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Businesses

Keurig Stock Drops, Says It Was Wrong About DRM Coffee Pods 369

Posted by samzenpus
from the worst-laid-plans dept.
An anonymous reader writes: Green Mountain (Keurig) stock dropped by 10% this morning after a brutal earnings report. The reason? CNN Money reports that DRM has weakened sales of their Keurig 2.0. CEO Brian Kelley admits, "Quite honestly, we were wrong." Last year Green Mountain decided to make their new coffee machines work with licensed pods only. The company says they now plan to license more outside brands, and bring back “My K-Cup” reusable filters.

Comment: Re:This isn't even a problem unique to chess. (Score 1) 109

by mrzaph0d (#49446273) Attached to: A Data-Driven Exploration of the Evolution of Chess
i play "words with friends" with a guy from work, we usually have two or three games going at once. at the start, i'd played for awhile before he started playing. i trounced him. after awhile, he picked up on most of the words, and we were almost even in wins. later, as we each developed new (to us) tricks and strategies, we would leapfrog ahead of the other. now, its really down to luck of the draw. we each use the same tricks and strategies, and its reflected when one of us has say a string of turns with no vowels present. or tons of high-point letters, but no where left to play them at the end of the game.
Security

Research Finds Shoddy Security On Connected Home Gateways 88

Posted by timothy
from the junction-box-is-open dept.
chicksdaddy writes Connected home products are the new rage. But how do you connect your Nest thermostat, your DropCam surveillance device and your Chamberlin MyQ 'smart' garage door opener? An IoT hub, of course. But not so fast: a report from the firm Veracode may make you think twice about deploying one of these IoT gateways in your home. As The Security Ledger reports, Veracode researchers found significant security vulnerabilities in each of six IoT gateways they tested, suggesting that manufacturers are giving short shrift to security considerations during design and testing. The flaws discovered ranged from weak authentication schemes (pretty common) to improper validation of TLS and SSL certificates, to gateways that shipped with exposed debugging interfaces that would allow an attacker on the same wireless network as the device to upload and run malicious code. Many of the worst lapses seem to be evidence of insecure design and lax testing of devices before they were released to the public, Brandon Creighton, Veracode's research architect, told The Security Ledger. This isn't the first report to raise alarms about IoT hubs. In October, the firm Xipiter published a blog post describing research into a similar hub by the firm VeraLite. Xipiter discovered that, among other things, the VeraLite device shipped with embedded SSH private keys stored in immutable areas of the firmware used on all devices.
Transportation

Planes Without Pilots 460

Posted by Soulskill
from the and-now-for-the-overreaction dept.
HughPickens.com writes: John Markoff writes in the NY Times that in the aftermath of the co-pilot crashing a Germanwings plane into a mountain, aviation experts are beginning to wonder if human pilots are really necessary aboard commercial planes. Advances in sensor technology, computing and artificial intelligence are making human pilots less necessary than ever in the cockpit and government agencies are already experimenting with replacing the co-pilot, perhaps even both pilots on cargo planes, with robots or remote operators. NASA is exploring a related possibility: moving the co-pilot out of the cockpit on commercial flights, and instead using a single remote operator to serve as co-pilot for multiple aircraft. In this scenario, a ground controller might operate as a dispatcher, managing a dozen or more flights simultaneously. It would be possible for the ground controller to "beam" into individual planes when needed and to land a plane remotely in the event that the pilot became incapacitated — or worse. "Could we have a single-pilot aircraft with the ability to remotely control the aircraft from the ground that is safer than today's systems?" asks Cummings. "The answer is yes."

Automating that job may save money. But will passengers ever set foot on plane piloted by robots, or humans thousands of miles from the cockpit? In written testimony submitted to the Senate last month, the Air Line Pilots Association warned, "It is vitally important that the pressure to capitalize on the technology not lead to an incomplete safety analysis of the aircraft and operations." The association defended the unique skills of a human pilot: "A pilot on board an aircraft can see, feel, smell or hear many indications of an impending problem (PDF) and begin to formulate a course of action before even sophisticated sensors and indicators provide positive indications of trouble." Not all of the scientists and engineers believe that increasingly sophisticated planes will always be safer planes. "Technology can have costs of its own," says Amy Pritchett. "If you put more technology in the cockpit, you have more technology that can fail.""

Comment: Re:Task scheduling is not issue tracking (Score 1) 144

by mrzaph0d (#49243173) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Issue Tracker For Non-Engineers?

yeah, gotta agree. without the methodology, no one will use it. plus, if the users don't even have admin on their machine, good luck installing stuff and keeping it installed when the real IT department finds out.

go for the offline solution like a whiteboard. put it in a location where everyone has to pass at least once a day, or in a meeting room where everyone goes to update it together on a regular basis.

either way, make a point to use it and stick with it, but be flexible enough to make changes to the methodology if it isn't working.

Science

Cosmologists Show Negative Mass Could Exist In Our Universe 214

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the beam-me-up dept.
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes The idea of negative mass has fascinated scientists since it was first used in the 16th century to explain why metals gain weight when they are oxidized. Since then, theoretical physicists have shown how it could be used to create exotic objects such as wormholes and the Alcubierre warp drive. But cosmologists' attempts to include negative matter in any reasonable model of the cosmos have always run into trouble because negative mass violates the energy conditions required to make realistic universes with Einstein's theory of general relativity. Now a pair of cosmologists have found a way around this. By treating negative mass as a perfect fluid rather than a solid point-like object, they've shown that negative mass does not violate the energy conditions as had been thought, and so it must be allowed in our universe. That has important consequences. If positive and negative mass particles were created in the early universe, they would form a kind of plasma that absorbs gravitational waves. Having built a number of gravitational wave observatories that have to see a single gravitational wave, astronomers might soon need to explain the absence of observations. Negative mass would then come in extremely handy.
Perl

Ask Slashdot: Choosing a Web Language That's Long-Lived, and Not Too Buzzy? 536

Posted by timothy
from the perl-6-will-blow-them-all-away dept.
adelayde (185757) writes "In my day job, I work on a web based service with a lot of legacy code written in that older (and some may say venerable) web-scripting language, Perl. Although we use Modern Perl extensions such as Moose, the language just seems to be ossifying and we're wanting to move to a more up-to-date and used language for web applications, or even an entire framework, to do new development. We're still planning to support the legacy code for a number of years to come; that's unavoidable. This is a fairly big project and it's mission critical to the business. The thing we're afraid of is jumping onto something that is too new and too buzzy as we'd like to make a technology decision that would be good at least for the next five years, if not more, and today's rising star could quite easily be in tomorrow's dustbin. What language and/or framework would you recommend we adopt?"

Comment: Re:Don't. (Score 1) 408

we..er..a friend of mine has a smaller dog who rolls over to get his belly rubbed for anyone. but if the front door is closed and he hears something outside, he goes nuts barking. he also barks at the wind blowing, his shadow, and when we open the door and wake him from his nap. and the A/C unit coming on. and when i move too suddenly when he's asleep on my lap.

I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them. -- Isaac Asimov

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