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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

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+ - French nuclear industry in turmoil as manufacturer buckles->

Submitted by mdsolar
mdsolar (1045926) writes "France's nuclear industry is in turmoil after the country's main reactor manufacturer, Areva, reported a loss for 2014 of 4.8 billion euros ($5.3 billion) — more than its entire market value.

The government of France, the world's most nuclear dependent country, has a 29% stake in Areva, which is among the biggest global nuclear technology companies. The loss puts its future — and that of France as a leader in nuclear technology — at risk.

Energy and Environment Minister Segolene Royal said Wednesday she asked Areva and utility giant Electricite de France to work together on finding solutions, amid reports of a possible merger or other link-up.

The government said in a statement that it's working closely with Areva to restructure and secure financing, and would "take its responsibility as a shareholder" in future decisions about its direction.

Areva reported Wednesday 1 billion euros in losses on three major nuclear projects in Finland and France, among other hits.

Areva has lost money for years, in part linked to delays on those projects and to a global pullback from nuclear energy since the 2011 Fukushima accident."

Link to Original Source

+ - Would You Need a License to Drive a Self-Driving Car?->

Submitted by agent elevator
agent elevator (1075679) writes "Not as strange a question as it seems, writes Mark Harris at IEEE Spectrum : 'Self-driving cars promise a future where you can watch television, sip cocktails, or snooze all the way home. But what happens when something goes wrong? Today’s drivers have not been taught how to cope with runaway acceleration, unexpected braking, or a car that wants to steer into a wall.' The California DMV is considering something that would be similar to requirements for robocar test-driver training."
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+ - White House issues veto threat as House prepares to vote on EPA 'secret science'->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "The U.S. House of Representatives could vote as early as this week to approve two controversial, Republican-backed bills that would change how the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) uses science and scientific advice to inform its policies. Many Democrats, scientific organizations, and environmental groups are pushing back, calling the bills thinly veiled attempts to weaken future regulations and favor industry. White House advisors today announced that they will recommend that President Barack Obama veto the bills if they reach his desk in their current form."
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+ - SpaceX's Challenge Against Blue Origins' Patent Fails to Take Off->

Submitted by speedplane
speedplane (552872) writes "As was previously discussed on Slashdot, back in September SpaceX challenged a patent owned by Blue Origin. The technology concerned landing rockets at sea. Yesterday, the judges in the case issued their opinion stating that they are unable to initiate review of the patent on the grounds brought by SpaceX.

Although at first glance this would appear to be a Blue Origin win, looking closer, the judges explained that Blue Origin's patent lacks sufficient disclosure, effectively stating that the patent is invalid, but not on the specific grounds brought by SpaceX:

Because claim 14 lacks adequate structural support for some of the means-plus-function limitations, it is not amenable to construction. And without ascertaining the breadth of claim 14, we cannot undertake the necessary factual inquiry for evaluating obviousness with respect to differences between the claimed subject matter and the prior art.

If SpaceX wants to move forward against Blue Origin, this opinion bodes well for them, but they will need to take their case in front of a different court."
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+ - Are Google and Wikipedia in a mutually-destructive relationship?->

Submitted by metasonix
metasonix (650947) writes "Who benefits from Google's increasing of Wikipedia data to support its search results? Mark Devlin, CEO of Newslines, a new crowdsourced news search engine, says the increasing co-dependency between the multi-billion dollar search corporation and its built-for-free partner hurts users experience, devalues web results and has turned unwitting Wikipedia editors into Google's slaves." And he offers evidence, unlike most WMF press releases.

Previously by Devlin: Stop Giving Wikipedia Money"

Link to Original Source

+ - Domain Shadowing Latest Angler Exploit Kit Evasion Technique->

Submitted by msm1267
msm1267 (2804139) writes "The Angler Exploit Kit continues to evolve at an alarming rate, seamlessly adding not only zero-day exploits as they become available, but also a host of evasion techniques that have elevated it to the ranks of the more formidable hacker toolkits available.

New research has been released on a technique used in a recent Angler campaign in which attackers are using stolen domain registrant credentials to create massive lists of subdomains that are used in rapid-fire fashion to either redirect victims to attack sites, or serve as hosts for malicious payloads.

The technique has been called domain shadowing, and it is considered the next evolution of fast flux; so far it has enabled attackers to have thousands of subdomains at their disposal. In this case, the attackers are taking advantage of the fact that domain owners rarely monitor their domain registration credentials, which are being stolen in phishing attacks.They’re then able to create a seemingly endless supply of subdomains to be used in additional compromises."

Link to Original Source

+ - Scientists Create Artificial Sunlight Real Enough To Trick the Brain 1

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "Navanshu Agarwal writes that Italian scientists have developed an artificial LED sunlight system that looks just like real daylight streaming through a skylight. The LED skylight uses a thin coating of nanoparticles to recreate the effect that makes the sky blue, known as Rayleigh Scattering that doesn’t just light up a room but produces the texture and feel of sunlight. Paolo Di Trapani, one of the scientists who worked on the device believes that the skylight will allow developers of the future to not just build up, but also far down below the ground- without any of the dinginess that currently keeps us above ground.

CoeLux hopes to treat seasonal affective disorder, or SAD. Each year, some 10 million Americans, mostly women, find themselves sinking into a heavy malaise during the wintertime. CoeLux hopes its LED bulbs, which create the illusion of infinitely tall, bright blue skies, will help trick the brains of people with SAD, ridding them of their blues."

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