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+ - Jason Scott of textfiles.com Wants Your AOL & Shovelware CDs-> 1

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn writes: You've probably got a spindle in your close tor a drawer full of CD-ROM media mailed to you or delivered with some hardware that you put away "just in case" and now (ten years later) the case for actually using them is laughable. Well, a certain mentally ill individual named Jason Scott has a fever and the only cure is more AOL CDs. But his sickness doesn't stop there, "I also want all the CD-ROMs made by Walnut Creek CD-ROM. I want every shovelware disc that came out in the entire breadth of the CD-ROM era. I want every shareware floppy, while we’re talking. I want it all. The CD-ROM era is basically finite at this point. It’s over. The time when we’re going to use physical media as the primary transport for most data is done done done. Sure, there’s going to be distributions and use of CD-ROMs for some time to come, but the time when it all came that way and when it was in most cases the only method of distribution in the history books, now. And there were a specific amount of CD-ROMs made. There are directories and listings of many that were manufactured. I want to find those. I want to image them, and I want to put them up. I’m looking for stacks of CD-ROMs now. Stacks and stacks. AOL CDs and driver CDs and Shareware CDs and even hand-burned CDs of stuff you downloaded way back when. This is the time to strike." Who knows? His madness may end up being appreciated by younger generations!
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+ - Adventures in microchip repair

Submitted by plcurechax
plcurechax writes: From Intel's own website, a "soft-news" or promotional pieces takes a high level look at technology behind fixing design mistakes in microprocessors, "Microscopic Adventures of a Chip Circuitry Repairman":

For nearly two decades, the pursuit of perfection has led Nikos Troullinos down minuscular rabbit holes to fix tiny design mistakes that can cause computer processor circuitry to malfunction..

While Slashdot regulars and IT veterans don't need to be reminded about well publicized follies of past processor flaws that have been discovered, from the infamous Pentium floating point division bug (FDIV) discovered in 1994, to the TSX flaw on Haswell to early Broadwell processors discovered in 2014. TSXTransactional Synchronization Extensions.

Given the complexity and vast number of processor models, few flaws are discovered outside of the manufacturer. I believe an average of less than 1.0 (flaw) per technology generation. While Intel's processor flaws are the best publicized, that is at least in part due to having the largest brand awareness amongst consumers. Non-Intel x86 and other non-x86 microprocessors have had flaws as well from classic 8-bit micros used in 1980s personal computers and game systems to the latest AMD and ARM offerings.

The Intel Pentium FDIV bug occurred at a time when the company had been spending considerable amounts of money and effort in mainstream advertising intended to build brand awareness, direct to average consumers, not just IT professors and computing enthusiasts. Bob Colwell, retired Intel engineer who worked on the Pentium Pro (P6) to the Pentium 4 (NetBurst / Willamette), discusses this in an appendix of his book, The Pentium Chronicles, Colwell discusses his own involvement in internal FDIV bug reporting, and Intel's surprise and poor handling of the public relations fiasco which perplexed top executives and engineers for quite some time.

+ - Ancestery.com caught sharing DNA database with government->

Submitted by SonicSpike
SonicSpike writes: In 1996, a young woman named Angie Dodge was murdered in her apartment in a small town in Idaho. Although the police collected DNA from semen left at the crime scene, they haven’t been able to match the DNA to existing profiles in any criminal database, and the murder has never been solved.

Fast forward to 2014. The Idaho police sent the semen sample to a private lab to extract a DNA profile that included YSTR and mtDNA—the two genetic markers used to determine patrilineal and matrilineal relationships (it’s unclear why they reopened the case after nearly 20 years). These markers would allow investigators to search some existing databases to try to find a match between the sample and genetic relatives.

The cops chose to use a lab linked to a private collection of genetic genealogical data called the Sorenson Database (now owned by Ancestry.com), which claims it’s “the foremost collection of genetic genealogy data in the world.” The reason the Sorenson Database can make such an audacious claim is because it has obtained its more than 100,000 DNA samples and documented multi-generational family histories from “volunteers in more than 100 countries around the world.”

Sorenson promised volunteers their genetic data would only be used for “genealogical services, including the determination of family migration patterns and geographic origins” and would not be shared outside Sorenson.

Despite this promise, Sorenson shared its vast collection of data with the Idaho police. Without a warrant or court order, investigators asked the lab to run the crime scene DNA against Sorenson’s private genealogical DNA database. Sorenson found 41 potential familial matches, one of which matched on 34 out of 35 alleles—a very close match that would generally indicate a close familial relationship. The cops then asked, not only for the “protected” name associated with that profile, but also for all “all information including full names, date of births, date and other information pertaining to the original donor to the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy project.”

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+ - Apple Confirms Tattoos Can Interfere With Apple Watch's Heart Rate Sensor-> 1

Submitted by itwbennett
itwbennett writes: Some watch functions require direct contact with the skin to work. If the device can’t detect a pulse, it assumes it isn’t being worn, shutting downs apps and requiring people to enter their passcode. Turning off the wrist-detection function solves the issue, but prevents people from using Apple Pay. 'Permanent or temporary changes to your skin, such as some tattoos, can also impact heart rate sensor performance. The ink, pattern, and saturation of some tattoos can block light from the sensor, making it difficult to get reliable readings,' Apple wrote on the device’s product support page.
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+ - Scientists Find Radioactive Aircraft Carrier Off California Coast

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com writes: Aaron Kinney writes in the San Jose Mercury News that scientists have captured the first clear images of the USS Independence, a radioactivity-polluted World War II aircraft carrier that rests on the ocean floor 30 miles off the coast of Half Moon Bay. The Independence saw combat at Wake Island and other decisive battles against Japan in 1944 and 1945 and was later blasted with radiation in two South Pacific nuclear tests. Assigned as a target vessel for the Operation Crossroads atomic bomb tests, she was placed within one-half-mile of ground zero and was engulfed in a fireball and heavily damaged during the 1946 nuclear weapons tests at Bikini Atoll. The veteran ship did not sink, however (though her funnels and island were crumpled by the blast), and after taking part in another explosion on 25 July, the highly radioactive hull was later taken to Pearl Harbor and San Francisco for further tests and was finally scuttled off the coast of San Francisco, California, on 29 January 1951. "This ship is an evocative artifact of the dawn of the atomic age, when we began to learn the nature of the genie we'd uncorked from the bottle," says James Delgado. "It speaks to the 'Greatest Generation' — people's fathers, grandfathers, uncles and brothers who served on these ships, who flew off those decks and what they did to turn the tide in the Pacific war."

Delgado says he doesn't know how many drums of radioactive material are buried within the ship — perhaps a few hundred. But he is doubtful that they pose any health or environmental risk. The barrels were filled with concrete and sealed in the ship's engine and boiler rooms, which were protected by thick walls of steel. The carrier itself was clearly "hot" when it went down and and it was packed full of fresh fission products and other radiological waste at the time it sank. The Independence was scuttled in what is now the Gulf of the Farallones sanctuary, a haven for wildlife, from white sharks to elephant seals and whales. Despite its history as a dumping ground Richard Charter says the radioactive waste is a relic of a dark age before the enviornmental movement took hold. "It's just one of those things that humans rather stupidly did in the past that we can't retroactively fix."

+ - FBI Accuses Researcher of Hacking Plane, Seizes Equipment->

Submitted by chicksdaddy
chicksdaddy writes: The Feds are listening and they really can't take a joke. That's the apparent moral of security researcher Chris Roberts' legal odyssey on Wednesday, which saw him escorted off a plane in Syracuse by two FBI agents and questioned for four hours over a humorous tweet Roberts posted about his ability to hack into the cabin control systems of the Boeing 737 he was flying.(https://twitter.com/Sidragon1/status/588433855184375808) Roberts (aka @sidragon1), joked that he could "start playing with EICAS messages," a reference to the Engine Indicating and Crew Alerting System (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Engine-indicating_and_crew-alerting_system).

Roberts was traveling to Syracuse to give a presentation. He said local law enforcement and FBI agents boarded the plane on the tarmac and escorted him off. He was questioned for four hours, with officers alleging they had evidence he had tampered with in-flight systems on an earlier leg of his flight from Colorado to Chicago.

In an interview with The Security Ledger (https://securityledger.com/2015/04/hacker-on-a-plane-fbi-seizes-researchers-gear/), Roberts said the agents questioned him about his tweet and whether he tampered with the systems on the United flight -something he denies doing.

Roberts had been approached earlier by the Denver office of the FBI which warned him away from further research on airplanes. The FBI was also looking to approach airplane makers Boeing and Airbus and wanted him to rebuild a virtualized environment he built to test airplane vulnerabilities to verify what he was saying.

Roberts refused, and the FBI seized his encrypted laptop and storage devices and has yet to return them, he said. The agents said they wished to do a forensic analysis of his laptop. Roberts said he declined to provide that information and requested a warrant to search his equipment. As of Friday, Roberts said he has not received a warrant.

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+ - Oil Producers & Frackers Excluded From California's Emergency Water Restrict->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 writes: California's oil and gas industry is estimated (with official data due to be released in coming days) to use more than 2 million gallons of fresh water per day; so it is hardly surprising that, as Reuters reports, Californians are outraged after discovering that these firms are excluded from Governor Jerry Brown's mandatory water restrictions, "forcing ordinary Californians to shoulder the burden of the drought."
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+ - Rendering a Frame of "Deus Ex: Human Revolution"

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: Video games are among the most computationally intensive applications. The amount of calculation achieved in a few milliseconds can sometimes be mind-blowing.
This post about the breakdown of a frame rendering in "Deus Ex: Human Revolution" takes us through the different steps of the process.
It explains in detail the rendering passes involved, the techniques as well as the algorithms processed by a computer — 60 times per second.

+ - Postal Service using spy cameras to collect data at post offices->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 writes: A hidden camera was found that captured license plates and facial features of customers leaving a Denver Post Office. Soon after the discovery went public the device was ripped from the ground and disappeared.

The device was operated by the United State Postal Inspection Service, the law enforcement branch of the U.S. Postal Service. The device appeared to be tripped by any vehicle leaving the property on Johnson Road, but the lens was not positioned to capture images of the front door, employee entrance, or loading dock areas of the post office.

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+ - Demacrocy, Free Speech; and Beta Slashdot considered Harmful.->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: As a non-Beowulf cluster of Anonami, we humbly beg for the attentions of our Robotic Soviet Corporate overlords in the small matter of the Beta Slashdot debacle. As a member of the tin-foil hat wearing Anonamouses, we are trying to keep the size of our digital footprint at low as possible, but instead of being heralded and regaled as the pinnacle of digital evolution, we are instead accursed 25% of the time with BETA SLASHDOT.
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+ - New Digital Map Reveals Stonehenge is Even Bigger Than We Thought->

Submitted by Taffykay
Taffykay writes: Previously unknown archaeological monuments have been discovered around Stonehenge as part of an enormous digital mapping project that has transformed scientists’ knowledge of this iconic landscape. A team from the University of Birmingham’s Stonehenge Hidden Landscape Project have used remote sensing techniques and geophysical surveys to map the area to a depth of three meters below ground, resulting in the most detailed archaeological digital map of Stonehenge and its surrounds ever produced.
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+ - Internet access required to map local drive Windows 8.1->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: On my Dell Venue 8 pro running Windows 8.1 x86 it requires Internet access in order to map a local Samba share. I created a short video showing the behavior. It will not allow the local drive mapping until it is able to talk to Microsoft. In the video the IP address is 131.253.61.98 (owned by Microsoft) on port 443.
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