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Submission + - Social media is not your friend

Presto Vivace writes: Of 8 Tech Companies, Only Twitter Says It Would Refuse to Help Build Muslim Registry for Trump

The Intercept contacted nine of the most prominent such firms, from Facebook to Booz Allen Hamilton, to ask if they would sell their services to help create a national Muslim registry, an idea recently resurfaced by Donald Trump’s transition team. Only Twitter said no.

Submission + - China abandons banning the bomb? (slashdot.org)

Dan Drollette writes: The United States and Russia are not only failing to disarm—they are pursuing policies that threaten a dangerous and destabilizing resumption of the nuclear arms race.

Submission + - AMD Zen SR7 CPU Allegedly Will Offer Core i7 5960X Performance At Half The Price (hothardware.com)

MojoKid writes: AMD needs a win in the high-end processor category badly and if the latest leak turns out to be accurate, AMD could get its much needed victory when its unreleased Zen SR7 processor hits the market sometime in Q1 with eight cores in tow. The octal-core Zen part is said to perform better than Intel's muscular Core i7-5960X, a Haswell-E chip with eight cores clocked at 3GHz to 3.5GHz, 16 threads, and 20MB of cache. Not for the faint of wallet, the Core i7-5960X tops $1,000 in street pricing even when it's on sale. AMD's competing SR7 Summit Ridge part is said to cost half as much at $499. New engineering samples of the potentially game changing Zen chip have been popping up in the wild. These latest revisions feature a 3.2GHz core clockspeed and 3.5GHz turbo frequency. These are noticeable jumps in frequency compared to the previous version AMD showed, which had the core and turbo clockspeeds running at 2.8GHz and 3.2GHz, respectively.

Submission + - Wikileaks Reveals how NSA Analysts Earned "XKS Skilz points" by Spying (wikileaks.org)

Xenographic writes: Wikileaks has recently released 90 gigabytes of information relating to the German parliamentary inquiry into the surveillance activities of Germany's foreign intelligence agency Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND) and its cooperation with the United States' National Security Agency (NSA). One of these is related to the gamification of XKeyscore (XKS), which is the NSA's program for searching and analyzing global Internet data. According to this PDF document, analysts could earn "XKS Skilz points" for spying:

"Combine these exciting finds with the introduction of XKS Skilz points, and you can see why McDonald's teamed up with Monopoly years ago: people buy more and even super size their orders just to get game pieces. With the brainchild of Skilz, where analysts can earn points and unlock achievements for performing tasks in XKS, people are willing to try new things within the tool. Analysts think to themselves, "Using the Pivot Data feature will earn 30 points... I'm going to try it and see what happens." Discovery! Points! We have been lured by our geeky desire to unlock achievements and earn points, and bragging rights are everything."

Comment Re:Not misleading? (Score 3, Informative) 75

Can you be specific? I just rewatched the two videos on the Steam page, and apart from a number of minor graphical differences, there was nothing in there that I haven't seen in some form while playing the game. Caves, megafauna, alien monoliths, space battles over huge freighters, trading posts, walker robots, space stations - everything's in there.

Well, there were sub-second shots of a large beast pushing trees aside and what looked like a crashed freighter - not seen those, but they were only shown briefly as set decoration, not gameplay-related.

Submission + - Apparently the NSA whistleblowers failed to disclose the NSA space capability (obamasweapon.com)

strstr writes: NSA space capability is actively being used by local law enforcement agencies today to perform magnetic resonance imaging, electron spin resonance, RADAR, and quantum entanglement scans of our homes, bodies, and brains enabling tracking, memory and thought monitoring, including password and encryption code interception. NSA whistleblower Todd Giffen along with other interesting parties have made the leaks, and dumped the patents behind the technology on obamasweapon.com. This is the same technology used on Saddam Hussein during the Gulf war classified as psychotronics and biocommunications, which was reported by USA Today and the Iraqi newspaper Babel to have caused a blood clot in his brain or heart, normally undetectable to be man-caused. NSA whistleblower Todd Giffen is actively being scanned, irradiated, and no touch tortured with the technology on US soil by law enforcement and intelligence agencies, which is deployed across the United States to target and hit all citizens as they please. Dr. Robert Duncan AB, SM, MBA PhD Harvard graduate CIA/DOD/US DOJ/NASA engineer and system architect backs Todd Giffen up as a victim of ruthless people and software on his website drrobertduncan.com. Will someone help? SOS.

Comment Re:Steam Page (Score 4, Informative) 75

Leaving aside that the vast majority of the so-called "bullshit" in that video is purely subjective (e.g. "real" dinosaurs, "will you get bored") or trivial (e.g. a creature pushes aside trees), it's clear that nearly all the player grief stems from Murray's responses to questions about multiplayer - and the video shows those responses entirely out of all context.

I watched a lot of the original interviews at the time, and while Murray did on some occasions answer with tentative "yes" responses to questions like "can you play with your friends" and "can you grief other players ("kinda") - questions that could be ambiguously interpreted, but I agree he should certainly have answered differently - he also spent considerable time downplaying any suggestion of multiplayer, saying it's not that sort of game, it's not about playing with others, it's not designed for that, and anyway there'd be virtually zero chance of meeting other players anyway. You saw none of that in the video, which was obviously designed to pick over everything he said in hindsight and show it in the worst light.

I get that some people really wanted multiplayer in there, but that was never claimed on any marketing material, and Murray invariably tried to steer away from those questions if it came up in an interview. Personally I never thought for a moment that it was a multiplayer game in any sense, and was surprised by the backlash from people that wanted to think that it did. The reviews were certainly very clear that it was solo only.

Submission + - Backdoor encryption sneaks into UK law (theregister.co.uk)

Coisiche writes: Seems that all the US companies that said any encryption backdoors would undermine global competitiveness, when such a thing was recently mooted there, can now find out if they were correct or not by watching the UK. Meanwhile various TLA agencies will be wondering if it could be as easily slipped into law in their jurisdiction.

Submission + - Which is the best-managed U.S. bank?

Futurepower(R) writes: I see plenty of evidence that banks don't manage their web sites well.

When I check my balance at Ally Bank, the NoScript and Ghostery Firefox add-ons tell me that 11 other sites* would be contacted if I didn't have protection. See the sites below.

The Barclays U.S. Bank web site terms of use say that Barclays U.S. Bank has no legal responsibility or liability for anything it says on its web site. Quoting: "... THE BANK DOES NOT WARRANT THAT: (i) THE SITE OR THE SITE CONTENT IS CORRECT, ACCURATE, RELIABLE OR COMPLETE..." If you can't depend on what the web site says, how can you feel comfortable that you know enough about the bank to want to be a customer?

I talked with a representative at CapitalOne 360 Bank when I discovered that now there is no way to send a secure message to the bank. (My wife has an account.) The secure messaging only allows receiving messages from the bank. If you have a question, you have to call and talk with someone, and you have no way of proving what you were told. The CapitalOne 360 Bank representative said that there were too many incoming messages for the staff to answer, so incoming messages were recently deactivated. Customers are not allowed to keep the incoming messages from the bank; they are deleted after 90 days.

I have plenty of other stories like that. In my experience, top managers often have little knowledge of technology, and often seem not to want any knowledge.

So, which is the best-managed U.S. bank? What are your stories about banks?

*Here are the web sites linked when I check my balance at Ally Bank. Advertising: Adobe Audience Manager, Advertising.com, DoubleClick Floodlight, DoubleClick Spotlight, Google Dynamic Remarketing, MediaMath, and RUN. Site Analytics: Omniture (Adobe Analytics) and Qualtrics. Other web sites: Demdex.net and Omtrdc.net. When I tried to visit the Omtrdc.net web site, I got a Firefox message: "Your connection is not secure. The owner of omtrdc.net has configured their website improperly. To protect your information from being stolen, Firefox has not connected to this website."

Submission + - SPAM: China abandons banning the bomb

Dan Drollette writes: In a world no longer centered around the United States, Beijing's position on the UN resolution to ban nuclear weapons could be seen as a bellwether for how China will behave.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - New study shows marijuana users have low blood flow to the brain (eurekalert.org)

cold fjord writes: State level marijuana legalization efforts across the US have been gaining traction driven by the folk wisdom that marijuana is both a harmless recreational drug and a useful medical treatment for many aliments. However some cracks have appeared in that story with indications that marijuana use is associated with the development of mental disorders and the long term blunting of the brain's reward system of dopamine levels. A new study has found that marijuana appears to have a widespread effect on blood flow in the brain: "Published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, researchers using single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), a sophisticated imaging study that evaluates blood flow and activity patterns, demonstrated abnormally low blood flow in virtually every area of the brain studies in nearly 1,000 marijuana users compared to healthy controls, including areas known to be affected by Alzheimer's pathology such as the hippocampus. . . . According to Daniel Amen, M.D., ... "Our research demonstrates that marijuana can have significant negative effects on brain function. The media has given the general impression that marijuana is a safe recreational drug, this research directly challenges that notion. In another new study just released, researchers showed that marijuana use tripled the risk of psychosis. Caution is clearly in order.""

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