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Submission + - Supreme Court SHuts Down Wiley in International Copyright Case (arstechnica.com)

JustAnotherOldGuy writes: In 2013, the Supreme Court heard Kirtsaeng, a copyright case brought by the publisher Wiley, who argued that legal books became illegal when brought into America, because their copyright licenses were nation-specific. The implications of Wiley's theory were nuts: companies could place arbitrary limits on the use of anything manufactured abroad and use copyright law to enforce them. Thankfully, the Supreme Court rejected Wiley's theory. But that wasn't the end of it. Kirtsaeng's lawyers spent more than $2M on the case, and two courts said that they were not entitled to recover their fees from Wiley — sending the message to future defendants in bogus copyright suits that even if they won, they'd lose.

Submission + - Drug-test the Rich - Not the Poor - to Qualify for Tax Benefits (theguardian.com)

Press2ToContinue writes: "The (tax) benefits we give to poor people are so limited compared to what we give to the top 1%” of taxpayers, Congresswoman Gwen Moore says, “It’s a drop in the bucket.” Many states implement drug-testing programs to qualify for benefit programs so that states feel they are not wasting the value they dole out.

However, seven states who implemented drug testing for tax benefit program recipients spent $1m on drug testing from the inception of their programs through 2014. But the average rate of drug use among those recipients has been far below the national average – around 1% overall, compared with 9.4% in the general population – meaning there’s been little cost savings from the drug testing program. Why? “Probably because they can’t afford it,” say Moore.

“We might really save some money by drug-testing folks on Wall Street, who might have a little cocaine before they get their deal done,” she said, and proposes a bill requiring tests for returns with itemized deductions of more than $150,000.

“We spend $81bn on everything – everything – that you could consider a poverty program,” she explained. But just by taxing capital gains at a lower rate than other income, a bit of the tax code far more likely to benefit the rich than the poor, “that’s a $93bn expenditure. Just capital gains,” she added. Why not drug-test the rich to ensure they won't waste their tax benefits?

She is “sick and tired of the criminalization of poverty”. And, she added: “We’re not going to get rid of the federal deficit by cutting poor people off Snap. But if we are going to drug-test people to reduce the deficit, let’s start on the other end of the income spectrum.”

Submission + - Online Loans Made in China Using Nude Pictures as Collateral

HughPickens.com writes: There is more than one way to get a student loan in China as People's Daily Online reports that many Chinese university students use their nude pictures as IOUs on online lending platforms, putting themselves at the risks of having everybody – including their parents – see them naked. Borrowers are also required to upload pictures of their ID cards and report their family information, including their address and cell phone numbers. "The nude photos will be made public if the borrowers fail to repay their debts with interest," an insider was quoted as saying. The credit varies based on the borrower’s education background. Usually an undergraduate student can receive 15,000 yuan ($2,277) in credit, while those studying at famous universities as well as doctorate students can receive even larger loans. Snapshots of threatening collection messages have also gone viral, with a photo of a female borrower and a message reading how the lender would send the photo and her naked video footage to her family members if she could not pay back her 10,000 yuan borrowed on an annual interest rate of 24 percent within a week. “Naked IOUs started long ago. Not only university students but many others also borrowed money with nude pictures,” says insider surnamed Zhang. Zuo Shenggao from Jingshi Law Firm says that nude photos are actually invalid as collateral in terms of laws. "Nude photos are not property. It is in the category of reputation rights," says Shenggao. "If anyone threatens to publish the photos online, they will violate the clients' reputation. At the same time, they are also spreading pornographic material. Both are illegal and they will commit double offence,"

Submission + - Four newly discovered elements receive names - your chance to change them (theverge.com)

Press2ToContinue writes: The proposed names for recently discovered superheavy elements are:

Nihonium and symbol Nh, for the element 113
Moscovium and symbol Mc, for the element 115
Tennessine and symbol Ts, for the element 117
Oganesson and symbol Og, for the element 118

This isn't finalized. Not sure I even like some of these, and maybe you feel the same way. Above are the proposed names that will substitute for the current placeholders (e.g., ununpentium, ununseptium). Nilhonium, Moscovium, and Tennesine are all named for places; Oganessen is named for the Russian physicist Yuri Oganessian.

But we have until November to lobby for other names. Here's a chance to go down in history and name an element on the periodic table. How about naming one Elementy McElementface?

Submission + - Windows 10 goes full malware

Iamthecheese writes: Microsoft is adding another chapter to the long and sordid story of its latest OS. As reported by Windows Magazine, closing the upgrade permission window by clicking the familiar red x results in "approval" of the installation. Per this Microsoft support document, "If you click on OK or on the red “X”, you’re all set for the upgrade and there is nothing further to do."

Submission + - Apparently Slashdot Mobile Pushed Malvertising Back In January (softpedia.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Crooks used malicious ads (malvertising) to push a fake Android Marshmallow update to Android users accessing a series of high-profile news sites. The malicious ads were found on the mobile versions of reputable sites such as Slashdot and Android Police, but also on local news sites in France (20 Minutes) and Germany (SPON).

This campaign was unique compared to other mobile malvertising waves because it used a never seen before trick which auto-downloaded the fake Android 6.0 upgrade package on the devices without any kind of user interaction.

Submission + - FBI Wants to Exempt Its Massive Biometric Database from Federal Privacy Rules (nextgov.com)

schwit1 writes: The FBI wants to block individuals from knowing if their information is in a massive repository of biometric records, which includes fingerprints and facial scans, if the release of information would "compromise" a law enforcement investigation.

The FBI’s biometric database, known as the “Next Generation Identification System,” gathers a wide scope of information, including palm prints, fingerprints, iris scans, facial and tattoo photographs, and biographies for millions of people.

On Thursday, the Justice Department agency plans to propose the database be exempt from several provisions of the Privacy Act — legislation that requires federal agencies to share information about the records they collect with the individual subject of those records, allowing them to verify and correct them if needed.

Aside from criminals, suspects and detainees, the system includes data from people fingerprinted for jobs, licenses, military or volunteer service, background checks, security clearances, and naturalization, among other government processes.

Submission + - Ad-blocker blocking websites could be illegal under EU privacy law (theregister.co.uk)

AmiMoJo writes: Websites that detect ad-blockers to stop their users from reading webpages could be illegal under European law. Alexander Hanff, a privacy campaigner and programmer, says he has received a letter from the European Commission confirming that browser-side web scripts that pick out advert blockers access people's personal data (ie: the plugin stored on their computer). Thus, just like you need to give permission to EU websites to access and store your cookies, ad-blocker detectors must ask for permission before probing your browser.

Comment FYI Redundant Systems Design (Score 3, Informative) 93

From TFA:

"the whole system should be able to land if you have one turboreactor fail. So I’m able to stabilize it even if I lost one engine and we had enough thrust to get down and land. If one turboreactor fails it’s fine, because we have four turboreactors, and we can fly with three. And inside the remote we have three different Wi-Fi channels, plus we have three sensors. Everything is threefold, and they speak together, so in case one fails, the two also know which one failed."

Submission + - A new predator emerges in North America (economist.com)

Beeftopia writes: Mating between species usually creates offspring less vigorous than either parent, if they survive at all. But the combination of wolf, coyote and dog DNA has created an exception, resulting in an extraordinarily fit new animal. The typical DNA of the new creature is on average 10% dog, 25% wolf and 65% coyote. Coyotes dislike hunting in forests. Wolves prefer it. This animal is adept at catching prey in both environments. Its cry is also a combination of coyote and wolf. The first part of the howl resembles a wolf's deeper pitch, ending in the yipping of the coyote. Interbreeding has also allowed the creature to feel more comfortable around humans, and allowing them to process a broader diet. They eat pumpkins, watermelons and other produce as well as squirrels and pets. Cats are eaten, skull and all, with clues left only in the droppings.

Submission + - Ransomware Authors Deliver Encryption Keys Via Bitcoin Blockchain (csoonline.com)

itwbennett writes: Authors of the CTB-Locker ransomware have come up with a new method of delivering encryption keys to their victims using the bitcoin block chain itself. This new behavior was observed by researchers from security company Sucuri in a CTB-Locker version released in March. 'The new CTB-Locker variant generates a unique bitcoin wallet address for every infection,' explains Lucian Constantin. 'Once the victim pays the ransom by sending the required amount of bitcoins to that address, the attackers generate a new bogus transaction from that same wallet to which they append the encryption key in the OP_RETURN field.'

Submission + - Dyson Airblades 'spread germs 1,300 times more than paper towels' (telegraph.co.uk)

schwit1 writes: Dyson Airblade hand-driers spread 60 times more germs than standard air dryers, and 1,300 times more than standard paper towels, according to research published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology.

University of Westminster researchers carrying out the research dipped their hands into water containing a harmless virus. They then dried their hands with either a Dyson Airblade, a standard hot-air dryer, or a paper towel.

According to their findings, the Dyson drier's 430mph blasts of air are capable of spreading viruses up to 3 meters across a bathroom. The standard drier spread viruses 75cm, and the hand towels 25cm.

Submission + - The Beginning of the end for encryption schemes? (foresight.org) 1

schwit1 writes: New quantum computer, based on five atoms, factors numbers in a scalable way.

What are the prime factors, or multipliers, for the number 15? Most grade school students know the answer — 3 and 5 — by memory. A larger number, such as 91, may take some pen and paper. An even larger number, say with 232 digits, can (and has) taken scientists two years to factor, using hundreds of classical computers operating in parallel.

Because factoring large numbers is so devilishly hard it is the basis for many encryption schemes for protecting credit cards, state secrets, and other confidential data. It’s thought that a single quantum computer may easily crack this problem, by using hundreds of atoms, essentially in parallel, to quickly factor huge numbers.

In 1994, Peter Shor, the Morss Professor of Applied Mathematics at MIT, came up with a quantum algorithm that calculates the prime factors of a large number, vastly more efficiently than a classical computer. However, the algorithm’s success depends on a computer with a large number of quantum bits. While others have attempted to implement Shor’s algorithm in various quantum systems, none have been able to do so with more than a few quantum bits, in a scalable way.

Now, in a paper published today in the journal Science [abstract], researchers from MIT and the University of Innsbruck in Austria report that they have designed and built a quantum computer from five atoms in an ion trap. The computer uses laser pulses to carry out Shor’s algorithm on each atom, to correctly factor the number 15. The system is designed in such a way that more atoms and lasers can be added to build a bigger and faster quantum computer, able to factor much larger numbers. The results, they say, represent the first scalable implementation of Shor’s algorithm.

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