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Network

Submission + - Klout.com CEO Responds to Critics, Death Threats (foxnews.com) 1

Velcroman1 writes: Over 100 million users rely on Klout.com to measure their social media influence — the site defines people by a single number: 1 represents the least influential, 100 the most influential. The website calculates your Klout score based on true reach, how many people you influence, amplification, how much you influence them, and network impact, the full influence of your network. Scientists then jam all that information in an algorithm to create your ever-changing, sometimes frustrating, Klout score.

And the Web is up in arms over recent changes to the algorithm that determines it, including an #occupyklout Twitter protest movement. “http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/community/2011/11/03/klout-ceo-fernandez-responds-to-critics-gives-tips-and-talks-future/">I got everything short of death threats,” CEO Joe Fernandez said recently.

Earth

Submission + - Geologists Say California May Be Next

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Newsweek reports that first there was a violent magnitude-8.8 event in Chile in 2010, then a horrifically destructive Pacific earthquake in New Zealand on February 22, and now the recent earthquake in Japan. All three phenomena involved more or less the same family of circum-Pacific fault lines and plate boundaries—and though there is still no hard scientific evidence to explain why, there is little doubt now that earthquakes do tend to occur in clusters: a significant event on one side of a major tectonic plate is often—not invariably, but often enough to be noticeable—followed some weeks or months later by another on the plate’s far side. "It is as though the earth becomes like a great brass bell, which when struck by an enormous hammer blow on one side sets to vibrating and ringing from all over. Now there have been catastrophic events at three corners of the Pacific Plate—one in the northwest, on Friday; one in the southwest, last month; one in the southeast, last year." That leaves just one corner unaffected—the northeast. And the fault line in the northeast of the Pacific Plate is the San Andreas Fault, underpinning the city of San Francisco. All know that the San Andreas Fault is due to rupture one day—it last did so in 1906, and strains have built beneath it to a barely tolerable level. Although geologists believe a 9.0 quake is virtually impossible along the San Andreas, a network of "strike-slip" faults smaller and more fragmented than the great chasm that exists where two continent-sized plates of the Earth's crust meet along the Japanese islands, USGS studies put the probability of California being hit by a quake measuring 7.5 or more in the next 30 years at 46 percent, and the likelihood of a 6.7 quake, comparable in size to the temblors that rocked San Francisco in 1989 and Los Angeles in 1994, at 99 percent statewide."
Iphone

Submission + - iPhone 5 To Put Antenna Woes To Bed? (eweekeurope.co.uk)

Anonymous Coward writes: "New model rumoured to have done away with troublesome exterior rim

Apple put iPad 2 rumours to rest by unveiling the next-generation tablet last week, clearing the way for media and bloggers to obsess about another company product reportedly in the pipeline: the iPhone 5.

Summer launch expected
If Apple follows its pattern from past years, this summer will see the release of its next iPhone. And according to a report in Taiwan’s Economic Daily News, as repeated 7 March on blogs such as Apple Insider, Apple’s upcoming smartphone will emphasise aluminum over the iPhone 4’s glass casing, and possibly eliminate the exterior antenna rim that has caused the company no end of headaches.

The iPhone 5 will also reportedly include Apple’s A5 processor, just unveiled in conjunction with the iPad 2. Backing the smartphone with aluminium instead of glass, in theory, will help prevent the scratches that cause a certain subset of iPhone users to burst into tears of unimaginable grief.

The elimination of the current iPhone’s exterior antenna rim could slam the final coffin-nail into an issue that’s plagued Apple since last summer, when iPhone 4 owners reported that gripping the smartphone in a certain way, with their bare hand, resulted in radical signal dampening. Those “death grip” reports sprung back to life with this year’s release of the Verizon iPhone. A bumper or slipcase around the iPhone 4’s antenna rim will solve the issue, at the cost of the device’s minimalist aesthetics.

Rumours have also been flying around for months about possible additions to the iPhone 5, with pundits freely conjecturing about everything from more powerful cameras and upgraded hardware to 3G-enabled FaceTime video-conferencing."

Canada

Submission + - CRIA Copyright Astroturf Site Gamed By U.S. Execs (michaelgeist.ca)

An anonymous reader writes: Michael Geist reports that the recording industry's copyright astroturfing site, which has been encouraging users to flood blogs and media articles, has been gamed by U.S. record executives. While promoted as a Canadian site, members include U.S.-based record company executives. The site has also added a mandatory letter for recording industry employees to elected officials that cannot be edited.
Security

Submission + - Apple silently updates Mac malware protection (sophos.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Apple's recent Mac OS X 10.6.4 upgrade included at least one security update that they didn't document — an update to Snow Leopard's anti-virus protection.

Sophos researchers say that Apple secretly updated the OS's rudimentary malware protection — delivered through a file called XProtect.plist — to include detection of a backdoor trojan horse known as HellRTS or OSX/Pinhead-B.

If it successfully infects a Mac, the trojan can send spam email from your Mac, take screenshots of what you are doing, access your files and clipboard.

Security bloggers at Sophos have speculated that Apple may have deliberately not announced the update to Mac OS X's anti-malware feature for "marketing reasons":

"Shh! Don't tell folks that we have to protect against malware on Mac OS X!"



Mind you, you have to wonder if Sophos is also discussing the update for marketing reasons too..

Security

Submission + - BBC Amazing article: Fighting back against attacks (bbc.co.uk)

An anonymous reader writes: Hi-tech criminals are not very good at securing the tools they use to attack websites, suggests research.

Security experts have found that many of the kits used by cyber criminals are riddled with bugs and vulnerabilities.

Censorship

Submission + - Thailand shuts down 43,000 more websites (bangkokpost.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Bangkok Post reports that the Thai government has now shut down over 43,000 websites deemed defamatory to the royal institution. Thai ISP's are warned to cooperate 'voluntarily' or lose their license. This is in addition to 17,000+ that were recently blocked for 'national security', including both Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Iphone

Submission + - Apple Eases Restrictions On iPhone Developers (macrumors.com)

WrongSizeGlass writes: MacRumors has a story on a report by Apple Outsider's Matt Drance that Apple is easing their restrictions on interpreted code used in iPhone development, a change which allows game developers in particular to continue to use interpreted languages such as Lua in their App Store applications. The change comes alongside Apple's further modifications of its iOS developer terms that again allow for limited analytics data collection to aid advertisers and developers, but appear to shut out non-independent companies such as Google's AdMob from receiving the data.

It's not enough of an 'about face' to let Adobe or Google back in the picture but they've backpedaled enough to let the little guys squeeze through.

Submission + - New Futurama Clip & Conversation with Billy We (discovermagazine.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Robot-human intermarriage. The Harlem Globetrotters performing mathematical wizardry. Hearing, “Good news, everyone!” when bad news is on the way. It means one thing: Futurama is back. The interstellar travels of the Planet Express crew—canceled by Fox in 2003 but kept alive by syndication, straight-to-DVD movies, and the unstoppable force of geek fandom—return with 26 fresh episodes on Comedy Central, starting with a full hour on June 24 at 10PM eastern. Here’s our conversation with voice actor Billy West. The voice behind Philip J. Fry, Professor Farnsworth, Dr. Zoidberg, and Zapp Brannigan on Futurama (not to mention Stimpy on Ren & Stimpy and Looney Tunes characters like Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd in Space Jam) talks of the origin of the professor’s vocabulary, why Richard Nixon is the President of 31st century Earth, and whether it’s weird to talk to yourself so much.

Submission + - Mafia Wars Blueprint Revealed (mafiawarsblueprintrevealed.com)

braumab writes: Mafia Wars Blueprint Revealed — Is it the right choice to dominate the online gangster game or just another product to waste your time? Read prominent reviews about Mafia Wars Blueprint and get the fullest out of the Mafia Wars Secrets.

Submission + - On the Job With Mona Dehghan of Domino Records a (venuszine.com)

An anonymous reader writes: At Domino Records’ 2010 South By Southwest showcase, the crowd
is shivering in the strangely cold-for-Austin weather, downing coffee, and layering
on flimsy hoodies to keep warm. While British neo-trip-hoppers Malachai perform,
Mona Dehghan hands out stacks of promo records, makes countless introductions, and
ensures everyone she knows has food and drink tickets (and a hug). She then coordinates
an interview for the band, tracks them down when they eventually disappear, and
after our in...

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