generations In Mice

Yes, for the initial test group. But two things (quotes from blog not TFP):

1. "startle" is not necessarily aversion

For example, the researchers didn’t do a control experiment where the F0 animals are exposed to the fruity odor without the shock. So it’s unclear whether the “memory” they’re transmitting to their offspring is a fear memory, per se, or rather an increased sensitivity to an odor.

and 2. not for the group where they used IVF to create the offspring to eliminate some possible biases:

To control for these possibilities, the researchers performed an in vitro fertilization (IVF) experiment in which they trained male animals to fear acetophenone and then 10 days later harvested the animals’ sperm. They sent the sperm to another lab across campus where it was used to artificially inseminate female mice. Then the researchers looked at the brains of the offspring. They had larger M71 glomeruli, just as before. (The researchers couldn’t perform behavioral tests on these animals because of laboratory regulations about animal quarantine.)

Comment: They did not pass "aversion" to their grandkids (Score 5, Informative) 118

by belphegore (#45578265) Attached to: Scientists Find Olfactory "Memory" Passed Between Generations In Mice

The grandkids had enhanced receptors for that particular smell. They specifically did not test for, and point out in the paper that they do not claim that the AVERSION was passed on, only that F1 and F2 had structures in the brain that are enlarged compared to control, and that are associated with the sense of smell for the chemical that was used to prime the F0 generation.

Much better science-savvy writeup by my cousin on the Nat Geo blog:

http://phenomena.nationalgeographic.com/2013/12/01/mice-inherit-specific-memories-because-epigenetics/

Comment: Re:Too bad (Score 2) 216

It's not totally missing. Max legal wifi xmit power is 100mW at the source. Conversion at the receiver is ~37% efficient. So if you're directly on top of the xmitter, capturing ALL the (generally omni-radiated) energy, you'd get 37mW of power. USB on newer devices is like ~10W.

And of course if you're not capturing 100% of the signal in all directions, and if you're away from the source (remember friends: inverse square power dropoff), then you'll be lucky to get even a mW.

Comment: Meanwhile, THEIR code is sketchy (Score 3, Funny) 470

by belphegore (#45275207) Attached to: How Your Compiler Can Compromise Application Security

Checked out their git repo and did a build. They have a couple sketchy-looking warnings in their own code. A reference to an undefined variable; storing a 35-bit value in a 32-bit variable...

lglib.c:6896:7: warning: variable 'res' is used uninitialized whenever 'if' condition is true [-Wsometimes-uninitialized]
lglib.c:6967:10: note: uninitialized use occurs here
plingeling.c:456:17: warning: signed shift result (0x300000000) requires 35 bits to represent, but 'int' only has 32 bits [-Wshift-overflow]

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