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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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+ - Nobel Peace Prize chairman demoted, first time in 114-year history->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "The Nobel Peace Prize awarding Norwegian Nobel Committee on Tuesday elected a new chairman to replace Thorbjoern Jagland, whose six-year tenure has been lined with controversies.

Jagland will remain a member of the voting panel but was a contentious leader, attracting criticism for his dual role as committee chairman and head of the European Council when the prize was awarded to the European Union in 2012. His leadership also was clouded by the decision to give the prize to Barack Obama in 2009 after he had just been elected president, and the 2010 prize to the jailed dissident Liu Xiabo drew fury from China.

The former labor politician was replaced by the panel's deputy chairman, Kaci Kullmann Five, a former conservative party leader. She denied that Jagland's ousting had anything to do with pressure from China, which froze diplomatic ties to Norway after the 2010 award."

Link to Original Source

+ - Astronomers Find a Dusty Galaxy That Shouldn't Exist->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Peering back in time to find the very earliest objects in the universe, an international team of astronomers has discovered a galaxy that shouldn't be there at all.

The problem, the scientists report Monday in Nature , is that while the tiny galaxy dates from just 700 million years or so after the big bang, it's far more dusty than something this young and small has any right to be.

The dusty galaxy is just one of the recent surprises astronomers have found. "Last week," says Marrone, "we learned of an incredibly massive black hole in the early universe. Now we have this average galaxy with significant amounts of dust. We've had this cartoon picture of the early universe, but it's clear that we really don't know what's going on.""

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+ - Small satellite industry predicted to blossom->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "An industry study now predicts that more than 500 small satellites, including nanosats, cubesats, microsats, and minisats, will be launched in the next five years.

Note however this important detail, highlighted below:

75% of the 510 satellites to be launched during the next five years will be for government civil and defense agencies. Growth in government demand will be stronger than in the commercial world where a total of 130 satellites are expected. "Large constellation projects such as those announced in 2014 by OneWeb and by SpaceX in association with Google have not been included in our forecasts/scenarios for launch by 2019," said Rachel Villain, Principal Advisor at Euroconsult and Editor of the report. "Large constellation projects could, however, represent a very significant component of launches over the following five year period (2020-2024)." [emphasis mine]

Even though the predicted launches represent a two-thirds increase per year compared to the previous decade, this launch rate does not include the big private constellations that appear almost certain to fly. In other words, all signs point to the possibility that we are about to see a real boom in the space industry."
Link to Original Source

+ - ISIS threatens life of Twitter founder after thousands of account suspensions->

Submitted by Patrick O'Neill
Patrick O'Neill (3863175) writes "After a wave of account bannings that marks Twitter's most aggressive move ever against ISIS, new images circulated from militants shows founder Jack Dorsey in crosshairs with the caption "Twitter, you started this war." The famously tech-savy ISIS has met a number of defeats on American-built social media recently with sites like Twitter and YouTube banning the group's efforts in unprecedented numbers."
Link to Original Source

+ - But for the video ...->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "The latest example of cellphone video vindicating someone from false charges is a doozy.

He was not only arrested, he was also charged with two felonies and a misdemeanor. A prior drug charge on his record meant he was potentially looking at decades in prison. Seven witnesses backed up the police account that Dendinger had assaulted Cassard.

But Dendinger had asked his wife and nephew to record him serving the papers. It was a last minute decision, but one that may have saved him his freedom. That’s all well and good. And Dendinger has since filed a federal civil rights lawsuit. But why aren’t the seven witnesses to Dendinger’s nonexistent assault on Cassard already facing felony charges?"

Link to Original Source

+ - Ghostery lists Adobe TypeKit as privacy threat -> 3

Submitted by Maurits van der Schee
Maurits van der Schee (2943109) writes "In order to provide the Typekit service, Adobe may collect information about the fonts being served to your website. The information is used for the purposes of billing and compliance, and may include the following:

Adobe TypeKit's privacy policy says that, but AFAIK "may include" does not imply "is limited to". Also this "compliance" is not further specified. What do you think? Should I take off my tin-foil hat?"
Link to Original Source

+ - Giant craters found in Siberia, but scientists are nervous to study them->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Russian scientists have now spotted a total of seven craters, five of which are in the Yamal Peninsula. Two of those holes have since turned into lakes. And one giant crater is rimmed by a ring of at least 20 mini-craters, the Siberian Times reported. Dozens more Siberian craters are likely still out there, said Moscow scientist Vasily Bogoyavlensky of the Oil and Gas Research Institute, calling for an "urgent" investigation.

He fears that if temperatures continue to rise — and they were five degrees higher than average in 2012 and 2013 — more craters will emerge in an area awash in gas fields vital to the national economy. "It is important not to scare people, but to understand that it is a very serious problem and we must research this," he told the Siberian Times. "We must research this phenomenon urgently, to prevent possible disasters."

These objects need to be studied, but it is rather dangerous for the researchers," Bogoyavlensky told the Siberian Times. "We know that there can occur a series of gas emissions over an extended period of time, but we do not know exactly when they might happen. ... It is very risky, because no one can guarantee there would not be new emissions."

Making matters worse, the gas is extremely flammable. One of the methane bursts has already caught fire. Nearby residents in a town called Antipayuta say they recently saw a bright flash in the distance. "Probably the gas ignited," Bogoyavlensky said. "This shows us that such [an] explosion could be rather dangerous and destructive. Years of experience has shown that gas emissions can cause serious damage to drilling rigs, oil and gas fields and offshore pipelines.""

Link to Original Source

+ - Oracle Sues 5 Oregon Officials for "improper influence"

Submitted by SpzToid
SpzToid (869795) writes "Following up on an earlier Slashdot story, the Oracle Corporation has filed a rather timely suit against five of former governor John Kitzhaber's staff for their "improper influence" in the decision to shutter the Cover Oregon healthcare website, while blaming Oracle to defuse the political consequences. Oracle argues the website was ready to go before the state decided to switch to the federal exchange in April.

"The work on the exchange was complete by February 2014, but going live with the website and providing a means for all Oregonians to sign up for health insurance coverage didn’t match the former-Governor's re-election strategy to 'go after' Oracle,” Oracle spokeswoman Deborah Hellinger said in a statement.

Kitzhaber resigned last week amid criminal probes into an influence-peddling scandal involving allegations that his fiancée used her position in his office for personal gain."

+ - UNDER U.S. PRESSURE, PAYPAL NUKES MEGA FOR ENCRYPTING FILES->

Submitted by seoras
seoras (147590) writes "After coming under intense pressure PayPal has closed the account of cloud-storage service Mega. According to the company, SOPA proponent Senator Patrick Leahy personally pressured Visa and Mastercard who in turn called on PayPal to terminate the account. Bizarrely, Mega's encryption is being cited as a key problem.... ... What makes the situation more unusual is that PayPal reportedly apologized to Mega for its withdrawal while acknowledging that company’s business is indeed legitimate.
However, PayPal also advised that Mega’s unique selling point – it’s end-to-end-encryption – was a key concern for the processor.""

Link to Original Source

+ - NSA Spying Wins Another Rubber Stamp->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "The FISA court has again renewed an order allowing the NSA to continue its illegal bulk collection of Americans' phone records, at least until June 1 when it is set to expire in Congress. President Obama pledged to end the controversial program more than a year ago.

The extension is the fifth of its kind since Obama said he would effectively end the Snowden-exposed program as it currently exists during a major policy speech in January 2014. Obama and senior administration officials have repeatedly insisted that they will not act alone to end the program without Congress.

After all the other things he's done against or without congressional approval and he balks at this one?"

Link to Original Source

+ - Sabotage in Arizona Shuts Down Internet, Cellphone, Telephone Service Statewide->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Cellphone, Internet, and telephone services across half of Arizona went dark on Wednesday after vandals sliced a sensitive fiber optic cable, according to those familiar with the situation. The incident is raising concerns about the safety of U.S. infrastructure.

“There was a cut that took place on a fiber optic cable that basically runs from Phoenix to Northern Arizona. The line, which is composed of extremely thick cable, appeared to have been cut with a hacksaw"

“The fiber optic cable was encased in metal piping which would have to have been accessed prior to reaching the optics. This indicates the use of a power tool and doesn’t look like ‘vandalism’ but rather like sabotage,”"

Link to Original Source

+ - Why I'm Saying Goodbye to Apple, Google and Microsoft->

Submitted by DrJimbo
DrJimbo (594231) writes "Dan Gillmore says; "When I became a technology columnist in the mid-1990s, the public Internet was just beginning its first big surge. Back then, I advised my readers to avoid the semi-political, even religious battles that advocates of this or that technology platform seemed to enjoy. Appreciate technology, I urged, for what it is—a tool—and use what works best.

So why am I typing this on a laptop running GNU/Linux, the free software operating system, not an Apple or Windows machine? And why are my phones and tablets running a privacy-enhanced offshoot of Android called Cyanogenmod, not Apple’s iOS or standard Android?""

Link to Original Source

+ - Jet lag is worse on Mars 1

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Research and actual experience has found that adjusting to the slightly longer Martian day is not as easy as you would think.

If you’re on Mars, or at least work by a Mars clock, you have to figure out how to put up with the exhausting challenge of those extra 40 minutes. To be exact, the Martian day is 24 hours, 39 minutes, and 35 seconds long, a length of day that doesn’t coincide with the human body’s natural rhythms. Scientists, Mars rover drivers, and everyone else in the space community call the Martian day a “sol” to differentiate it from an Earth day. While it doesn’t seem like a big difference, that extra time adds up pretty quickly. It’s like heading west by two time zones every three days. Call it “rocket lag.”

"

Q: How many IBM CPU's does it take to execute a job? A: Four; three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.

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