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Comment Re:Cuba (Score 2) 56

You jest, but that's actually not a bad idea. Picking a country that you have absolutely no connection with and that has a less than friendly relationship with your own government is probably the best you can do in the current mass-surveillance climate - provided that you don't do anything that violates the local laws of your hosting country in a major way. Sure, they might well be monitoring your data, but they almost certainly won't care about it, and if your own country's law enforcement/copyright cartel/whatever comes knocking for any reason they'll almost certainly get nowhere.

Comment Re:Against the law (Score 3, Insightful) 155

Unjust or not, the issue then becomes one of whether or not it acceptable to try and change a law by wilfully violating it - as Uber et al are doing in some of the locales they are operating in - with the implication of whether that slipperly slope is *really* one that you want to go down, and especially so when it's a corporation making that decision just because it's inconvenient to their business model/profit margin. In some cases, sure, mass civil disobedience is necessary to bring about change, in others a lone individual might do as a trigger (Rosa Parks, for instance), but generally those are for far more egregious or morally corrupt laws than the kind of bureaucratic red tape and entrenched industry regulation that Uber is opposing.

Yes, much of that legislation is unjust, anti-competetive and so on, just as Uber is claiming, and some of it is also there in order to at least try and establish a minimum standard of safety and service. The correct process for Uber and the like to take is to challenge the unjust, anti-competetive laws first, potentially citing public demand for their services, *then* start operations if (and only if) they can successfully establish a framework that enables them to operate legally and in compliance with the safety and service legislation. Starting operations regardless and dealing with the legal fallout might be acceptable to them, possibly even considered as an acceptable risk within their business model, but it also smacks of "we're above the law" arrogance, which will lose them some of the public support they might have had if they were purely fighting it through the courts and better discriminating between the two sets of rules. Factor in the stories of how Uber treats its drivers when things go wrong, drivers having their cars taken of the road, and even the issue of their status as contractor or employee, and it's easy to see how people who might otherwise be supportive of Uber are not.

Comment Re:Brave polling, but in real life? (Score 1) 114

True enough, but it possibly depends on how people are interpreting the poll. I genuinely have no idea what most of my passwords are because they are strings of random gibberish in a password manager, with unique passwords (or pre-shared keys and passphrases where applicable) for every site/system. The only passwords/phrases I actually memorise are those that I need to log on in the first place and to access the password manager which are a tiny fraction of the total, so if I don't have access to the password DB and the USB stick with the key on it with me, then I couldn't provide someone with most of my passwords, even if I wanted to. Taking that scenario to its logical conclusion though the more likely outcome would probably be either the "Cold, Dead Fingers" (albeit maybe not literally) or "Warrant" option, depending on who was doing the asking and how "persuasive" they were.

Submission EPA Gave Volkswagen Free Pass On Emissions Ten Years Ago Due To Lack Of Budget->

An anonymous reader writes: A new report suggests that continuing cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency's budget contributed to Volkswagen being able to cheat on its emissions tests. When the test scripts were developed the department — which can still only conduct 'spot tests' on 20% of all qualifying vehicles — was forced to concentrate on heavy machinery and truck manufacturers, which at the time had a far higher incidence of attempting to cheat on vehicle standards tests. Discounting inflation the EPA's 2015 budget is on a par with its 2002 budget, and has been cut by 21% since 2010.
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Submission Increasingly, U.S. IT workers are alleging discrimination->

An anonymous reader writes: Some U.S. IT workers who have been replaced with H-1B contractors are alleging discrimination and are going to court. They are doing so in increasing numbers. There are at least seven IT workers at Disney who are pursuing, or plan to pursue, federal and state discrimination administrative complaints over their layoffs. Separately, there are ongoing court cases alleging discrimination against two of the largest India-based IT services firms, Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services. There may also be federal interest in examining the issue.
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Submission Microsoft Exchange Server 2016 Is Shipping

jones_supa writes: Microsoft's mail and calendar server package Exchange Server 2016 is being refreshed and is now out of preview, along with the 2016 revamp for other Office products. The new Exchange tries to simplify the software's architecture while still adding new features and creating greater synergy with other Office products. You can now use links from Sharepoint 2016 and OneDrive for Business as email attachments, instead of having to upload the actual file, leading to more robust file sharing and editing. The Outlook web app has been greatly improved. Search has been tuned to make it both faster and more intelligent, and it allows to search across Microsoft services. Add-ins have been introduced, which allows extensibility similar to extensions on a web browser. For those of you who are interested, Microsoft provides a 180 days trial for free.

Submission Apple CEO Tim Cook: 'Privacy Is A Fundamental Human Right'->

An anonymous reader writes: On government requests for customer text messages:

"The government comes to us from time to time, and if they ask in a way that is correct, and has been through the courts as is required, then to the degree that we have information, we give that information.

However, we design our products in such a way that privacy is designed into the product. And security is designed in. And so if you think about it ... some of our most personal data is on the phone: our financial data, our health information, our conversations with our friends and family and co-workers. And so instead of us taking that data into Apple, we've kept data on the phone and it's encrypted by you. You control it."

On Apple's recent emphasis on customer privacy: :We do think that people want us to help them keep their lives private. We see that privacy is a fundamental human right that people have. We are going to do everything that we can to help maintain that trust. ...

Our view on this comes from a values point of view, not from a commercial interest point of view. Our values are that we do think that people have a right to privacy. And that our customers are not our products. We don't collect a lot of your data and understand every detail about your life. That's just not the business that we are in."

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Comment Re:Communism or Capitalism (Score 1) 107

Some potentially interesting implications with Cuba getting into bed with China though. Given historical ties with Russia (or rather the USSR) and the high probability that Cuba would look the other way regarding the numerous sanctions in place against Russia due to the involvement in the Crimea and Eastern Ukraine it seems like Russia has lost out on some major opportunities here, not least the ability to get a bit of a PR coup and rattle the cages of some of the more hawkish US political/military crowd. Presumably the stronger long term prospects of the Chinese and any concessions they may have offered won out for Cuba, but you have to wonder what China's long term game plan is here and how badly the US will react when they finally realise what it is - or when Chinese naval vessels start arriving in the Caribbean.

Submission AWS Customer Crypto Keys Exposed In New Vulnerability->

An anonymous reader writes: Amazon has patched a vulnerability in its cloud storage platform, after researchers discovered a flaw which could have allowed attackers to steal customer RSA keys. The study revealed that a sophisticated CPU cache attack against an Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) instance, could have given a hacker complete access to a 2048-bit RSA key used in a separate instance.
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Submission NASA's New Horizons shows Pluto's moon Charon is a strange, new world->

MarkWhittington writes: NASA's New Horizons has returned a stunning series of images of Pluto, the dwarf planet that resides on the edge of the solar system, revealing a strange new world of ice mountains and glaciers of frozen nitrogen. NASA released images of Pluto’s largest moon. Charon. Scientists expected a plain ball of rock pockmarked with craters. What they saw was anything but plain and monotonous.
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Submission SPAM: Disguising drugs as platelets could make them more effective against cancer

thanhhoang777 writes: The technique is detailed in a study published in Advanced Materials, in which it was tested successfully in mice.

Corresponding author Zhen Gu, an assistant professor in the joint biomedical engineering program at North Carolina State University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, states that there are two key advantages to using platelet membranes to coat anticancer drugs.

"First, the surface of cancer cells has an affinity for platelets — they stick to each other," he explains. "Second, because the platelets come from the patients own body, the drug carriers arent identified as foreign objects, so last longer in the bloodstream."

Not only does this new technique allow drugs to target a cancers main tumor site, but the platelet membrane coating increases the chances of the drugs attaching to circulating tumor cells — cells in the bloodstream that cause a cancer to spread to other parts of the body.

nam agaricus

In the study, the researchers took blood from mice and collected platelets from the samples. From these platelets, the researchers then extracted the membranes and added them to a solution with a gel containing an anticancer drug called doxorubicin (Dox).

By compressing the solution, the team produced nanoscale spheres comprised of a platelet membrane outer shell with a Dox-gel core. They then coated the surfaces of these spheres with another anticancer drug called TRAIL that is known to be effective at attacking cancer cell membranes.

Submission The FAA Has Missed Its Congressionally Mandated Deadline to Regulate Drones->

derekmead writes: When Congress passed the FAA Modernization Act in 2012, it gave the agency until September 30, 2015 to fully regulate commercial drones for use in the United States. Well, it's October 1, and we're left with a patchwork of regulatory band-aids, quasi-legal "guidelines," and a small drone rule that still hasn't gone into effect yet.

This news shouldn't surprise anyone. The agency has missed most every milestone—both internal and lawmaker mandated—that has been set for it. The last two years have been fraught with lawsuits, confusion on enforcement within its own local offices (some FAA agents have told pilots they can't post videos on YouTube, for example), and various conflicting guidelines as to who can fly a drone where, and for what purposes.

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Submission How someone acquired the domain name for a single minute->

An anonymous reader writes: We’ve all been there: It’s nearly 2 in the morning and you’re cruising around the Internet looking for new domain names to purchase. I mean, talk about a cliched night, right?

Now imagine that during the course of your domain browsing, you unexpectedly discover that the holy grail of domain names — — is (gasp!) available for purchase for the low, low price of just $12. Testing fate, you attempt to initiate a transaction. Dare I say, you’re feeling a little bit lucky. And just like that, in the blink of an eye, the transaction goes through and the vaunted and highly valuable Google domain is in your possession.

While this might read like a ridiculous plot summary from some horrible piece of nerd fiction, this series of events above, believe it or not, actually happened to former Googler Sanmay Ved earlier this week.

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Submission IBM Scientists Find New Way to Shrink Transistors->

MarcAuslander writes: In the semiconductor business, it is called the “red brick wall” — the limit of the industry’s ability to shrink transistors beyond a certain size.

On Thursday, however, IBM scientists reported that they now believe they see a path around the wall. Writing in the journal Science, a team at the company’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center said it has found a new way to make transistors from parallel rows of carbon nanotubes.

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"I may be synthetic, but I'm not stupid" -- the artificial person, from _Aliens_