Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

+ - Supreme Court skeptical of computer-based patents->

Submitted by walterbyrd
walterbyrd (182728) writes "The case, Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International, poses huge risks for both sides. If the court upholds the patent or rules only narrowly against it without affecting most others, the problem of too many patents — and patent lawsuits — will continue. In that case, Justice Stephen Breyer said, future competition could move from price and quality to "who has the best patent lawyer.""
Link to Original Source

+ - Google Flu Trends gets it wrong three years running->

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "From NewScientist:

Google may be a master at data wrangling, but one of its products has been making bogus data-driven predictions. A study of Google's much-hyped flu tracker has consistently overestimated flu cases in the US for years. It's a failure that highlights the danger of relying on big data technologies.

Evan Selinger, a technology ethicist at Rochester Institute of Technology in New York, says Google Flu's failures hint at a larger problem with the algorithmic approach taken by technology companies to deliver services we all want to use. The problem is with the assumption that either the data that is gathered about us, or the algorithms used to process it, are neutral.

Google Flu Trends has been discussed at slashdot before: When Google Got Flu Wrong."

Link to Original Source

+ - Snowden Document Proves that Dutch Secret Service AIVD Hacks Internet Forums->

Submitted by vikingpower
vikingpower (768921) writes "In the ever-longer wake of the NSA scandal, much-respected Dutch newspaper NRC today reveals, in English, as mandated by the gravity of the occasion, that the Dutch secret service, the AIVD, hacks internet forums. And yes, that is gross misconduct against Dutch law. The service, whose headquarters are in Zoetermeer, did not yet comment upon the divulgation of the document from Edward Snowden's collection. Incensed Dutch parliamentaries are calling for an enquiry."
Link to Original Source

+ - Study Suggests Link Between Dread Pirate Roberts and Satoshi Nakamoto->

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "Two Israeli computer scientists say they may have uncovered a puzzling financial link between Ross William Ulbricht, the recently arrested operator of the Internet black market known as the Silk Road, and the secretive inventor of bitcoin, the anonymous online currency, used to make Silk Road purchases."
Link to Original Source

+ - Reprogrammed bacterium speaks new language of life->

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "From NewScientist:
A bacterium has had its genome recoded so that the standard language of life no longer applies. Instead, one of its words has been freed up to impart a different meaning, allowing the addition of genetic elements that don't exist in nature.
The work has been described as the first step towards a new biology because the techniques used should open the door to reinventing the meaning of several genetic words simultaneously, potentially creating new types of biomaterials and drugs."

Link to Original Source

+ - Matchstick-sized sensor can record your private chats-> 1

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "From NewScientist: A sensor previously used for military operations can now be tuned to secretly locate and record any single conversation on a busy street.

Now, a Dutch acoustics firm, Microflown Technologies, has developed a matchstick-sized sensor that can pinpoint and record a target's conversations from a distance.
Known as an acoustic vector sensor, Microflown's sensor measures the movement of air, disturbed by sound waves, to almost instantly locate where a sound originated. It can then identify the noise and, if required, transmit it live to waiting ears.

Security technologist Bruce Schneier says this new capability is unwelcome – particularly given the recent claims about the NSA's success at tapping into our private lives. "It's not just this one technology that's the problem," Schneier says. "It's the mic plus the drones, plus the signal processing, plus voice recognition.""

Link to Original Source

+ - "Patent troll" closes controversial podcast patent deal with SanDisk->

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "The patent company Personal Audio of James Logan has closed a licensing agreement with SanDisk. The company says that now "between a third and two thirds of all mp3 audio players" is made by the companies to which its patents have been licensed, including LG, Samsung, HTC, Motorola, Blackberry and Amazon.

In the past Logan even went "into the lion's den," fielding a question-and-answer session at Slashdot.

The digital civil rights movement Electronic Frontier Foundation wants to fight Personal Audio's podcasting patent at the US Patent and Trademark Office. The money for the procedure, about 30,000 dollars, was brought in earlier this year through crowdfunding."

Link to Original Source

+ - The NSA's next move: silencing university professors?-> 2

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "From the Guardian:

A Johns Hopkins computer science professor blogs on the NSA and is asked to take it down.

A professor in the computer science department at Johns Hopkins, a leading American university, had written a post on his blog, hosted on the university's servers, focused on his area of expertise, which is cryptography. The post was highly critical of the government, specifically the National Security Agency, whose reckless behavior in attacking online security astonished him.

On Monday, he gets a note from the acting dean of the engineering school asking him to take the post down and stop using the NSA logo as clip art in his posts. The email also informs him that if he resists he will need a lawyer.

Why would an academic dean cave under pressure and send the takedown request without careful review, which would have easily discovered, for example, that the classified documents to which the blog post linked were widely available in the public domain?"

Link to Original Source

+ - Schneier: The US government has betrayed the internet. We need to take it back.-> 2

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "Quoting Bruce Schneier in the Guardian:

The NSA has undermined a fundamental social contract. We engineers built the internet – and now we have to fix it

Government and industry have betrayed the internet, and us. This is not the internet the world needs, or the internet its creators envisioned. We need to take it back. And by we, I mean the engineering community.

Yes, this is primarily a political problem, a policy matter that requires political intervention. But this is also an engineering problem, and there are several things engineers can – and should – do."

Link to Original Source

+ - Apple has received a patent on providing different levels of user access->

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "A future version of iOS may feature a unique security method that recognizes different gesture inputs to open specific sets of apps, allowing for greater control over user access.

The technology, detailed in a patent awarded to Apple on Tuesday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, deals with so-called "access inputs" that determine what apps, device services and functions can be accessed by a user.

Apple's U.S. Patent No. 8,528,072 for a "Method, apparatus and system for access mode control of a device," describes a system that creates user access modes guarded by predetermined gesture inputs."

Link to Original Source

+ - Microsoft forces German Windows-backdoor article offline

Submitted by wabrandsma
wabrandsma (2551008) writes "Webwereld writes: Microsoft forces German Windows-backdoor article offline (in Dutch).

Microsoft is forcing through the courts to take a controversial article offline on internal concerns of the German government about Windows 8 and Trusted Computing. ZEIT Online is fighting the court order.

Microsoft has an ex-parte injunction enforced by the court of Munich on an article by ZEIT Online. This piece is about the dangers of Windows 8 and the Trusted Platform Module 2.0. This publication last week did stir dust worldwide. Monday the article was taken offline, but the publisher will defend itself against this provisional judgment.

The article has been previously discussed on Slashdot here German Government Warns Windows 8 Is an Unacceptable Security Risk"

Comment: Vodafone injects the X-VF-ACR header (Score 1) 212

by wabrandsma (#44671645) Attached to: Cookieless Web Tracking Using HTTP's ETag

Vodafone makes tracking of users possible which does not require access to the user's equipment. The HTTP request is enriched with a piece of identifying information. This involves an HTTP header called X-VF-ACR: 'Vodafone Anonymous Customer Recognition.'

See also: http://referaat.cs.utwente.nl/conference/16/paper/7306/using-browser-properties-for-fingerprinting-purposes.pdf (pdf)

There has been a little distress selling on the stock exchange. -- Thomas W. Lamont, October 29, 1929 (Black Tuesday)

Working...