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Submission + - Astronomers Identify the Sun's Long-Lost Sister 1

An anonymous reader writes: A team of researchers led by astronomer Ivan Ramirez of the University of Texas — Austin has identified the first 'sibling' of the sun, a star almost certainly born from the same cloud of gas and dust as our star. 'Astronomers had been observing the star for almost two decades without realizing it's the long-lost sister of the Sun. No doubt we have catalogued other solar siblings whose common heritage has yet to be discovered. Indeed, the UT team, lead by astronomer Ivan Ramirez, is confident that the identification of HD 162826 is just the beginning. “We want to know where we were born,” Ramirez said in a statement. “If we can figure out in what part of the galaxy the Sun formed, we can constrain conditions on the early solar system. That could help us understand why we are here.”'

Submission + - Possible Hint to origin of Stuxnet Worm (

Sooner Boomer writes: "There is a possible hint to the origin of the Stuxnet Worm which has been reported as running in the wild in Iran. Several of the teams of computer security researchers who have been dissecting the software found a text string that suggests that the attackers named their project Myrtus. The guava fruit is part of the Myrtus family, and one of the code modules is identified as Guava. FromTFA:

"Deep inside the computer worm that some specialists suspect is aimed at slowing Iran’s race for a nuclear weapon lies what could be a fleeting reference to the Book of Esther, the Old Testament tale in which the Jews pre-empt a Persian plot to destroy them. "


"Ralph Langner, a German computer security consultant who was the first independent expert to assert that the malware had been “weaponized” and designed to attack the Iranian centrifuge array, argues that the Stuxnet worm could have been brought into the Iranian nuclear complex by Russian contractors.

“It would be an absolute no-brainer to leave an infected USB stick near one of these guys,” he said, “and there would be more than a 50 percent chance of having him pick it up and infect his computer.”

So — put on your tinfoil hat (or yarmulke...), but watch out for unknown USB keys..."


White House Claims Copyright On Flickr Photos 169

Hugh Pickens writes "US government policy is that photos produced by federal employees as part of their job responsibilities are not subject to copyright in the US. But Kathy Gill writes that after originally putting official White House photos in the public domain, since January the Obama White House has been asserting that no one but 'news organizations' can use its Flickr photos taken by the official White House photographer, who is a US government employee. This change appears to be a heavy-handed response to last month's controversy resulting from a billboard that implied the President endorsed The Weatherproof Garment Co. after the company used an AP photo of the president for a Times Square billboard. However a New York law already protects individuals from unauthorized use of their image for advertising, and the billboard was quickly taken down. Gill writes, 'Whatever the reason, the assertion of these "rights" seems to be in direct contrast to official government policy and is certainly in direct contrast to reasonable expectations by the public, given that the photos are being produced with taxpayer (i.e., public) money. Ironically, the same Flickr page that claims (almost exclusive) copyright also links to the US copyright policy statement.'"

DIY Live Photos From ISS 42

leighklotz writes "The international amateur satellite organization AMSAT is reporting live reception of TV images directly from the orbiting ISS via the ARISS-SSTV project. The images are said to be preparations for the upcoming visit to the ISS by Richard Garriot (W5KWQ), which will provide images from space as part of the Windows on Earth project."

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