Daniel_Stuckey writes: Since 2010, the Straters have been under assault from an online campaign of ever-increasing harassment—prank deliveries, smear attacks, high-profile hacks, and threats of violence against schools and law enforcement officials in their name—and it’s slowly torn them apart. Masterminding it all, Blair charges, is a teenage computer hacker from Finland, at war with him over a seemingly minor dispute spun completely out of control.
Security researcher Eric Taylor discovered the internet service provider’s vulnerability as part of his research, and demonstrated how a simple header modification performed with a browser plug-in could reveal details of Charter subscriber accounts. After Fast Company notified Charter of the issue, the company said it had installed a fix within hours.
Daniel_Stuckey writes: Who is really behind the cyber attack on Sony Pictures? The FBI has placed the blame for the attack, which caused the entertainment giant to temporarily halt its Dec. 25 release of its film "The Interview," squarely on North Korea, but some security experts are not convinced.
They suggest several other possibilities, not all of them involving North Korea. Based on available evidence, they say that the Sony data breach could have been accomplished by North Koreans inside North Korea; expatriates in China loyal to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un; international hackers abroad sponsored by Pyongyang; or simply bored hackers from another continent doing it for the lulz.
With the new.onion hidden service link (http://tksgyw4u4t6peema.onion/), which accesses the FBI’s tips page through a reverse proxy, Mustafa Al-Bassam told me in an IRC chat that he’s engineered a “proof-of-concept,” demonstrating how the bureau might go about setting up a more secure system for receiving crime tips.
Daniel_Stuckey writes: The final chapter in Poitras’s trilogy of post-9/11 films, CitizenFour is the stranger-than-fiction narrative of her and other journalists’ first encounters with the NSA whistleblower. Chronicling investigative journalism’s biggest scoop since Watergate as it unfolds before Poitras’s lens, the real-life adventure has so far only reached a few major cities, but it’s struck a nerve.
Perhaps Poitras’s closer peek into Snowden’s soul may be the sentimental treatment the whistleblower movement needs. The film’s up-close, personal examination of Snowden—done in pursuit of revealing intrusions into citizen privacy—is in itself, a production of celebrity and spectacle. Who better to empathize with him now than celebrities?
Daniel_Stuckey writes: Hope you're not too attached to looking out the windows when you fly—the designers of tomorrow's airplanes seem intent on getting rid of them. A Paris design firm recently made waves when it released its concept for a sleek, solar paneled, windowless passenger jet. Before that, Airbus proposed eschewing windows and building its cabins out of transparent polymers. Now, the Center for Process Innovation has floated its own windowless plane concept, and it's attracting plenty of attention, too.
Daniel_Stuckey writes: But yesterday, the account of 2.3 million followers started following Twitterers outside of its own family of accounts for what it told Motherboard was a “strategic reason.” WikiLeaks declined to elaborate further.
I was alerted of the account’s sudden following spree by my roommate who’d excitedly told me he’d just been followed by and had sent it a thanks-for-following direct message, but alas, he hath yielded no response.
The account is now following a large handful of international politicians and presidents, journalists, publishers, lawyers, whistleblower support and activist groups, including what appear to be all the Swedish embassies and ambassadors the account could manage to follow. Among its new followees is Googler-in-Chief, Eric Schmidt, the adversarial focus of Assange’s recently-published book, When Google Met WikiLeaks. At the time of this writing, WikiLeaks was following 1,491 people and counting fast.
Daniel_Stuckey writes: Hector Xavier Monsegur, also known online as "Sabu," was caught by the FBI in June of 2011 for a litany of hacking-related offenses and, within hours, began cooperating with authorities in hopes of receiving a lenient sentence.
Daniel_Stuckey writes: In parts of Peru, there's an old culinary delicacy that consists of liquefying a rare frog. Drinking the concoction is said to cure a wide range of ailments, include bronchitis, tuberculosis, asthma, arthritis, and yes, even impotence.
The amphibian garnish in question is not just any frog, but the critically endangered Telmatobius culeus, or more commonly known as the scrotum water frog, which is endemic to the Lake Titicaca region. As unflattering as it sounds, the nickname is rather apt considering the croaker's many blanket-like skin folds that cover its body; think of it as amphibious version of a blubbery bulldog, with skin that helps it breathe.
In their trials, researchers make "scaffolds" of rabbit penises by washing donor organs in detergent to kill all the living cells. This process leaves a collagen frame that can be seeded with penile cells from the recipient rabbit. The lab-grown penis is specifically rich with cultivated muscle and endothelial cells, which are essential for erectile function. Link to Original Source
Daniel_Stuckey writes: A new MIT study offers a way out of one of solar power's most vexing problems: the matter of efficiency, and the bare fact that much of the available sunlight in solar power schemes is wasted. The researchers appear to have found the key to perfect solar energy conversion efficiency—or at least something approaching it. It's a new material that can accept light from an very large number of angles and can withstand the very high temperatures needed for a maximally efficient scheme.
Conventional solar cells, the silicon-based sheets used in most consumer-level applications, are far from perfect. Light from the sun arrives here on Earth's surface in a wide variety of forms. These forms—wavelengths, properly—include the visible light that makes up our everyday reality, but also significant chunks of invisible (to us) ultraviolet and infrared light. The current standard for solar cells targets mostly just a set range of visible light.
In a trailer advertising WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s new book, When Google Met WikiLeaks, the never-before-seen clip (below) shows WikiLeaks editor Sarah Harrison phoning the State Department’s front desk and asking to speak with then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. “It’s an emergency,” Assange prompts Harrison to say, passing a notecard across the table.
Daniel_Stuckey writes: Laser warfare is pretty much here. We've got lasers on Navy ships and Army trucks, on guided missiles, and one just got test-mounted on an airplane. And obviously, someday there will be lasers on drones. But as any military contractor should remember: no eye stuff.
In 1995 the United Nations banned "Blinding Laser Weapons," which the adopted protocol defined as "laser weapons specifically designed, as their sole combat function or as one of their combat functions, to cause permanent blindness to unenhanced vision" and, in the same protocol, stipulated that, in the employment of laser systems, "the High Contracting Parties shall take all feasible precautions to avoid the incidence of permanent blindness to unenhanced vision."
Straight-forward enough, it seems. But apparently this stipulation bears repeating. Former laser journalist Dan Drollette Jr. explained in an analysis piece in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists that, even after giving up plans to build blinding laser weapons, the US military continued researching them...