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Submission + - FCC said to be considering monitoring radio and TV news content ( 4

sixoh1 writes: According to an op-ed in today's WSJ (tiered subscription model) by Ajit Pai (current FCC commissioner, nominated by Obama):

Last May the FCC proposed an initiative to thrust the federal government into newsrooms across the country. With its "Multi-Market Study of Critical Information Needs," or CIN, the agency plans to send researchers to grill reporters, editors and station owners about how they decide which stories to run. A field test in Columbia, S.C., is scheduled to begin this spring.

Don't rush to the tin-foil hats, but at the same time we're seeing a fight over Net-Neutrality, do we want to see a precedent set that allows the FCC to select favored content?

Submission + - Top 10 security tools in Kali Linux 1.0.6 (

Mark Gibbs writes: When it comes to forensics, penetration and security testing Kali Linux – which is designed for security professionals and packed with more than 300 security testing tools — is arguably the most developed of the Linux distributions.

Submission + - Open Source -- The Last Patent Defense? (

dp619 writes: A developer might fly under the patent troll radar until she makes it big, and then it's usually open season. Apple just shared that it has faced off 92 lawsuits over just 3 years. Even Google's ad business is at risk. Well known FOSS attorney Heather Meeker has blogged at the Outercurve Foundation on what to consider and what to learn if you're ever sued for patent infringement. Meeker examined how provisions of open source licenses can deflate a patent troll's litigation and shift the balance in favor of the defense.

Submission + - Laser Headlights Promise More Intense, Controllable Beams

cartechboy writes: If you're a fan of spy spoofs, you know the iconic line, "Fire the laser!" Yes, Austin Powers was a hoot, but now it's time to talk about real life. And soon, your new car's headlights will be powered by lasers. That's right, the BMW i8 is entering production and it's the first vehicle to offer laser headlights. These new laser headlights offer a handful of advantages over LED lighting, including greater lighting intensity, extending the beams' reach as far as 600 meters down the road (nearly double the range of LEDs). The beam pattern also can be controlled very precisely. Plus, laser lights consumer about 30 percent less energy than the already efficient LED lights. Audi is among the short list of other auto manufacturers to promise laser lights in the near future, but BMW is going to be the first to deliver on the new technology. But the coolest part of all this? When you turn on the i8's headlights, you'll be able to scream, "FIRE THE LASERS!"

Submission + - IBM's Chip Manufacturing Business Won't Be An Easy Sale (

itwbennett writes: IBM is a quiet but significant player in chip manufacturing and the sale of that part of its business could have a severe ripple effect if the buyer can't match IBM's level of innovation, says blogger Andy Patrizio. For example, 'with IBM out of the business, there would be no one left to champion silicon-on-insulator technology as an alternative to the CMOS design used by Intel and TSMC. This is all inside baseball, but it does leave the question of whether chip design will continue to be innovative with all the foundries using just one type of design.'

Submission + - China And Taiwan Hold First Direct Talks Since 1949 Civil War Split (

cold fjord writes: The Washington Post reports, "China and Taiwan agreed to establish a formal government-level dialogue for the first time in 65 years, official media reported, after an historic meeting in the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing. Representatives from both sides smiled and shook hands warmly before ... the first formal talks since the country split in two in 1949, after a civil war. Beijing refuses to formally acknowledge the government in Taiwan, which it considers a breakaway province, and previous negotiations on cross-strait relations have been conducted by quasi-official representatives rather than government officials. Taiwan’s minister of mainland affairs, Wang Yu-chi, called the meeting a “new chapter” in relations between the two sides, and "truly a day for the record books," ... China’s representative, Zhang Zhijun, said the two negotiators could “definitely become good friends,” but would need to show imagination to achieve breakthroughs in the future ... The Chinese government keeps around 1,200 missiles pointed at Taiwan ... and Beijing has threatened to attack if the island ever declares formal independence or delays unification indefinitely. With the U.S. government formally committed to defend Taiwan in case of an attack, the issue remains a potential flashpoint."" The Telegraph adds, "The setting for the talks was also symbolic: a hotel in the Chinese city of Nanjing, which was twice the capital of Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalist government before it fled to Taiwan after defeat at the hands of the Communist party. "

Submission + - Bitcoin Exchanges Halt Withdrawals After 'Massive' DDoS Attack (

An anonymous reader writes: The Bitstamp bitcoin exchange has temporarily halted its users from withdrawing bitcoins, as it is targeted by a "massive and concerted" cyber attack.

A DDoS (distributed denial of service) attack is being felt across the bitcoin landscape, with a number of exchanges affected by what is known as the cryptocurrency 'transaction malleability problem', first discovered in 2011 and flagged up by the Mt Gox exchange earlier this week.

Submission + - 'Motherlode' Of A Fossil Site Discovered In Canada (

An anonymous reader writes: A new fossil site discovered in the Canadian Rockies has unearthed 50 animal species in just 15 days.

The fossil site located in Kootenay National Park in Radium, British Columbia was discovered in the summer of 2012 by a team of paleontologists. The team’s findings, described in the journal Nature Communications, reveals how the Marble Canyon fossil beds are a treasure trove of fossilized arthropods, a group that today represents more than 80 percent of all living animals today.

Submission + - Google to restore Hangar One and operate runways at Moffett Field (

mpicpp writes: After designing driverless cars, experimenting with robots and secretly building a fleet of barges, Google is taking on a new challenge: running an airfield in the heart of Silicon Valley and restoring one of the area's most iconic buildings, once used to house Navy blimps.

On Monday, federal officials announced they have chosen a Google subsidiary to restore the landmark Hangar One at Moffett Field and assume control of the airfield's two runways, located just a few miles from Google's main offices.

Google's plans for the Moffett airfield are unclear, although the agreement could allow limited commercial development, or possibly a museum or education center at the hangar site.

Submission + - Proof Comcast Throttles Netflix ( 8

An anonymous reader writes: Matt Vukas has done some (not so thorough) testing to prove that Comcast is definitely throttling Netflix after the FCC gave the green-light. On comcast network, Netflix is slow. Still using the same network, but with an added VPN layer, which should be slower, Netflix is suddenly back to normal speed.

Submission + - A Business Park in North Korea Is Getting Internet (

Daniel_Stuckey writes: A business park in North Korea will soon have (limited) access to the internet, according to news reports.

The Register wrote that an industrial park in the Kaesong Industrial Region will house internet-connected PCs by the first half of this year. The Daily NK explained that the first step to connectivity will be an internet cafe with 20 computers but after that, company offices will also get hooked up.

They quoted a spokesperson from the Ministry of Unification—a department of the South Korean government that works on unifying the two Koreas—as saying, “We are planning to launch the basic level of Internet services at the Kaesong Industrial Complex starting in the first half of this year,” and adding, “Officials and employees in the North's border city will be able to use most of the online services now available in South Korea.”

Submission + - Android can't escape the Pandora's Box of openness (

rsmiller510 writes: As a large company with a target on its back, Google has to walk a fine line when it comes to Android. That's because when it made Android open source, it left it vulnerable to forking where it could eventually lose control of its own project. It's an issue Oracle has faced in the past and one Google has to be wary of even if as a mature OS, it's more difficult to pull off at scale.

Submission + - South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution from Standards

Toe, The writes: The South Carolina Education Oversight Committee approved new science standards for students except for one clause: the one that involves the use of the phrase 'natural selection.' Sen. Mike Fair, R-Greenville, argued against teaching natural selection as fact, when he believes there are other theories students deserve to learn. Fair argued South Carolina's students are learning the philosophy of natural selection but teachers are not calling it such. He said the best way for students to learn is for the schools to teach the controversy. Hopefully they're going to teach the controversy of gravity and valence bonds too. After all, they're just theories.

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