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Comment: Robots ahead of time... (Score 1) 46

The next step is to realize that we should be sending a robotic mission with this stuff a few years earlier. That way whenever the first people get there, they'll find a cleared landing field and radio guidance towers, as well as a place to stay after they debark.

Of course the fly in the ointment is that you send robots and have them spend a few years building your base. Then someone else comes in before you and claims "rights of salvage" over all of that "abandoned property" they just found.

+ - At Zappos.com, "No Bosses" Management Style Not For Everyone

Submitted by schnell
schnell writes: From The Washington Post: "In March, Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh issued an ultimatum of sorts to his employees. If they didn't feel like they could get behind the company's radical new management system—in which there are no traditional managers or job titles—he would give them until April 30 to decide whether they wanted to leave in exchange for at least three months' severance. Now that the deadline has passed, it turns out that 210 employees, or about 14 percent of the online retailer's 1,500 workers, have taken Hsieh up on it."

The anti-?)management style Zappos has adopted, created by a programmer and called "holacracy" must sound like a dream to some. Still, it doesn't seem to be working out for everyone. Is this a matter of personal preference, or is there really no organizational structure that will truly make everyone happy?

Comment: Re:He's also an interesting candidate for this (Score 2) 395

by dpilot (#49602405) Attached to: Bernie Sanders, Presidential Candidate and H-1B Skeptic

I'm generally in favor of free market capitalism, but sometimes I'm not sure that's what I'm seeing right now. I also think that problems arise when revenue and profit become the number one goal, especially at the expense of the products and services that are supposedly being sold for that revenue and profit.

+ - Bernie Sanders, H-1B skeptic

Submitted by Presto Vivace
Presto Vivace writes: Will the Vermont senator raise the visibility of the visa issue with his presidential run?

The H-1B visa issue rarely surfaces during presidential races, and that's what makes the entrance by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) into the 2016 presidential race so interesting. ... ...Sanders is very skeptical of the H-1B program, and has lambasted tech firms for hiring visa workers at the same time they're cutting staff. He's especially critical of the visa's use in offshore outsourcing.

+ - FBI Slammed On Capitol Hill For 'Stupid' Ideas About Encryption->

Submitted by blottsie
blottsie writes: At a hearing in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, the FBI endured outright hostility as both technical experts and members of Congress from both parties roundly criticized the law enforcement agency's desire to place so-called back doors into encryption technology.

"Creating a technological backdoor just for good guys is technologically stupid," said Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.), a Stanford University computer science graduate. "That's just stupid."

Link to Original Source

+ - What Is Space?->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: Many physicists, writes Jennifer Ouellette in “How Quantum Pairs Stitch Space-Time,” have long “suspected a deep connection between quantum entanglement — the ‘spooky action at a distance’ that so vexed Albert Einstein — and space-time geometry at the smallest scales.” How might entanglement stitch together the structured fabric of space-time? One compelling recent idea, writes K.C. Cole in “Wormholes Untangle a Black Hole Paradox,” suggests that quantum entanglement “could be creating the ‘spatial connectivity’ that ‘sews space together,’ according to Leonard Susskind, a physicist at Stanford University and one of the idea’s main architects.” This idea, though still in its infancy, would solve the troublesome black hole firewall paradox and, enticingly, could help explain quantum gravity.

To illustrate how space-time might arise from quantum entanglement, Quanta Magazine invited Owen Cornec, a data visualization fellow at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, to imagine peeling back layers of space to find a network of entanglements. The resulting interactive presentation serves as the third installment of our series on “The Quantum Fabric of Space-Time.”

Link to Original Source

+ - Wellness App Author Lied About Cancer Diagnosis

Submitted by Freshly Exhumed
Freshly Exhumed writes: Wellness advocate Belle Gibson, who translated her high profile as a cancer survivor into publishing success, has admitted her cancer diagnosis was not real. Ms Gibson, 23, who claimed to have healed terminal brain cancer by eating wholefoods, made the admission in an interview with the Australian Women's Weekly. The success of Gibson's book, The Whole Pantry, and her smartphone application, which advocates natural therapies, has been largely dependent on her high-profile as a cancer survivor. Sadly, we've seen this sort of behaviour before. It would seem that Belle Gibson has emulated Dr. Andrew Wakefield in knowingly decieving the public in ways that could possibly be dangerous to the health of believers.

+ - If Earth never had life, continents would be smaller-> 1

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit writes: It may seem counterintuitive, but life on Earth, even with all the messy erosion it creates, keeps continents growing. Presenting here this week at the annual meeting of the European Geosciences Union, researchers say it's the erosion itself that makes the difference in continental size. Plant life, for example, can root its way through rock, breaking rocks into sediment. The sediments, like milk-dunked cookies, carry liquid water in their pores, which allows more water to be recycled back into Earth’s mantle. If not enough water is present in the mantle about 100 to 200 km deep to keep things flowing, continental production decreases. The authors built a planetary evolution model to show how these processes relate and found that if continental weathering and erosion rates decreased, at first the continents would remain large. But over time, if life never evolved on Earth, not enough water would make its way to the mantle to help produce more continental crust, and whatever continents there were would then shrink. Now, continents cover 40% of the planet. Without life, that coverage would shrink to 30%. In a more extreme case, if life never existed, the continents might only cover 10% of Earth.
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Landing vs splashdown (Score 2) 342

I've heard this point before, with the obvious comparison of Shuttle wings. The counter is that wings are absolutely dead weight on liftoff, plus you've added an entirely new structural mode to the airframe. It has to have the correct structural strength for both vertical ascent and horizontal landing. Both wings and bimodal structure add weight.

Landing the F9 on it's tail, it's practically empty, a fraction of it's initial weight. I'd be interested in seeing the math between F9 and Shuttle, but I suspect SpaceX has done their homework on this.

Of course the science fiction idea of landing anything that can then take off is just that - science fiction. The LEM did it, but then again, only half of the LEM - the bottom was left behind.

+ - Accelerating Universe? Not So Fast->

Submitted by Thorfinn.au
Thorfinn.au writes: A UA-led team of astronomers found that the type of supernovae commonly used to measure distances in the universe fall into distinct populations not recognized before. The findings have implications for our understanding of how fast the universe has been expanding since the Big Bang.

Certain types of supernovae, or exploding stars, are more diverse than previously thought, a University of Arizona-led team of astronomers has discovered. The results, reported in two papers published in the Astrophysical Journal, have implications for big cosmological questions, such as how fast the universe has been expanding since the Big Bang.

Most importantly, the findings hint at the possibility that the acceleration of the expansion of the universe might not be quite as fast as textbooks say.

The team, led by UA astronomer Peter A. Milne, discovered that type Ia supernovae, which have been considered so uniform that cosmologists have used them as cosmic "beacons" to plumb the depths of the universe, actually fall into different populations. The findings are analogous to sampling a selection of 100-watt light bulbs at the hardware store and discovering that they vary in brightness.

Link to Original Source

+ - Ten U.S. senators seek investigation into the replacement of U.S. tech workers->

Submitted by dcblogs
dcblogs writes: Ten U.S. senators, representing the political spectrum, are seeking a federal investigation into displacement of IT workers by H-1B-using contractors. They are asking the U.S. Department of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security and the Labor Department to investigate the use of the H-1B program "to replace large numbers of American workers" at Southern California Edison (SCE) and other employers. The letter to Attorney General Eric Holder and the secretaries of the two other departments, was signed by U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has oversight over the Justice Department. The other signers are Sens. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), a longtime ally of Grassley on H-1B issues; Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), David Vitter (R-La.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Bernard Sanders (I-Vt.), James Inhofe (R-Okla.). Neither California senator signed on. "Southern California Edison ought to be the tipping point that finally compels Washington to take needed actions to protect American workers," Sessions said. Five hundred IT workers at SCE were cut, and many had to train their replacements.
Link to Original Source

+ - The 'Page 63' Backdoor to Elliptic Curve Cryptography 3

Submitted by CRYPTIS
CRYPTIS writes: The security of Elliptic curve cryptography is facilitated by the perceived 'hard' problem of cracking the Discrete Logarithm Problem (DLP) for any given curve. Historically, for FIPS (Federal Information Processing Standards) compliance it was required that your curves conformed to the FIPS186-2 document located at http://csrc.nist.gov/publicati... . Page 63 of this specifies that the 'a' and 'b' elliptic curve domain parameters should conform to the mathematical requirement of c*b^2 = a^3 (mod p).

Interestingly, back in 1982, A. M. Odlyzko, of AT & T Bell Laboratories, published a document entitled “Discrete logarithms in finite fields and their cryptographic significance” ( http://www.dtc.umn.edu/~odlyzk... ). Page 63 of this document presents a weak form of the DLP, namely a^3 = b^2*c (mod p).

It seems then, that the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), driven in turn by the NSA, have required that compliant curves have this potentially weak form of the DLP built in; merely transposing the layout of the formula in order to obtain what little obfuscation is available with such a short piece of text.

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