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Submission + - DNA confirms cause of 1665 London's Great Plague

JThaddeus writes: The BBC reports that a 17th Century mass grave uncovered in London confirms the identity of the bacteria responsible for the Great Plague of 1665-1666. "Testing in Germany confirmed the presence of DNA from the Yersinia pestis bacterium — the agent that causes bubonic plague — rather than another pathogen." The grave contains approximately 3,500 skeletons. Teeth were removed from some of the skulls, and their pulp tested at the Max Planck Institute in Germany. Positive results were found in 5 of 20 individuals tested. It is estimated that the Great Plague killed nearly one quarter of London's population (then about 350,000). The article also adds, "To reassure anyone worried whether plague bacterium was released from the excavation work or scientific analysis, it doesn't survive in the ground."

Submission + - Linux 4.8 Prepares NVIDIA Pascal & Raspberry Pi 3 SoC Support, AMD Overclock (

An anonymous reader writes: The Linux 4.8 feature merge window was open the past two weeks and it culminated with this evening's release of Linux 4.8-rc1. Now that the merge window is over, it's easy to grasp a good look at the Linux 4.8 features. Coming to the Linux 4.8 kernel is initial NVIDIA Pascal support via the open-source Nouveau driver, initial support for the Broadcom SoC found in the Raspberry Pi 3, AMD GPU overclocking support for the open-source driver, multiple new security safeguards, file-system improvements, and more.

Submission + - SPAM: Almost Half of All TSA Employees Have Been Cited for Misconduct

schwit1 writes: Almost half of all TSA employees have been cited for misconduct, and the citations have increased by almost 30 percent since 2013.

Of the total allegations filed, 90.8 percent were against TSA officers, while 4.8 percent were filed against managers or administrators. Of the areas of misconduct, “Attendance & Leave” sees the highest number of offenders, while “Failure to Follow Instructions,” “Screening & Security,” “Neglect of Duty,” and “Disruptive Behavior” round out the top five.

It also appears that the TSA has been reducing the sanctions it has been giving out for this bad behavior.

Submission + - DWI arrests are up 7.5% in Austin, Texas since the city banned Uber and Lyft. ( 1

An anonymous reader writes: City police made 359 DWI arrests from May 9, 2016 (the day Uber and Lyft shut down) to May 31, 2016. During that same period in 2015, Austin police made 334 DWI arrests.

Whether ridesharing services actually affect the rate of drunk driving in cities remains up for debate. Some studies cite a drastic drop off in DWIs, while others claim there’s no correlation between the two at all. Regardless, local Austin drivers say they’ve seen more alarming behavior downtown than ever before.

“You can literally hear people leaving the bars saying ‘just forget it, I’ll drive, it’s not that far,’” she said of the bar crowd frustrated by the late-night transportation limitations.

With the limited number of ways to get home, Morgan Taylor, who works as a bartender, says the situation has not only caused a noticeable drop in sales but also changed the way she serves her customers. Should someone leave her bar, decide to drive drunk, and cause an accident, the Texas Beverage Code holds both the bar and individual bartenders responsible in civil suits.

“I used to say ‘hey are you taking an Uber or Lyft home?’ now it’s just three drinks and ‘I’m sorry I have to cut you off.’”

Submission + - More Details Surface On AMD 32-Core Server Chip Code Named Naples (

An anonymous reader writes: AMD is hoping their next generation Zen processor architecture will be able to go toe-to-toe with the best that Intel has to offer and AMD is reportedly working on a high-end server variant of Zen as well, codenamed Naples. Naples would have a total of 32 cores, with a cluster of Zen cores sharing an 8MB pool of L3 cache. Total L3 shared cache is pegged at a stout 64MB and Naples will be capable of executing 64 threads while operating within a 180W power envelope. Naples reportedly will support eight independent memory channels and up to 128 PCIe Gen 3 lanes. In addition, a 16x10 GbE Ethernet controller is integrated into the chipset and Naples will use an SP3 LGA socket. The first server-based Zen processor could possibly squeak by for a late 2016 introduction, but odds are that we won't see widespread availability until 2017. At that time, you should expect Zen server processors in dual-, quad-, 16- and 32-core variants, with TDPs ranging from 35 watts to 180 watts. This is the second sighting of a 32-core AMD Zen variant. Earlier this year a CERN Engineer had details corroborating its existence in a presentation he was giving.

Submission + - An American scientist makes the case for NASA returning to the moon (

MarkWhittington writes: Recently, the idea of an American return to the moon received a push in Congress, with the upcoming NASA spending bill mandating the cancellation of the asteroid redirect mission and a refocusing of the space agency’s efforts toward lunar surface operations in advance of the Journey to Mars. Now, the scientific community has weighed in, in the person of Clive R. Neal, a professor of geology at the University of Notre Dame. Professor Neal took to the pages of the latest issue Scientific America to advocate for a return to the moon

Submission + - Laid-Off Americans, Required to Zip Lips on Way Out, Grow Bolder (

Indigo writes: New York Times: American corporations are under new scrutiny from federal lawmakers after well-publicized episodes in which the companies laid off American workers and gave the jobs to foreigners on temporary visas.

But while corporate executives have been outspoken in defending their labor practices before Congress and the public, the American workers who lost jobs to global outsourcing companies have been largely silent.

Until recently. Now some of the workers who were displaced are starting to speak out, despite severance agreements prohibiting them from criticizing their former employers.

Submission + - A reprieve for Moore's Law: milspec chip writes computing's next chapter (

schwit1 writes: As it turns out, Raytheon and some commercial manufacturers of GaN chips have found a way to produce them more cheaply than other semiconductors—including silicon chips made for the same applications. The ability to handle high power and have fast switching speeds makes GaN interesting, even essential, for a whole host of applications from cellular communications to renewable and portable energy. And as the cost of making GaN(gallium nitride) chips falls, GaN could start to challenge silicon for more tasks. Particularly because of its ability to operate at much higher frequencies, GaN might even become the next thing to help extend the life of Moore's Law--not in terms of actual transistor density, but in terms of increases in speed of processors.

Submission + - Visual Studio 2015 c++ compiler secretly inserts telemetry code into binaries ( 4

edxwelch writes: Reddit user "sammiesdog" discovered recently that the Visual Studio 2015 c++ compiler was inserting calls to a Microsoft telemetery function into binaries.
"I compiled a simple program with only main(). When looking at the compiled binary in Ida, I see a calls for telemetry_main_invoke_trigger and telemetry_main_return_trigger. I can not find documentation for these calls, either on the web or in the options page."
Only after the discovery did Steve Carroll, the dev manager for Visual C++, admit to the feature and posted a work around. The "feature" is to be removed in Update 3 of the product.

Submission + - EBT Cards Experiencing Outages (

Salo2112 writes: Widespread reports continue to pour in from all over the nation of “glitches” with the food stamp system. It is eight days into the month and large numbers of people still have not received their benefits, and in other instances it is being reported that EBT cards are simply not working correctly. So what in the world is going on here? On there are scores of reports of problems with the EBT system from people all over the nation.

Submission + - Four newly discovered elements receive names - your chance to change them (

Press2ToContinue writes: The proposed names for recently discovered superheavy elements are:

Nihonium and symbol Nh, for the element 113
Moscovium and symbol Mc, for the element 115
Tennessine and symbol Ts, for the element 117
Oganesson and symbol Og, for the element 118

This isn't finalized. Not sure I even like some of these, and maybe you feel the same way. Above are the proposed names that will substitute for the current placeholders (e.g., ununpentium, ununseptium). Nilhonium, Moscovium, and Tennesine are all named for places; Oganessen is named for the Russian physicist Yuri Oganessian.

But we have until November to lobby for other names. Here's a chance to go down in history and name an element on the periodic table. How about naming one Elementy McElementface?

Submission + - Gates Foundation Failures-Why Philanthropists Shouldn't Set Public School Agenda

theodp writes: As the U.S. entrusts tech billionaires and their fave nonprofits with K-12 Computer Science education, the Los Angeles Times looks back on some of the havoc wreaked on U.S. schools by the well-intentioned Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, citing the organization's costly failures as Exhibit A in the case against philanthropists setting public school agenda. "The mission of improving education in America is both vast and complicated," concedes Gates Foundation CEO Sue Desmond-Hellm, "and the Gates Foundation doesn’t have all the answers." Still, that isn't stopping Bill and Melinda Gates from pressing Congress "to provide funding for every student in every school to have an opportunity to learn computer science" ($4.2B is a nice start!).The LA Times concludes, "Philanthropists are not generally education experts, and even if they hire scholars and experts, public officials shouldn’t be allowing them to set the policy agenda for the nation’s public schools. The Gates experience teaches once again that educational silver bullets are in short supply and that some educational trends live only a little longer than mayflies."

Submission + - Microsoft Removes 260-Character Path Length Limit In Windows 10 Redstone (

An anonymous reader writes: Windows 10 build 14352, a preview version of the upcoming Anniversary Update (also known as Redstone), comes with an eagerly awaited change that Microsoft hasn’t yet announced publicly. The 260-character path length limit in Windows can be removed with the help of a new policy, thus allowing you to run operations with files regardless of their path or file name. While this new rule is not enabled by default, admins can turn it on by following these instructions. Launch the Registry Editor by clicking the Start menu and typing “regedit.exe,” and then navigate to the following path: [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Group Policy Objects\{48981759-12F2-42A6-A048-028B3973495F}Machine\System\CurrentControlSet\Policies]. Look for an entry called "LongPathsEnabled," and if it does not exist, simply right-click Policies, select New DWORD (32-bit), name it "LongPathsEnabled" (without the quotes), enter value 1, and you're good to go. The description of the preview reads, “Enabling NTFS long paths will allow manifested win32 applications and Windows Store applications to access paths beyond the normal 260 char limit per node. Enabling this setting will cause the long paths to be accessible within the process.”

Submission + - systemd starts killing your background processes by default ( 1

nautsch writes: systemd changed a default value in logind.conf to "yes", which will kill all your processes, when you log out. And as always: It's not a bug, it's a feature. Translated from the german source: "Bug of the day: systemd kills background processes on logout". There is already a bug-report over at debian: Debian bug tracker (link also from the source)

Submission + - WikiLeaks Exposes TISA Trade Deal Secrets (

An anonymous reader writes: The leaked documents show how stipulations outlined in the TISA documents advanced the "deregulation" of big corporations entering overseas markets.

According to the leaked documents, the TISA rules would also restrict governmentsâ(TM) ability to determine the size or growth of certain economic activities and entities, preventing nations from limiting the size of foreign companies in the market.

"The TISA provisions in their current form will establish a wide range of new grounds for domestic regulations to be challenged by corporations â" even those without a local presence in that country," WikiLeaks warned on Wednesday.

The whistleblowing website went on to note that the proposals and language contained in the text promotes what it described as âoethe corporatization of public services.â

There is growing evidence that the privatization of state-owned companies leads to an increase in costs for consumers. In the 34 OECD countries, for example, the average price for energy charged by private companies is 23.1 percent higher than the price charged by public companies.

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