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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


+ - Sony selling off VAIO computer business-> 1

Submitted by Kensai7
Kensai7 (1005287) writes "Confirming reports from earlier in the week, Sony has announced plans to sell off its VAIO computer division to a Japanese investment fund. Japan Industrial Partners (JIP) will take control of the operation for an undisclosed fee, and Sony will "cease planning, design and development of PC products." For a variety of reasons "including the drastic changes in the global PC industry," Sony says "the optimal solution is to concentrate its mobile product lineup on smartphones and tablets and to transfer its PC business to a new company.""
Link to Original Source

+ - Slashdot BETA Discussion-> 60

Submitted by mugnyte
mugnyte (203225) writes "With Slashdot's recent restyled "BETA" slowly rolled to most users, there's been a lot of griping about the changes. This is nothing new, as past style changes have had similar effects. However, this pass there are significant usability changes: A narrower read pane, limited moderation filtering, and several color/size/font adjustments. BETA implies not yet complete, so taking that cue — please list your specific, detailed opinoins, one per comment, and let's use the best part of slashdot (the moderation system) to raise the attention to these. Change can be jarring, but let's focus on the true usability differences with the new style."
Link to Original Source

+ - NSA Cold War domestic operations declassified->

Submitted by AHuxley
AHuxley (892839) writes "With the US trying to understand the domestic role of their foreign intelligence and counterintelligence services in 2013, what can a declassified look back into the 1960's and 1970's add to the ongoing legal debate? Welcome to the world of Interagency Security Classification Appeals Panel and the work done by the National Security Archive at George Washington University. Read about prominent anti-war critics and US senators been tracked and who was on the late 1960's NSA watch list. From Rev. Martin Luther King to civil rights leader Whitney Young, boxer Muhammad Ali, Tom Wicker, the Washington bureau chief and Washington Post columnist Art Buchwald, Sen. Howard Baker (R-Tenn.). The NSA was aware of the legality of its work and removed all logos or classification markings, using the term 'For Background Use Only". Even back then NSA director at the time, Lew Allen noted: “appeared to be a possible violation of constitutional guarantees,” page 86:
What did the NSA think about signals intelligence sites in your country? See if your country makes the "indefinite" list on page 392:"

Link to Original Source

First Measurement of Magnetic Field In Earth's Core 34

Posted by timothy
from the best-place-to-try-it dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A University of California, Berkeley, geophysicist has made the first-ever measurement of the strength of the magnetic field inside Earth's core, 1,800 miles underground. The magnetic field strength is 25 Gauss, or 50 times stronger than the magnetic field at the surface that makes compass needles align north-south. Though this number is in the middle of the range geophysicists predict, it puts constraints on the identity of the heat sources in the core that keep the internal dynamo running to maintain this magnetic field."

Comment: Re:How can they tell... (Score 5, Informative) 746

by wakaranai (#30193316) Attached to: New Research Forecasts Global 6C Increase By End of Century

You can measure the ratio of different types of carbon in tree rings.

What has been found is that 13C/12C ratios are the lowest they've been for 10000 years, and that there is a sharp decline starting in 1850.

RJ Francey et al, Tellus 51B, pp.170-193, 1999

Hardware Hacking

+ - Hackers Next Target: Your In-Car Navigation System

Submitted by
roscoetoon writes " rget-your-in-car-navigation-system/

  "We hate to break it to you, but that oh-so-reliable GPS system that you simply obey each day could eventually lead you down a dark, perilous path",reports,"a new discovery has found that the unencrypted data that's beamed to drivers everyday via RDS-TMC navigation systems could be undermined with relative ease.". "The wireless signals could not only be intercepted, but incorrect directions could actually be used to lead motorists into a trap.""
Hardware Hacking

+ - The World's First Open-Source Car

Submitted by
head_dunce writes "The world's first open source car was was introduced at AutoRAI in Amsterdam. The car's web site will soon allow you to download the entire vehicle's genetic makeup (specifications, technical drawings, etc.) Although this isn't the only open source car project, this one looks like it may have enough of a community behind it to work. — The first thing I'm changing is the user interface, it's ugly..."

+ - Bacteria to protect against quakes

Submitted by
Roland Piquepaille
Roland Piquepaille writes "If you live near the sea, chances are high that your home is built over sandy soil. And if an earthquake strikes, deep and sandy soils can turn to liquid, with some disastrous consequences for the buildings sitting on them. But now, U.S. researchers have found a way to use bacteria to steady buildings against earthquakes by turning these sandy soils into rocks. Today, it is possible to inject chemicals in the ground to reinforce it, but this can have toxic effects on soil and water. On the contrary, this use of common bacteria to 'cement' sands has no harmful effects on the environment. But so far, this method is limited to labs and the researchers are working on scaling their technique. Here are more references and a picture showing how unstable ground can aggravate the consequences of an earthquake."
It's funny.  Laugh.

+ - UK government ministers hacked by impressionist

Submitted by crush
crush (19364) writes "From the social-engineering-101 department: The well-known British impressionist and comedian Rory Bremner pulled off an amazing coup when he managed to get British cabinet ministers Peter Hain and Margaret Beckett to talk to him about highly confidential Labour Party internal matters. Imitating the (inimitable!) gruff scots accent of Gordon Brown (who is the likely succesor to Tony Blair) he was quickly transferred by Downing St. switchboard operators to the private lines of senior cabinet members. Margaret Beckett appears to have divulged 10 minutes of sensitive information to Bremner's tape-recorder. "Security is all about people" is hopefully a message to which this identity-card pushing government will wise up as a result of this exposure. Bremner is going to publish the tapes on the net."

When Were the Americas Populated? 259

Posted by kdawson
from the clovis-breath dept.
evil agent passes along an article in Scientific American reporting that new radiocarbon dating techniques have cast doubt on the accepted story of how the Americas were populated. In the traditional view, "[M]igrants out of northeast Asia slipped into the Americas bearing finely shaped stone projectiles, so-called 'Clovis points,' after the town in New Mexico where they were first uncovered. This Clovis culture rapidly spread throughout the empty continents and by 1,000 years after their arrival had reached the southernmost tip of what is now South America, making them the original ancestors of indigenous Americans." The new dating of Clovis sites suggests that "Clovis" was not a people, but rather a technology. That is, a new and more efficient method of making arrowheads for hunting spread rapidly through a pre-existing population in both North and South America, over at most 350 years.

Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing. -- Wernher von Braun