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Submission + - Amazon Said Buying Mobile Payment Startup

Rambo Tribble writes: TechFlash is reporting on articles from TechCrunch and the Wall Street Journal indicating that Amazon is scooping up San Francisco startup, mobile-payments provider GoPago, to compete with the likes of PayPal and Square. Opinions differ as to whether this is a speculative deal or a fait accompli.

Submission + - Printing Retinal Cells

Rambo Tribble writes: The BBC reports on research that points to the possibility of using inkjet technology to print retinal ganglion and glial cells. While the research is preliminary, it is thought to hold great promise for treating certain kinds of eye problems.

Comment Flawed Procurement (Score 1) 586

Oregon's problems with the Cover Oregon site are reflective of a procurement process mired in the 1980s. Indeed, this is a problem at all levels of government, and is one of the issues to plague HealthCare.gov. The officials specing and evaluating proposals characteristically have little comprehension of modern software development, and simply give the contract to whatever proprietary vendor does the best marketing job on them.

Another recent, but unnoticed example of this skewed process, also from Oregon, is the awarding of the state's online portal development to a vendor clearly chosen, by key officials, before the process of selection even started. No consideration was given to open development or open standards, the meetings leading up to the purchase decision were just sales presentations by said vendor.

Submission + - German Court Rules Against MS FAT Patent 1

Rambo Tribble writes: Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, at ZDnet, is reporting on a decision in a German court that Microsoft's File Allocation Table patent is invalid due to "obviousness". This threatens MS revenues from the mobile OS that generates the most profits for them, Android.

Submission + - Google to Allow Customized Street Views

Rambo Tribble writes: The BBC reports that Google is making available a new tool that will allow individuals to create their own Street View panoramas. Using photos from an Android device or digital camera, the user will be able to stitch together these custom 360-degree views of their favorite places.

Submission + - What Role Does Software Play in Unintended Acceleration in Vehicles? (cmu.edu)

heidibrayer writes: Safety-critical avionics, aerospace, medical, and automotive systems are becoming increasingly reliant on software. Malfunctions in these systems can have significant consequences including mission failure and loss of life. So, they must be designed, verified, and validated carefully to ensure that they comply with system specifications and requirements and are error free. This blog post describes an effort at the SEI that aims to help engineers use time-proven architecture patterns (such as the publish-subscribe pattern or correct use of shared resources) and validate their correct application.

Submission + - Google Finds Fraudulent Certificates Used by French Government (securityweek.com)

wiredmikey writes: Google announced on Saturday that it detected a French government agency using unauthorized digital certificates for several Google domains to perform man-in-the-middle attacks on a private network.

Google security engineer Adam Langley said the company traced the fraudulent certificates to Agence nationale de la sécurité des systèmes d’information (ANSSI), a French certificate authority that falls under the government's cyber-security agency. "ANSSI has found that the intermediate CA certificate was used in a commercial device, on a private network, to inspect encrypted traffic with the knowledge of the users on that network," Langley noted in a blog post.

In a separate statement, ANSSI blamed "human error" for the incident.

Google's Langley described the incident as a "serious breach" and warned that the company is considering additional actions.

Submission + - Satanists Propose Monument at Oklahoma Statehouse Next to Ten Commandments

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes: The Tulsa World reports that in their zeal to tout their faith in the public square, conservatives in Oklahoma may have unwittingly opened the door to a wide range of religious groups, including satanists who are now seeking to put their own statue next to a Ten Commandments monument on the Statehouse steps. The Republican-controlled Legislature in Oklahoma authorized the privately funded Ten Commandments monument in 2009, and it was placed on the Capitol grounds last year despite criticism from legal experts who questioned its constitutionality. But the New York-based Satanic Temple saw an opportunity and notified the state's Capitol Preservation Commission that it wants to donate a monument too. "We believe that all monuments should be in good taste and consistent with community standards," Lucien Greaves wrote in letter to state officials. "Our proposed monument, as an homage to the historic/literary Satan, will certainly abide by these guidelines." Brady Henderson, legal director for ACLU Oklahoma, said if state officials allow one type of religious expression, they must allow alternative forms of expression, although he said a better solution might be to allow none at all on state property. "We would prefer to see Oklahoma's government officials work to faithfully serve our communities and improve the lives of Oklahomans instead of erecting granite monuments to show us all how righteous they are," says Henderson. "But if the Ten Commandments, with its overtly Christian message, is allowed to stay at the Capitol, the Satanic Temple's proposed monument cannot be rejected because of its different religious viewpoint."

Submission + - "Digital Gophers" Advance Understanding of Mima mounds

Rambo Tribble writes: The BBC reports on an attempt to explain the mystery of Mima mounds. These features are found worldwide, but have, until now, defied explanation. Theories have ranged from them being burial mounds to evidence of extraterrestrial activity. This latest attempt, using computer modelling, tags generations of the lowly gopher as the mounds' architects.

Comment One Thing Is Clear (Score 1, Interesting) 670

Many conditions that are treated with pills could as effectively be addressed with proper diet, nutrition and exercise. Curiously, doctors are rarely averse to prescribing medications for most of these; it is noteworthy that obesity is treated differently. On the other hand, maybe it's time the pills were left on the shelf and patients were required to take responsibility. Big pharma wouldn't like it, but a host of side effects would be avoided, billions of dollars would be saved, and "survival of the fittest" would actually mean something in the social context.

Submission + - "Uptalk" Becoming More Common in Men?

Rambo Tribble writes: The BBC reports that "uptalk" or "valleygirl speak", a raise in pitch at the end of a sentence, is becoming more common in California men. The study was small, but this didn't keep some from coming to conclusions. The opinion seems to vary from this hailing a new age in the use of inflection in human communication, to it just being another So-Cal, androgynous fad.

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