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+ - Xen Cloud Fix Shows the Right Way To Patch Open-Source Flaws->

Submitted by darthcamaro
darthcamaro (735685) writes "Amazon, Rackspace and IBM have all patched their public clouds over the last several days due to a vulnerability in the Xen hypervisor. According to a new report, the Xen project was first advised of the issue two weeks ago, but instead of the knee jerk type reactions we've seen with Heartbleed and now Shellshock, the Xen project privately fixed the bug and waited until all the major Xen deployment were patched before any details were released. Isn't this the way that all open-source projects should fix security issues?"
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+ - Obama Administration argues for backdoors in personal electronics->

Submitted by mi
mi (197448) writes "

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said on Tuesday that new forms of encryption capable of locking law enforcement officials out of popular electronic devices imperil investigations of kidnappers and sexual predators, putting children at increased risk.

Seriously. Would somebody, please, think of the children?!"
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Techdirt: CIA Can't Let You Know How Much It Paid For A Single Amiga Computer In 1987->

From feed by feedfeeder

Steven Aftergood at the FAS (Federation of American Scientists) Secrecy Blog came across this interesting redaction of mundane information while perusing the "Studies in Intelligence" journals recently released by the CIA. In an article [pdf link] touting the purchase of a product that would forever change the world of the CIA's in-house video production department, the actual purchase price has been redacted.

If you can't read/see the picture, it says:

We bought our first Commodore Amiga in 1987, for less than [REDACTED] including software.
Twenty-seven years later, this dollar amount still can only be speculated on. (Aftergood prices it out with Wikipedia's help.) It couldn't have been much, though. The preceding paragraph states:

We did not have a big budget, so we were tempted to buy the system with petty cash.
Does the CIA actually believe some sort of irreparable rift in the National Security Complex might occur if this dollar amount from three decades ago (unadjusted for inflation) was made public? Probably not. Aftergood theorizes that it's a blanket exemption used to redact more sensitive dollar amounts and this innocent cost just became collateral damage during the rush to declassify several dozen documents in response to an FOIA lawsuit court order.

CIA seems to have adopted a declassification rule dictating that all of its expenditures, no matter how trivial, shall be withheld from disclosure, except in extraordinary cases (or the occasional mistake). The Agency might go on to argue that such a rule actually facilitates disclosure by expediting the declassification review process. Thats because instead of needing to pause to consider the potential ramifications of any individual spending disclosure, the Agency can proceed more quickly by simply withholding all such figures.
So, there's the excuse for over-redaction, even if it isn't much of one. Aftergood points out that efforts have been made to scale back overbroad classification and redactions since 1997, but little if anything has come of those attempts -- part of the reason why so many FOIA requests end in lawsuits.

Also of note: the author's adoration of the new technology leads to the innocent Amiga being used for evil.

We are experimenting with photo enhancement and colorization of black-and-white photography. Future Executive Summaries will include "Turnerized" ground photos.
While this CIA doc is good for a few laughs at the agency's overprotective tendencies, it must be noted that these documents stem from former CIA agent Jeffrey Scudder's FOIA request -- a request that ended his career and saw his house raided by the FBI, which seized every electronic device it came across. The CIA destroyed the life of a 19-year employee who had served the agency in Africa, Afghanistan and Iraq in order to withhold things like a three-decade-old computer purchase.

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+ - Boeing Told to Replace Cockpit Screens Affected by Wi-Fi

Submitted by Rambo Tribble
Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "The Federal Aviation Administration has ordered Boeing to replace Honeywell-built cockpit screens that could be affected by wi-fi transmissions. Additionally, the FAA has expressed concerns that other frequencies, such as used by air surveillance and weather radar, could disrupt the displays. The systems involved report airspeed, altitude, heading and pitch and roll to the crew, and the agency stated that a failure could cause a crash.

Meanwhile, the order is said to affect over 1,300 aircraft, and some airlines are baulking, since the problem has never been seen in operation, that the order presents "a high, and unnecessary, financial burden on operators"."

+ - The $1,200 DIY Gunsmithing Machine-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "You may recall Cody Wilson as the man behind the world's first 3D-printed gun. He built a company behind the ideals of DIY gunmaking, and now he's come back with another device: the Ghost Gunner, a CNC mill designed to create the lower receiver of an AR-15 rifle. "That simple chunk of metal has become the epicenter of a gun control firestorm. A lower receiver is the body of the gun that connects its stock, barrel, magazine and other parts. As such, it’s also the rifle’s most regulated element. Mill your own lower receiver at home, however, and you can order the rest of the parts from online gun shops, creating a semi-automatic weapon with no serial number, obtained with no background check, no waiting period or other regulatory hurdles. Some gun control advocates call it a “ghost gun.” Selling that untraceable gun body is illegal, but no law prevents you from making one." Wilson's goal is still to render government gun regulation useless, even as debate rages on banning this kind of manufacturing."
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Google News Sci Tech: Pebble drops price, adds new Jawbone and Misfit fitness apps - CNET->

From feed by feedfeeder

MobileMarketing Magazine

Pebble drops price, adds new Jawbone and Misfit fitness apps
The Pebble and Pebble Steel get true background fitness tracking and support for apps, along with lower prices: at last, could we have a smartwatch end up being a serious fitness band replacement? by Scott Stein @jetscott; September 30, 2014 10:00 AM...
Pebble update enables full activity, sleep tracking; support for Misfit, Jawbone ... ZDNet
Pebble Drops Prices, Boosts Activity TrackingPC Magazine

all 107 news articles

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+ - Unexplained out-of-band WIndows DVD patch

Submitted by davidwr
davidwr (791652) writes "Microsoft released September 2014 update for DVD playback in Windows 7 SP1

as an out-of-band "Important" update yesterday without explaining why it was rushed instead of waiting two weeks.

Microsoft knows that patching annoys system administrators and others and typically doesn't do out of band updates without a good reason. Unlike the recent out-of-band Russian Time Zone update, there isn't an obvious to be a "you must install this by a certain date or something will break" reason to rush this.

Does anyone know why Microsoft didn't either 1) wait two weeks or 2) provide a clearer explanation of why this is important enough to push out early?"

+ - Reserve Bank ordered to pay back R250m to Mark Shuttleworth-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "South Africa-born tech entrepreneur and world’s first space tourist Mark Shuttleworth has been awarded R250m – with interest – by the court of appeal following a lengthy legal battle over exchange control levies which saw that amount docked from his R2.5bn fortune when he sought to repatriate the money overseas."
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+ - Calling Mr Orwell, rejigged executive order makes collecting data not collecting->

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "' is often the case that one can be led astray by relying on the generic or commonly understood definition of a particular word.' Specifically words offering constitutional protections against unreasonable search and seizure. TechDirt looks at the redefinition of the term collection as redefined by Executive Order 12333 to allow basically every information dragnet, provided no-one looks at it. "Collection" is now defined as "collection plus action." According to this document, ot still isn't collected, even if its been gathered, packaged and sent to a "supervisory authority." No collection happens until examination. It's Schroedinger's data, neither collected nor uncollected until the "box" has been opened. This leads to the question of aging off collected data/communications: if certain (non) collections haven't been examined at the end of the 5-year storage limit, are they allowed to be retained simply because they haven't officially been collected yet? Does the timer start when the "box" is opened or when the "box" is filled?"
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+ - DIY Open Source Smart Watch Launches

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "An Open Source project called TinyScreen has just launched which lets you create your own wearable devices like smart watches using a miniature Arduino hardware system with a color OLED screen. The hardware includes support for Bluetooth Low Energy connections to smart phones along with iOS and Android apps, and is small enough to create a set of smart glasses."

+ - Linux Foundation Announces Major Network Functions Virtualization Project->

Submitted by Andy Updegrove
Andy Updegrove (956488) writes "The Linux Foundation this morning announced the latest addition to its family of major hosted open source initiatives: the Open Platform for NFV Project (OPNFV), Its mission is to develop and maintain a carrier-grade, integrated, open source reference platform for the telecom industry. Importantly, the thirty-eight founding members include not only cloud and service infrastructure vendors, but telecom service providers, developers and end users as well. The announcement of OPNFV highlights three of the most significant trends in IT: virtualization (the NFV part of the name refers to network function virtualization), moving software and services to the Cloud, and collaboratively developing complex open source platforms in order to accelerate deployment of new business models while enabling interoperability across a wide range of products and services. The project is also significant for reflecting a growing recognition that open source projects need to incorporate open standards planning into their work programs from the beginning, rather than as an afterthought."
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+ - Web Magna Carta: WWW inventor calls for 'online bill of rights'

Submitted by ltorvalds11
ltorvalds11 (3774511) writes "Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web has spoken out against world governments and corporations, which he says are seeking to control the web for their own gain. He called for a revolutionary bill of rights to guaranty the web’s independence.

"If a company can control your access to the internet, if they can control which websites they go to, then they have tremendous control over your life," Berners-Lee spoke at London’s ‘Web We Want’ festival, which discussed the future of the internet and its guidelines.
"If a government can block you going to, for example, the opposition's political pages, then they can give you a blinkered view of reality to keep themselves in power."
"There have been lots of times that it has been abused, so now the Magna Carta is about saying...I want a web where I'm not spied on, where there's no censorship," Berners-Lee said at the Web We Want Festival According to his comment, the only information that should be kept off the web relates to things that were illegal before the web, and remain illegal now – such as “child pornography, fraud, telling someone how to rob a bank,” and the like."

+ - HP Introduces Sub-$100 Windows Tablet->

Submitted by jfruh
jfruh (300774) writes "While Windows-based tablets haven't exactly set the world on fire, Microsoft hasn't given up on them, and its hardware partners haven't either. HP has announced a series of Windows tablets, with the 7-inch low-end model, the Stream 7, priced at $99. The Stream brand is also being used for low-priced laptops intended to compete with Chromebooks (which HP also sells). All are running Intel chips and full Windows, not Windows RT."
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+ - Matchstick And Mozilla Take On Google's Chromecast With $25 Firefox OS Dongle

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Matchstick and Mozilla today announced their open-source take on the Chromecast: a $25 Firefox OS-powered HDMI dongle. The streaming Internet and media stick will be available first through Kickstarter, in the hopes to drive down the price tag. Jack Chang, Matchstick General Manager in the US, described the device to me as “essentially an open Chromecast.” He explained that while the MSRP is $25 (Google’s Chromecast retails for $35), the Kickstarter campaign is offering a regular price of $18, and an early bird price of $12."

+ - Popular Android Browser May Monetize Usage->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Jack Wallen in TechRepublic reports that the popular Dolphin browser for Android may be "hijacking" user input and redirecting web usage through a monetizing third-party. ( Evidence for the redirection can be seen with certain inputs like "bestbuy" when the device is in airplane mode and disconnected from the internet, redirections going to Namespace Strategy and ultimately Commission Junction. A reddit thread ( also describes how tools like Adaway also block the redirections when connected to the internet."
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Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable.