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Security

Submission + - China's IT Infrastructure Rife With Security Holes (threatpost.com)

chicksdaddy writes: "A U.S. security expert has uncovered data on more than 10,000 job applicants for positions with China's State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, including user names and passwords that could be used to gain access to other sensitive government systems. The discovery by Dillon Beresford, a security researcher with NSS Labs, is part of ongoing research that has discovered thousands of loosely protected or unprotected computer servers operated by the Chinese government. Beresford also claims to have discovered 12,000 vulnerable devices running the VxWorks embedded operating system. Those devices include Voice over IP (VoIP) phone systems, telecommunications switches, routers and SCADA systems."
Technology

Recommendations For Home Virtualization? 384

An anonymous reader writes "I'll have to upgrade my home computers sometime in the next few months and I'm thinking it's time to swallow the virtualization pill. Besides the ease of switching between Windows and Ubuntu, I'm looking mainly for the ability to save machine state in order to be able to revert to a known working state. Googling turns up mostly guides from 2009 and earlier. Is VMWare ESX pretty much the way to go? Performance does matter — not for gaming but I am heavily into photography, so apps like Lightroom and Photoshop need to run well. Thanks for any insight."
Medicine

Submission + - A Lung Transplant With a Side of Peanut Allergies (discovermagazine.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Here's a weird story. A woman in need of a lung transplant got her new lungs from someone with a peanut allergy who died of anaphylactic shock. Seven months after the surgery, the woman was at an organ transplant support group when she ate a peanut butter cookie and had a violent allergic reaction. So how had the woman's new lungs brought along a peanut allergy? A blog post dives into the medical details and explains that immune cells in the donated lungs couldn't have lived in the new body for long enough to cause the reaction... however, if they encountered an allergen (i.e. something peanuty) shortly after being transplanted, they could have trained the woman's native immune cells to respond.
Space

Submission + - Astronomers Find Weird, Warm Spot on Exoplanet (spacefellowship.com)

SGDK664 writes: Observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope reveal a distant planet with a warm spot in the wrong place. Using Spitzer, an infrared observatory, astronomers found that upsilon Andromedae b's hot spot is offset by a whopping 80 degrees. Basically, the hot spot is over to the side of the planet instead of directly under the glare of the sun. "We really didn't expect to find a hot spot with such a large offset," said Ian Crossfield, lead author of a new paper about the discovery appearing in an upcoming issue of Astrophysical Journal. "It's clear that we understand even less about the atmospheric energetics of hot Jupiters than we thought we did."
United States

Submission + - Immigration Monitors Facebook for Applicant Fraud

Pickens writes: "According to documents obtained by the EFF, that since at least 2008 the US Immigation Service has been tracking social networks like Facebook to monitor and detect potential fraud from people who are applying for US citizenship. According to a May 2008 memo by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services, social networking sites give the government an opportunity to reveal fraud by friending people who are applying for citizenship, then monitoring their activity to see if they are being deceptive about their relationships. "Narcissistic tendencies in many people fuels a need to have a large group of “friends” link to their pages and many of these people accept cyber-friends that they don’t even know," says the memo. "This provides an excellent vantage point for FDNS to observe the daily life of beneficiaries and petitioners who are suspected of fraudulent activities." The memo doesn't say that officials need to be forthright about their own identities when "friending" immigrants, "leaving open the possibility that agents could actively deceive online users to infiltrate their social networks and monitor the activities of not only that user, but also the user's friends, family, and other associates.""

Submission + - Is this man really a cyborg? (cnn.com)

witch-doktor writes: It is not clear what Kevin Warwick means when he call's himself a cyborg. People with neural prostheses, such as deaf people with coclear implants, or the early attempts by Dobelle to insert signals into V1 of humans, would be better examples of cyborgs. What is a cyborg? Why is this man getting so much press? What has he done that makes him deserve this attention, rather than all the people who toiled to make cochlear implants? His website is here http://www.kevinwarwick.com/ .

Submission + - Stress Can Control Our Genes

An anonymous reader writes: Stress has become one of the major disease states in the developed world. But what is stress? It depends on from where you look. You may experience stress as something that affects your entire body and mind, the causes of which are plentiful. But if we zoom in on the building bricks of the body, our cells, stress and its causes are defined somewhat differently. Stress can arise at the cellular level after exposure to pollution, tobacco smoke, bacterial toxins etc, where stressed cells have to react to survive and maintain their normal function. In worst case scenario, cellular stress can lead to development of disease. Researchers from Dr.Klaus Hansen's group at BRIC, University of Copenhagen, have just shown that external factors can stress our cells through the control of our genes.

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