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AI

Wolves Howl In Different 'Dialects,' Machine Learning Finds (vice.com) 7

derekmead writes: Differentiating wolf howls with human ears can prove tricky, so researchers have turned to computer algorithms to suss out if different wolf species howl differently. They think that understanding wolf howls could help improve wolf conservation and management programs. In a study published in the journal Behavioural Processes, a group of international researchers describe using machine learning for the first time to analyze 2,000 wolf howls gathered from both wild and domesticated wolves and their subspecies from around the world.
Oracle

Java Installer Flaw Shows Why You Should Clear Your Downloads Folder (csoonline.com) 25

itwbennett writes: On Friday, Oracle published a security advisory recommending that users delete all the Java installers they might have laying around on their computers and use new ones for versions 6u113, 7u97, 8u73 or later. The reason: Older versions of the Java installer were vulnerable to binary planting in the Downloads folder. 'Though considered relatively complex to exploit, this vulnerability may result, if successfully exploited, in a complete compromise of the unsuspecting user's system,' said Eric Maurice, Oracle's software security assurance director, in a blog post.

Submission + - Audioquest Caught Rigging HDMI Demo to "Prove" Audible Differences (audioholics.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Audiophile drama is unfolding as an Audioquest HDMI cable demo, featuring an Audioquest employee showing unrealistic changes in sound, was seemingly debunked as fraudulent by Mark Waldrep, aka Dr. AIX, in a recent blog post. A subsequent "Open Letter" from Audioquest owner William Low admitted he heard the video a year ago, found the audio difference "unbelievable", but did not ask to have the video removed until after Mark Waldrep published his findings a year later. Is this an isolated incident, or just the latest in a string of misleading behavior perpetuated in the high-end cable industry?
Businesses

How the Cloud Has Changed (Since Last You Looked) 28

snydeq writes: InfoWorld's Peter Wayner takes a look at the new services and pricing models that are making cloud computing more powerful, complex, and cheaper than it was a few short years ago. 'We get more, but using it isn't always as simple as it could be. Sure, you still end up on root on some box that's probably running Linux, but getting the right performance out of that machine is more complex,' Wayner writes. "But the real fun comes when you try to figure out how to pay for your planned cloud deployment because there are more options than ever. ... In some cases, the cost engineering can be more complex than the software engineering."

Submission + - After Avast & Comodo, It's Now Steam's Turn to Use an Insecure Chromium Vers (softpedia.com)

An anonymous reader writes: After the Avast (Avastium) and the Comodo (Chromodo) debacles, it's now Valve's turn to be shamed, as the Steam client is using an outdated Chromium version, and also runs with the --no-sandbox flag, eliminating a key security feature, and allowing attacks to trickle down from the Web page to the underlying operating system.
Earth

Carbon Dioxide From the Air Converted Into Methanol (gizmag.com) 68

Zothecula writes: The danger posed by rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide has seen many schemes proposed to remove a proportion it from the air. Rather than simply capture this greenhouse gas and bury it in the ground, though, many experiments have managed to transform CO2 into useful things like carbon nanofibers or even fuels, such as diesel. Unfortunately, the over-arching problem with many of these conversions is the particularly high operating temperatures that require counterproductive amounts of energy to produce relatively low yields of fuel. Now researchers at the University of Southern California (USC) claim to have devised a way to take CO2 directly from the air and convert it into methanol using much lower temperatures and in a correspondingly simpler way.
Social Networks

Instagram Launches Account Switching On iOS and Android (google.com) 20

Today, Instagram announced that users will be able to switch between up to five different accounts when using the app on iOS and Android. This new feature will be available later this week, when users download version 7.15 of the app. According to a blog post from the company, "Go to your profile settings to add an additional account. From there, tap your username at the top of your profile to switch between accounts. Once you have multiple accounts added, you'll see your profile photo appear in places throughout the app so you can always tell which one you're using at the moment."

Submission + - The Internet of Broken Things (hackaday.com)

szczys writes: The Internet of Things is all the hype these days. On one side we have companies clamoring to sell you Internet-Connected-everything to replace all of the stuff you already have that is now considered "dumb". On the other side are security researchers screaming that we're installing remote access with little thought about securing it properly. The truth is a little of both is happening, and that this isn't a new thing. It's been around for years in industry, the new part is that it's much wider spread and much closer to your life. Al Williams walks through some real examples of the unintended consequences of IoT, including his experiences building and deploying devices, and some recent IoT gaffs like the NEST firmware upgrade that had some users waking up to an icy-cold home.
Businesses

Sen. Blumenthal Demands Lifting of IT 'Gag' Order (computerworld.com) 91

dcblogs writes: U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) is asking the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the layoff and replacement of IT workers by foreign workers at a state energy utility. But he is also demanding that the utility, Eversource Energy, drop a particularly restrictive non-disparagement clause that laid off employees had to sign to receive their severance. This clause bars discussion "that would tend to disparage or discredit" the utility. [emphasis added] He wants the employees, who had to train foreign replacements, to be able to state "honestly what happened to them."

Feed Google News Sci Tech: Australia Cuts 110 Climate Scientist Jobs - Scientific American (google.com)


Scientific American

Australia Cuts 110 Climate Scientist Jobs
Scientific American
With an ax rather than a scalpel, Australia's federal science agency last week chopped off its climate research arm in a decision that has stunned scientists and left employees dispirited. As many as 110 out of 140 positions at the atmosphere and ...
The Science Is Settled, So Australia Will Fire 100 Climate ScientistsDaily Caller
CSIRO to Cut Up to 350 Jobs As Climate Change 'Answered'Laboratory Equipment
CSIRO Trims StaffGenomeWeb
Forbes-On Line opinion
all 34 news articles

Piracy

Anti-Piracy Group BREIN Demands Torrents Time Cease and Desist 59

An anonymous reader writes: Not even a week has gone by since Torrents Time appeared on the scene, and the site has already been served with a cease-and-desist letter. Anti-piracy group BREIN, based in the Netherlands, has deemed the streaming tool an "illegal application" and demands the administrators "cease and desist the distribution of Torrents Time immediately."

Submission + - Sen. Blumenthal demands lifting of IT 'gag' order (computerworld.com)

dcblogs writes: U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) is asking the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the layoff and replacement of IT workers by foreign workers at a state energy utility. But he is also demanding that the utility, Eversource Energy, drop a particularly restrictive non-disparagement clause that laid off employees had to sign to receive their severance. This clause bars discussion "that would tend to disparage or discredit" the utility. [emphasis added] He wants the employees, who had to train foreign replacements, to be able to state "honestly what happened to them."

Submission + - Anti-Piracy Group BREIN Demands Torrents Time Cease And Desist

An anonymous reader writes: Not even a week has gone by since Torrents Time appeared on the scene, and the site has already been served with a cease-and-desist letter. Anti-piracy group BREIN, based in the Netherlands, has deemed the streaming tool an “illegal application” and demands the administrators “cease and desist the distribution of Torrents Time immediately.”
Open Source

GitHub Open Sources Their Internal Testing Tool (thenewstack.io) 35

destinyland writes: Last week GitHub released a new open source tool called Scientist, a Ruby-based library they've been using in-house for several years. "It's the most terrifying moment when you flip the switch," GitHub engineer Jesse Toth told one technology reporter, who notes that the tool is targeted at developers transitioning from a legacy system. "Scientist was born when GitHub engineers needed to rewrite the permissions code — one of the most critical systems in the GitHub application." The tool measures execution duration and other metrics for both test and production code during runtime, and Toth reports that they're now also developing new versions in Node.js, C#, and .Net..
Businesses

The Hyperloop Industrial Complex 173

Jason Koebler writes: Two and a half years after Elon Musk pitched the technology, actually traveling on a hyperloop is still theoretical, but its effect on business is not. There is a very real, bonafide industry of people whose job description is, broadly speaking "make the hyperloop into a tangible thing." The SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Design Weekend at Texas A&M University earlier this weekend was the coming out party for people in that industry.

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