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Submission + - Why we will never run out of Oil (

bobbied writes:

Nearly every warning about an impending energy crisis over the past 30 to 40 years has turned out to be wrong. And none of them are more wrong than the idea that we’re running out of oil.

The natural rise and fall of energy prices is responsible for the wax and wane cycle of energy production technology. Over the last decade, in the face of ever rising energy prices, the resulting advancement in technology has boosted production and encouraged efficiency. Now we are faced with a huge surplus of oil and natural gas as a result of things like "fracking" and related technologies.

We will never really run out of oil, not that the supply isn't finite, but as prices rise and technology improves there will be more supply that can economically developed. Rising prices will also drive innovation in efficiency, reducing demand. For now, the development of technology has been finding new reserves faster than the depletion of known reserves.

Submission + - Former NSA Chief says "Isis are using Snowden leaks to evade intellegence" ( 2

bobbied writes: Former NSA Deputy Chief Chris Ingles claims that the information that Snowden leaked is being used by ISIS to evade intelligence gathering by the NSA. He also said "militants in Iraq and Syria are 'clearly' harder to track down since the rogue agent made freely available a wealth of top-secret information about how the U.S. government hunts its enemies online."

The Ex NSA Deputy Chief is claiming that what was leaked by Snowden goes way beyond what was necessary to expose Snowden's privacy concerns and has severely damaged the NSA's ability to collect intelligence by exposing their methods so they can be evaded.

Submission + - NASA to perform reformat of Mars Rover Opportunity flash storage (

bobbied writes: After a ten years of survival on the Martian surface, Opportunity continues to show that it is getting older. Recently the computer has been resetting itself more and more often. Controllers believe that the flash memory where the rover stores it's variable instructions has a number of bad cells which have simply worn out and stopped working. Doing a reformat operation will find these cells and remove them from use, hopefully eliminating the problematic reboots.

So, "Have you tried to re flash the firmware and power cycle it?" really IS rocket science.

Submission + - Researchers find security flaws in backscatter X-ray scanners (

An anonymous reader writes: Researchers from UC San Diego, University of Michigan and Johns Hopkins say they've found security vulnerabilities in full-body backscatter X-ray scanners deployed to U.S. airports between 2009 and 2013. In labo tests, they were able to conceal firearms and plastic explosive simulants from the Rapiscan Secure 1000 scanner, plus modify the scanner software so it presents an “all-clear” image to the operator even when contraband was detected. “Frankly, we were shocked by what we found,” said lead researcher J. Alex Halderman. “A clever attacker can smuggle contraband past the machines using surprisingly low-tech techniques.”

Submission + - Edward Snowden is not alone! ( 2

bobbied writes: Apparently Edward Snowden is not alone. CNN is reporting that recent leaked documents published by "the Intercept" (a website that has been publishing Snowden's leaked documents) could not have been leaked by Snowden because they didn't exist prior to his fleeing the USA and he couldn't possibly have accessed them. Authorities are said to be looking for a new leaker.

Submission + - Microsoft's Xbox One Is Failing 1

Monkey writes: Even with the price cut after Microsoft un-bundled the Kinect from the Xbox One, the console is still struggling to gain market share from Sony's Playstation 4. From the article:
"Prior to the Kinect-less version of the Xbox One, the console was averaging around 40,000 units per week. This rose about 50% to 60,000 per week after the lower price was introduced, but that's still roughly half of the weekly sales of Sony's PlayStation 4."

Submission + - Why Can't Fish Swim Deeper than 8000 Meters? Their Brains Explode

sciencehabit writes: Ocean-going fish can’t live any deeper than 8200 meters, according to a new study. A team of biologists say the threshold is set by two competing effects of trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO), a chemical in fish cells that prevents proteins from collapsing under high pressure. While fish should need more and more TMAO to survive ever greater depths, higher concentrations of the compound also draw in more and more seawater through osmosis, the process by which cells regulate their water content. In the deepest waters, high TMAO levels reverse osmosis pressure, swelling brain cells to the point that they stop working and, in principle, bursting red blood cells open.

Submission + - NASA Forgets How to Talk to ICE/ISEE-3 Spacecraft 1

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes: Randall Munroe's XKCD cartoon on the ICE/ISEE-3 spacecraft inspired me to do a little research on why Nasa can no long communicate with the International Cometary Explorer. Launched in 1978 ISEE-3 was the first spacecraft to be placed in a halo orbit at one of Earth-Sun Lagrangian points (L1). It was later (as ICE) sent to visit Comet Giacobini-Zinner and became the first spacecraft to do so by flying through a comet's tail passing the nucleus at a distance of approximately 7800 km. ICE has been in a heliocentric orbit since then, traveling just slightly faster than Earth and it's finally catching up to us from behind, and will return to Earth in August. According to Emily Lakdawalla, it's still functioning, broadcasting a carrier signal that the Deep Space Network successfully detected in 2008 and twelve of its 13 instruments were working when we last checked on its condition, sometime prior to 1999. Can we tell the spacecraft to turn back on its thrusters and science instruments after decades of silence and perform the intricate ballet needed to send it back to where it can again monitor the Sun? Unfortunately the answer to that question appears to be no. "The transmitters of the Deep Space Network, the hardware to send signals out to the fleet of NASA spacecraft in deep space, no longer includes the equipment needed to talk to ISEE-3. These old-fashioned transmitters were removed in 1999." Could new transmitters be built? Yes, but it would be at a price no one is willing to spend. "So ISEE-3 will pass by us, ready to talk with us, but in the 30 years since it departed Earth we've lost the ability to speak its language," concludes Lakdawalla. "I wonder if ham radio operators will be able to pick up its carrier signal — it's meaningless, I guess, but it feels like an honorable thing to do, a kind of salute to the venerable ship as it passes by."

Submission + - Amazon to put Android in set-top box to compete with Apple, Roku (

sfcrazy writes: Amazon is all set to get Apple and Roku some serious competition with it’s own ‘web-TV’ or set-top box. According to reports Amazon will be using Google’s Android to build the box. Amazon already has a huge library of content (from Amazon Prime) which it can push to the living room through the box. Amazon, like Netflix, is also investing heavily in producing content to their own set-box. Amazon has also been hiring game developers and it won’t be surprising if the company also dabbles into gaming.

Submission + - Meg Whitman: Let's Make A Deal (

itwbennett writes: HP ended its fiscal year last October with $9.1 billion in free cash flow, and it generated $2.4 billion in the quarter that just ended. When asked on Thursday's earnings call what the company plans to do with its free cash flow, Meg Whitman replied, 'I do think we will now be considering acquisitions' — particularly in the areas of 'security, big data, mobility and cloud,' she said, adding that any deals are likely to be 'small to medium-sized.' HP will also be considering divestitures as it looks to 'optimize' its portfolio.

Submission + - Obama Admin Knew Obamacare Would Cost 93 Million Americans Their Insurance (

An anonymous reader writes: I wonder if this counts as a conspiracy? Forbes reports, "... the Affordable Care Act contains what’s called a “grandfather” provision that, in theory, allows people to keep their existing plans if they like them. But subsequent regulations from the Obama administration interpreted that provision so narrowly as to prevent most plans from gaining this protection. “The ... mid-range estimate is that 66 percent of small employer plans and 45 percent of large employer plans will relinquish their grandfather status by the end of 2013,” ... All in all, more than half of employer-sponsored plans will lose their “grandfather status” and become illegal. According to the Congressional Budget Office, 156 million Americans—more than half the population—was covered by employer-sponsored insurance in 2013. ... How many people are exposed to these problems? ... 93 million Americans. ... President Obama’s famous promise that “you could keep your plan” was not some naïve error or accident. He, and his allies, knew that previous Democratic attempts at health reform had failed because Americans were happy with the coverage they had, and opposed efforts to change the existing system. Now, supporters of the law are offering a different argument. “We didn’t really mean it when we said you could keep your plan,” they say, “but it doesn’t matter, because the coverage you’re going to get under Obamacare will be better than the coverage you had before.” But that’s not true. Obamacare forces insurers to offer services that most Americans don’t need, don’t want, and won’t use, for a higher price."

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