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+ - Comcast Forgets To Delete Revealing Note From Blog Post

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Earlier today, Comcast published a blog post to criticize the newly announced coalition opposing its merger with Time Warner Cable and to cheer about the FCC’s decision to restart the “shot clock” on that deal. But someone at Kabletown is probably getting a stern talking-to right now, after an accidental nugget of honesty made its way into that post. Comcast posted to their corporate blog today about the merger review process, reminding everyone why they think it will be so awesome and pointing to the pro-merger comments that have come in to the FCC. But they also left something else in. Near the end, the blog post reads, “Comcast and Time Warner Cable do not currently compete for customers anywhere in America. That means that if the proposed transaction goes through, consumers will not lose a choice of cable companies. Consumers will not lose a choice of broadband providers. And not a single market will see a reduction in competition. Those are simply the facts.” The first version of the blog post, which was also sent out in an e-mail blast, then continues: “We are still working with a vendor to analyze the FCC spreadsheet but in case it shows that there are any consumers in census blocks that may lose a broadband choice, want to make sure these sentences are more nuanced.” After that strange little note, the blog post carries on in praise of competition, saying, “There is a reason we want to provide our customers with better service, faster speeds, and a diverse choice of programming: we don’t want to lose them.”"

+ - What Does The NSA Think Of Cryptographers? ->

Submitted by mikejuk
mikejuk (1801200) writes "A recently declassified NSA house magazine, CryptoLog, reveals some interesting attitudes between the redactions. What is the NSA take on cryptography?
The article of interest is a report of a trip to the 1992 EuroCrypt conference by an NSA cryptographer whose name is redacted.We all get a little bored having to sit though presentations that are off topic, boring or even down right silly but we generally don't write our opinions down. In this case the criticisms are cutting and they reveal a lot about the attitude of the NSA cryptographers. You need to keep in mind as you read that this is intended for the NSA crypto community and as such the writer would have felt at home with what was being written.
Take for example:
Three of the last four sessions were of no value whatever, and indeed there was almost nothing at Eurocrypt to interest us (this is good news!). The scholarship was actually extremely good; it’s just that the directions which external cryptologic researchers have taken are remarkably far from our own lines of interest.
It seems that back in 1992 academic cryptographers were working on things that the NSA didn't consider of any importance. Could things be the same now?
The gulf between the two camps couldn't be better expressed than:
The conference again offered an interesting view into the thought processes of the world’s leading “cryptologists.” It is indeed remarkable how far the Agency has strayed from the True Path.
The ironic comment is clearly suggesting that the NSA is on the "true path" whatever that might be.
Clearly the gap between the NSA and the academic crypto community is probably as wide today with the different approaches to the problem being driven by what each wants to achieve. It is worth reading the rest of the article."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Just what any parent knows (Score 1) 154

>Everyone is exactly as intelligent as a human, unless they're brain damaged by disease or defect. Any child, any adult, properly motivated, with proper practice and effort, can be a genius. It is just that simple.

This is false on its face. It does not matter how much some people try, or study, or work hard - they will never be a genius in anything and it's not because they have brain damage. There are variations in how our brains work, just as with how the rest of our bodies work, that are heritable and that limit how much we can achieve. I think it's a disservice to tell people that the reason that they aren't succeeding at something is because they aren't trying hard enough, when in reality they are literally incapable of that kind of performance.

+ - Details of iOS and Android Device Encryption

Submitted by swillden
swillden (191260) writes "There's been a lot of discussion of what, exactly, is meant by the Apple announcement about iOS8 device encryption, and the subsequent announcement by Google that Android L will enable encryption by default. Two security researchers tackled these questions in blog posts:

Matthew Green tackled iOS encryption, concluding that at bottom the change really boils down to applying the existing iOS encryption methods to more data. He also reviews the iOS approach, which uses Apple's "Secure Enclave" chip as the basis for the encryption and guesses at how it is that Apple can say it's unable to decrypt the devices. He concludes, with some clarification from a commenter, that Apple really can't (unless you use a weak password which can be brute-forced, and even then it's hard).

Nikolay Elenkov looks into the preview release of Android "L". He finds that not only has Google turned encryption on by default, but appears to have incorporated hardware-based security as well, to make it impossible (or at least much more difficult) to perform brute force password searches off-device."

+ - Some raindrops exceed their terminal velocity->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "New research reveals that some raindrops are “super-terminal” (they travel more than 30% faster than their terminal velocity, at which air resistance prevents further acceleration due to gravity). The drops are the result of natural processes—and they make up a substantial fraction of rainfall. Whereas all drops the team studied that were 0.8 millimeters and larger fell at expected speeds, between 30% and 60% of those measuring 0.3 mm dropped at super-terminal speeds. It’s not yet clear why these drops are falling faster than expected, the researchers say. But according to one notion, the speedy drops are fragments of larger drops that have broken apart in midair but have yet to slow down. If that is indeed the case, the researchers note, then raindrop disintegration happens normally in the atmosphere and more often than previously presumed—possibly when drops collide midair or become unstable as they fall through the atmosphere. Further study could improve estimates of the total amount of rainfall a storm will produce or the amount of erosion that it can generate."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:And what they did not publish (Score 1) 227

by EllisDees (#47650157) Attached to: About Half of Kids' Learning Ability Is In Their DNA

>There's nothing in this research that shows equal opportunity or head start programs don't help, much less that they are a "waste."

Well, not in *this* research. The government's own research does shows that head start is a massive waste of money:

"In sum, this report finds that providing access to Head Start has benefits for both 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds in the cognitive, health, and parenting domains, and for 3-year-olds in the social-emotional domain. However, the benefits of access to Head Start at age four are largely absent by 1st grade for the program population as a whole."

http://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/opre/executive_summary_final.pdf

+ - How Facebook Sold You Krill Oil

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "With its trove of knowledge about the likes, histories and social connections of its 1.3 billion users worldwide, Facebook executives argue, it can help advertisers reach exactly the right audience and measure the impact of their ads — while also, like TV, conveying a broad brand message. Facebook, which made $1.5 billion in profit on $7.9 billion in revenue last year, sees particular value in promoting its TV-like qualities, given that advertisers spend $200 billion a year on that medium. “We want to hold ourselves accountable for delivering results,” said Carolyn Everson, Facebook’s vice president for global marketing solutions, in a recent interview. “Not smoke and mirrors, maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t.”"

Comment: I've owned every BF Game (Score 1) 208

by puppetman (#47310465) Attached to: The Simultaneous Rise and Decline of <em>Battlefield</em>

I've played a lot of BF, since owning 1942 on release day. I can't think of a version I've missed (though I've stopped buying expansion packs).

That said, I stopped buying on release day a while ago. My gaming time is maybe 2% of what it was a decade or so ago, so it's valuable and not to be wasted on buggy releases and bad games.

Comment: Re:Thanks for the tip! (Score 3, Interesting) 448

by puppetman (#47306607) Attached to: $500k "Energy-Harvesting" Kickstarter Scam Unfolding Right Now

I'm embarrassed to say that I pledged $70. I thought being on Kickstarter provided some level of protection against this, and that no one would be so brazen as to hijack people's names and credentials, and post them a popular website to promote their claims.

Thanks, Slashdot. I promise I'll be more careful next time.

If someone tells me the PowerUp 3.0 remote-controlled airplane is a hoax, I'll be devastated...

"One day I woke up and discovered that I was in love with tripe." -- Tom Anderson

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