Oh, and it's not once a year, it's once a year on average, over four years. So if you work on a big project for 2-3 years and then get a flurry of papers out at the end, then that's fine too.
Now you cost us a good book !
Wait, I thought TFA was about Charles Stross?
The big problem is that it's very hard to get good entropy early on in the boot process (when things like TCP sequence numbers and sometimes when SSH server keys are initially generated). You can use a hash of the kernel, but that's shared between other machines with the same kernel. You can use the time, but that's likely known to the attacker (and in some embedded systems will always be the same on every boot, until it queries an external source and corrects it). You can use interrupt times, but the ones from the disk / flash are likely to be similar, if not the same, across boots of the same kernel and the early network ones are susceptible to attack by people on the local network.
The hardware RNG definitely gives you some entropy, and so using it to stir the pool for Yarrow helps a lot here. Later on, there is a lot more entropy. As you start to get disk access patterns based on system use and network connections from a variety of sources, interrupt times give quite a lot of entropy. It still helps to mix in the hardware RNG, however.
As I said in another post, it's quite unlikely that the hardware is intentionally compromised (although it's a nice attack, so I wouldn't guarantee that future versions won't be), but it's very likely that it provides less entropy than advertised. This makes it fine for input into a PRNG like Yarrow of Fortuna (I think Fortuna made it into FreeBSD 10, if not it should be in 10.1), but not adequate for general use. The point of a PRNG algorithm like Yarrow is to generate an unpredictable sequence of numbers from some source entropy seed, which can change over time. As long as you have enough entropy, you will get a cryptographically secure sequence of pseudo-random numbers. All this work is doing is saying 'we trust the hardware to give us some entropy, but we don't trust it to give us all of the entropy that we need'.
This work has been ongoing for about a year, since long before the NSA stuff came out. The consensus has been for a while that some hardware random number generators give very good entropy, but some are very poor and it's difficult to tell without querying them a few million times and plotting the distribution which one you have. Add to that, some of them appear to be influenced by the temperature, and as Stephen Murdoch's attack on Tor showed influencing the temperature of someone else's server is not always as difficult as you'd think.
It seems quite unlikely that the hardware RNGs are tampered with, although it would be a very neat hypothetical attack if you could influence a specific RNG in such a way that you could reduce the entropy to, say, 16 bits within a larger space and only you be able to determine what the real space was, but it's very likely that some of them are quite bad. Adding Yarrow makes you a bit safer, because there will be other entropy sources mixed in and so even a relatively poor RNG helps stir the pool.
 Or some other whitening algorithm - Yarrow is the default, but there are some newer ones that are better, at the cost of a footprint that is not desirable for embedded devices, and FreeBSD 10 now includes a framework to make it easy to plug in the one you want.
But you can get that just by fedexing copies of your backups to friends in different cities.
Switzerland stood up to the nazis, but they caved to the American IRS. There is no more reason to trust a Swiss bank today.
You don't think the smoking carcass would own all of the patents and make it impossible for a bunch of new startups to get into the industry?
Patents are assets. Assets are auctioned off in bankruptcy. The owner of a patent benefits from licensing the patent for fees, not from sitting on a patent and preventing anyone from using it.
Certainly far more useful than chemistry
Nope. Basic understanding of chemistry can keep people from mixing ammonia and bleach to clean the tub.
Speaking as one who had the misfortune of having to try to help kids with no interest at all in computing, back when I was in high school myself, this is a fucking idiotic idea. Coding isn't for everyone.
This will turn into just another way to rape the planet
Oh, for Christ's sake. Why don't you just go freeze in the dark, and quit bitching about people trying to improve the lives of their fellow man?
Money isn't everything -- but it's a long way ahead of what comes next. -- Sir Edmond Stockdale