Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

SpaceX Accident Cost it Hundreds of Millions ( 67

Elon Musk's SpaceX lost more than a quarter of a billion dollars in 2015 after a botched cargo run to the International Space Station and the subsequent grounding of its Falcon 9 rocket fleet, The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday. From a report: The accident derailed SpaceX's expectations of $1.8 billion in launch revenue in 2016, an analysis of the privately held firm's financial documents showed, according to the Journal, which said it had obtained the documents. SpaceX declined to comment on the Journal's report. In a statement emailed to Reuters, SpaceX chief financial officer Bret Johnsen said the company "is in a financially strong position" with more than $1 billion in cash reserves and no debt.

DARPA Will Stage an AI Fight in Las Vegas For DEF CON ( 89

An anonymous Slashdot reader writes: "A bunch of computers will try to hack each other in Vegas for a $2 million prize," reports Tech Insider calling it a "historic battle" that will coincide with "two of the biggest hacking conferences, Blackhat USA and DEFCON". DARPA will supply seven teams with a supercomputer. Their challenge? Create an autonomous A.I. system that can "hunt for security vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit to attack a computer, create a fix that patches that vulnerability and distribute that patch -- all without any human interference."

"The idea here is to start a technology revolution," said Mike Walker, DARPA's manager for the Cyber Grand Challenge contest. Yahoo Tech notes that it takes an average of 312 days before security vulnerabilities are discovered -- and 24 days to patch it. "if all goes well, the CGC could mean a future where you don't have to worry about viruses or hackers attacking your computer, smartphone or your other connected devices. At a national level, this technology could help prevent large-scale attacks against things like power plants, water supplies and air-traffic infrastructure.

It's being billed as "the world's first all-machine hacking tournament," with a prize of $2 million for the winner, while the second and third place tem will win $1 million and $750,000.
The Almighty Buck

Joking About Giving Money To ISIS Can Cost You Money ( 321

Reader rudy_wayne writes: A person who was using Venmo, an app that allows people to send money to each other via their phones, sent $42 to repay a friend, and jokingly labelled it "ISIS Beer Fund". He immediately got an e-mail from Venmo questioning the purpose of the money. Although he tried to explain "The $42 was payment to a dear friend for two pitchers of Samuel Adams Boston Lager" he was informed "Due to OFAC regulations, we are not allowed to give the funds back to you or issue a refund." The Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control is a 54-year-old institution, quietly working to keep money out of the hands of America's enemies.From the report, "It turns out -- shockingly -- this isn't the first time someone's Venmo transaction was cut off at the knees with a reference to subjects that are a matter of national security. Venmo won't explicitly say what words will trigger blockage, Gawker pointed out in October.

Comment Re: Video latency (Score 2) 62

Chromecast is pretty great, but as it is merely an extension on the pc/mac within chrome all you can do is view a single tab of the browser, or use one of the services. I'm not concerned with broadcasting my entire desktop or laptop environment to my tbs, I just want access to all of my tvs, movies and music in he. With plex media server and plex apps, I now have easy, user friendly access to all my media on my tvs or other devices (cell, tablet, and my roommates can access my media content on their devices as well).

Submission + - Amazon plans to use Drones for delivering Packages 2

rtoz writes: Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos unveiled a new service, named as “Prime Air.” According to this program “Prime Air”, the octocopter drones will pick up packages in small buckets at Amazon’s fulfillment centers and fly directly to customers’ nearby within 30 minutes after they click the “buy” button. The package is pulled off the lines by the octocopter, and then using GPS it is directed to the delivery address. When it arrives it releases the package on the doorstep. Because the octocopter has eight blades, Bezos said, if one broke the drone would still be able to safely drop off a package.

It may take few years for Prime Air drones to take to the skies, as the program is still subject to safety and regulatory rules by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration(FAA).

Amazon Prime Air FAQ says, “We hope the FAA’s rules will be in place as early as sometime in 2015. We will be ready at that time”

Few months back an Australian Startup “Flitery” had announced their plan about using Drones to deliver Books.

Comment Tianhe-2? (Score 3, Informative) 118

Totally off topic, but I ended up getting drunk with a bunch of people that are here in town for SC13 last night. Those boys can drink. But I'm surprised that there wasn't more talk about Tianhe-2 there, and how Chinese is going to kick the US off the top 25 in international supercomputing.

Comment Re:Proud to be an American! (Score 1) 324

What worries me the most is that it is quite possible that a black ops unit exists, operating within the US, and targets US citizens solely for interrogation and assassination (similar to B613 in the TV show Scandal). I guess that doesn't worry me the most - what worries me the most about that would be the fact that it would most likely be a completely autonomous organization with no oversight by the military or elected civilian leadership.

Slashdot Top Deals

"If you can, help others. If you can't, at least don't hurt others." -- the Dalai Lama