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Privacy

Submission + - NXP RFID Cracked

kamlapati writes: The Chaos Computer Club (Hamburg, Germany) has cracked the encryption scheme of NXPs popular Mifare Classic RFID chip. The device is used in many contactless smartcard applications including fare collection, loyalty cards or access control cards. NXP downplays the significance of the hack. So much for the security of RFID: http://www.eetimes.com/news/latest/showArticle.jhtml;jsessionid=YLPVK3WYXCTVEQSNDLSCKHA?articleID=207000946
Data Storage

Array-Based Memory May Put a Terabyte On a Chip 93

Lucas123 writes "A new type of flash memory, called array-based memory, could offer a terabyte of data on a single chip within the next decade by bypassing current NAND memory technology, which is limited by the miniaturization capability of lithography. According to the Computerworld story, start-up Nanochip Inc. is being backed by Intel and others, and over 11 years has made research breakthroughs that will enable it to deliver working prototypes to potential manufacturing partners next year. And by 2010, the first chips are expected to reach 100GB capacity."
Privacy

In Soviet US, Comcast Watches YOU 404

cayenne8 sends us to Newteevee.com for a blog posting reporting from the Digital Living Room conference earlier this week. Gerard Kunkel, Comcast's senior VP of user experience, stated that the cable company is experimenting with different camera technologies built into its devices so it can know who's in your living room. Cameras in the set-top boxes, while apparently not using facial recognition software, can still somehow figure out who is in the room, and customize user preferences for cable (favorite channels, etc.). While this sounds 'handy,' it also sounds a bit like the TV sets in 1984. I am sure, of course, that Comcast wouldn't tap into this for any reason, nor let the authorities tap into this to watch inside your home in real time without a warrant or anything."
Social Networks

Lessig Bets On the Net To Clean Up Government 126

christian.einfeldt writes "Stanford Law Professor Larry Lessig really 'gets it' when it comes to the efficacy of distributed open source code production. Now he is attempting to use distributed production methods to expose corruption in the US Congress with the launch of another 'CC' organization — this time it's called 'Change Congress'. CC (as opposed to cc for Creative Commons) would invite users to track whether US legislators are willing to commit to Change Congress' four pledges. CC will rely on users to record and map the positions of candidates who are running for open seats in the US House and Senate. Change Congress will use a Google mash-up to create a map depicting which legislators have taken the CC pledge, which have declined, and which have signaled support for planks in the Change-Congress platform. The four pledges (which are not numbered 0 through 3) call for greater transparency in government, and less influence of private money in shaping legislation."
Patents

Sony Blu-ray Under Patent Infringement Probe 160

Lucas123 writes "The US International Trade Commission said it will launch an investigation into possible patent infringements involving Sony's Blu-ray players and other technologies using laser and light-emitting diodes, such as Motorola's Razr phone and Hitachi camcorders. The investigation was prompted by a complaint filed in February by a Columbia University professor emerita who says she invented a method of using gallium nitride-based semiconductor material for producing wide band-gap semiconductors for LEDs and laser diodes in the blue/ultraviolet end of the light spectrum. Her complaint asks the ITC to block imports of LED and laser diode technology from Asia and Europe. The total market for all types of gallium nitride devices has been forecast at $7.2 billion for 2009 alone."
Math

Road Coloring Problem Solved 202

ArieKremen writes "Israeli Avraham Trakhtman, a Russian immigrant mathematician who had been employed as a night watchman, has solved the Road Coloring problem. First posed in 1970 by Benjamin Weiss and Roy Adler, the problem posits that given a finite number of roads, one should be able to draw a map, coded in various colors, that leads to a certain destination regardless of the point of origin. The 63-year-old Trakhtman jotted down the solution in pencil in 8 pages. The problem has real-world implementation in message and traffic routing."
Media

Blu-ray BD+ Cracked 521

An anonymous reader writes "In July 2007, Richard Doherty of the Envisioneering Group (BD+ Standards Board) declared: 'BD+, unlike AACS which suffered a partial hack last year, won't likely be breached for 10 years.' Only eight months have passed since that bold statement, and Slysoft has done it again. According to the press release, the latest version of their flagship product AnyDVD HD can automatically remove BD+ protection and allows you to back-up any Blu-ray title on the market."
Power

Buckyballs Can Store Concentrated Hydrogen 193

Pickens brings news that researchers from Rice University have discovered that it's possible to store hydrogen inside buckyballs. Hydrogen can be an excellent power source, but it is notoriously difficult to store. The buckyballs can contain up to 8% of their weight in hydrogen, and they are strong enough to hold it at a density that rivals the center of Jupiter. "Using a computer model, Yakobson's research team has tracked the strength of each atomic bond in a buckyball and simulated what happened to the bonds as more hydrogen atoms were packed inside. Yakobson said the model promises to be particularly useful because it is scalable, that is it can calculate exactly how much hydrogen a buckyball of any given size can hold, and it can also tell scientists how overstuffed buckyballs burst open and release their cargo."
Patents

Submission + - "Patent Troll Tracker" Sued for Defamation

jellie writes: "Richard Frenkel, who outed himself recently as the Patent Troll Tracker (invitation only), is now being sued for defamation over content in his blog relating to a case in which his employer is involved, ESN V. Cisco, filed in the Eastern District of Texas. Cisco is also named as a defendent in the lawsuit. In the original post, PTT alleged

that the filing date for ESN v. Cisco was changed from Oct. 15, 2007, to Oct. 16, 2007, after ESN's local counsel "called the EDTX court clerk, and convinced him/her to change the docket to reflect an October 16 filing date, rather than the October 15 filing date." The filing date is significant, Frenkel alleged in the blog, because the ESN patent that is the basis of the suit was not issued until Oct. 16.
Interestingly, one of the plaintiff's lawyers is John Ward, Jr., who is the son of U.S. District Judge T. John Ward of the Eastern District."
Censorship

Wikileaks Calls For Global Boycott Against eNom 137

souls writes "The folks at Wikileaks are calling for a boycott against eNom, Inc., one of the top internet domain registrars, which WikiLeaks claims is involved in systematic domain censoring. On Feb 28th eNom shut down wikileaks.info, one of the many Wikileaks mirrors held by a volunteer as a side-effect of the court proceedings around wikileaks.org. In addition, eNom was the registrar that shut off access to a Spanish travel agent who showed up on a US Treasury watch list. Wikileaks calls for a 'global boycott of eNom and its parent Demand Media, its owners, executives and their affiliated companies, interests and holdings, to make clear such behavior can and will not be tolerated within the boundaries of the Internet and its global community.'"
Government

Lessig On Corruption and Reform 138

Brian Stretch sends us to the National Review for an interview with Stanford professor Lawrence Lessig. Lessig talks about money, politics, money in politics, and his decision not to run for an open seat in Congress. From the interview: "Lessig hates corruption. He hates it so much, in fact, that last year he announced he'd be shifting away from his work on copyright and trademark law... to focus on it... 'One of the biggest targets of reform that we should be thinking about is how to blow up the FCC.'"
Communications

Verizon, Fiber Or Die? 291

dynamator writes "I live about 550 meters from my Verizon central office. I pay for their higher-tier 'Power Plan' DSL service, which boasts 3 Mbps down and 758 Kbsp up. For the past year, I've enjoyed excellent performance on this line. However, this past month Verizon has been hooking up my neighbors with FiOS, their new fiber-to-the-home system, and guess what, my connection speed and dependability have taken a nosedive. What can I do to build the case that this is really happening? Will anyone, least of all Verizon, care? Are they making me a fiber offer I can't refuse?" We discussed a few times last year what Verizon may be up to.
The Military

US Air Force Issues DMCA Takedown Notice 93

palegray.net writes "Threat Level brings us the story of the US Air Force's use of the DMCA to forcibly remove a 'Cyber Command' recruitment video that they had previously thanked Threat Level for running. The article notes that US government works are not even subject to copyright, but this fact didn't stop YouTube from caving and taking down the video."
Security

Submission + - German police arrest admin of Tor anonymity server (cnet.com)

An anonymous reader writes: In a recent blog posting, a German operator of a Tor anonymous proxy server revealed that he was arrested by German police officers at the end of July. Showing up at his house at midnight on a Sunday night, police cuffed and arrested him in front of his wife and seized his equipment. In a display of both bitter irony and incompetence, the police did not take or shut-down the Tor server responsible for the traffic they were interested in, which was located in a data center, over 500km away. In the last year, Germany has passed a draconian new anti-security research law and raided seven different data centers to seize Tor servers. While back in 2003, A German court ordered the developers of a different anonymity network to build a back-door into their system. CNET's article has the full details.

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