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+ - Debian 8 Jessie released->

Submitted by linuxscreenshot
linuxscreenshot writes: After almost 24 months of constant development the Debian project is proud to present its new stable version 8 (code name Jessie), which will be supported for the next 5 years thanks to the combined work of the Debian Security team and of the Debian Long Term Support team. Jessie ships with a new default init system, systemd. The systemd suite provides many exciting features such as faster boot times, cgroups for services, and the possibility of isolating part of the services. The sysvinit init system is still available in Jessie. Screenshots and a screencast is available.
Link to Original Source

+ - Think Tanks: How a Bill [Gates Agenda] Becomes a Law

Submitted by theodp
theodp writes: The NY Times' Eric Lipton was just awarded a 2015 Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting that shed light on how foreign powers buy influence at think tanks. So, it probably bears mentioning that Microsoft's 'two-pronged' National Talent Strategy to increase K-12 CS education and the number of H-1B visas — which is on the verge of being codified into laws by the President and lawmakers — was hatched at an influential Microsoft and Gates Foundation-backed think tank mentioned in Lipton's reporting, the Brookings Institution. In 2012, the Center for Technology Innovation at Brookings hosted a forum on STEM education and immigration reforms, where fabricating a crisis was discussed as a strategy to succeed with Microsoft's agenda where earlier lobbying attempts by Bill Gates and Microsoft had failed. "So, Brad [Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith]," asked the Brookings Institution's Darrell West at the event, "you're the only [one] who mentioned this topic of making the problem bigger. So, we galvanize action by really producing a crisis, I take it?" "Yeah," Smith replied (video). And, with the help of nonprofit organizations like Code.org and FWD.us that were founded shortly thereafter, a national K-12 CS and tech immigration crisis was indeed created. Last December, as Microsoft-backed Code.org 'taught President Obama to code' at a White House event to kick off the nations's Hour of Code (as a top Microsoft lobbyist looked on), Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was also in D.C. publicly lobbying for high-skilled immigration and privately meeting with White House officials on undisclosed matters. And that, kids, is How a Bill [Gates Agenda] Becomes a Law!
Government

FCC Chairman: a Former Cable Lobbyist Who Helped Kill the Comcast Merger 78

Posted by Soulskill
from the judging-books-by-covers dept.
An anonymous reader writes: After Friday's news that the Comcast/TWC merger is dead, the Washington Post points out an interesting fact: FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who was instrumental in throwing up roadblocks for the deal, used to be a lobbyist for the cable and wireless industry. "Those who predicted Wheeler would favor industry interests 'misunderstood him from the beginning — the notion that because he had represented various industries, he was suddenly in their pocket never made any sense,' said one industry lawyer, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he represents clients before the FCC." The "revolving door" between government and industry is often blamed for many of the problems regulating corporations. We were worried about it ourselves when Wheeler was nominated for his current job. I guess this goes to show that it depends more on the person than on their previous job.

+ - Patents show Google Fi was envisioned before the iPhone was released->

Submitted by smaxp
smaxp writes: Contrary to reports, Google didn't become a mobile carrier with the introduction of Google Fi. Google Fi was launched to prove that a network-of-networks serves smartphone users better than a single mobile carrier's network. Patents related to Google Fi, filed in early 2007, explain Google's vision – smartphones negotiate for and connect to the fastest network available. The patent and Google Fi share a common notion that the smartphone should connect to the fastest network available, not a single carrier's network that may not provide the best performance. It breaks the exclusive relationship between a smartphone and a single carrier.
Link to Original Source

+ - 3D display without the need for 3D glasses

Submitted by Qualitypointtech
Qualitypointtech writes: Researchers at Swinburne University of Technology have shown the capacity of a technique using graphene oxide and complex laser physics to create a pop-up floating display without the need for 3D glasses.At this moment, the demonstrated graphene 3D display can only allow images up to 1cm. But there is no limitation for the up scalability of this technique.This new generation floating 3D display technology also has potential applications for military devices, entertainment, remote education and medical diagnosis. In a paper, published in Nature Communications, they show how their technology realises wide viewing-angle and full-color floating 3D display in graphene based materials.

+ - Creative Wired editor's take on John Deere's DMCA madness->

Submitted by sckirklan
sckirklan writes: This guy isn't creative and hopes whomever looks through these is and makes adjustments... Basically, Microsoft is to John Deere as Windows/Office/etc is to the tractor. Thanks for your dollars, it's ours but you can use it. Next we put soil moisture/ph sensors in your field and say you don't own it but if you pay taxes you can use it, btw that was in your eula when you bought your, err our tractor (or we updated it just because we can and you agree to it because you already agreed to it.)
Link to Original Source

+ - Hacking Team's Malware Is a Symptom of a Larger Problem

Submitted by Nicola Hahn
Nicola Hahn writes: The RSA conference is underway in San Francisco this week and a myriad of vendors are extolling the virtues of encryption-based corporate security products. Yet a series of recently published documents detail how the DEA and U.S. Army used Hacking Team’s Remote Control System (RCS) technology to subvert encryption and make off with sensitive data.

There are high-profile experts who believe that this sort of clandestine subversion is “perfectly reasonable” just so long as spying campaigns are carefully targeted. Yet Hacking Team’s RCS product is designed for mass deployment against hundreds of thousands of people. Hardly what could be called “targeted.” This raises important questions about the role of the private sector in mass surveillance. Some researchers would argue that mass surveillance is fundamentally driven by corporate interests. As Ed Snowden put it, “these programs were never about terrorism: they're about economic spying, social control, and diplomatic manipulation.” Cui Bono?

+ - Federal agent smashes cellphone woman was using to record police activity...->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 writes: After high-profile uses of force caught on video in places like South Carolina, New York and L.A.'s skid row, officers in the Southeast L.A. suburb had been told to take filming in stride. If you're not doing anything wrong, police brass reasoned, what do you have to worry about?

So on Sunday, when a lawman was caught on video snatching a woman's cellphone in South Gate as she recorded and smashing it on the floor, it was with relief that South Gate police said the officer wasn't one of their own but a deputy U.S. marshal.

Link to Original Source

+ - All Your Content Will Belong to PayPal->

Submitted by Anita Hunt (lissnup)
Anita Hunt (lissnup) writes: Following last year's announcement from eBay,PayPal has contacted UK (maybe other) users by email, alerting them to the upcoming separation of the two companies from 1 July 2015, and drawing attention to changes in PayPal T&Cs. A new clause on Intellectual Property asserts: “When providing us with content or posting content (in each case for publication, whether on- or off-line) using the Services, you grant the PayPal Group a non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, sublicensable (through multiple tiers) right to exercise any and all copyright, publicity, trademarks, database rights and intellectual property rights you have in the content, in any media known now or in the future. Further, to the fullest extent permitted under applicable law, you waive your moral rights and promise not to assert such rights against the PayPal Group, its sublicensees or assignees. You represent and warrant that none of the following infringe any intellectual property right: your provision of content to us, your posting of content using the Services, and the PayPal Group’s use of such content (including of works derived from it) in connection with the Services.”
Any users that don't agree are invited to close their account "without incurring any additional charges"

Link to Original Source

+ - "Acoustruments" could add physical controls to Smartphones just by using plastic->

Submitted by rtoz
rtoz writes: Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and Disney Research have invented a unique type of accessory called “Acoustruments” for smartphones and other gadgets. They’ve come up with a way of utilizing ultrasonic waves to make smartphones even smarter.

The researchers got the inspiration for their invention from the wind instruments

The idea is to use pluggable plastic tubes and other structures to connect the smartphone’s speaker with its microphone. The device can then be controlled by acoustically altering sounds as they pass through this system. i-e they can control phones with sounds from their own speakers

Using smartphones as computers to control toys, appliances and robots is already a growing trend. Acoustruments can make the interactivity of these new ‘pluggable’ applications even richer

The researchers have used Acoustruments to build an interactive doll, which responds when its tummy is poked; a smartphone case that can sense when it has been placed on a table or is being hand carried; and an alarm clock that provides physical on/off and snooze buttons.

Acoustruments can be made with 3-D printers, with injection molds, or even by hand in some cases

The plastic tubing is designed to limit external noise interference, and the emitted ultrasonic frequencies are inaudible to the human ear. Experiments carried out by the researchers showed the control method to be impressively precise – achieving an accuracy of 99 percent when controlling a smartphone.

And, the researchers highlight smartphone-powered virtual reality headsets as a product category that could benefit from this technology, where users are physically unable to interact with a touchscreen interface.

Link to Original Source

+ - Android's Growth Is A Pain In The App For Developers

Submitted by rjmarvin
rjmarvin writes: Flush in market share, emerging platforms and devices, Android developers face a fragmented version, IDE and app tooling landscape http://sdtimes.com/androids-gr.... Android grew to 81.5% of the global smartphone market share in 2014, Spread within that massive growth is an operating system split into different forks on different smartphone and tablet device lines, made by different manufacturers all running different versions of Android itself, from Froyo to Lollipop. Despite more features, development options, platforms and emerging devices to target than ever before, actually developing for Android can be a pain in the app.

+ - Baltimore Police say Stingray phone tracking use exceeds 25,000 instances->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: The Baltimore Police Department is starting to come clean about its use of cell-phone signal interceptors — commonly known as Stingrays — and the numbers are alarming. According to recent court testimony reported by The Baltimore Sun, the city's police have used Stingray devices with a court order more than 25,000 times. It's a massive number, representing an average of nearly nine uses a day for eight years (the BPD acquired the technology in 2007), and it doesn't include any emergency uses of the device, which would have proceeded without a court order.
Link to Original Source

+ - New Nudge Technology Prods You to Take Action

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com writes: Natasha Singer reports at the NYT on a new generation of devices whose primary function is to prod people to change. This new category of nudging technology includes “hydration reminder” apps like Waterlogged that exhort people to increase their water consumption; the HAPIfork, a utensil that vibrates and turns on a light indicator when people eat too quickly; and Thync, “neurosignaling” headgear that delivers electrical pulses intended to energize or relax people. “There is this dumbing-down, which assumes people do not want the data, they just want the devices to help them,” says Natasha Dow Schüll. “It is not really about self-knowledge anymore. It’s the nurselike application of technology.” While some self-zapping gizmos may resemble human cattle prods, other devices use more complex cues to encourage people to adopt new behavior. For example, the Muse, a brain-wave monitoring headband, is intended to help people understand their state of mind by playing different sounds depending on whether they are distracted or calm. “Based on what it registers, it plays loud, disruptive wind or waves lapping or, if you are supercalm and you maintain it for a while, you get calm, lovely noises of birds tweeting,” says Schüll. “You do learn to calm your mind.

But do the new self-tracking and self-improvement technologies benefit people or just create more anxiety? An article published in The BMJ, a British medical journal, describes healthy people who use self-tracking apps as “young, asymptomatic, middle-class neurotics continuously monitoring their vital signs while they sleep.” Dr. Des Spence argues that many health tracking apps encouraged healthy people to unnecessarily record their normal activities and vital signs — turning users into continuously self-monitoring “neurotics.” Spence recommends people view these new technologies with skepticism. “The truth is that these apps and devices are untested and unscientific, and they will open the door of uncertainty,” says Spence. “Make no mistake: Diagnostic uncertainty ignites extreme anxiety in people.”

+ - DARPA Just Open Sourced All This Swish 'Dark Web' Search Tech->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 writes: Google appears to be an indomitable force. But, with today's release from the US military's research arm of its Memex search technologies and Europe's competition investigation into the Mountain View giant, it might be a propitious time for tech-minded entrepreneurs to start building a Google killer.

DARPA's Memex search technologies have garnered much interest due to their initial mainstream application: to uncover human trafficking operations taking place on the âoedark webâ, the catch-all term for the various internet networks the majority of people never use, such as Tor, Freenet and I2P. And a significant number of law enforcement agencies have inquired about using the technology. But Memex promises to be disruptive across both criminal and business worlds.

Christopher White, who leads the team of Memex partners, which includes members of the Tor Project, a handful of prestigious universities, NASA and research-focused private firms, tells FORBES the project is so ambitious in its scope, it wants to shake up a staid search industry controlled by a handful of companies: Google, Microsoft and Yahoo.

Putting those grandiose ideas into action, DARPA will today open source various components of Memex, allowing others to take the technologies and adapt them for their own use. As is noticeable from the list of technologies below, there's great possibility for highly-personalised search, whether for agents trying to bring down pedophiles or the next Silk Road , or anyone who wants a less generic web experience. Here's an exclusive look at who is helping DARPA build Memex and what they're making available on the Open Catalogue today

Link to Original Source

You should never bet against anything in science at odds of more than about 10^12 to 1. -- Ernest Rutherford

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