Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Submission + - 'Black Holes' In Ocean Exist Scientists Say (huffingtonpost.ca)

dryriver writes: Nothing escapes the yawning chasm of a black hole. Not matter, sound nor even light. Normally confined to the reaches of space, black holes and their seemingly insatiable appetites for everything, have fascinated — and enlightened — scientists for years. Now, they may not have to look so far to study them. Researchers at Switzerland's ETH Zurich and the University of Miami say black holes are among us — at least, massive eddies in the southern Atlantic Ocean bear their telltale signatures. What a black hole is to light, an ocean eddy, scientists suggest, is to water. Dubbed maelstroms, they're bigger than cities, winding up billions of tonnes of ocean water so tightly, nothing escapes them. And scientists are discovering more every day. In a paper published earlier this month in the Journal of Fluid Mechanics, George Haller, a professor at ETH Zurich and Francisco Beron-Vera of the University of Miami claim they can track and define these engorged eddies — a feat that has, until now, proven elusive. The ocean's natural turbulence has thwarted previous attempts to demarcate these islands of intensity. But, by studying satellite imagery, Haller and Baron-Vera were able to identify seven black-hole types in a group of eddies, called Agulhas Rings, that regularly appear off the tip of Africa.

Submission + - The NSA's next move: silencing university professors? (theguardian.com) 2

wabrandsma writes: From the Guardian:

A Johns Hopkins computer science professor blogs on the NSA and is asked to take it down.

A professor in the computer science department at Johns Hopkins, a leading American university, had written a post on his blog, hosted on the university's servers, focused on his area of expertise, which is cryptography. The post was highly critical of the government, specifically the National Security Agency, whose reckless behavior in attacking online security astonished him.

On Monday, he gets a note from the acting dean of the engineering school asking him to take the post down and stop using the NSA logo as clip art in his posts. The email also informs him that if he resists he will need a lawyer.

Why would an academic dean cave under pressure and send the takedown request without careful review, which would have easily discovered, for example, that the classified documents to which the blog post linked were widely available in the public domain?

Submission + - NSA Officers Sometimes Spy on Love Interests (wsj.com)

Jah-Wren Ryel writes: The latest twist in the NSA coverage sounds like something out of a dime-store romance novel — NSA agents eavesdropping on their current and former girlfriends. Official categories of spying have included SIGINT (signals intelligence) and HUMINT (human intelligence) and now the NSA has added a new category to the lexicon LOVEINT which is surely destined to be a popular hashtag now.

Submission + - The financial relationship between the NSA and Silicon Valley (theregister.co.uk)

An anonymous reader writes: 'New documents from Edward Snowden published in The Guardian have shown for the first time the financial relationship between the NSA and some of the largest names in the tech business over the PRISM data-collection scheme ..`

"Last year's problems resulted in multiple extensions to the certifications' expiration dates which cost millions of dollars for Prism providers to implement each successive extension – costs covered by Special Source Operations" the document reads.

Submission + - EFF Victory: Release of Secret Court Opinion: NSA Surveillance Unconstitutional

mspohr writes: For over a year, EFF has been fighting the government in federal court to force the public release of an 86-page opinion of the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC). Issued in October 2011, the secret court's opinion found that surveillance conducted by the NSA under the FISA Amendments Act was unconstitutional and violated "the spirit of" federal law.
https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2013/08/eff-victory-results-expected-release-secret-court-opinion-finding-nsa-surveillance
Further coverage at the NYTimes: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/22/us/2011-ruling-found-an-nsa-program-unconstitutional.html
Judge Bates: “The Court is troubled that the government’s revelations regarding N.S.A.’s acquisition of Internet transactions mark the third instance in less than three years in which the government has disclosed a substantial misrepresentation regarding the scope of a major collection program,”

Submission + - US, Germany To Enter No-Spying Agreement (itworld.com) 1

itwbennett writes: From the solving-nonexistent-problems department. The German Federal Intelligence Service said in a news release that the U.S. has verbally committed to enter into a no-spying agreement with Germany. The no-spying agreement talks were announced as part of a progress report on an eight-point program proposed by German Chancellor Angela Merkelin July with measures to better protect the privacy of German citizens. In the progress report, the German government found that U.S. intelligence services comply with German law. Also, the operators of large German Internet exchanges and the federal government did not find any evidence that the U.S. spies on Germans, the government said.

Submission + - Next Up: The Jamming Wars (itworld.com)

chicksdaddy writes: ITWorld has an interesting opinion piece on the next privacy battleground, which they say will be over citizens right to use jamming technology to (forcibly) opt-out of ubiquitous surveillance, as sensors pop up in more and more public spaces (http://arstechnica.com/security/2013/08/no-this-isnt-a-scene-from-minority-report-this-trash-can-is-stalking-you/) and private homes alike.

"Given the rapid pace of technological change, we don't know exactly what the future holds for us. But one thing is certain: personal privacy is going to turn from a "right" to a "fight" in the next decade, as individuals take up arms against government and private sector snooping on their personal lives."

The article mentions some skirmishes that have already occurred: employees using GPS jamming hardware to prevent employers from tracking their every movement, and the crush of new business for encrypted voice, video and texting services like SilentCircle (up 400% in the last two months). (https://securityledger.com/2013/08/anonymous-email-services-shutter-in-wake-of-snowden/)

"Absent the protection of the law, citizens should be expected to do what they do elsewhere: take matters into their own hands: latching onto tools and technology to give them the privacy that they aren't afforded by the legal system. However, there may not be an easy technology fix for ubiquitous, unregulated surveillance. Writing in Wired this week (http://www.wired.com/opinion/2013/08/yah-surveillance-sucks-but-technology-isnt-the-only-solution/), Jathan Sadowski warns that the tendency for individuals to focus on securing their own data and communications and using technology to do may be misleading.

"The problem is that focusing on one or both of these approaches distracts from the much-needed political reform and societal pushback necessary to dig up a surveillance state at its root," Sadowski writes.

Submission + - Samsung Workers Given Just 85 Seconds to Assemble a Smartphone (ibtimes.co.uk)

DavidGilbert99 writes: A worker in Samsung’s factory in Zona Franca de Manaus, which sits on the banks of the Amazon, is given just six seconds to prepare a box containing a mobile phone battery charger, headset and two instruction manuals. This task is expected to be carried out up to 6,800 times in single shift.
This — along with having just 85 seconds to put entirely assemble a smartphone, 10-hour shifts standing on your feet, working 27 days straight and a hugely increased incidence of work-related injuries — are the reasons why prosecutors in Brazil have brought legal action against Samsung for violating labour laws.

Submission + - Snowden, Manning not whistleblowers, claims Australia's Attorney-General (delimiter.com.au)

renai42 writes: If you talk to most people, WikiLeaks collaborator Bradley Manning and former NSA contractor Edward Snowden are either criminals or some of the greatest whistleblowers of the modern age. Australia's Federal Attorney-General — the highest lawmaker in the country — has come down in the first camp, declaring in a high profile speech during the country's election campaign that neither can technically be classified as "whistleblowers", as they did not expose any government wrongdoing.

Submission + - Edward Snowden Speaks to Peter Maass .. (nytimes.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Peter Maass: Why did you seek out Laura and Glenn, rather than journalists from major American news outlets (N.Y.T., W.P., W.S.J. etc.)? In particular, why Laura, a documentary filmmaker?

Edward Snowden: After 9/11, many of the most important news outlets in America abdicated their role as a check to power — the journalistic responsibility to challenge the excesses of government — for fear of being seen as unpatriotic and punished in the market during a period of heightened nationalism. From a business perspective, this was the obvious strategy, but what benefited the institutions ended up costing the public dearly. The major outlets are still only beginning to recover from this cold period ..

Slashdot Top Deals

They are called computers simply because computation is the only significant job that has so far been given to them.

Working...