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Cloud

Datagram Recovers From 'Apocalyptic' Flooding During Sandy 114

1sockchuck writes "During SuperStorm Sandy, few data centers faced a bigger challenge than the Datagram facility in lower Manhattan. The storm surge from Sandy flooded its basement, disabling critical pumps. 'It was apocalyptic,' said CEO Alex Reppen. 'It was like a tidal wave over lower Manhattan.' While companies like CoreSite dealt primarily with the loss of ConEd power, the Datagram team sought to recover operations in an active flood zone. Why was mission-critical equipment in the basement? Because city officials restrict placing fuel tanks on rooftops and upper floors, citing concerns about diesel emerging from the 9-11 attacks."
Microsoft

Windows 8 PCs Still Throttled By Crapware 657

jfruh writes "Windows 8's Metro UI presents a clean and spiffy new interface for Microsoft's latest OS. But one of the operating system's oldest and most hated problems — crapware — still lurks below the surface. For instance, the Acer Aspire 7600U is an all-in-one that, at $1,900, is hardly a bargain-basement PC. And yet as shipped it includes over 50 pieces of OEM and third-party software pre-installed, much of which simply offer trials for paid services."
Businesses

Submission + - O'Reilly Discounts Every eBook by 50% (oreilly.com)

destinyland writes: O'Reilly and Associates just announced that they're offering a 50% discount on every ebook they publish for Cyber Monday. Use the code CYBERDAY when checking out to claim the discount (which expires at midnight). Amazon has also discounted their Kindle Fire tablets to just $129. Due to a prodcution snafu, they've already sold out of the new Kindle Paperwhite, and won't be able to ship any more until December 21
Mars

Submission + - SpaceX Founder Sets Sights On Martian Colony (isciencetimes.com)

amkkhan writes: Elon Musk, founder of the private spaceflight company SpaceX, is has his eye on forming a Mars colony, and you can be part one of the first Martian explorers for only $500,000. The Mars colony would be part of a Mars settlement program, and Must envisions ferrying up to 80,000 people to the red planet as part of the first Mars colony.

The Mars settlement program would start with 10 people, who would journey on to Mars on a reusable rocket created by SpaceX powered by liquid oxygen and methane, according to Yahoo! News.

"At Mars, you can start a self-sustaining civilization and grow it into something really big," Musk said, according to Space.com.

Security

Submission + - Dual Interface Mobile Devices To Address BYOD Issue (computerworld.com)

Lucas123 writes: Next year, smart phones will begin shipping with the ability to have dual identities: one for private use and the other for corporate. Hypervisor developers, such as VMware and Red Bend, are working with system manufacturers to embed their virtualization software in the phones, while IC makers, such as Intel, are developing more powerful and secure mobile device processors. The combination will enable mobile platforms that afford end users their own user interface, secure from IT's prying eyes, while in turn allowing a company to secure its data using mobile device management software. One of the biggest benefits dual-identity phones will offer is enabling admins to wipe corporate data from phones without erasing end users profiles and personal information.
Bug

Submission + - Researcher Finds Nearly Two Dozen SCADA Bugs in a Few Hours' Time (threatpost.com)

Trailrunner7 writes: It is open season on SCADA software right now. Last week, researchers at ReVuln, an Italian security firm, released a video showing off a number of zero-day vulnerabilities in SCADA applications from manufacturers such as Siemens, GE and Schneider Electric. And now a researcher at Exodus Intelligence says he has discovered more than 20 flaws in SCADA packages from some of the same vendors and other manufacturers, all after just a few hours' work.

Aaron Portnoy, the vice president of research at Exodus, said that finding the flaws wasn't even remotely difficult.

"The most interesting thing about these bugs was how trivial they were to find. The first exploitable 0day took a mere 7 minutes to discover from the time the software was installed. For someone who has spent a lot of time auditing software used in the enterprise and consumer space, SCADA was absurdly simple in comparison. The most difficult part of finding SCADA vulnerabilities seems to be locating the software itself," Portnoy said in a blog post.

Portnoy said that he plans to suggest to ICS-CERT that the group consider developing a repository of SCADA software to make it easier for security researchers to do their work.

Comment Title is wrong (Score 1) 2

Title says tap water... article says rain water. The synopsis is also wrong. The synopsis says that "3 Liters of rainwater collected contained 134 Becquerels of Iodine for an average of 20.1 Becquerel per liter", but this isn't the case (and in any case the average given those numbers would be 44.67 (134 / 3 = 44.67)). That data shows that 20.1 Bq/L of Iodine 131 were found (in three liters, meaning a total of 60.3 becquerel) and the parenthetical number (134) is "the number of liters of water that one would need to consume to equal the radiation exposure of a single round trip flight from San Francisco to Washington D.C. (0.05 mSv)."

Comment Re:solution: (Score 1) 557

You learn to turn emotion off when you have no control over the outcome beyond what you've been able to do. I do this quite well as a paramedic. I see horrific things, encounter situations that would leave others crying in the fetal position for days... but I get through it through a sense of personal accomplishment and team camaraderie. Am I stoic? To a degree. But I also know when to ask for help, and there's a communication style among my peers that allows for expression through humor, anger, etc. that's not frowned upon. Some of the best therapy I've ever had was sitting on the bumper of the ambulance at the hospital after a particularly bad call, scene, patient, etc. I don't *like* what I see, but I like being able to affect it. And being trusted to affect it. That doesn't make me a sociopath... just someone who WOULD be a sociopath if you locked me up in a windowless office for eight hours a day with Excel and actuarial tables.

Comment Re:Apple owns a patent for screen rotation? (Score 1) 434

Fancy words like 'hire,' and grammatical structures like "Which would have been thrown out." expressed as a sentence rather than a question?

I'm not defending patents for broad swaths of technology - not in the least. At the same time, requiring very specific patent applications requires the use of very detailed, technical language as part of the description. The patent suit problem is that patent approvals hinge on interpretation of descriptive language. It's the classic elephant problem - you and I describing the same thing but in completely different vocabularies.

The Internet

The Internet Is 'Built Wrong' 452

An anonymous reader writes "API Lead at Twitter, Alex Payne, writes today that the Internet was 'built wrong,' and continues to be accepted as an inferior system, due to a software engineering philosophy called Worse Is Better. 'We now know, for example, that IPv4 won't scale to the projected size of the future Internet. We know too that near-universal deployment of technologies with inadequate security and trust models, like SMTP, can mean millions if not billions lost to electronic crime, defensive measures, and reduced productivity,' says Payne, who calls for a 'content-centric approach to networking.' Payne doesn't mention, however, that his own system, Twitter, was built wrong and is consistently down."

Places Rated, Skeptically 125

Readers left more than 500 comments on yesterday's post suggesting that, after accounting for local price differences, the best-paid tech jobs aren't in Silicon Valley or other areas well known for computer jobs, but rather in smaller cities around the country. Quality of life is overall more important than salary, though, and it isn't an easy thing to measure. Several readers pointed to reasons why the most expensive places to live get to be so expensive, and why (for those who can afford to live there in the first place) locations like Silicon Valley are often worth their premiums. Read on for some of the most interesting comments from the discussion in today's Backslash summary.

Dvorak Admits To Trolling Mac Users 354

jalefkowit writes "Tech pundit John Dvorak has long been known for his inflammatory opinions. Many have suspected that these opinions are just a way to drive up traffic to his column. Now, we have it straight from the horse's mouth: Dave Winer has Dvorak on video describing his methodology for trolling the Mac community to pump up his stats." I have to admit I'm also guilty of posting the occasional inflammatory story, but I find it's usually best to suffix the title with a question mark, and let our ever-knowledgeable readers hash out the issue and decide for themselves.

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