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Submission + - AG scores victory in bid to shut down Indian Point (lohud.com)

mdsolar writes: Federal safety regulators used the wrong data to analyze the potential economic impacts of a severe accident at the Indian Point nuclear power plant, a panel of commissioners for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission ruled Wednesday.

The ruling, which reversed an earlier finding, will force the NRC to conduct a fresh analysis of the costs of a devastating accident and cleanup at the nuclear power plant in Buchanan, 24 miles north of New York City.
The decision was hailed by New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, whose office is spearheading the state’s challenge to Indian Point’s efforts to renew federal licenses for its two reactors. Schneiderman estimates that some 1.5 million workers would be needed in to take part in decontamination efforts in the event of a nuclear mishap, with cleanup costs surging as high as $1 trillion.

Submission + - 10 Awesome facts about the Big Bang Theory (not the show)

An anonymous reader writes: There are few scientific idea more revered or more important than the Big Bang. For the vast majority of human history, we had nothing but wonder, stories, ideas and myths about where our Universe came from and how it got to be the way it is today. Thanks to the Big Bang — and in particular, to the tremendous scientific achievements of the 20th century — we now have bonafide scientific answers. But the Big Bang isn’t necessarily what most people think it is, and there are quite a few surprises encoded in our best understanding of the Universe as it is today. Here are the top 10 facts about the Big Bang.

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 + - OpenWrt Fork Promises Greater Openness (hackerboards.com)

DeviceGuru writes: The ubiquitous, router-oriented, lightweight OpenWRT embedded Linux distribution is being forked by some of OpenWRT's core developers into a new Linux Embedded Development Environment (LEDE) distribution. The new distro's goal is to provide greater transparency, inclusiveness, and decentralization than the current OpenWrt project. The LEDE project is billed as both a 'reboot' and 'spinoff' distro that will make it 'easy for developers, system administrators, or other Linux enthusiasts to build and customize software for embedded devices, especially wireless routers,' according to the group. The ELEC announcement, which was signed by Jo-Philipp Wich and six other former OpenWrt core members, claims that LEDE represents a significant share of the most active members of the OpenWrt community.

Submission + - The Small Town Judge Who Sees a Quarter of the Nation's Patent Cases (vice.com)

derekmead writes: Since taking the bench in 2011—moving literally across the street from his law office into the district courthouse—Judge Rodney Gilstrap has become one of the most influential patent litigation judges in the country. In 2015, there were 5,819 new patent cases filed in the US; 1,686 of those ended up in front of Judge Gilstrap. That’s more than a quarter of all cases in the country; twice as many as the next most active patent judge.

This busy patent docket didn’t blossom overnight, and it’s not some strange coincidence. Due to some unique rules around intellectual property filings, patent holders can often file their lawsuits at any district court in the country, even if neither the plaintiff nor the defendant is based there. By introducing a list of standing court orders and local regulations, the Eastern District of Texas (and, in particular, Gilstrap’s division of Marshall) has become the court of choice for many plaintiffs, especially non-practicing entities, often referred to as patent trolls.

Submission + - Failing Tanks Have Hanford Site Cascading Towards Disaster

An anonymous reader writes: As the cleanup of the Hanford nuclear waste site slide continually further behind schedule local news sources are reporting that even the newer doubled walled tanks are failing to contain the high level waste. Looming on the horizon is a DOE prediction from 2008 that puts the window where contamination from the begins reaching the Columbia River only four years away.

Submission + - Tech companies and age bias (observer.com)

OffTheLip writes: A recent editorial in the Observer by Dan Lyons highlights overt negative bias towards older tech workers including his personal journey as an aging worker. Information technology is young business in comparison to many other industries but one of the few where older workers are not valued for their institutional knowledge. It is accepted that current trends are for the young, the agile, workers with seemingly tireless work ethic and dedication. None of these traits are associated with older workers. Lyons draws comparisons to other successful workforce diversity efforts that seemingly don't apply to the tech world. He makes an argument for what the older worker brings to the team in experience and wisdom. As a recently retired techie I experienced this firsthand, both as a older worker, and earlier in my career one who didn't see the value in older workers. As Lyons states, older workers are good business.

Submission + - MenuetOS 1.22 released (menuetos.net)

GlowingCat writes: Menuet is a 100% assembly written 64bit operating system with pre-emptive multitasking. Latest improvements include SMP support with upto 32 processors and streaming audio and video (mp3/mpeg2) support. Also non-preempting processes are supported for time-critical applications. Menuet calculates GUI transparency in the main x64 CPU, avoiding compatibility and stability problems with various graphics cards.

Submission + - I finally caught them in the act! 5

fustakrakich writes: Slashdot is deleting comments!

I am asking you if you find this acceptable. To me it isn't. Indelible comments is Slashdot's only advantage it has over other what are now simple news aggregators. Deletions will mean the end of any of that. Better that the place shuts down completely. Please help save Slashdot. Don't let your comments be deleted. Please. Without Slashdot, there is no internet.

Submission + - Neil deGrasse Tyson says it's 'very likely' the universe is a simulation (extremetech.com)

mspohr writes: ... At the most recent Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate.
His logic is indisputable:
"This is the crux of Tyson’s point: if we take it as read that it is, in principle, possible to simulate a universe in some way, at some point in the future, then we have to assume that on an infinite timeline some species, somewhere, will simulate the universe. And if the universe will be perfectly, or near-perfectly, simulated at some point, then we have to examine the possibility that we live inside such a universe. And, on a truly infinite timeline, we might expect an almost infinite number of simulations to arise from an almost infinite number or civilizations — and indeed, a sophisticated-enough simulation might be able to let its simulated denizens themselves run universal simulations, and at that point all bets are officially off."

Submission + - AMD lands 3 large semi-custom SoC orders, expects revenue of $1.5 Billion over n (arstechnica.com)

John Smith writes: AMD announced an expected 15% income gain in Q2 2016 (and even larger ones in Q3 2016) mostly driven by three semi-custom SoC orders. They expect these three to bring in $1.5 billion in revenue over the next 3-4 years.
We know one of them is the new PlayStation from various leaks, but what are the other two? General suspicion seems to be the Nintendo NX and a Xbox refresh. This would among other things suggest that Nintento is going for an SoC design over their previous PowerPC/AMD chips, and that an Xbox refresh is coming soon.
However, whatever these turn out to be we are going to be seeing them soon. According to Ars Technica, "At least one of those three SOC deliveries will begin "ramping" in the second half of this year, with all of those SOCs launching by 2017."

Submission + - How we know inflation came before the Big Bang

StartsWithABang writes: If you go back in time, earlier and earlier, things get hotter, denser and more energetic. But there’s a limit to how far back you can go, and that limit doesn’t end in a singularity with the birth of time and space; instead, it ends with a period of cosmic inflation, which set up the hot Big Bang as we know it. For a long time, inflation was pure theory. Recently, however, detailed observations of the density fluctuations in the Universe have not only confirmed it, but have allowed us to better understand which models of inflation might actually describe our Universe. If our modeling is correct and the data continues to improve, we just might come to understand how the Universe came to be this way after all.

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