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Submission + - Reddit is going dark after new CEO fires key employee. (

GNUALMAFUERTE writes: At approximately 5pm UTC, 1pm EST, on Thursday the 2nd of July, 2015, the moderators of /r/IAmA took their subreddit, which is one of the default set, private, making it for all intents and purposes shut down. Just after that, a thread was posted to another subreddit, /r/outoftheloop, asking whether anyone knew why it had happened. User /u/karmanaut, top mod of /r/IAmA, responded explaining that Victoria Taylor, Reddit's Director of Talent had been fired without notifying any of the subreddits that depended on her work. Victoria was a moderator of many default subs, and essentially the main contact between the moderators and the admins.

After Reddit's employees refused to comment on the issue, most other default subreddits, including /r/AskReddit , /r/Books , /r/science , /r/Music , /r/gaming , /r/history , /r/Art , /r/videos , /r/gadgets , /r/todayilearned , /r/Documentaries, /r/LifeProTips and /r/movies decided to do the same in solidarity with r/IAMA, effectively shutting down 90% of Reddit.

This thread in /r/outoftheloop has more information, and updates will be posted there.

Submission + - Reddit's Top Forums are Shutting Down to Protest an Admin's Removal (

Advocatus Diaboli writes: Some of the most prominent parts of the social media site Reddit are going dark in defiance of the removal of an admin who organized the site’s popular “IAmA” interviews with celebrities, politicians, and other people of note. The subreddit /r/IAmA was the first to go dark following the departure of administrator Victoria Taylor, a Reddit employee who was let go, according to the forum moderators. Taylor scheduled and ran many of the forum’s Q&As.

Submission + - Snowden Document: CSEC spying on Canadians

Walking The Walk writes: It seems the NSA isn't the only agency doing illegal domestic spying. According to a Snowden document obtained by the CBC, Canada's Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC) has apparently been tracking domestic travellers, starting from when they first use free wifi at an airport, and continuing for days after they left the terminal. From the article:

The document indicates the passenger tracking operation was a trial run of a powerful new software program CSEC was developing with help from its U.S. counterpart, the National Security Agency. In the document, CSEC called the new technologies "game-changing," and said they could be used for tracking "any target that makes occasional forays into other cities/regions."

The CBC notes early in the article that the spy agency:

is supposed to be collecting primarily foreign intelligence by intercepting overseas phone and internet traffic, and is prohibited by law from targeting Canadians or anyone in Canada without a judicial warrant.

Predictably, CSEC's chief is quoted saying that they aren't allowed to spy on Canadians, so therefore they don't. As observed by experts consulted for the story, that claim is equivalent to saying that they collect the data but we're to trust that they don't look at it.


Submission + - Game dev Tommy Refenes: EA's apathy and refunds do more damage than piracy (

phenopticon writes: "From game developer Tommy Refenes, a blog post that details from his experience why developer apathy and return refunds are infinitely more damaging than piracy or DRM cracking.

Quote: I think I can safely say that Super Meat Boy has been pirated at least 200,000 times. We are closing in on 2 million sales and assuming a 10% piracy to sales ratio does not seem unreasonable. As a forward thinking developer who exists in the present, I realize and accept that a pirated copy of a digital game does not equate to money being taken out of my pocket. Team Meat shows no loss in our year end totals due to piracy and neither should any other developer."


Submission + - Electronics Arts CEO ousted in wake of SimCity launch disaster ( 2

mozumder writes: The disastrous launch of SimCity took it's first major toll, with EA CEO John Riccitiello being fired from his position and removed from the Board of Directors. It is unknown what effect this may have on the SimCity franchise or any future DRM of EA games, but clearly someone didn't think their cunning plan all the way through when they decided to implement always-on connections for single-player gaming.

Submission + - Bug on EA's Origin game platform allows attackers to hijack player PCs (

ganjadude writes: "Millions upon millions could be at risk due to the attack that was displayed this past friday at the black hat security conference.

"The Origin platform allows malicious users to exploit local vulnerabilities or features by abusing the Origin URI handling mechanism," ReVuln researchers Donato Ferrante and Luigi Auriemma wrote in a paper accompanying last week's demonstration. "In other words, an attacker can craft a malicious Internet link to execute malicious code remotely on [a] victim's system, which has Origin installed.



Submission + - Magnetism flips heat flow (

ananyo writes: "Researchers have demonstrated that a magnetic field can control the flow of heat from from one body to another. First predicted nearly 50 years ago, the quantum effect might some day form the basis of a new generation of transistors that use heat rather than charge as the information carrier.
The research stems from the work of physicist Brian JosephsonSQUIDs), which are now sold commercially as ultra-sensitive magnetometers. In the latest work, researchers measured the devices’ thermal behaviour. The duo heated one end of a SQUID several micrometres long and monitored the temperature of an electrode connected to it. A SQUID consists of two y-shaped pieces of superconductor joined together to form a loop, but with two thin pieces of insulating material sandwiched in between. As the researchers varied the magnetic field passing through the loop, they found that the amount of heat flowing through the device also changed. The device worked by partly reversing the heat transfer, so that some would flow from the colder body to the warmer one."


Submission + - IQ 'a myth,' study says (

An anonymous reader writes: The idea that intelligence can be measured by a single number — your IQ — is wrong, according to a recent study led by researchers at the University of Western Ontario. The study, published in the journal Neuron on Wednesday, involved 100,000 participants around the world taking 12 cognitive tests, with a smaller sample of the group undergoing simultaneous brain-scan testing.
Data Storage

Submission + - Non-Volatile Memory's Future is in Software (

Lucas123 writes: As emerging memory technologies such as Phase-Change Memory and Racetrack Memory offer the promise of higher performance and longevity compared with today's NAND flash, developers are working on specifications that will allow them to serve dual roles of mass storage and system memory in the future. One industry task force made up of system and software manufacturers has already begun work to improve OS speeds by making them aware when a medium that is faster than spinning disk is available. The group will then work on giving applications direct access to the flash through the OS; and lastly, it wants to enable new non-volatile memory to be seen as system memory by the CPU.

Submission + - Confirmed: Germany Monitors Skype, Google Mail, Yahoo Mail and Facebook chat (

hypnosec writes: German Government has went a bit too far trying to be transparent and has inadvertently revealed that German police monitors Skype, Google Mail, MSN Hotmail, Yahoo Mail and Facebook chat as and when necessary. The revelations come as the German Government let out figures of expenses incurred by the Federal Ministry of the Interior following a parliamentary inquiry, which were spotted by the annalist blog. The pages contain a whole lot of tables and as many would find those boring, some pages reveal something very startling. On page 34 and page 37 of the report line item 486 and 265 respectively, represent decoding software for Google Mail, MSN Hotmail, Yahoo Mail for prevention and investigation.

Submission + - Bill Would Force Patent Trolls To Pay Defendants' Legal Bills (

SomePgmr writes: "A new bill introduced in the House of Representatives attempts to deter frivolous patent litigation by forcing unsuccessful patent plaintiffs to cover defendants' legal costs. Introduced by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and co-sponsored by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), the Saving High-Tech Innovators from Egregious Legal Disputes (SHIELD) Act is limited to patents related to computer hardware and software."

Submission + - Valve shares performance numbers on port of Left4Dead (

nschubach writes: One factor in creating a good gaming experience is throughput. This post discusses some of what we’ve learned about the performance of our games running on Linux.

After this work, Left 4 Dead 2 is running at 315 FPS on Linux. That the Linux version runs faster than the Windows version (270.6) seems a little counter-intuitive, given the greater amount of time we have spent on the Windows version. However, it does speak to the underlying efficiency of the kernel and OpenGL. Interestingly, in the process of working with hardware vendors we also sped up the OpenGL implementation on Windows. Left 4 Dead 2 is now running at 303.4 FPS with that configuration."

"It seems there are good things coming out of this for both Operating Systems!


Submission + - Breakthrough in Hydrogen Energy? (

destinyland writes: MIT researchers have developed a way to split a hydrogen/oxygen water molecule by emulating the way blue-green algae separates oxygen from hydrogen. One chemistry professor called it "an extremely clever piece of work" that addresses "the nanoscale organization of the components", and they're currently developing a cheap way to split off the hydrogen atoms. Using sunlight rather than electricity to make hydrogen from water could greatly improve the efficiency of the process, and then the hydrogen can be stored for generating electricity or burning as fuel for cars. The project is being led by the winner of a 2004 MacArthur Foundation genius grant, who uses genetically-engineered viruses as templates for nanoscale electronic components. "Suddenly, I wondered, what if we could assemble materials like the abalone does — but not be limited to one element?"

Submission + - Super Strong Metal Foam May Save Energy and Lives (

MikeChino writes: Metal foams have been around for some time, but new research by Dr. Afsaneh Rabiei of North Carolina State University has revealed the strongest metal foam ever. It can compress up to 80% of its original size under loading and still retain its original shape. Applications for the new material are numerous — naturally, it could be integrated into the bodies of cars to minimize the impact from crashes, but it could also be used for body armor or even in artificial limbs. It’s even foreseeable that the metal foam could be used in buildings and help absorb shocks from earthquakes.

Submission + - Wikileaks shuts down site 2

An anonymous reader writes: WikiLeaks, a whistleblower website that allows people to publish information anonymously, has suspended operations owing to financial problems. "To concentrate on raising the funds necessary to keep us alive into 2010, we have reluctantly suspended all other operations, but will be back soon," Wikileaks said Monday. While it has received numerous recognition, awards "do not pay the bills," the site said.

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