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+ - China tests 3,000-kph 'super-Maglev' train->

Submitted by romiir
romiir (874939) writes "Chinese researchers are testing a transportation concept that could allow future magnetic levitation trains to go over 3,000 km or 1,800 miles per hour. They believe that the vacuum tube system may also have implications for military or space launch systems.

I'd like to see it in the new proposed Beijing to United States line."

Link to Original Source

+ - Russia Retaliates: Blocks GPS, Bans US Use Of Its Rocket Engines->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Moscow is banning Washington from using Russian-made rocket engines, which the US has used to deliver its military satellites into orbit, said Russia’s Deputy PM, Dmitry Rogozin, who is in charge of space and defense industries.

According to Rogozin, Russia is also halting the operation of all American GPS stations on its territory from June 1.

Russia currently hosts 11 ground-based GPS stations, the Deputy PM said.

The move comes after the US refused to place a signal correction station for Russia’s own space-based satellite navigation system, GLONASS, on American territory, he explained.

This is a major problem for the US military because (as Bloomberg reports),

The Pentagon has no “great solution” to reduce its dependence on a Russian-made engine that powers the rocket used to launch U.S. military satellites, the Defense Department’s top weapons buyer said.

“We don’t have a great solution,” Frank Kendall, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, said yesterday after testifying before a Senate committee. “We haven’t made any decisions yet.”

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the Air Force to review its reliance on the rocket engine after tensions over Russia’s takeover of Ukraine’s Crimea region prompted questions from lawmakers about that long-time supply connection.

United Launch Alliance LLC, a partnership of Lockheed Martin Corp. and Boeing Co., uses the Russian-made RD-180 engine on Atlas V rockets."

Link to Original Source

+ - Price for Nevada dad to see state's school files on his kids: $10G->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Nevada dad John Eppolito got a bad case of sticker shock when he asked state education officials to see the permanent records of his four children.

He was told it would cost $10,194. Eppolito was concerned about Nevada's recent decision to join a multi-state consortium that shares students’ data. He wanted to know exactly what information had been compiled on his school-age kids. But state officials told him he would have to pay fees and the cost of programming and running a custom report.

“The problem is that I can’t stop them from collecting the data,” Eppolito said. “I just wanted to know what it [collected data] was. It almost seems impossible. Certainly $10,000 is enough reason to prevent a parent from getting the data.”

“This data is for everyone except the parents," Eppolito said. "It’s wrong.”

According to the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), parents have the right to review their kids' records. Small fees are allowed to be issued for records unless they in any way prevent them from obtaining them.

The Nevada Department of Education attempted to justify the hefty price tag for viewing copies of student records in a response to Eppolito.“Because the SAIN system is not designed to create reports that display individual student data in a readable format, the parent was initially told that the requested reports do not exist and cannot be produced,”"

Link to Original Source

+ - Should the unlicensed be allowed to 'drive' an autonomous car? Share your ideas->

Submitted by Hallie Siegel
Hallie Siegel (2973169) writes "How comfortable are you in putting unlicensed persons as the only passengers of autonomous cars? Would you feel comfortable letting your eight year old daughter ride an autonomous car alone to get to school? How about those who are legally blind? Let us know what you think in this opinion poll from the Open Roboethics Initiative."
Link to Original Source

+ - Feds: Sailor hacked Navy network while aboard nuclear aircraft carrier->

Submitted by ClownPenis
ClownPenis (1315157) writes "by Dan Goodin — May 9 2014, 10:31am PDT
BLACK HAT INTERNET CRIME

A former sailor assigned to a US nuclear aircraft carrier and another man have been charged with hacking the computer systems of 30 public and private organizations, including the US Navy, the Department of Homeland Security, AT&T, and Harvard University. Nicholas Paul Knight, 27, of Chantilly, VA, and Daniel Trenton Krueger, 20, of Salem, IL, were members of a crew that hacked protected computers as part of a scheme to steal personal identities and obstruct justice, according to a criminal complaint unsealed earlier this week in a US District Court in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The gang, which went by the name Team Digi7al, allegedly took to Twitter to boast of the intrusions and publicly disclose sensitive data that was taken. The hacking spree lasted from April 2012 to June 2013, prosecutors said."

Link to Original Source

+ - Firefox OS 1.3 Arrives With Dual SIM Support, Continuous Autofocus, Flash, More

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Mozilla today released Firefox OS version 1.3 to its partners for implementing in their smartphones. There are many new features for both users and developers, and the first phone to feature them is the ZTE Open C, which is available for sale as of today on eBay. First and foremost, Firefox OS users can expect dual-SIM dual-standby (DSDS) support, which gives you two lines on compatible phones, a popular feature in emerging markets. DSDS lets dual-SIM devices individually manage two different SIMs for calling, texting, or data through the “SIM Manager” interface."

+ - Execs of Cogent & Level 3 speak up about net neutrality issues

Submitted by romiir
romiir (874939) writes "Executives at Cogent and Level 3 are speaking up publicly about unnecessary internet congestion being caused by certain large ISPs refusing to upgrade congested peering connections.

On CNET: The CEO of Cogent says "Comcast bullied Netflix into an interconnection deal by refusing upgrades to fix congestion, a claim a Comcast executive told Congress was "wholly inaccurate." Full article here

Over at Level 3's blog a couple days earlier Mark Taylor, VP of Content and Media at Level 3 talked about feedback received to Michael Mooney's blog article "Chicken" | A Game Played as a Child and by some ISPs with the Internet. He goes on to explain more in depth the current situation in which some american ISPs have been made aware of congestion issues on their peering connections but refuse to take any action to allow their customers to get the bandwidth they are already paying for. More Here

Interesting that after all of this. Today, Netflix subscribers worldwide are being e-mailed informing them of a $1 increase for all new members so they can "continue to adding more movies and TV shows". The e-mail goes on to thank existing Netflix customers and let them know their plan and price will not change for two years.

Ars Technica just posted an article titled "Netflix comes through with price hike after struggles with Comcast, Verizon""

+ - The Whole Story on Dark Matter

Submitted by StartsWithABang
StartsWithABang (3485481) writes "If you looked at all the light from all the stars, clusters and galaxies in the Universe, you could figure out how much mass in the Universe had formed stars. And if you looked at how gravitation worked over the Universe's history, you could figure out how much total mass there was. These numbers differ by a factor of 50, and that's the dark matter problem. But why do we think that this dark matter has to be a new type of particle that not only isn't protons, neutrons and electrons, but can't be anything in the Standard Model? Come read the whole story on dark matter and see for yourself."

+ - Amazon Patent Standard Photography Lighting Technique

Submitted by SimonTheSoundMan
SimonTheSoundMan (1012395) writes "Photography Bay writes that the USPTO have granted a patent to Amazon as what can be described as a standard way of lighting a photography studio.

Amazon state:

Prior art solutions for achieving such a result for capturing images and/or video of objects set against a true white background include solutions that often involve some type of image retouching, post processing, “green screen” techniques, or other special effects and image and video manipulation to achieve the result of an object set against a true white background.

Accordingly, as will be described herein, embodiments of the present disclosure provide a studio arrangement in which an object can be photographed and/or filmed, and the images and/or video captured by the camera achieve the effect noted above without any image manipulation due to the particular arrangements of the subject, camera, lighting and background.

Just be careful where you place your lights to obtain a perfect white background, you could face serious litigation."

+ - SPAM: If You Drop Dead, What Happens to Your Computer Passwords?

Submitted by rlewisthewriter
rlewisthewriter (3644953) writes "It’s a typical Tuesday night. You’re surfing the web on your new iPhone, checking out the American Idol highlights on YouTube.

You finish your bowl of chips, gulp down the rest of your soda when suddenlywham.

Pain shoots through your chest, you feel a shortness of breath and your entire body grinds to a halt—you’re having a heart attack.

You grasp your chest, lose your balance and drop to the floor, dead as a doornail.

After the dust settles (literally), your loved ones may be stunned to discover the tragedy behind the tragedy: they don’t have access to your computer passwords.

But don’t worry: Legacy Locker’s one-of-a-kind “life insurance policy” for computer passwords is looking to change that.

The idea is simple. With Legacy Locker (now called "Password Box"), your computer passwords are accessible even after you’re six feet under. You store passwords in the system and, in the event of your demise, it provides those passwords to those you designate as “beneficiaries.”"

Link to Original Source

+ - The Fight To Have Have The First Laser Headlights

Submitted by cartechboy
cartechboy (2660665) writes "Will the real first laser headlights please stand up? You may find that to be a funny, but I'm not kidding. It's gotten to the point where we have a he said she said battle going on over which automaker has the first laser headlights. BMW has claimed to have the world's first production laser headlights with the new i8, but now Audi's claiming to have them with the R8 LMX. So which is really first? Honestly, does it even matter? Yes, yes it does, and both automakers are technically correct. The BMW i8 offered laser high-beams before the R8 LMX did, but the i8's are optional; the Audi R8 LMX comes with them standard—but also only as high beams. Unfortunately laser headlights aren't DOT approved here in the U.S., yet. So we can't even order them on the i8, and Audi hasn't said whether the R8 LMX will come to the U.S."

+ - SpaceX Injunction Dissolved->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Two weeks ago, SpaceX filed suit against the U.S. Air Force in an attempt to enforce competition for rocket purchases. They argued that is was a bad idea to blindly shovel money into Russia's coffers for rides to space, and said there was no way for other rocket manufacturers to get a foot in the door. Last week, it looked like they were getting traction — an injunction was granted, temporarily halting the Air Force's process of buying rockets. Unfortunately for SpaceX, that injunction has now been dissolved. At the heart of the suit was Executive Order 13,661, which blocks the transfer of wealth to people in the Russian Federation who are related to the situation in the Ukraine. SpaceX said that since Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin was the head of their space agency, payments to the agency were effectively payments to him. U.S. departments of Commerce, State, and the Treasury all sent letters to the court saying this was not the case, and the court agreed.
Here's the final ruling."

Link to Original Source

+ - Physicists Turn 8MP Smartphone Camera Into A Quantum Random Number Generator

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "Random numbers are the lifeblood of many cryptographic systems and demand for them will only increase in the coming years as techniques such as quantum cryptography become mainstream. But generating genuinely random numbers is a tricky business, not least because it cannot be done with a deterministic process such as a computer program. Now physicists have worked out how to use a smartphone camera to generate random numbers using quantum uncertainties. The approach is based on the fact that the emission of a photon is a quantum process that is always random. So in a given unit of time, a light emitter will produce a number of photons that varies by a random amount. Counting the number of photons gives a straightforward way of generating random numbers. The team points out that the pixels in smartphone cameras are now so sensitive that they can pick up this kind of quantum variation. And since a camera has many pixels working in parallel, a single image can generate large quantities of random digits. The team demonstrate the technique in a proof-of principle experiment using the 8 megapixel camera on a Nokia N9 smartphone while taking images of a green LED. The result is a quantum random number generator capable of producing digits at the rate of 1 megabit per second. That's more than enough for most applications and raises the prospect of credit card transactions and encrypted voice calls from an ordinary smartphone that are secured by the laws of quantum physics."

Comment: Re:Sigh... (Score 1) 227

by romiir (#46959769) Attached to: Comcast: Destroying What Makes a Competitive Internet Possible
Well, I do use Netflix, and have had their service non-stop for nearly a decade. I used to have 8 discs at a time, but for the past few years have only used their streaming service. I am outraged at both companies for even considering the peering arrangement. (If your not familiar, google: "netflix comcast deal" they are also working on deals with other ISPs all of which hurt network neutrality. Want to know why? Click my links below!)

Here is some food for thought:
A bunch of cable tv channels were dropped from directv a few times fairly recently during contract disputes. If level 1 providers like cogent and level3 take a card from big cables deck; by offering offending ISPs just had a taste of dark fiber and all customers jumping ship they might change their tune. I'm sure other ISPs could build a decent network with all those new customers. If you hold their customers hostage and they will definitely come to the table or go out of business, either would be good. We can not allow money hungry last mile monopoly to continue to drive internet speeds downward while erasing net neutrality.

If you are a netflix customer I urge you to please: CALL THEM AND DEMAND THEY CANCEL THE COMCAST AND OTHER ISP DEALS. WE CAN NOT STAND FOR THEM HURTING NET NEUTRALITY NOR CAN WE AFFORD TO PAY THEM TO PUT SERVERS IN EVERY SINGLE ISPs DATACENTER. I CALLED AND DEMANDED THAT THEY SEND A MESSAGE TO THEIR CEO TO GOOGLE LEVEL3 http://blog.level3.com/global-... and COGENTs http://www.cnet.com/news/cogen... STANCE ON THE SITUATION.

Spread the word, please, I beg you as a longterm netflix customer and fan who loves this (normally) innovative and forward thinking company.

Comment: Re:net neutrality... (Score 1) 114

by romiir (#46959679) Attached to: Netflix Pondering Peer-to-Peer Technology For Streaming Video
I couldn't agree more with this comment. If it is OK for netflix to pay network providers for peering/colocation, then we should be able to get reimbursed for hosting a netflix node even as a customer.

Here is some food for thought:
A bunch of cable tv channels were dropped from directv a few times fairly recently. If level 1 providers take a card from big cables deck; by offering offending ISPs just had a taste of dark fiber and all customers jumping ship they might change their tune. I'm sure other ISPs could build a decent network with all those new customers. If you hold their customers hostage and they will definitely come to the table or go out of business, either would be good. We can not allow money hungry last mile monopoly to continue to drive internet speeds downward while erasing net neutrality.

If you are a netflix customer I urge you to please: CALL THEM AND DEMAND THEY CANCEL THE COMCAST AND OTHER ISP DEALS. WE CAN NOT STAND FOR THEM HURTING NET NEUTRALITY NOR CAN WE AFFORD TO PAY THEM TO PUT SERVERS IN EVERY SINGLE ISPs DATACENTER. I CALLED AND DEMANDED THAT THEY SEND A MESSAGE TO THEIR CEO TO GOOGLE LEVEL3 http://blog.level3.com/global-... and COGENTs http://www.cnet.com/news/cogen... STANCE ON THE SITUATION.

Spread the word, please, I beg you as a longterm netflix customer and fan who loves this (normally) innovative and forward thinking company.

The cost of feathers has risen, even down is up!

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