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Comment Ala "Second Variety" (Score 2) 265

It's a legitimate concern in an all out arms race that someone will let AI guided weapons make their own attack decisions if only to circumvent the decision cycle of the enemies systems. It's not hard to end up with scenarios like Philip K. Dick's "Second Variety" or the movie Screamers (based on the book).

Submission + - Google Announces "End-To-End" Encryption Extension for Chrome

Nexus Unplugged writes: On their security blog today, Google announced a new Chrome extension called "End-To-End" intended to make browser-based encryption of messages easier for users. The extension, which was rumored to be "underway" a couple months ago, is currently in an "alpha" version and is not yet available pre-packaged or in the Chrome Web Store. It utilizes a Javascript implementation of OpenPGP, meaning that your private keys are never sent to Google. However, if you'd like to use the extension on multiple machines, its keyring is saved in localStorage, which can be encrypted with a passphrase before being synced. The extension still qualifies for Google's Vulnerability Reward Program, and joins a host of PGP-related extensions already available for Chrome.

Submission + - Will Giant Pyramids Save the World?

LoLobey writes: Scott Adams has proposed a pyramid project to save the world via energy generation and tourism. Basically build giant pyramids, miles wide and high, in the desert to generate power via chimney effect and photo voltaics with added features for tourism (he’s planning ahead for when robots take over all the work and we’ll need something to do). He’s been big on a few “Big Ideas” lately (canals, ice bergs, ion energy), it appears he wants to save the world, or at least make it a better place. Pyramid idea seems borderline feasible, but impractical. What do you guys think?

Comment Re:The man lost interest in science a long time ag (Score 1) 220

A little late back to this but- I agree, it's stupid. Religion has no place in any kind of cohesive argument. It has no place because it is entirely made up. It's fiction. It's trying to answer questions but the answers are without merit. Why are we here? Why not? Why is there something instead of nothing? Why not? What is our purpose? Whatever we make it out to be, there's nothing external defining it. We're bits of animated mud that get to sit up and look around for a while.

Comment Re:The man lost interest in science a long time ag (Score 1) 220

Religion is a lie, undeserving of the undue respect granted it. Most of the people involved with religion are good, likable people. They would likely be that way whether they were religious or not. They like the idea of there being a plan and someone in charge. It comforts them. As long as they keep their religion in their churches and homes and social events they're fine, but a lot of them try to speak out, or impose their will, on public policy using their religion as the reason for their position. Their views on these items are not credible until they have a reason other than "God says so", whether they say it directly or it underlays their stated reasons.

Submission + - Chrome 25 to Support Unprefixed Content Security Policy (

Trailrunner7 writes: Google is continuing to introduce new security technologies in its Chrome browser, and the latest addition on the horizon is support for unprefixed Content Security Policy, a behind-the-scenes improvement designed to prevent malicious script injections. The technology is included in the beta of Chrome 25, which was released earlier this week, and will soon find its way into the stable channel.

One of the many attack vectors that have made life easier for the bad guys in the last few years is cross-site scripting. This attack relies on specific vulnerabilities in Web applications that allow attackers to get their own malicious scripts onto a legitimate Web page. Browsers will then run those scripts as if they were part of the trusted Web page, enabling the attacker to plant malicious code on a victim's machine or steal sensitive data.

Content Security Policy is one mechanism for preventing these kinds of attacks by allowing users to define which content sources they trust. Chrome then will run scripts only from those trusted sources, creating a whitelist of known good content sources and ignoring content from all other sources.


Submission + - The Privacy Illusion

LoLobey writes: Scott Adams has an entertaining entry on his Dilbert Blog about perceptions of privacy-
“It has come to my attention that many of my readers in the United States believe they have the right to privacy because of something in the Constitution. That is an unsupportable view. A more accurate view is that the government divides the details of your life into two categories:
1. Stuff they don't care about.
2. Stuff they can find out if they have a reason.

Written in response to some reader comments on another entry about privacy guardians and how swell life would be if we voluntarily gave up certain personal info.
Do slashdotters need privacy given that they don’t have it now?

Submission + - Why Insect Wings Don't Fracture (

sciencehabit writes: How can an insect's gossamer wings survive the stresses of flexing, twisting, bending, and flapping millions of times? Tests similar to those used to analyze aircraft parts reveal that the secret lies in the wings’ veins. Researchers mounted sections from the rear wings of lab-raised desert locusts into tiny frames and stretched the wings until they cracked. Unsurprisingly, the membrane between veins, which ranges from a mere 1.7 to 3.7 micrometers thick and is mainly composed of cross-linked proteins, had little resistance to the propagation of cracks. But when cracks reached a wing vein, their growth typically slowed or stopped. Overall, veins boosted a wing’s resistance to crack growth by about 50%. (Cool video demonstration)

Submission + - Harry Harrison, the Stainless Steel Rat: Sayonara (

Toad-san writes: "R.I.P. Harry Harrison, creator of the Stainless Steel Rat, Bill the Galactic Hero, and Soylent Green
Charlie Jane Anders

If Harry Harrison had only created "Slippery" Jim DiGriz, the roguish hero of the Stainless Steel Rat books, he would deserve a high place in science fiction history. But he also wrote dozens of other novels, including the hilarious Bill the Galactic Hero saga, the proto-Steampunk classic A Transatlantic Tunnel, Hurrah!, and the novel that became the movie Soylent Green, Make Room! Make Room!.

Amazingly, Harrison kept writing great novels, with the last Stainless Steel Rat book coming out just two years ago. He died today, aged 87, according to his official website. No details are yet known."

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