fantomas writes: The BBC reports on the Japanese phenomenon of Hikikomori: young people, mainly men, who are holed up in rooms in their parents' houses, refusing to go out and engage with society. Why is this happening? and is it a global phenomenon or something purely due to Japanese culture? (we're all familiar with the standing slashdot joke of the geek in their mom's basement for example)
fantomas writes: Remember the news that foreign hackers had disrupted US infrastructure, hacking into a water pump and overriding its controls? The Illinois Statewide Terrorism and Intelligence Center (ISTIC) claimed cyber attackers had obtained access using stolen login names and passwords. Well the BBC reports that it was a false alarm..Turns out the pumps were reset by the water engineer responsible for the pumps, who was on holiday in Russia at the time. "A quick and simple phone call to me right away would have defused the whole thing immediately," said the engineer, Jim Mimlitz. However, security experts warn that a real attack might happen some time in the future.
fantomas writes: In recent demonstrations in Warsaw, Poland, a demonstrator has used a drone helicopter spycam, manufactured by Robokopter, to monitor police actions and how they behave towards protestors. Videos show the copter taking off and flying over police lines. A case of man-bites-dog? Is this a first? or do slashdot readers know of similar technology being used by protestors in the USA 'Occupy' movements or elsewhere?
fantomas writes: BBC News reports (in a video) that the Iranian elite Revolutionary Guards have taken delivery of a squadron of "flying boats" better known perhaps as Ground Effect Vehicles. One man reconnaisance versions of the famous Soviet ekranoplan, the Caspian Sea Monster? Meaningless novelties or innovative utilisation of under-used but efficient niche technologies? What do the slashdot crowd think?
fantomas writes: The BBC is reporting on a proposal from Congressman Jared Polis to create a new type of USA visa to encourage entrepreneurs to base themselves in the USA. The Congressman and others are concerned that strict immigration laws in the USA are driving away talent to other countries, while critics argue encouraging immigration takes jobs away from Americans. Should the USA have a new "entrepreneur visa"?
fantomas writes: Iranian state media is reporting the successful launch of its first domestic satellite, according to the BBC. The satellite was designed for research and telecommunications purposes, the television report said. Iran's first satellite was launched by a Russian rocket in 2005, and in 2007 Iran launched its first rocket capable of getting a payload into space. Congratulations to the newest member of space-faring nations — but doubtless many governments will take their own political slant on whether this is good or bad news. Cynics may suggest this makes the world a more dangerous place, optimists may argue the more peaceful access we have to space the better. What do you think?
fantomas writes: US stun gun maker Taser is making a new cheaper, version available for fashion conscious members of the public. Cheaper than their current security models, this stylish 'non-lethal weapon' is being launched at an electronics fair in Las Vegas on Monday. The company has not yet revealed exactly how many volts it will deliver, but presumably it will still knock attackers flat. I guess if a bunch of 8 year old terrors now ask me for my wallet and mobile phone, I'll just have to hand them over, being bigger or having a few self defence martial art tricks really aren't going to help me any more. Any slashdotters know any ways of protecting yourself against tasers?
fantomas writes: The BBC is reporting that the current EU-US talks over data collected from people flying into the USA collapsed last night. The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are insisting on access to the airlines records and 34 pieces of data to be collected from each passenger. According to the undertakings on data protection provided by the US, this includes "personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade union membership, and data concerning the health or sex life of the individual". This has been gathered since 2004, but only as a temporary agreement and now renewal is due, national data protection laws in the EU doesn't allow the deal to continue. Chaos may ensue. Airlines who receive to hand over information to US authorities may be fined up to $6000 per passenger, and the passengers themselves held in immigration for hours. Good for the EU on protecting the privacy of their citizens? or are they hindering the War on Terror?