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Submission + - Phony Ubuntu website possibly serving malware 4

An anonymous reader writes: If you accidentally misspell Ubuntu while typing in the address, you may end up at http://uhuntu.com/ . Spelling Ubuntu with an "h" instead of a "b" takes you to a website that looks just like Canonicals Ubuntu website. No word on whether or not they are serving malware ridden Ubuntu ISOs, so watch what you type into that address bar.

Submission + - Over 25 million accounts stolen after Mail.ru forums hacked (zdnet.com)

alir1272 writes: Over 25 million accounts associated with forums hosted by Russian internet giant Mail.ru have been stolen by hackers.

Two hackers carried out attacks on three separate game-related forums in July and August. One forum alone accounted for almost half of the breached data — a little under 13 million records; the other two forums make up over 12 million records.

Submission + - The Epi-Pen price battle hits Congress (cnn.com) 1

Applehu Akbar writes: The recent exorbitant increase in the price of the Epi-Pen injector for epinephrine, a compound that has been generic for years, has now turned into civil war in the US Senate. One senator's daughter relies on Epi-Pen, while another senator's daughter is CEO of Mylan, the single company that is licensed to sell these injectors in the US.

On the worldwide market there is no monopoly on these devices. Manufacturers include Amedra Pharmaceuticals LLC, ALK Abello, Sanofi SA, and Lincoln Medical Ltd, Itelliject Inc, Adamis Pharmaceuticals Corp, Hospira Inc, Teva Pharmaceuticals Ltd and Antares Pharma Inc. Is it finally time to allow Americans to go online and fill their prescriptions on the world market?

Submission + - Linux Turns 25, Happy Birthday!

prisoninmate writes: 25 years later, it turns out Linux is a big thing, and it's everywhere around us. Linux kernel powers your Android smartphone as you read this story on your 5.5-inch display, it's used by search engine giant Google, as well as 99.9% of the websites you're accessing daily. Linux kernel, as the core component of a GNU/Linux operating system, is everywhere around us, even if you don't see it. For God's sake, the whole Internet is powered by Linux! It's used in airplanes, on your Wi-Fi router, on smartwatches, smart TVs, and any other smart device you have in your home. Yes, even your smart fridge uses Linux, but we won't bother you with nonsense geek details because it's celebration time. Happy 25th birthday Linux!

Submission + - Pilgrim nuclear plant powered down after discovery of problem valve (patriotledger.com)

mdsolar writes: Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, already one step from being forced by federal regulators to close down based on poor performance, remained powered down for a third day Tuesday as crews tried to repair a malfunctioning valve designed to prevent radioactivity from leaking into the environment during a nuclear accident.

Patrick O'Brien, a spokesman for plant operator Entergy, said inspectors discovered during routine test last week that one of the valves was not closing fast enough. The plant had already been lowered to 47 percent power last Tuesday for maintenance and was powered down completely on Sunday to allow crews to repair the valve.

This is the second time in a year that a problem in the valve system has shut down the reactor. Critics say it is further evidence that parts are wearing out and not being replaced in time at the 44-year-old reactor because owner-operator Entergy Corp. plans to permanently shutter the plant in mid-2019.

“Even with increased federal oversight, repetitive failure of critical safety equipment is yet another serious warning that Pilgrim's ongoing degradation continues to threaten our region,” Diane Turco, co-founder of the watchdog group Cape Downwinders, wrote in an email. “Pilgrim is an accident waiting to happen. Closure should be now, not in 2019.”

Submission + - Orangutans face complete extinction within 10 years (independent.co.uk)

campuscodi writes: Orangutans will be extinct from the planet within 10 years unless action is taken to preserve forests in Indonesia and Malaysia where they live, a conservation charity has warned.

The Bornean orangutan was officially listed as critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) last month, joining the only other kind, the Sumatran orangutan, in that classification. In just 25 years, more than a quarter of Indonesia's forests – 76 million acres, an area almost the size of Germany – have disappeared. One of the main reasons is to clear land to make way for palm oil plantations.

Submission + - 20% of Scientific Papers On Genes Contain Conversion Errors Caused by Excel (winbeta.org)

An anonymous reader writes: A new report from scientists Mark Ziemann, Yotam Eren, and Assam El-Osta says that 20% of scientific papers on genes contain gene name conversion errors caused by Excel. In the scientific article, titled “Gene name errors are widespread in the scientific literature,” article’s abstract section, the scientists explain: “The spreadsheet software Microsoft Excel, when used with default settings, is known to convert gene names to dates and floating-point numbers. A programmatic scan of leading genomics journals reveals that approximately one-fifth of papers with supplementary Excel gene lists contain erroneous gene name conversions.” It’s easy to see why Excel might have problems with certain gene names when you see the “gene symbols” that the scientists use as examples: “For example, gene symbols such as SEPT2 (Septin 2) and MARCH1 [Membrane-Associated Ring Finger (C3HC4) 1, E3 Ubiquitin Protein Ligase] are converted by default to ‘2-Sep’ and ‘1-Mar’, respectively. Furthermore, RIKEN identifiers were described to be automatically converted to floating point numbers (i.e. from accession ‘2310009E13’ to ‘2.31E+13’). Since that report, we have uncovered further instances where gene symbols were converted to dates in supplementary data of recently published papers (e.g. ‘SEPT2’ converted to ‘2006/09/02’). This suggests that gene name errors continue to be a problem in supplementary files accompanying articles. Inadvertent gene symbol conversion is problematic because these supplementary files are an important resource in the genomics community that are frequently reused. Our aim here is to raise awareness of the problem.”

Submission + - Why are GitHub and WordPress.com censoring content? (networkworld.com)

Miche67 writes: The internet is known for the free and rapid dissemination of uncensored information, but lately sites and services have been censoring content--including GitHub and WordPress.com.

Bryan Lunduke says: "GitHub, a service primarily used for open source and free culture projects, recently censored a repository that contained information proving the NSA developed malware targeting numerous systems." And WordPress.com "censored content posted by “Guccifer 2” that was potentially damaging to the reputation of the Democratic party."

Neither organizations have responded to requests by Lunduke to find out why they took those actions.

This comes after Twitter and Facebook came under fire for their censorship actions.

Lunduke poses the question:

When something that many people feel is important to their lives occurs and the major online platforms for disseminating that information censor them, what does that say about those platforms?


Submission + - US army blames lost computer files for part of accounting nightmare (reuters.com)

Bruce66423 writes: "DFAS also could not make accurate year-end Army financial statements because more than 16,000 financial data files had vanished from its computer system. Faulty computer programming and employees’ inability to detect the flaw were at fault, the IG said."

Overall the report indicates that the army's accounts are massively fudged, and has been for years. The question is: Why has the executive branch failed to address the issue, and why hasn't congress ensured compliance with basic standards of behaviour. Meanwhile blaming the loss of computer files is the resort of the IT incompetent.

Submission + - Comcast Rolls Out $70-Per-Month Gigabit Internet Service In Chicago (pcmag.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Comcast is now offering Chicagoans gigabit internet speeds. PC Magazine reports: "Launched on Wednesday, the program uses DOCSIS 3.1 technology to deliver speeds up to 1Gbps over existing network infrastructure. DOCSIS 3.1 runs through standard cable connections already in place at your home or office. So Xfinity and Comcast Business Internet customers can simply sign up for a plan and plug in a new modem; no fiber installation required. The service, according to Comcast, allows you to download a 5GB HD movie in 40 seconds, a 60MB TV episode in four seconds, a 150MB music album in two seconds, or a 15GB video game in two minutes. Initial users have the choice of a promotional contract price of $70 per month for 36 months, or $139.95 per month (plus tax and fees) with no contract."

Submission + - Oracle Is Funding A New Anti-Google Group (fortune.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Oracle says it is funding a new non-profit called "Campaign for Accountability," which consists of a campaign called "The Google Transparency Project" that claims to expose criminal behavior carried out by Google. "Oracle is absolutely a contributor (one of many) to the Transparency Project. This is important information for the public to know. It is 100 percent public records and accurate," said Ken Glueck, Senior Vice President of Oracle. Fortune reports: "Oracle's hidden hand is not a huge surprise since the company has a history of sneaky PR tactics, and is still embroiled in a bitter intellectual property lawsuit with Google." One would think Microsoft may be another contributor, but the company said it is not. Daniel Stevens, the deputy director of the CfA, declined to name the group's other donors, or to explain why it does not disclose its funders.

Submission + - Clean-Burning 'Blue Whirl' Could Help Clean Oil Spills (sciencenews.org)

An anonymous reader writes: An unfortunate mix of electricity and bourbon has led to a new discovery. After lightning hit a Jim Beam warehouse in 2003, a nearby lake was set ablaze when the distilled spirit spilled into the water and ignited. Spiraling tornadoes of fire leapt from the surface. In a laboratory experiment inspired by the conflagration, a team of researchers produced a new, efficiently burning fire tornado, which they named a blue whirl. To re-create the bourbon-fire conditions, the researchers, led by Elaine Oran of the University of Maryland in College Park, ignited liquid fuel floating on a bath of water. They surrounded the blaze with a cylindrical structure that funneled air into the flame to create a vortex with a height of about 60 centimeters. Eventually, the chaotic fire whirl calmed into a blue, cone-shaped flame just a few centimeters tall, the scientists report online August 4 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The soot-free blur whirls could be a way of burning off oil spills on water without adding much pollution to the air, the researchers say, if they can find a way to control them in the wild.

Submission + - US Air Force wants to plasma bomb the sky using tiny satellites (newscientist.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Now the USAF wants to do this more efficiently, with tiny cubesats, for example, carrying large volumes of ionised gas directly into the ionosphere.

As well as increasing the range of radio signals, the USAF says it wants to smooth out the effects of solar winds, which can knock out GPS, and also investigate the possibility of blocking communication from enemy satellites.

Submission + - NASA Research publicly available

Presto Vivace writes: From Now On You'll Be Able to Access NASA Research for Free

Any scientists publishing NASA-funded work will be required to upload their papers to a free, online database called PubSpace within a year of publication.

PubSpace is managed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) PubMed Central, which archives biomedical research. You can see NASA-funded studies here, with recent examples including a paper on cardiovascular disease in Apollo astronauts and one on Martian tsunamis caused by meteor impacts.

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