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Building an 'Invisibility Cloak' With Electromagnetic Fields 71

Nerval's Lobster writes "University of Toronto researchers have demonstrated an invisibility cloak that hides objects within an electromagnetic field, rather than swaddling it in meta-materials as other approaches require. Instead of covering an object completely in an opaque cloak that then mimics the appearance of empty air, the technique developed by university engineering Prof. George Eleftheriades and Ph.D. candidate Michael Selvanayagam makes objects invisible using the ability of electromagnetic fields to redirect or scatter waves of energy. The approach is similar to that of 'stealth' aircraft whose skin is made of material that absorbs the energy from radar systems and deflects the rest away from the radar detectors that sent them. Rather than scattering radio waves passively due to the shape of its exterior, however, the Toronto pair's 'cloak' deflects energy using an electromagnetic field projected by antennas that surround the object being hidden. Most of the proposals in a long list of 'invisibility cloaks' announced during the past few years actually conceal objects by covering them with an opaque blanket, which becomes 'invisible' by displaying an image of what the space it occupies would look like if neither the cloak nor the object it concealed were present. An invisibility cloak concealing an adolescent wizard hiding in a corner, for example, would display an image of the walls behind it in an effort to fool observers into thinking there was no young wizard present to block their view of the empty corner. 'We've taken an electrical engineering approach, but that's what we are excited about,' Eleftheriades said in a public announcement of the paper's publication. (The full text is available as a free PDF here.)"

Sony Launches Internet Service Offering Twice the Speed of Google Fiber 268

An anonymous reader writes "Sony Japan has announced that its own Internet service provider So-net Entertainment has launched what is thought to be the world's fastest Internet connection for home use in Japan with download speed of 2 Gbps on average. This speed is twice as fast as competing high-speed fiber connections in Japan. The ultra-fast connection, known as Nuro, will cost an inexpensive 4,980 yen ($51) per month- offering download speeds of 2 Gbps and uploads of up to 1 Gbps."

Netflix Wants To Go HTML5, But Not Without DRM 394

FuzzNugget writes "In a recent blog post, Netflix details their plans to transition from Silverlight to HTML5, but with one caveat: HTML5 needs to include a built-in DRM scheme. With the W3C's proposed Encrypted Media Extensions, this may come to fruition. But what would we sacrificing in openness and the web as we know it? How will developers of open source browsers like Firefox respond to this?"

Remote Linksys 0-Day Root Exploit Uncovered 133

Orome1 writes "DefenseCode researchers have uncovered a remote root access vulnerability in the default installation of Linksys routers. They contacted Cisco and shared a detailed vulnerability description along with the PoC exploit for the vulnerability. Cisco claimed that the vulnerability was already fixed in the latest firmware release, which turned out to be incorrect. The latest Linksys firmware (4.30.14) and all previous versions are still vulnerable."

Book Reviews: Lockpicking Books From Deviant Ollam 123

benrothke writes "It is well known that the password, while the most widespread information security mechanism, is also one of the most insecure. It comes down to the fact that the average person can't create and maintain secure passwords. When it comes to physical locks, the average lock on your home and in your office is equally insecure. How insecure it in? In two fascinating books on the topic, Deviant Ollam writes in Practical Lock Picking, Second Edition: A Physical Penetration Testers Training Guide and Keys to the Kingdom: Impressioning, Privilege Escalation, Bumping, and Other Key-Based Attacks Against Physical Locks that it is really not that difficult. When it comes to information security penetration tests done on the client site, the testers will most often have permission to be inside the facility. On rare occasions, the testers need to find alternative means to gain entrance. Sometimes that means picking the locks." Keep reading to learn if you'll be picking locks soon.
Input Devices

Is It Time To End Our Love Affair With the QWERTY Keyboard? 557

Master Moose writes "Brisbane-based entrepreneur John Lambie currently has in beta an alternative to what he calls the 'dysfunctional' QWERTY keyboard. Given the way the world is abandoning their keyboards for smartphones he sees now as the perfect time to introduce a new layout. He calls his new keyboard Dextr and believes it is the natural progression from using a number pad to enter text — This is especially so in developing countries where users have not grown up with QWERTYs on thier phones. While he is not the first to ever propose an alternate or alphabetical keyboard — Are we locked into QWERTY for familiarity's sake, or as we shift to smaller, more mobile and new devices, is Mr. Lambie's project coming at the right time?"

Submission + - Congress Capitulates to TSA; refuses to let Bruce Schneier testify (schneier.com)

McGruber writes: Following up on the earlier Slashdot story "Congress Wants Your TSA Stories" (http://yro.slashdot.org/story/12/03/23/2312228/congress-wants-your-tsa-stories), earlier today, the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure held a hearing titled 'TSA Oversight Part III: Effective Security or Security Theater?' that was streamed line by CSPAN (http://www.c-span.org/Events/House-Hearing-Examines-TSA-Security-Initiatives/10737429331-1/).

In a blog update (http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2012/03/congressional_t.html), Bruce Schneider says that "at the request of the TSA" he was removed from the witness list.

Bruce also said "it's pretty clear that the TSA is afraid of public testimony on the topic, and especially of being challenged in front of Congress. They want to control the story, and it's easier for them to do that if I'm not sitting next to them pointing out all the holes in their position. Unfortunately, the committee went along with them."


Facebook Could Spawn Thousands of Milionaires 434

Hugh Pickens writes "Retuers reports that the world's No. 1 online social network is preparing for a blockbuster initial public offering that could create thousands of millionaires as Facebook employees past and present begin hatching plans on how to spend their anticipated new wealth. 'There's been discussions of sort of bucket list ideas that people are putting together of things they always wanted to do and now we'll be able to do it,' says one former employee who expects his shares to be worth $50 million and is planning to book a trip to space with Virgin Galactic that would cost $200,000 or more. 'It's been a childhood dream.' Another group of Facebook workers has begun laying the groundwork for its own jungle expedition to excavate a relatively untouched site of Mayan ruins in Mexico that sounds like Raiders of the Lost Ark. But for many of Facebook's staffers, the IPO will provide the means to pay off school loans and buy a house or new car and many homeowners and real-estate agents are eagerly anticipating a surge of new buyers that could push prime real estate to new heights. 'If a Facebook guy buys a house and wants to remodel it, maybe the contractor will buy another car,' says Buff Giurlani. 'Maybe the realtor will put a car in. There's a trickle-down effect.'"
GNU is Not Unix

Apple Remove Samba From OS X 10.7 Because of GPLv3 1075

recoiledsnake writes "The upcoming release of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion Server will remove the formerly bundled open source Samba software and replace it with Apple's own tools for Windows file sharing and network directory services. In both Mac OS X Server and client editions, Samba enables Macs to share files with Windows clients on the network and access Windows file servers. It has also later allowed Mac OS X Server to work as an NT Domain Controller to manage network accounts and make roaming profiles and home directories available to Windows PC users. However, the Samba team has moved active development of the project to the more strict GPLv3 license, which prevents Apple from using the software commercially. Apple is now said to be recommending Active Directory to users who are still dependent upon the older NT Domain Controller network directory services. Apple has previously stopped contributing code to GCC and started looking at other options like LLVM because of GCC's switch to GPLv3."

IPhone 4 Survives 1,000 Foot Fall From Plane 222

tekgoblin writes "From the article: 'US Air Force Combat controller Ron Walker had lost his iPhone 4 from his aircraft during flight. He works as a Jump Master, which is where he would ensure the airplane was in the correct position when he sends parachute jumpers out. The plane was moving at 150 mph and while looking out the door of the plane to find necessary ground landmarks his pocket opened and his iPhone flew out. When he noticed his phone fell, he thought all was lost. Upon landing and sharing the story with friends he installed the Find My iPhone app on one of their phones and went looking for his phone. He expected it to be battered from the fall but found the phone to be 100% un-damaged from the fall. The phone was protected by a Griffin Motif TPU iPhone case but it isn't clear whether the case protected the phone from the fall or the fact that it was cushioned by the brush that it hit.'"

Thermal Nanotape Promises Cooler, Healthier Chips 48

Blacklaw writes "A team of researchers comprised of members from the Semiconductor Research Corporation and Stanford University has developed a new thermal nanotape which it claims will lead to chips that run cooler and last longer. The thermal nanotape, constructed of binder materials surrounding carbon nanotubes, promises to lead to the creation of semiconductors — including CPUs and GPUs — that don't suffer from the rigors of frequent temperature changes, known as thermal cycling."
The Media

iPad Newspaper From News Corp Rumored in January 220

An anonymous reader writes "News Corp plans to launch its rumored iPad-only newspaper on January 17 according to recent reports. Dubbed the 'Daily,' the paper will reportedly make use of a new 'push' subscription feature from Apple wherein users can opt to be automatically billed for either week-long or month-long subscriptions. Once set up, a new edition of the publication will show up on user's iPads each and every morning."

IT Worker's Revenge Lands Her In Jail Screenshot-sm 347

aesoteric writes "A 30-year-old IT worker at a Florida-based health centre was this week sentenced to 19 months in a US federal prison for hacking, and then locking, her former employer's IT systems. Four days after being fired from the Suncoast Community Health Centers' for insubordination, Patricia Marie Fowler exacter her revenge by hacking the centre's systems, deleting files, changing passwords, removing access to infrastructure systems, and tampering with pay and accrued leave rates of staff."

Rogue Satellite Shuts Down US Weather Services 202

radioweather writes "On Sunday, the drifting rogue 'zombie' Galaxy 15 satellite with a stuck transmitter interfered with the satellite data distribution system used by NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS), effectively shutting down data sharing between NWS offices nationwide, as well as weather support groups for the US Air force. This left many forecasters without data, imagery, and maps. Interference from Galaxy 15 affected transmissions of the SES-1 Satellite, which not only serves NOAA with data relay services, but also is used to feed TV programming into virtually every cable network in the US. NOAA's Network Control Facility reports that the computer system affected was NOAA's Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System (AWIPS) used to issue forecasts and weather bulletins which uses the weather data feed. They also state the problem is likely to recur again this month before the satellite drifts out of range and eventually dies due to battery depletion."

A rock store eventually closed down; they were taking too much for granite.