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Censorship

Microsoft Tries To Censor Bing Vulnerability 275

An anonymous reader writes "Microsoft's Bing search engine has a vulnerability with its cash-back promotion, which impacts both merchants and customers. In traditional Microsoft fashion, the company has responded to the author of the breaking Bing cash-back exploit with a cease & desist letter, rather than by fixing the underlying security problem. It is possible for a malicious user to create fake Bing cash-back requests, resulting in not only fake cash-back costs for the merchant, but also blocking legitimate customers from receiving their cash-back from Bing. The original post is currently available in Bing's cache, although perhaps not for long. But no worries, the author makes it clear that the exploit should be painfully obvious to anyone who reads the Bing cash-back SDK."
Databases

The NoSQL Ecosystem 381

abartels writes 'Unprecedented data volumes are driving businesses to look at alternatives to the traditional relational database technology that has served us well for over thirty years. Collectively, these alternatives have become known as NoSQL databases. The fundamental problem is that relational databases cannot handle many modern workloads. There are three specific problem areas: scaling out to data sets like Digg's (3 TB for green badges) or Facebook's (50 TB for inbox search) or eBay's (2 PB overall); per-server performance; and rigid schema design.'
Biotech

NASA Reproduces a Building Block of Life In the Lab 264

xp65 writes "NASA scientists studying the origin of life have reproduced uracil, a key component of our hereditary material, in the laboratory. They discovered that an ice sample containing pyrimidine exposed to ultraviolet radiation under space-like conditions produces this essential ingredient of life. 'We have demonstrated for the first time that we can make uracil, a component of RNA, non-biologically in a laboratory under conditions found in space,' said Michel Nuevo, research scientist at NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif. 'We are showing that these laboratory processes, which simulate occurrences in outer space, can make a fundamental building block used by living organisms on Earth.'"
Google

Startup Claims Google Copied Web-Annotation Product 167

An anonymous reader writes "Web annotation startup ReframeIt claim Google copied their web annotation product when releasing Google Sidewiki. At first glance, the products do look quite similar, and this eWeek article has some interesting evidence, including suspicious user registrations by Google employees and an attempt by Google to hire off ReframeIt's lead engineer."
Media

Tired of Flash? HTML5 Viewer For YouTube 372

An anonymous reader writes "Instead of spending the next 10 years trying to find a Flash implementation for Linux or OS X that doesn't drain CPU cycles like there's no tomorrow, NeoSmart Technologies has made an HTML5 viewer for YouTube videos. It loads YouTube videos in an HTML5 video container and streams (with skip/skim/pause/resume) against an MP4 resource, and an (optional) userscript file can update YouTube pages with the HTML5 viewer. The latest versions of Firefox, Chrome, and Safari are supported. Personally, I can't wait until the major video sites default to HTML5 and we can finally say goodbye to Flash."
The Internet

The Internet Turns 40, For a Second Time 152

sean_nestor writes with this excerpt from The Register: "Some date the dawn of the net to September 12, 1969, when a team of engineers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) connected the first two machines on the first node of ARPAnet, the US Department of Defense-funded network that eventually morphed into the modern interwebs. But others — including Professor Leonard Kleinrock, who led that engineering team — peg the birthday to October 29, when the first message was sent between the remote nodes. 'That's the day,' Kleinrock tells The Reg, 'the internet uttered its first words.' ...A 50kbps AT&T pipe connected the UCLA and SRI nodes, and the first message sent was the word 'log' — or at least that was the idea. UCLA would send the 'log' and SRI would respond with 'in.' But after UCLA typed the 'l' and the 'o,' the 'g' caused a memory overflow on the SRI IMP. ... 'So the first message was "Lo," as in "Lo and Behold,"' Kleinrock says. 'We couldn't have asked for a better message — and we didn't plan it.'"
Wireless Networking

New Improvements On the Attacks On WPA/TKIP 166

olahau writes "Two weeks ago, improvements to the previously reported attack on WPA/TKIP, were presented at the NorSec Conference in Oslo, Norway. In their paper coined 'An Improved Attack on TKIP,' Finn Michael Halvorsen and Olav Haugen describe the improvements, which enable an attacker to inject larger, maliciously crafted packets into a WPA/TKIP protected network, thus opening the probabilities for new and more sophisticated attacks against the well-established wireless security protocol."
Software

Who Installs the Most Crapware? 583

Barence writes "PC Pro has done a thorough test of the software bundled by nine of the leading laptop manufacturers to find out who installs the most crapware on their PCs. Manufacturers such as Acer add as much as two minutes to their boot times by stuffing their machines full of bundled software, with own-brand proprietary software being the worst offender. HP's bundled apps, meanwhile, have a memory footprint of more than 1GB. PC Pro has also reviewed three pieces of software which promise to remove rubbish from your PC — with mixed results."
Idle

Bad Driving May Have Genetic Basis 449

Serenissima writes "Bad drivers may in part have their genes to blame, suggests a new study by UC Irvine neuroscientists. People with a particular gene variant performed more than 20 percent worse on a driving test than people without it — and a follow-up test a few days later yielded similar results. About 30 percent of Americans have the variant. 'These people make more errors from the get-go, and they forget more of what they learned after time away,' said Dr. Steven Cramer, neurology associate professor and senior author of the study published recently in the journal Cerebral Cortex."
Power

Thermonuclear Reactor To Use Coconut Shells 251

destinyland writes "A key component of a $10 billion nuclear fusion plant is vintage 2002 Indonesian coconut-shell charcoal. After a 20-year search, German researchers discovered that the coconut-shell charcoal is the best medium for 'adsorbing' waste byproducts sucked out of the thermonuclear reactor's vacuum chamber. In what will be the first fusion power facility that's commercially viable, magnetic fields will heat hydrogen isotopes to over 150 million degrees Centigrade. (Essentially, the super-hot plasma creates artificial stars.) As the article points out, 'It's not quite a Starship warp drive, but it does harness the power of the sun.'"

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