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Submission Summary: 1 pending, 9 declined, 2 accepted (12 total, 16.67% accepted)

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Submission + - Dakota Pipeline Activists Accuse Facebook of State Collusion (telesurtv.net)

Burz writes:

An alternative media outlet covering the grassroots Indigenous struggle against the US$3.8 billion North Dakota pipeline project have accused Facebook of deliberately censoring "a critical moment of our coverage" as riot police cracked down on protesters. Amid a visibly beefed up police presence, at least 20 grassroots and Indigenous activists were arrested and Unicorn Riot were on hand to livestream the "direct action" to their Facebook page, but were blocked from doing so by Facebook. In comments made via email to RT, a member of the media outlet said their "collective members immediately noticed that the full Livestream event URL (https://livestream.com/unicornriot/events/6340986) was being blocked from Facebook.” “Posts and comments with the URL both immediately triggered popup security alerts,” the unnamed member added. “We tried putting the same URL through Bitly shortening and that official Unicorn Riot page post was deleted by Facebook within a few minutes.

Their video shows a militarized police force drawing semi-automatic weapons on unarmed protesters.

Submission + - Research finds normal matter distribution determines galaxy rotation (sciencedaily.com)

Burz writes: "Galaxy rotation curves have traditionally been explained via an ad hoc hypothesis: that galaxies are surrounded by dark matter," said David Merritt, professor of physics and astronomy at the Rochester Institute of Technology, who was not involved in the research. "The relation discovered by McGaugh et al. is a serious, and possibly fatal, challenge to this hypothesis, since it shows that rotation curves are precisely determined by the distribution of the normal matter alone. Nothing in the standard cosmological model predicts this, and it is almost impossible to imagine how that model could be modified to explain it, without discarding the dark matter hypothesis completely."

The researchers plotted the radial acceleration observed in rotation curves published by a host of astronomers over the last 30 years against the acceleration predicted from the observed distribution of ordinary matter now in the Spitzer Photometry & Accurate Rotation Curves database McGaugh's team created. The two measurements showed a single, extremely tight correlation, even when dark matter is supposed to dominate the gravity.

Submission + - Qubes OS 3.1 has been released

Burz writes: Invisible Things Labs has released Qubes OS 3.1. Some of the features recently introduced into this secure concept, single-user desktop OS are Salt management, the Odyssey abstraction layer, and UEFI boot support. The 3.x series also lays the groundwork for distributed verifiable builds, Whonix VMs for Tor isolation, split-GPG key management, USB sandboxing, and a host of others.

Qubes has recently gained a following among privacy advocates, notable among them journalist J.M. Porup, Micah Lee at The Intercept and Edward Snowden.

Embodying a shift away from complex kernel-based security and towards bare metal hypervisors and IOMMUs for strict isolation of hardware components, Qubes seals off the usual channels for 'VM breakout' and DMA attacks. It isolates NICs and USB hardware within unprivileged VMs which are themselves are a re-working of the usual concept, each booting from read-only OS 'templates' which can be shared. Graphics are also virtualized behind a simple, hardened interface. Some of the more interesting attacks mitigated by Qubes are Evil Maid, BadBIOS, BadUSB and Mousejack.

Submission + - Safety expert: Virgin Galactic 'ignored' repeated warnings (rawstory.com) 2

Burz writes: AFP reports that a propulsion safety expert warned Virgin Galactic about their choice their choice of propellant for the ill-fated SpaceshipTwo. “Based on the work we’ve done, including me writing a paper on the handling of nitrous oxide, we were concerned about what was going on at Virgin Galactic,” she told AFP. “I sent copies of the paper to various people at Virgin Galactic in 2009, and they were ignored.”

Whether or not the crash was caused by the populsion system, this does make the company's attitude toward safety look questionable. Condsidering SpaceshipTwo was a civil passenger vehicle, were Virgin Galatic's engineers pushing the envelope too fast?

Submission + - EU FairPhone starts 25k+ production run in one week

Burz writes: Ubuntu Edge may not have made it off the drawing board, but more ambitious FOSS-oriented devices have:

FairPhone has garnered over 32,000 orders for its socially-conscious design of the same name, overshooting the original 25k target in the time they allotted (a second run for the same model will start in January). Unfortunately, this sexy phone starts out as an EU-only product. The FairPhone is priced at 325 euros and will come loaded with Android 4.2, a 4.3" touchscreen, dual SIM slots, replaceable battery, and an admirable array of ports and sensors. What FairPhone aren't interested in selling you, however, is another charging brick-- bring your own! :)
Networking

Submission + - Doctorow tears up ISP contract: lack of neutrality (boingboing.net)

Burz writes: As a reaction to Virgin Media CEO's promise to violate the concept of net neutrality, Cory Doctorow is declaring his ISP contract void, canceling the service, and asking other Virgin customers to do the same. He isn't alone, and neutrality apparently isn't the only reason to drop Virgin. Myself, I am thinking of stopping my Virgin Mobile service in protest.

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