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Submission + - Fog clears around encrypted email provider Lavabit court documents (nytimes.com)

snowtigger writes: The New York Times reports that on Wednesday, a federal judge unsealed documents in the case (covered here), allowing the tech entrepreneur to speak candidly for the first time about his experiences. Among other things, a court order required provide the F.B.I. with “technical assistance,” which agents told him meant handing over the private encryption keys, technically called SSL certificates, that unlock communications for all users.

Submission + - Apple and Nokia outraged that Samsung lawyers leaked patent license terms

An anonymous reader writes: U.S. courts have strict rules in place governing the treatment of confidential business information. The most sensitive information is labeled 'highly confidential — attorneys' eyes only', meaning that only a company's outside lawyers are allowed to see it. The Apple-Nokia patent settlement contract and deals Apple struck with others (Ericsson, Sharp, Philips) were such highly confidential business information. But a Samsung executive allegedly boasted in a patent licensing negotiation with Nokia a few months ago about knowing all the terms of the Apple-Nokia deal because the Korean company's lawyers had provided it to their client, against the rules. The United States District Court for the Northern District of California now wants to find out more before deciding on sanctions against Samsung and its law firm, Quinn Emanuel. This is getting nasty if it wasn't already...

Submission + - Mars Orbiter Spies Lackluster Comet ISON (discovery.com)

astroengine writes: Scientists managing the High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera aboard NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) have released their first observations of the incoming Comet ISON. The MRO was commanded to turn away its perpetual Mars-ward gaze and point into deep space to capture its own snapshot of the famous comet. ISON is currently making its closest approach to the red planet, passing just 7 million miles from its surface. The first raw images were snapped on Sept. 29 when the object was 8 million miles from the planet and more images (taken on Oct. 1 and Oct. 2) are currently being processed. The four initial observations reveal a fuzzy cometary object moving relative to background stars. Detail is lacking as the comet is still too distant, but these observations are useful to gauge how the brightness of the object compares to predicted values. So far, ISON is at the “low end” of predicted brightness values.

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