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Submission + - First alpha of public sector Linux deployment system 1

mathiasfriman writes: SverigeLinux (SwedenLinux in swedish) is a project financed by the Swedish Internet Fund that develop a Linux deployment system for the public sector. It is based on DebianLAN and has just released its first public early alpha version. This 7 minute video shows how you can deploy up to 100 workstations with minimal Linux knowledge in under an hour, complete with DHCP, DNS and user data in LDAP, logins using Kerberos and centralized storage. The project has a home on Github and is looking for testers and developers, hope you will try it out. Don't worry, no Björgen Kjörgen, it's all in english.

Submission + - Did Hillary Commit a Felony? ( 1

bhlowe writes: Hilliary used a private email server hosted at her house to conduct business as Secretary of State under a pseudonym. This appears to be in violation of US law that may exclude her from holding office. A mock twitter account has been set up using the pseudonym of the "administrator" of her server, Eric Hoteham. In 2000, Hillary Clinton says she gave up using email because of the number of investigations she's been under.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot - Private-cloud file hosting software for linux, like Google Drive?

TarpaKungs writes: I'm Asking Slashdot because I *know* this is a growing problem, but I have failed to find a suitable soution. Here's hoping the collective intelligence of Slashdot will prevail :)

OK — you have lots of android devices and maybe a several Chromebooks: Google Drive is great — it works well, it has user selectable offline caching ("Keep on device") — and most importantly, it handles updates from multiple clients gracefully. The main problem with this is reliability (will the service stay there), security, privacy and cost.

"Cost" because I have several terabytes of data (mostly photos, but a lot of other important files and documents) on an existing linux infrastructure which is well maintained, raid-ed and backed up. A small fraction of this it would be nice to replicate to all my client devices. The rest would be nice just to have on demand, subject to a network connection.

"Privacy and security" because I have lots of data that I don't want to lose control of.

I have been searching for a long time and have yet to find any self hosted software that has the technical abilities of Google Drive or Dropbox. Adding to that, the ability to maintain a secondary sync'd full copy of specific shares on linux (eg on my laptop) would be cool — but not crucial. However a general access linux client is a must.

I'm not looking for the all singing all dancing features of Google Drive such as live spreadsheets in my browser or any of the ancillary features like email and calendars. Simply good honest robust file serving with client offline mode (aka local cached copy, user selectable file by file or folder by folder) and no issues with multiple clients updating files.

I've tried Tonido and Owncloud and neither play nice with POSIX user permissions — they seem to want to own the files and manage access at a server level. Owncloud free seems also to be limited to a single share and enterprise pricing on both products is very high (3 to 4 figures) with no hobbyist/home licensing tier.

Simpler scenarios like SFTP and SMB of course do play nice with the local user permissions, but are not so bright on the client side — ie no offline mode. I did look down the WebDAV route but again, I have failed to find any client apps that are smart about offline mode. I suspect Google and Dropbox add some additional stuff to their protocols to push notifications of changes to other connected clients and also to manage the concept of "who has the latest copy".

So I guess what I am looking for is either a whole server/client suite that works or at least an SFTP/SMB/WebDAV client that is a bit smarter. Here's hoping the collective intelligence of Slashdot will prevail :)

Submission + - Open source mapping plays important role in humanitarian response (

An anonymous reader writes: Open source and crowdsourcing—uttering these words at a meeting of the United Nations before the year 2010 would have made you persona non grata. In fact, the fastest way to discredit yourself at any humanitarian meeting just five years ago was to suggest the use of open source software and crowdsourcing in disaster response. Then, a tragic earthquake occured in Haiti in 2010, and OpenStreetMap and Ushahidi were deployed in the aftermath.

Their use demonstrated the potential of free and open source crowdsourcing platforms in humanitarian contexts.

Then, Typhoon Ruby in the Philippines occured five years later. What technology was used?

Submission + - Google Quietly Backs Away From Encrypting New Lollilop Devices by Default

An anonymous reader writes: Although Google announced in September 2014 that Android 5.0 Lollipop would require full-disk encryption by default in new cell phones, Ars Technica has found otherwise in recently-released 2nd-gen Moto E and Galaxy S6. It turns out, according to the latest version of the Android Compatibility Definition document (PDF), full-disk encryption is currently only "very strongly recommended" in anticipation of mandatory encryption requirements in the future. The moral of the story is don't be lazy; check that your full-disk encryption is actually enabled.

Submission + - Blackphone 2 caters to the enterprise, the security-minded and the paranoid (

Mark Wilson writes: Yep, we know all about the NSA, thanks Edward. Yeah, it's possible (probable?) that a government agent somewhere is listening to or recording your conversations. And yes, even if you're not one of the tin-foil hat brigade, there's a danger that someone could tap into your phone. But you don’t have to be paranoid to want security; there are plenty of companies and enterprise customers for whom security is of the utmost importance.

While much of the news coming out of MWC 2015 has been dominated by Microsoft's Lumia 640, the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, and tablets from Sony, there's always room for something a little different. Following on from the security-focused Blackphone, Silent Circle used the Barcelona event to announce the follow-up — the Blackphone 2.

Submission + - Cameras to "see" cancer

Champaklal writes: Inspired by the mantis shrimp's ability to see polarized light, scientists are working on developing cameras to detect cancerous cells. The mantis shrimp has compound eyes which has 16 different kinds of photocells (compared to humans, we have only 3).

The camera uses aluminum nano wires to replicate the polarization sensitive ommatidia photocells in shrimps. They placed the nanowires on top of photodiodes to finally convert image into electrical signals. The complete paper can be found here.

Submission + - From the Maker of Arduboy: Tetris on a Bracelet

timothy writes: Kevin Bates showed off his tiny ("credit card sized") homebrewed game-playing rig at OSCON this summer; not content with merely wallet sized, he's now squeezed enough display — three of them, lacking a curved display to wrap around the wrist — input sensors, and processing power (Atmega 328p) to play Tetris on a tiny, multi-segmented bracelet (video). Sure, there's been Tetris on watches before, but from large-budget companies, not — at least not that I've ever seen — from hackers. Bates' post gives some more technical details, too.

Submission + - Researchers Develop Purely Optical Cloaking

Rambo Tribble writes: Researchers, at the University of Rochester, have developed a remarkably effective visual cloak using a relatively simple arrangement of optical lenses. The method is unique in that it uses off-the-shelf components and provides cloaking through the visible spectrum. Also, it works in 3-D. As one researcher put it, "This is the first device that we know of that can do three-dimensional, continuously multidirectional cloaking, which works for transmitting rays in the visible spectrum." Bonus: The article includes instructions to build your own.

Submission + - Why the Z-80's data pins are scrambled (

An anonymous reader writes: The Z-80 microprocessor has been around since 1976, and it was used in many computers at the beginning of the PC revolution. (For example, the TRS-80, Commodore 128, and ZX Spectrum.) Ken Shirriff has been working on reverse engineering the Z-80, and one of the things he noticed is that the data pins coming out of the chip are in seemingly random order: 4, 3, 5, 6, 2, 7, 0, 1. (And a +5V pin is stuck in the middle.) After careful study, he's come up with an explanation for this seemingly odd design. "The motivation behind splitting the data bus is to allow the chip to perform activities in parallel. For instance an instruction can be read from the data pins into the instruction logic at the same time that data is being copied between the ALU and registers. ... [B]ecause the Z-80 splits the data bus into multiple segments, only four data lines run to the lower right corner of the chip. And because the Z-80 was very tight for space, running additional lines would be undesirable. Next, the BIT instructions use instruction bits 3, 4, and 5 to select a particular bit. This was motivated by the instruction structure the Z-80 inherited from the 8080. Finally, the Z-80's ALU requires direct access to instruction bits 3, 4, and 5 to select the particular data bit. Putting these factors together, data pins 3, 4, and 5 are constrained to be in the lower right corner of the chip next to the ALU. This forces the data pins to be out of sequence, and that's why the Z-80 has out-of-order data pins."

Submission + - Astrophysicists Use Apollo Seismic Array To Hunt for Gravitational Waves

KentuckyFC writes: Back in the 1970s, the astronauts from Apollos 12. 14. 15 and 16 set up an array of seismometers on the lunar surface to listen for moonquakes. This array sent back data until 1977 when NASA switched it off. Now astrophysicists are using this lunar seismic data in the hunt for gravitational waves. The idea is that gravitational waves must squeeze and stretch the Moon as they pass by and that at certain resonant frequencies, this could trigger the kind of seismic groans that the array ought to have picked up. However, the data shows no evidence of activity at the relevant frequencies. That's important because it has allowed astronomers to put the strongest limits yet on the strength of gravitational waves in this part of the universe. Earlier this year, the same team used a similar approach with terrestrial seismic data to strengthen the existing limits by 9 orders of magnitude. The lunar data betters this by yet another order of magnitude because there is no noise from sources such as oceans, the atmosphere and plate tectonics. The work shows that good science on gravitational waves can be done without spending the hundreds of millions of dollars for bespoke gravitational wave detectors, such as LIGO, which have yet to find any evidence of the waves either.

Submission + - Soyuz Breaks Speed Record to ISS (

Zothecula writes: A manned Soyuz spacecraft set a record for traveling to the International Space Station (ISS), arriving six hours after launch instead of the usual two days. Soyuz 34 lifted off from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Friday, March 28 at 4:43 p.m. EDT (08:43 GMT) and docked with the ISS at 10: 28 PM EDT (03:28 GMT). It was able to catch up and match trajectories with the ISS in only four orbits using new techniques previously tested in ISS rendezvouses with Russian unmanned Progress cargo ships.

Submission + - NASA Tightens Security in Response to Insider Threat ( 1

CowboyRobot writes: "NASA has closed down its technical reports database and imposed tighter restrictions on remote access to its computer systems following the arrest of a Chinese contractor on suspicion of intellectual property theft. NASA administrator Charles Bolden outlined those and other security measures in March 20 testimony before a congressional subcommittee. Bolden said he had ordered a review of the access that foreign nationals from designated countries — including China, Iran and North Korea — are given to NASA facilities and a moratorium on providing new access to citizens of those countries. The agency's actions follow the March 16 arrest of Bo Jiang, a Chinese citizen, at Dulles Airport in Washington, D.C., as he prepared to leave the United States. The FBI, in its application for an arrest warrant, said it was investigating violations of the Arms Export Control Act."

Submission + - Worst Recession Ever? (

Dark Coder writes: The Great Depression was extended by 5 years according to various economists due to debilitating Federal policies enacted by FDR. Five recent bills (Auto, Finance, Bank, Health-Care and Teacher Jobs) are touted as being similar to FDR's worsening policies. As a result, we're still sliding into a deeper recession. What does it take to get us out of this doldrums?

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