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Submission + - New book on Internet history: "Securing the Network" (amazon.com)

StonyCreekBare writes: How the NSFNet Internet became the modern Commercial Internet and the people and companies who made it happen. How one man built one of the first metropolitan data networks in the 1980s, sold it to MFS and created MFS Datanet. How WorldCom rejected his ideas for streaming media and Enron sought him out and created Enron Broadband Services where his ideas were implemented in Blockbuster Video to the Home in 2000, precursor to today's Netflix, Hulu and more. Not only how we got to today's Internet, but where the Internet must go. Available in both eBook and paperback.

Submission + - Who Is Killing the Towns of Western Massachusetts? (backchannel.com) 1

mirandakatz writes: If Western Massachusetts is going to retain its population—particularly its younger residents—it needs 21st century internet. That's easier said than done: Governor Charlie Baker appears to be favoring an approach that gives money to incumbent telecoms companies, and prevents towns from seizing control of their connectivity. At Backchannel, Susan Crawford argues that "because of Governor Baker, many of the people of Western MA, especially younger residents, will have to move somewhere. And even a region rich in culture, with second-home owners who otherwise might want to stay full time, will find itself populated with ghosts. Unhappy ghosts, with lousy, overpriced internet access."

Submission + - Is it time to hold police officers accountable for constitutional violations? (washingtonpost.com)

schwit1 writes: Recently the Supreme Court issued a summary opinion in the White v. Pauly case.A police officer was sued for killing a man during an armed standoff during which the officers allegedly never identified themselves as police. The Supreme Court, however, concluded that the officer had “qualified immunity.” That is, he was immune from a suit for damages, because his conduct — while possibly unconstitutional — was not obviously unconstitutional.

The doctrine of qualified immunity operates as an unwritten defense to civil rights lawsuits brought under 42 U.S.C. 1983. It prevents plaintiffs from recovering damages for violations of their constitutional rights unless the government official violated “clearly established law,” usually requiring a specific precedent on point. This article argues that the doctrine is unlawful and inconsistent with conventional principles of statutory interpretation.

Members of the Supreme Court have offered three different justifications for imposing such an unwritten defense on the text of Section 1983. One is that it derives from a common law “good faith” defense; another is that it compensates for an earlier putative mistake in broadening the statute; the third is that it provides “fair warning” to government officials, akin to the rule of lenity.

But on closer examination, each of these justifications falls apart, for a mix of historical, conceptual, and doctrinal reasons. There was no such defense; there was no such mistake; lenity ought not apply. And even if these things were otherwise, the doctrine of qualified immunity would not be the best response.

The unlawfulness of qualified immunity is of particular importance now. Despite the shoddy foundations, the Supreme Court has been reinforcing the doctrine of immunity in both formal and informal ways. In particular, the Court has given qualified immunity a privileged place on its agenda reserved for few other legal doctrines besides habeas deference. Rather than doubling down, the Court ought to be beating a retreat.

Government officials, especially those with the power that Law Enforcement officers have, should be held to a higher standard, not a lower one.

Submission + - In the Crosshairs, Healthcare Industry Girds for World of Cyber Adversaries

alexandrkrulik writes: With the healthcare industry already facing at least one cyberattack a month according to one survey, experts predict that more sophisticated breaches involving malware will occur in the coming year and that it could be “only a matter of time” before medical devices and hospital IT networks feel the full brunt of a crippling attack..Source

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Where to go in IT today?

An anonymous reader writes: In about a year I (hopefully) will have finished a bachelors degree in applied computer sciences, specializing in internet technology. The curriculum is rather broad, ranging from systems programming on a raspberry pi over HTML/CSS/Javascript/C/Java/JPA/Python/GO/node.js, software design patterns, basic network stuff (mostly Cisco) and various database technologies. With these skills under my belt, what career path should I pursue?

I'm looking for satisfying and rewarding work, pay is not that important. While the lectures are interesting and I am able to maintain good grades rather effortlessly, I'm not all that interested in doing a masters, at least not at the moment.

As a side note, I am working already part-time as a system administrator for two small companies, but don't want to stay there forever because it's basically a dead end position. Enjoying the job, though.

I hope for some insightful comments from the slashdot community. Thanks!

Submission + - Is Using Big Data to Influence Elections Right Up There With Fake News, Hacking?

theodp writes: While the use of hacking and fake news to influence the 2016 Presidential election have been widely-decried, the ethics of using Big Data to make a President — a practice embraced by Democrats and Republicans alike — has received less scrutiny. Inspired by the Obama team's pioneering use of Big Data to defeat Romney in 2012, both the Clinton and Trump campaigns used data analytics to mess with voters' heads, tailoring messages to make their candidate look better and the other candidate look worse. And, as DAWN pointed out, the data scientists who wield increasing influence over election outcomes have their own political agendas. Reflecting on the 2012 election, Obama for America Chief Scientist Rayid Ghani, whose family lived in London while he worked in the U.S., recalled what drove him to help the Obama campaign: "At this point I really don’t know what I am," he said. "It's less about country than about the larger world. For me it was a really easy decision, 'Is Obama better for the world than (Mitt) Romney?' Absolutely."

Submission + - Baby Brain

EzInKy writes: The BBC and others are reporting the results of a study that women's brains do in fact change during pregnancy.

"Pregnancy reduces grey matter in specific parts of a woman's brain, helping her bond with her baby and prepare for the demands of motherhood.

Scans of 25 first-time mums showed these structural brain changes lasted for at least two years after giving birth.

European researchers said the scale of brain changes during pregnancy were akin to those seen during adolescence."

Thanks Mom!

Submission + - Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Stave Off Dakota Access Pipeline (For Now) (gardencollage.com)

rosamedi writes: After law enforcement recently escalated violence against the protectors at the Standing Rock camp and ordered them to evacuate, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe at last have a victory to celebrate. Yesterday, the Department of the Army (which manages the contested land) announced they would not be approving the Dakota Pipeline’s passage under Lake Oahe in North Dakota.

Submission + - Two Backdoors Found in Sony IP Cameras

Trailrunner7 writes: A long list of IP-enabled security cameras made by Sony contain backdoors in their firmware that can allow an attacker to run arbitrary code remotely on the devices and potentially opening them up for use in a botnet.

The cameras affected by the vulnerabilities are surveillance cameras, mainly used in enterprises and retail settings and there are dozens of models that contain the vulnerable firmware. Researchers at SEC Consult discovered the backdoors and found that an attacker could use one of them to enable hidden Telnet and SSH services on the cameras and then use the other backdoor to gain root privileges.

“After enabling Telnet/SSH, another backdoor allows an attacker to gain access to a Linux shell with root privileges! The vulnerabilities are exploitable in the default configuration over the network. Exploitation over the Internet is possible, if the web interface of the device is exposed," the researchers said.

Submission + - SPAM: Fulfilment of C-sections altering path of human evolution, says new childbirth s

An anonymous reader writes: Scientists say the tendency for the reason that Nineteen Fifties and Nineteen Sixties to choose a Caesarean has triggered babies to evolve larger heads.

This has then caused the big increase in felt pelvic disproportion: while the fatal head is just too massive – or when the birth canal is just too narrow – for natural childbirth.
The obstruction is "strikingly excessive" and now accounts for up to 6 in line with a cent of all births worldwide.

Cesareans meanwhile account for one in 4 births across the United Kingdom and a third of all births in the US.

“We expect that this susceptible directional selection has brought about a ten to twenty according to cent increase inside the price of felt pelvic portion reason that normal use of Cesarean sections,” said lead writer Dr.Philipp Mitteroecker, of the college of Vienna.

Link to Original Source

Submission + - Website Taking Donations For the Assassination of Donald Trump and Mike Pence (csoonline.com)

itwbennett writes: Saying it 'requires a lot of money to pay for equipment, bribes' and the assets (human, we presume) it has positioned in the government, a website on the darknet is collecting donations for the assassination of President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence. The Bitcoin wallet advertised on the website has collected more than $88,000 since March 2016. The U.S. Secret Service is aware of the website and has declined to comment.

Submission + - Nikola Motor Company Reveals Hydrogen Fuel Cell Truck With Range of 1,200 Miles (valuewalk.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Nikola Motor Company just unveiled a huge class 8 truck which will run on hydrogen fuel cells. Nikola claimed that the truck’s operational range will be as much as 1,200 miles (1,900 km), and it will be released in 2020. Nikola designed the Nikola One for long-haul transport across a large landmass. The truck will deliver over 1,000 horsepower and 2,000 foot-pounds of torque. Provided these claims are true, the vehicle will provide nearly double the power of the current-gen diesel-powered semis/articulated lorries, notes Ars Technica. The leasing cost of the trucks will include the fuel price, servicing costs and warranty, but exactly how the lease will work is not known now, notes Ars Technica. The company says it has already accepted nearly $3 billion in future orders. A fully-electric drivetrain which gets power from high-density lithium batteries runs the vehicle, and a hydrogen fuel cell charges the batteries on the go. Its reach is presently limited, as hydrogen fueling stations currently exist in only small numbers. This made Nikola decide to construct a network of 364 hydrogen fueling stations across the U.S. and Canada, just like Tesla with its network of Superchargers. Milton claims it will come with a smart dashboard which has the capability of picking the most cost-efficient route for drivers. Also one or two full-size beds will be included inside the vehicle’s enormous cab. It will have other luxuries and necessities as well, such as Wi-Fi, a refrigerator, 4G LTE connectivity, freezer, a 40-inch curved 4K TV with Apple TV and a microwave.

Submission + - International Authorities Cooperate To Take Down Massive 'Avalanche' Botnet

plover writes: Investigators from the U.S. Department of Justice, the FBI, Eurojust, Europol, and other global partners announced the takedown of a massive botnet named 'Avalanche', estimated to have involved as many as 500,000 infected computers worldwide on a daily basis.

"The global effort to take down this network involved the crucial support of prosecutors and investigators from 30 countries. As a result, five individuals were arrested, 37 premises were searched, and 39 servers were seized. Victims of malware infections were identified in over 180 countries. In addition, 221 servers were put offline through abuse notifications sent to the hosting providers. The operation marks the largest-ever use of sinkholing to combat botnet infrastructures and is unprecedented in its scale, with over 800 000 domains seized, sinkholed or blocked."

Submission + - Neuroscientists Say Simple Mathematical Logic Drives Complex Brain Computation (sci-news.com)

hackingbear writes: According to Dr. Joe Tsien, a neuroscientist at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University, the brain’s basic computational algorithm is organized by power-of-two-based logic. He and his colleagues from US and China have documented the algorithm at work in seven different brain regions involved with those basics like food and fear in mice and hamsters. “Intelligence is really about dealing with uncertainty and infinite possibilities,” he said, “It appears to be enabled when a group of similar neurons form a variety of cliques to handle each basic like recognizing food, shelter, friends and foes. Groups of cliques then cluster into functional connectivity motifs (FCMs) to handle every possibility in each of these basics. The more complex the thought, the more cliques join in.”

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