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Encryption

+ - John Nash's declassified 1955 letter to the NSA->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "In 1955, John Nash sends an amazing letter to the NSA in order to support an encryption design that he suggested. In it he no less than anticipates computational complexity theory as well as modern cryptography.

In the letter he proposes that the security of encryption can be based on computational hardness and makes the distinction between polynomial time and exponential time: "So a logical way to classify enciphering processes is by the way in which the computation length for the computation of the key increases with increasing length of the key. This is at best exponential and at worst probably at most a relatively small power of r, ar^2 or ar^3, as in substitution ciphers."

Link to Original Source
Government

Moscow Police Watch Pre-Recorded Scenes On Surveillance Cams 114

Posted by samzenpus
from the I-always-feel-like-nobody-is-watching-me dept.
An anonymous reader writes "During several months of 2009, Moscow police looked at fake pictures displayed on their monitors instead of what was supposed to be video from the city surveillance cams. The subcontractor providing the cams was paid on the basis of 'the number of working cams,' so he delivered pre-cooked pictures stored on his servers. The camera company CEO has been arrested."
Biotech

Single Neuron Wired To Muscle Un-Paralyzes Monkeys 180

Posted by samzenpus
from the gentlemen-we-can-rebuild-him dept.
GalaticGrub writes "A pair of paralyzed monkeys regained the ability to move their arms after researchers wired individual neurons to the monkeys' arm muscles. A team of researchers at the University of Washington temporarily paralyzed each monkey's arm, then rerouted brain signals from a single neuron in the motor cortex around the blocked nerve pathway via a computer. When the neuron fired above a certain rate, the computer translated the signal into a jolt of electricity to the arm muscle, causing it to contract. The monkeys practiced moving their arms by playing a video game."
Communications

Cisco Demos Public Rooms For Telepresence 65

Posted by samzenpus
from the can-you-see-me-now dept.
CWmike writes "Matt Hamblen reports that Cisco Systems Inc. has announced the first telepresence videoconferencing rooms available for public use. It demonstrated the technology simultaneously in four locations in India, the US and the UK Three of the four demonstration sites were retrofitted rooms in Taj Hotels in London, Bangalore, India and Boston. The luxury hotel chain will build the videoconferencing rooms for business and guest use at rates starting at $400 an hour in the Boston location. Cisco said prices will vary from $299 to $899 an hour at various locations globally, depending on the number of users. The rooms can accommodate from one to 18 people."
Portables (Apple)

Hands-On With the New MacBooks 128

Posted by timothy
from the nice-look-see dept.
Paige Philuer writes "Macworld has a hands-on article examining the new MacBook and MacBook Pro — not a quickie look from Tuesday's event, but a lengthy, in-depth look with laptops they actually have in their offices. Some interesting observations: No FireWire on the MacBook; the TrackPad doesn't feel like you're running your finger across a pane of glass, though that's what it is; and switching between graphics cards in the MacBook Pro requires you to log out." Reader Bourbon contributes three links at CNET related to the new models, too: a positive written review (giving a score of 8/10 to the new MacBook), a video review, and a behind-the-scenes look at how the new models are machined.
The Internet

World's Smallest IPv6 Stack By Cisco, Atmel, SICS 287

Posted by timothy
from the is-beautiful dept.
B Rog writes "Cisco, Atmel, and the Swedish Institute of Computer Science have released uIPv6, the world's smallest IPv6 compliant IPv6 stack, as open source for the Contiki embedded operating system. The intent is to bring IP addresses to the masses by giving devices such as thermometers or lightbulbs an IPv6 stack. With a code size of 11 kilobytes and a dynamic memory usage of less than 2 kilobytes (yes, kilobytes!), it certainly fits the bill of the ultra-low-power microcontrollers typically used in such devices. When every lightbulb has an IP address, the vast address range of IPv6 sounds like a pretty good idea."
Programming

6 Languages You Wish the Boss Let You Use 264

Posted by timothy
from the esperanto-and-atlantean-are-compact-and-efficient dept.
Esther Schindler writes "Several weeks ago, Lynn Greiner's article on the state of the scripting universe was slashdotted. Several people raised their eyebrows at the (to them) obvious omissions, since the article only covered PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby, Tcl and JavaScript. As I wrote at the time, Lynn chose those languages because hers was a follow-up to an article from three years back. However, it was a fair point. While CIO has covered several in depth, those five dynamic languages are not the only ones developers use. In 6 Scripting Languages Your Developers Wish You'd Let Them Use, CIO looks at several (including Groovy, Scala, Lua, F#, Clojure and Boo) which deserve more attention for business software development, even if your shop is dedicated to Java or .NET. Each language gets a formal definition and then a quote or two from a developer who explains why it inspires passion."
Transportation

Computer Error Caused Qantas Jet Mishap 389

Posted by kdawson
from the gimme-back-my-stick dept.
highways sends word that preliminary investigations into a Qantas Airbus A330 mishap where 51 passengers were injured has concluded that it was due to the Air Data Inertial Reference System feeding incorrect information into the flight control system — not interference from passenger electronics, as Qantas had initially claimed. Quoting from the ABC report: "Authorities have blamed a faulty onboard computer system for last week's mid-flight incident on a Qantas flight to Perth. The Australian Transport Safety Bureau said incorrect information from the faulty computer triggered a series of alarms and then prompted the Airbus A330's flight control computers to put the jet into a 197-meter nosedive ... The plane was cruising at 37,000 feet when a fault in the air data inertial reference system caused the autopilot to disconnect. But even with the autopilot off, the plane's flight control computers still command key controls in order to protect the jet from dangerous conditions, such as stalling, the ATSB said."
Sci-Fi

Paul Krugman Awarded Nobel Prize For Economics 425

Posted by kdawson
from the too-smart-fr-government dept.
zogger writes in his journal, "The guy who put together the concept of geographical location combined with cheap transportation leading to 'like trades with like' and the rise of superindustrial trading blocs has won the Nobel economics science prize. He's a bigtime critic of a lot of this administration's policies, and is unabashedly an FDR-economy styled fella. Here is his blog at the NYTimes." Reader yoyoq adds that Krugman's career choice was inspired by reading Asimov's Foundation series at a young age.
Privacy

Flash Cookies, a Little-Known Privacy Threat 225

Posted by kdawson
from the flashblock-considered-mandatory dept.
Wiini recommends a blog posting exploring Flash cookies, a little-known threat to privacy, and how you can get control of them. 98% of browsers have Macromedia Flash Player installed, and the cookies it enables have some interesting properties. They have no expiration date; they store 100 KB of data by default, with an unlimited maximum; they can't be deleted by your browser; and they send previous visit information and history, by default, without your permission. I was amazed at some of the sites, not visited in a year or more, that still had Flash cookies on my machine. Here's the user-unfriendly GUI for deleting them, one at a time, each one requiring confirmation.
Portables (Apple)

Apple Announces New MacBook, Pro, Air 774

Posted by kdawson
from the must-have dept.
Steve Jobs just got through announcing new MacBook lines in Cupertino. The MacBook, the Pro, and the Air all got revved. The old line of plastic-body MacBooks drops in price by $100, to $999. The new MacBooks have a metal body and multi-touch trackpad, just like the new Pros. The Pro features two NVidia graphics chips. Quoting Jobs: "With the 9400M, you get 5 hours of battery life, with the 9600M GT you get four hours of battery life. You choose." In summary: "We're building both [MacBook and Pro] in a whole new way. From a slab of aluminum to a notebook. New graphics. New trackpad, the best we've ever built. And LED-backlit displays that are far brighter, instant on, far more environmentally responsible." They are shipping today and should be in stores tomorrow. Oh, and one more thing: Steve's blood pressure is 110/70.
Spam

Now Even Photo CAPTCHAs Have Been Cracked 340

Posted by timothy
from the given-enough-eyeballs dept.
MoonUnit writes "Technology Review has an interesting article about the way CAPTCHAS are fueling AI research. Following recent news about various textual CAPTCHAs being cracked, the article notes that a researcher at Palo Alto Research Center has now found a way crack photo-based CAPTCHAs too. Most approaches are based on statistical learning, however, so Luis von Ahn (one of the inventors of the CAPTCHA) says it is usually possible to make a CAPTCHA more difficult to break by making a few simple changes."
GUI

A 3D Curve Sketching System For Tablets 72

Posted by timothy
from the no-mention-of-license-terms dept.
dominique_cimafranca writes "The Dynamic Graphics Project of the University of Toronto has released a pretty nifty 3D curve sketching system. Apart from the large drawing area, the tablet software looks very intuitive to artists. From the site: 'The system coherently integrates existing techniques of sketch-based interaction with a number of novel and enhanced features. Novel contributions of the system include automatic view rotation to improve curve sketchability, an axis widget for sketch surface selection, and implicitly inferred changes between sketching techniques. We also improve on a number of existing ideas such as a virtual sketchbook, simplified 2D and 3D view navigation, multi-stroke NURBS curve creation, and a cohesive gesture vocabulary.'"
Encryption

First Secure Quantum Crypto Network Up and Running 102

Posted by timothy
from the all-new-perfect-forever-place-your-bets dept.
John Lam was one of many readers to send in news that on Thursday, "at a conference in Vienna, Austria, as reported by the BBC, a European Community science working group built a quantum backbone using 200-km of standard commercial optical fiber running among seven sites and successfully demonstrated the first secure quantum cryptographic key distribution network. In addition, each of the seven links used a different kind of quantum encryption, demonstrating interoperability between the technologies. To paraphrase, the project focused on the trusted repeater paradigm and developed an architecture allowing seamless integration of heterogeneous quantum-key distribution-link devices in a unified framework. Network node-modules managing all classical communication tasks provide the underlying quantum devices with authentic classical channels. The node-module architecture uses a layered model to provision network-wide, end-to-end, provably secure key distribution."

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