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FTC Says It May Be Unable To Regulate Comcast, Google, and Verizon ( 86

The Federal Trade Commission is worried that it may no longer be able to regulate companies such as Comcast, Google, and Verizon unless a recent court ruling is overturned, ArsTechnica reports. From the article: The FTC on Thursday petitioned the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals for a rehearing in a case involving AT&T's throttling of unlimited data plans. A 9th Circuit panel previously ruled that the FTC cannot punish AT&T, and the decision raises questions about the FTC's ability to regulate any company that operates a common carrier business such as telephone or Internet service. While the FTC's charter from Congress prohibits it from regulating common carriers, the agency has previously exercised authority to regulate these companies when they offer non-common carrier services. But the recent court ruling said that AT&T is immune from FTC oversight entirely, even when it's not acting as a common carrier. It isn't clear whether the ruling sets an ironclad precedent preventing the FTC from regulating any company with a common carrier business.
The Internet

Internet Mapping Glitch Turned a Random Kansas Farm Into a Digital Hell ( 195

An anonymous reader writes: Back in 2002, a company called MaxMind had an idea: Gather up as many unique computer or smartphone IP addresses as they can, match them to a map, and sell that data to advertisers. The problem is that MaxMind's tech has made life miserable for a handful of homes across the US -- especially one otherwise unnoteworthy northern Kansas farm. The farm's 82-year-old owner, Joyce Taylor, and her tenants have been subject to numerous FBI visits, IRS collectors, ambulances, threats, and the release of private information online. They've found people rummaging in the farm's barn and one person even left a broken toilet for some reason. People would even post her details online and encourage others to get in on the harassment, she said. The local sheriff even had to put a sign on her driveway, telling trespassers to stay away and contact him first if there are any questions. What's her mistake? MaxMind thought that if its tech couldn't tell where, exactly, in the United States, an IP address was located, it would instead return a default set of coordinates very near the geographic center of the country -- coordinates that happen to coincide with Taylor's front yard. The abuse began in 2011. A quick online search for the farm's address brings up pages of forum posts reporting the "scam farm."

Comment Re:Correlation != Causation (Score 1) 104

Oh the classical correlation != causation meme! Read the f***ing paper first and understand the arguments!

You should understand WHICH 4 biomarkers they are testing: VLDL, Albumin, Citrate, and Alpha-1 acid glycoprotein. If these four are high, chances are the metabolism behind these four indicators has been wrong for DECADES and is hardly reversible. It makes sense, therefore, to predict 5-y mortality rate with these 4 biomarkers. Sure the prediction isn't perfect, but boy are they good indicators of someone health just as fasting blood glucose, blood pressures, cholesterols and other measurements!

So, just quit this kneejerk correlation != causation reaction already and understand the science behind it!

Comment Re:Correlations (Score 5, Informative) 256

> Open articles. Ctrl-F "Controling" No results. Close tab. Nothing of value.

It does. It is abbreviated as "RGSC" on the article. Look at Figure 2 to see the model graphically and you see that RGSC is featured prominently on the top. Also, if you look at Table 2, the authors acknowledge the link between SES of origin AND math / reading abilities. But this paper shows that the math & reading abilities at 7 years old do predict mid-life SES above AND beyond the SES of origin.


Submission + - Video shows Chinese military hacker launching successful attack (

colinneagle writes: Thanks to cybersecurity firm Mandiant, we now have a video of a hacker believed to be linked to the Chinese military infiltrating and stealing files from unidentified English language targets.

The video comes as part of Mandiant's 60-page report, first reported by the New York Times, that claims China's military is responsible for cyberattacks on more than 140 foreign businesses, many of which are in the United States. In the video, a hacker is seen registering a Gmail account with a U.S. IP number, then verifying it with a phone number located in Shanghai. From the email account, the narrator says it is clear the attacker has used it for spearphishing, particularly "focused on military exercises in the Philippines." He then installs command-and-control servers, tests them, and, after an hour of failed attempts to issue commands to a victim backdoor (which the video omits), uses stolen credentials to log into an email account. Once there, he uses several tools to launch spearphishing campaigns and steal files.

Comment Major challenge: Retrieval and storage (Score 3, Interesting) 136

Okay, storing is "solved". How about retrieval? Especially random access retrieval that are simple and fast (relatively speaking) that allow such storage medium to be practical? Certainly not DNA sequencing that can take weeks to complete?

The second problem: DNA denature and fragment at room temperature. Certainly a -80C lab freezer for storage wouldn't be practical.

Third problem: DNA secondary and tertiary structure. The coding scheme must also solves the problem of DNA tendency to make secondary structure (like hairpin) or tertiary structure (like super-coil) that can hamper reading / access to the information. I think this is the reason why the storage uses short sequences. But short DNA sequences like the one proposed (~100 bp, from the figure) could still make such structures.


Windows 8 Release Preview Now Available To Download 363

MrSeb writes "Microsoft has announced the immediate availability of Windows 8 Release Preview. Unfortunately there isn't a Consumer Preview > Release Preview upgrade path — you'll have to format and perform a clean installation. After downloading the ISO, simply burn Windows 8 RP onto a USB stick or DVD, reboot, and follow the (exceedingly quick and easy) installer. Alternatively, if you don't want to format a partition, ExtremeTech has a guide on virtualizing Windows 8 with VirtualBox. After a lot of fluster on the Building Windows 8 blog, the Release Preview is actually surprisingly similar to the Consumer Preview. Despite being promised a new, flat, Desktop/Explorer UI, Aero is still the default theme in Windows 8 RP. The tutorial that will introduce new users to the brave new Start buttonless Windows 8 world is also missing. Major features that did make the cut are improved multi-monitor support — it's now easier to hit the hot corners on a multi-monitor setup, and Metro apps can be moved between displays — and the Metro version of IE10 now has a built-in Flash plug-in. There will be no further pre-releases of Windows 8: the next build will be the RTM."

Tech Site Sues Ex-Employee, Claiming Rights To His Twitter Account 267

nonprofiteer writes "Noah Kravitz worked as a mobile phone reviewer for a tech website called Phonedog for four and a half years. While there, he started a Twitter account (of his own volition) with the handle @PhoneDog_Noah to tweet his stories and videos for the site as well as personal stuff about sports, food, music, etc. When he left Phonedog, he had approximately 17,000 followers and changed his Twitter handle to @noahkravitz. This summer, Phonedog started barking that it wanted the Twitter account back, and sued Kravitz, valuing the account at $340,000 (!), or $2.50 per follower per month. Kravitz claims the Twitter account was his own property. A California judge ruled that the case can proceed and theoretically go to trial. Meanwhile, Kravitz continues to tweet."
The Courts

Samsung Lawyer Fails To Differentiate iPad and Galaxy Tab In Court 495

Several readers sent in a story that's sure to be embarrassing for Samsung. The company has been involved in a drawn-out patent dispute with Apple over similarities between the Galaxy Tab and the iPad. Today, during a court session, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh held up both objects and asked one of Samsung's attorneys whether she could identify which was which. The attorney replied, "Not at this distance, your honor." The distance was roughly 10 feet. The judge then quizzed the rest of Samsung's lawyers. After a brief hesitation, one of them was able to correctly identify the Galaxy Tab.

Comment What constitutes a "real" name? (Score 2) 283

What constitutes a "real" name? Take a look at Sun Yat-Sen, for example. Which one do you think is THE real name? The original name? Baby name? Genealogy name? Courtesy name? School name? Eventually, Sun Yat-Sen was famed in China because of the pseudoname he used in Japan. And Yat-Sen itself is a school name.


Amazon, Google Cave To Apple, Drop In-App Buttons 307

CWmike writes "Amazon bowed on Monday to Apple's newest App Store rules, and removed a link in its iPhone and iPad Kindle apps that took customers directly to its online store. The move was required to comply with new rules designed to block developers from evading the 30% cut that Apple takes from in-app purchases. In February, Apple CEO Steve Jobs laid down the law. 'Our philosophy is simple — when Apple brings a new subscriber to the app, Apple earns a 30% share,' said Jobs in a statement released Feb. 15. 'When the publisher brings an existing or new subscriber to the app, the publisher keeps 100% and Apple earns nothing.' Rhapsody updated its iPhone app last week to, among other things, remove the in-app subscribing link. Also on Monday, Google complied with Apple's new rules when it re-released Google Books — which had been yanked from the App Store — minus an in-app purchasing button."

Comment GUIMiner is most likely optimized for AMD cards (Score 1) 403

The performance of GPU-based codes is highly dependent on the video cards. I highly doubt the dismal performance of NVIDIA cards. I think the authors most likely optimized the kernel code to AMD cards. This is evident when you look at the CL kernel code and you see that there are so many hardwired constants and fixed arrays (aligned to 128 ints or longs). Moreover, the authors GUIMiner don't seem to take advantage of NVIDIA's more local workthreads (compared to AMD's).

I'd say that declaring AMD a victor is premature.


Comcast Offering Home Security Bundle 102

vaporland writes "Bloomberg reports that media giant Comcast has begun offering home security bundles with cable or phone service in selected markets. From the article: 'The Philadelphia-based company is starting Xfinity Home Security in seven markets for $39.95 a month. It lets users remotely adjust lights and thermostats, watch cameras, and get e-mail or text alerts when doors and windows are opened and closed. Customers can watch live video of their homes on an Xfinity website or with an Apple Inc. iPad application.'"

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