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+ - Italian Man Who Used Infrared Contact Lenses To Cheat At Poker Sentenced->

Submitted by dmfinn
dmfinn (2840625) writes "It was back in 2011 when Stefano Ampollini and two other accomplices cheated a French Casino out of over 90,000 euros thanks to the help of Chinese made Infrared Contact Lenses. According to French authorities, Ampollini and two casino workers marked cards using an invisible liquid that would be picked up by the Infrared Lenses, which Ampollini then used to read his competitors cards. Though the contacts themselves cost over 2,000 euros, the crew managed to take 71,000 euros in their first night. However, the trio was finally caught when a lawyer working for the casino became suspicious after Ampollini folded with an unbelievably good hand, which suggested he knew the croupier's cards. This week, a French court sentenced Ampollini to 2 years in prison and a 100,000 euro fine.His main accomplice was handed an even harsher sentence, forced to pay the same fine but spend the next 36 months behind bars. It appears, despite their best efforts and advanced tactics, that the men were still unable to beat the house without raising significant alarms. So, at least for now, it seems modern technology still can't simulate good old "luck"."
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Sony

+ - Sony Exercising Its Acquisition of GaiKai, Plans To Stream Games To PS4->

Submitted by dmfinn
dmfinn (2840625) writes "With less than 5 days until the reported PS4 launch event, new details are emerging regarding some of the console's next-gen capabilities. Since last june, Sony has been quietly sitting on its $380 million dollar acqusition of Gaikai, a cloud based gaming company. The Wall Street Journal, among other sources, is now reporting that the PS4 will have GaiKai's cloud-based gaming technology directly integrated, thought it is unclear exactly what types of games will be available for streaming. Back in June, a rumor circulated that Sony was planning to use the technology to support backwards compatibility with PS2 and PS1 games, though no further details have arisen regarding whether or not the new console will be able to play previous generation games. It appears that Sony will most likely be using the service to stream PS3 and indie games to the console, as the current technology only supports 720p, not high enough quality for blockbuster games.

Constantly streaming interactive graphics, even if only at 720p, will still require a fast internet connection. Services like OnLive have struggled in the past due to the large amount of bandwidth they require, and many consumers complained of laggy connections and horrendous graphics. There is no word yet regarding the features of the games being streamed, including whether or not they will support online or local multiplayer."

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Government

+ - President Obama Calls For New 'Space Race' Funding->

Submitted by dmfinn
dmfinn (2840625) writes "While his union address covered a wide range of topics, President Obama made sure not to skip over the U.S.'s space program. The talking point was nearly identical to the one he gave in 2009, in which he called for space R&D spending to be increased past the levels seen during the the original cold war space race. Now, 4 years after that speach, it appears things have gone the opposite way. Since 2009 NASA has seen some serious cuts. Not only has the space-shuttle program been deactivated, but the agency was forced to endure harsh funding cuts during the presidents latter term. Despite an ominous history, it now seems that Obama is back on the space objective, pushing congress to increase non-defensive R&D spending to 3% of the U.S. GDP. It's important to keep in mind that not all of this money goes directly to space related programs, though under the proposed budget the National Science Foundation, Department of Energy Office of Science, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology Laboratories will have their budgets doubled.There will also be an increase in tax credits towards companies and organizations working on these R&D projects.

Should the U.S. go back to its 'Let's put a man on the moon" ideology, or is the federal government fighting an uphill battle against newly emerging private space expeditions? Either way, the question remains whether or not Obama will act on any of the propositions."

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+ - New Medal Designed To Honor Cyber Soldiers-> 1

Submitted by dmfinn
dmfinn (2840625) writes "Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has announced his plans to coin a new medal designed to honor those soldiers who fight behind screens. The award, which unnamed officials have dubbed the, "Distinguished Warfare Medal", will honor military personal who have proven themselves exceptional beyond their peers in regards to cyberwarefare. Unlike other medals in its tier, the DWM will not require any sort of "act of valor", an action in which ones life is put at risk, which means drone pilots and cyberwarefare operators are eligible to receive it. The medal cannot be given for any efforts made in the flesh, and any cyber operator will be eligible to receive it for his or her actions that took place after September 11th, 2001. In ranking to other medals, the defense department has confirmed that is considered an honor slightly higher than the Bronze Star, but lower than the Distinguished Flying Cross. This will be the first new medal introduced into the U.S. armed forces since the induction of the Bronze Star after WWII.

The official summary of the award states it will be award for, "extraordinary achievement, not involving acts of valor, directly impacting combat operations or other military operations.""

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