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+ - How much did your biggest "tech" mistake cost?

NotQuiteReal writes: What is the most expensive piece of hardware you broke (I fried a $2500 disk drive once, back when 400MB was $2500) or what software bug did you let slip that caused damage? (No comment on the details — but about $20K cost to a client.)

Did you lose your job over it?

If you worked on the Mars probe that crashed, please try not to be the First Post, that would scare off too many people!

+ - Someone Will Die Playing a Game in Virtual Reality

SlappingOysters writes: Grab It has detailed a hands-on session with horror VR title Kitchen — from Resident Evil creator Capcom — and argues how the physical reaction to the experience could lead to death. The site also believes that classifying VR games will be a challenge and many titles could be banned. Virtual Reality has a big year ahead, with the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Project Morpheus all set to release, while Microsoft is working on the HoloLens, which the site argues adds a further challenge to traditional gaming.

+ - Machine learning system detects emotions and suicidal behavior ->

An anonymous reader writes: A new machine learning technology is being developed by Israeli scientists which can identify emotion in text messages and email, such as sarcasm, irony and even antisocial or suicidal thoughts. The new computerised system, created by Eden Saig a computer science student at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, is described in a paper titled ‘Sentiment Classification of Texts in Social Networks.’ The system works by recognising repeated word patterns and was developed by Saig after he studied a course in artificial intelligence (AI) supervised by Professor Shaul Markovich. Saig explains that voice tone and vocal inflections are so crucial for conveying feelings in verbal communication, while with text and email messages these characteristics are lost – recently encouraging users to illustrate sentiment through superficial smileys or emoticons. Applying machine learning algorithms to popular opinion Facebook pages, Saig was able to use the results to pick out stereotypical habits in social network conversations. “Now, the system can recognise patterns that are either condescending or caring sentiments and can even send a text message to the user if the system thinks the post may be arrogant,” said Saig.
Link to Original Source

+ - The making of sci-fi Robot Overlords - nice robot VFX->

Hallie Siegel writes: Ever wonder how they make robots look so awesomely real in movies? Visual effects expert Graham Edwards goes behind the scenes with the makers of Robot Overlords to take you through the development of the robots in this movie, from script development and sketches, to filming and post FX. Really cool to see how these robots come to life.
Link to Original Source

+ - Assange Makes Plea For Asylum After Leaking Details Of NSA Spying On French Pols->

An anonymous reader writes: The NY Post reports, "Assange wrote a letter to French President Francois Hollande published in Le Monde on Friday, appealing to France’s history as a beacon for the repressed. He noted that WikiLeaks recently revealed that the US National Security Agency spied on Hollande and his two predecessors and leading French companies. Hollande quickly said “no.” In a statement, his office noted that Assange is under a European arrest warrant and his life is not in imminent danger. ... French Justice Minister Christine Taubira suggested in a televised interview last week that she would be open to the idea. ... Assange has spent three years in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London ... In his letter to Hollande, Assange said that the mother of his youngest child is French. He said he is restricted to a space of 5.5 square meters (60 square feet), lacking access to “fresh air, sun as well as any possibility to go to a hospital,” and noted that police say round-the-clock surveillance of him has cost $17.6 million." — 9News adds, "... In his open letter ... Assange described himself as a "journalist pursued and threatened with death by the United States' authorities as a result of my professional activities" ... "only France now has the ability to offer me the necessary protection against, and exclusively against, the political persecution that I am currently the object of". Such an offer of protection would be a "humanitarian and symbolic gesture" and send a message of encouragement "to journalists and whistleblowers around the world". Assange said in his letter he had not seen his youngest child or the child's mother, who are both French, for five years. "I have had to keep their existence secret up to today in order to protect them," he wrote. " — also noted: "WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has denied filing a request for asylum in France "
Link to Original Source

+ - Japanese court orders Google to delete past reports on man's arrest

AmiMoJo writes: The Saitama District Court has ordered Google Inc. to delete past reports on a man's arrest over molestation from its online search results after ruling that they violate the man's personal rights. The man, who was arrested about three years ago after molesting a girl under 18, and fined 500,000 yen (£2600, $4000). "He harbours remorse over the incident and is leading a new life. The search results prevent him from rehabilitating himself," the man's defence counsel said. The presiding judge recognized that the incident was not of historical or social significance, that the man is not in public office and that his offence was relatively minor. He concluded there was little public interest in keeping such reports displayed online three years after the incident. The judge acknowledged that search engines play a public role in assisting people's right to know.

Originally from Surado, the new name for Slashdot Japan: http://it.srad.jp/story/15/07/...

+ - Turing Near Ready To Ship World's First Liquid Metal Android Smartphone->

MojoKid writes: Liquid Metal is an alloy metal (technically, bulk metallic glass) that manages to combine the best features of a wide variety of materials into one product. Liquid Metal also has high corrosion resistance, high tensile strength, remarkable anti-wear characteristics and can also be heat-formed. Given its unique properties, Liquid Metal has been used in a number of industries, including in smartphones. Historically, it has been limited to small-scale applications and pieces parts, not entire products. However, Turing Robotic Industries (TRI) just announced pre-orders for the world's first liquid metal-frame smartphone. The Turing Phone uses its own brand of Liquid Metal called Liquidmorphium, which provides excellent shock absorption characteristics. So instead of making a dent in the smartphone casing or cracking/chipping like plastic when dropped, a Turing Phone should in theory "shake it off" while at the same time protecting the fragile display from breaking. The Turing Phone does not come cheap, however, with pricing starting at $610 for a 16GB model and escalating quickly to $740 and $870 respectively for the 64GB and 128GB models, unlocked. Pre-orders open up on July 31.
Link to Original Source

Google News Sci Tech: Solar-powered plane breaks solo flight record - Brisbane Times->


Brisbane Times

Solar-powered plane breaks solo flight record
Brisbane Times
The pilot of the Solar Impulse lands his aircraft in Hawaii, shattering the solo flight record threshold of 76 hours while crossing the Pacific. 04/07/15. Supporters of the. Up next... Countdown on to Greek vote. Play now. Return to video...
Solar Impulse 2: Sun powered the plane, yoga helped pilot on Japan-to-Hawaii ... San Jose Mercury News
Solar-powered airplane lands in Hawaii after record-breaking 5-day flight from ... Minneapolis Star Tribune
Solar Impulse 2 reaches Hawaii, shatters records in historic Pacific flightFox News
San Francisco Chronicle (subscription)-Newsweek-ABC Online
all 709 news articles

Link to Original Source

+ - FBI wants Pirate Bay logs for criminal investigation into copyright trolls.->

the simurgh writes: It has been revealed today that In the past few months, two of the Pirate Bay co-founders have been repeatedly questioned by Swedish authorities, acting on behalf of the FBI. the internet now has clear evidence that Prenda is indeed being investigated by the US Government for uploading their own copyrighted content in torrents placed onto The Pirate Bay, for the sole purpose of creating a honeypot trap to sue over pirated downloads. the full story is included in the link below
Link to Original Source

+ - Aussie ISP bakes in geo-dodging for Netflix, Hulu->

ste7en7 writes: A new Australian ISP is integrating geo-blocking circumvention into its broadband service, allowing customers to access streaming services like Hulu, Netflix USA, BBC iPlayer and Amazon Prime. When Yournet launches in August, customers will be able to sign up for broadband that allows users to instantly change the country they are supposedly surfing from.
Link to Original Source

+ - UberPOP suspended in France following riots and arrests->

An anonymous reader writes: Uber has today suspended its cheapest taxi-hailing service UberPOP in France, according to French newspaper Le Monde [http://www.lemonde.fr/economie/article/2015/07/03/uber-annonce-la-suspension-d-uberpop-en-france_4669011_3234.html]. The decision comes in the same week that two Uber France managers were arrested for alleged “illicit activities.” French interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve ordered a ban on the UberPOP service following a day of nationwide riots and protests against the app last week. The transportation company announced today that it would be pulling the taxi-ordering app out of France as a precautionary measure. “We have decided to suspend UberPOP in France from 20:00 this Friday evening, primarily to assure the safety of Uber drivers,” said Thibauld Simphal, head of Uber France. The two Uber managers detained by police on Monday will stand trial on 30 September. Uber has said that it will await the court decision before reinstating or permanently dropping the app in France.
Link to Original Source

+ - With Hobbit and LoTR in the can, Trolls no longer welcome in New Zealand->

An anonymous reader writes: New Zealand has become the latest country to think bad online manners are amenable to legislation.

The country last night passed a controversial bill, the Harmful Digital Communications Bill, in the hope of stemming “cyber-bullying”.

The bill creates a regime under which digital communications causing “serious emotional distress” are subject to an escalating regime that starts as “negotiation, mediation or persuasion” but reaches up to creating the offences of not complying with an order, and “causing harm by posting digital communication”.

The bill covers posts that are racist, sexist, or show religious intolerance, along with hassling people over disability or sexual orientation.

There's also a new offence of incitement to suicide (three years' jail).

Link to Original Source

+ - Rocket Labs picks New Zealand for its launch site

schwit1 writes: The small sat rocket company Rocket Labs has chosen a location in New Zealand as its future launch site.

Rocket Lab's all-black Electron booster offers launch for less than $5 million. The company, whose investors include Lockheed Martin, is targeting clients such as university programs and small start-ups, Beck said, and it already has 30 potential clients.

The company didn't specify how much it was investing in the site, which is due to be completed in the fourth quarter. New Zealand, which has been used in the past by the National Aeronautical and Space Administration, is considered a prime location because rockets launched from that deep in the Southern hemisphere can reach a wide range of Earth orbits. Rocket Lab's remote site on the Kaitorete Spit in the Canterbury region also means it has less air and sea traffic, which translates into more frequent launches and economies of scale, the company said. It also will no longer compete for airspace with the U.S. government.

Rocket Labs will have to actually launch something to really make the competition heat up. This announcement, however, illustrates that in the long run, the United States has some significant disadvantages as a spaceport location.

+ - Now possible to test over 170 models of Android devices from your browser->

An anonymous reader writes: CyberAgent, Inc. (Head office: Shibuya-ku, Tokyo; President: Susumu Fujita; listed in the first section of Tokyo Stock Exchange; Stock Code: 4751) has developed “STF-Smartphone Test Farm,” a system for testing all terminals, including the latest model of Android, from a browser, and will make it an open source. This system can be used in both Japanese and English.
Link to Original Source

+ - Supreme Court justices hold stock in tech vendors, other firms->

xantonin writes: "Chief Justice John Roberts owned up to US $750,000 in shares of Time Warner and its subsidiaries at the time the media giant filed a brief in ABC v. Aereo, which broadcasters won 6-3 last June, with Roberts in the majority. Aereo was a start-up offering TV service to subscribers through specialized antenna farms."
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