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Submission + - Obamacare to increase costs 60%

schwit1 writes: A new report from the Congressional Budget Office estimates that, because of Obamacare, the cost for employment-based health insurance will rise by 60% by 2025.

These increases are on top of the increases we've seen in the past five years, since the law was passed. Moreover, the increases are going to cost the federal government trillions in the coming years, as the law requires the government to pay large subsidies for those in the lower income brackets who can't afford these insane premiums. In fact, last year the tab was about $300 billion. And that's only the start. Worse yet, these estimates by the CBO are routinely low.

Submission + - The graffiti inside Apollo 11

schwit1 writes: An effort to create a 3D model of the inside of the Apollo 11 capsule on display at the National Air & Space Museum has revealed previously undocumented notes and scribbles that the astronauts put on the capsule's walls.

Needell and his team also decided that they would provide access to the lower equipment bay, the area located below the astronauts' seats, which housed the ship's navigation sextant, telescope and computer. "No one from the Smithsonian, as far I knew — not as long as I've been the curator for 20 years, has ever been below there to document the conditions or any of the aspects of the lower equipment bay," said Needell. "We've been able to sort of see above the seats, but that's about all."

So, for the first time, the curators removed from the lower bay the large bag that held the Apollo 11 crew's pressure garment assemblies — in other words, their spacesuits — as well as several helmet bags and a checklist pocket that command module pilot Michael Collins used while orbiting the moon alone.

And then they saw it, the literal writing on the wall.

They have located at least one post-landing image that shows some of the writing, which indicates that in 1969 no one considered this important enough to note. Then the capsule was put on display, and no one was allowed in it for decades.

Submission + - EPA reveals Gold King mine spill much worse than initially stated (foxnews.com)

schwit1 writes: On Thursday, the House Committee on Natural Resources released a damning report on the EPA and its handling of the Gold King Mine disaster last August. The report detailed how the EPA and the Department of the Interior were inaccurate and misleading in their conflicting accounts of the wastewater spill, which the EPA said last week released 880,000 pounds of toxic metals.

"When government actions result in harm, it's our duty to know who was responsible and why decisions failed. They haven't been forthcoming in this regard," Committee Chairman Rob Bishop, R-Utah, said in a released statement. "This report peels back one more layer in what many increasingly view as a pattern of deception on the part of EPA and DOI. The EPA is saying one thing and their own experts say another"

No wonder the trust in government is so low.

Submission + - Bug List for F-35 is huge. (extremetech.com) 1

nairnr writes: ExtremeTech has an article on the extensive bugs that the F-35 program has still in it. It is the longest development cycle of any plane and problems keeping on getting pushed back.

The US plan to buy a block of planes while still not operational means every plane will require some level of refit in order to go into service.

Submission + - North Korea's satellite tumbling 1

schwit1 writes: U.S. Defense officials stated today that the satellite that North Korea launched on Sunday is now tumbling in orbit and is useless.

Do not take comfort from this failure. North Korea has demonstrated that it can put payloads in orbit. From this achievement it is a very short leap to aiming those payloads to impact any continent on Earth. They might not be able to aim that impact very accurately, but if you want to ignite an atomic bomb somewhere, you don't have to be very accurate.

Submission + - Company tracked Iowa caucusgoers' phones 1

schwit1 writes: Who needs exit polls when you can track caucusgoers' phones?

That's what one company did. Dstillery, which has been called "Picasso in the dark art of digital advertising," turned its intelligence-collection capabilities to the Iowa caucuses last week.

The company used location data to identify more than 16,000 devices at caucus locations across the state.

"We can take a population in a discrete location — in this case a polling, a caucus site — and sample that population and go and then look at characteristics of that population that no one's been able to discern before, because we have this incredibly rich behavioral view of American consumers based on all the digital behaviors we observe," Dstillery CEO Tom Phillips said in an interview.

Submission + - Speeches That Earned Clinton Millions Remain a Mystery (go.com)

mdsolar writes: Hillary Clinton told voters in the latest Democratic debate there's "hardly anything you don't know about me."

Just minutes later, she got tangled in a question about a part of her resume that is an enduring mystery.

In the 18 months before launching her second presidential bid, Clinton gave nearly 100 paid speeches at banks, trade associations, charitable groups and private corporations. The appearances netted her $21.7 million — and voters very little information about what she was telling top corporations as she prepared for her 2016 campaign.

What she said — or didn't say — to Wall Street banks in particular has become a significant problem for her presidential campaign, as she tries to counter the unexpected rise of Democratic rival Bernie Sanders. He's put her in awkward position of squaring her financial windfall with a frustrated electorate.

Asked in the debate — and not for the first time — about releasing transcripts of those speeches, she said: "I will look into it. I don't know the status, but I will certainly look into it." She added, "My view on this is, look at my record."

Submission + - Financial advisors disrupted by AI (bloomberg.com)

schwit1 writes: Banks are watching wealthy clients flirt with robo-advisers, and that's one reason the lenders are racing to release their own versions of the automated investing technology this year, according to a consultant.

Robo-advisers, which use computer programs to provide investment advice online, typically charge less than half the fees of traditional brokerages, which cost at least 1 percent of assets under management.

Submission + - UK wants authority to serve warrants in U.S. (usatoday.com)

schwit1 writes: British and U.S. officials have been negotiating a plan that could allow British authorities to directly serve wiretap orders on U.S. communications companies in criminal and national security inquiries, U.S. officials confirmed Thursday.

The talks are aimed at allowing British authorities access to a range of data, from interceptions of live communications to archived emails involving British suspects, according to the officials, who are not authorized to comment publicly.

Under the proposed plan, British authorities would not have access to records of U.S. citizens if they emerged in the British investigations.

Congressional approval would be required of any deal negotiated by the two countries.

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