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Thursday, 28 December


Japanese H-2A Rocket Lifts Off with Two Satellites SoylentNews

I thought people might be interested in some recent stories about work that other countries are doing in their space programs.

Two research satellites to probe Earth's climate patterns and test ion engine technology to counter atmospheric drag in an unusual low-altitude orbit launched Saturday on top of a Japanese H-2A rocket.

The two Japanese-built spacecraft rocketed away from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan at 0126:22 GMT Saturday (8:26:22 p.m. EST Friday) inside the H-2A's payload fairing.

Liftoff occurred at 10:26 a.m. Saturday Japan Standard Time.

Mounted on a dual-payload adapter fixture, the satellites were released into two distinct orbits a few hundred miles above Earth by the H-2A's upper stage.

[...] The Shikisai satellite carries a wide-area global imaging instrument package including a visible and near-infrared radiometer and an infrared scanner to extend climate observations made by Japan's ADEOS 2 spacecraft, which succumbed to a power failure and ended its mission in 2003.

During its planned five-year mission, the climate monitoring observatory will make "surface and atmospheric measurements related to the carbon cycle and radiation budget, such as clouds, aerosols, ocean color, vegetation, and snow and ice," according to a fact sheet released by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.

Scientists say Shikisai's observations will improve their understanding of climate change, and help numerical climate models predict future changes. The imager will also track phytoplankton, aerosol, and vegetation activity to map fisheries, monitor the transport of dust, and estimate crop yields, according to JAXA.


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Wednesday, 27 December


Looking Back at 2017: A Year in Rejuvenation Biotechnology Lifeboat News: The Blog

The end of the year is approaching, and as we prepare for the celebrations for the new year, what could be better than sitting down with a warm drink and recapping 2017 in the world of rejuvenation biotechnology?

Winter kick-off

This year has been pretty intense, with a lot going on both at LEAF and in the rest of the community. January saw the launch of the LEAF website, shortly followed by both the Lifeboat Foundation and Trust me Im a biologist partnering with us. Given that its been only a year, were amazed at how enthusiastic and supportive the community has beenand how fast it has grown, with nearly 30,000 Facebook followers late in December! Were also very grateful to our friends at Fight Aging! for their encouragement, support, and appreciation for our work, including honoring us by featuring it on their website!


Unigine 2.6.1 Pushes The Jaw-Dropping Visuals With This Cross-Platform Game/Sim Engine Phoronix

While Unigine Engine 2 has yet to be picked up by any major games besides Dual Universe, this highly advanced game engine continues advancing and its effort for industrial simulators appears to be paying off as well. Unigine Corp is ending out 2017 by having released Unigine 2.6.1...


The popular cryptocurrency exchange EtherDelta suffered a DNS attack Security Affairs

The popular cryptocurrency exchange EtherDelta was hacked, attackers conducted a DNS attack that allowed to steal at least 308 ETH ($266,789) as well as a large number of tokens.

The spike in cryptocurrency values is attracting cybercriminals, the last victim is the popular cryptocurrency exchange EtherDelta that announced a potential attack against its DNS server.

As result of the attack, the exchange suspended its service, below the tweet sent by the company that confirms that its server was hacked by attackers.

The attackers spoofed EtherDeltas domain to trick users into sending money.

At least 308 ETH ($266,789) were stolen, as well as a large number of tokens potentially worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. reported Mashable.

EtherDelta posted another tweet to warn its users and explain that the impostors app had no chat button on the navigation bar, nor did it have an official Twitter feed on the bottom right. EtherDelta advised all users not to use the site.

On Dec. 22, the service was fully restored. The company clarified that users using the MetaMask or hardware wallet on EtherDelta were not affected by the attack, also users that had never imported their private key on the imposers phishing site are safe.



The Vulkan Moments Of 2017: More Games, Better Drivers & Continued Open-Source Adoption Phoronix

This year on Phoronix were more than 290 news articles on Phoronix about the Vulkan graphics API, not counting our dozens of Vulkan benchmarking articles, etc. Here's a look at the most popular Vulkan moments of the year...


War Stories | Ultima Online: The Virtual Ecology SoylentNews

ArsTechnica has a very interesting video (with transcript) that features Richard Garriot, co-creator of Ultima Online, discussing the virtual ecology of the game and how it went pear shaped as soon as the game was released.

When creating Ultima Online, Richard Garriott had grand dreams. He and Starr Long planned on implementing a virtual ecology into their massively multiplayer online role-playing game. It was an ambitious system, one that would have cows that graze and predators that eat herbivores. However, once the game went live a small problem had arisen...

Source: [Ed-Requires ecmascript]

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Balance like a Mountain Goat on this Simple Stewart Platform Hackaday

No goats were harmed in the making of this 3-DOF Stewart platform for [Bruce Land]s microcontrollers course at Cornell.

[Bruce Land]s course is always a bonanza of neat projects that pop up in our tipline this time of year, like a POV box fan, a coin cell Rickrolling throwie, and a dynamometer for small electric motors.

Filed under: Microcontrollers


Intel Icelake Support Gets Further Into Shape For LLVM Clang 6.0 Phoronix

LLVM's Clang compiler support for the Intel Icelake processors that succeed Cannonlake is getting into better shape ahead of the LLVM/Clang 6.0 feature freeze in January...


BlueZ 5.48 Brings New Features Phoronix

The BlueZ Linux Bluetooth stack is out with a new feature update before ending out the year...


Raw: Battistelli Stacking the Deck of the Internal EPO Court Techrights

Original/full: English [PDF] | German [PDF]

Stacking the deck

Summary: A look back at how separation of powers was blatantly eliminated at the European Patent Office, courtesy of an insecure bully who was put in charge of the Office


Mozilla patches five issues in Thunderbird, including a critical flaw Security Affairs

Mozilla issued a critical security update to address five flaws in the popular open-source Thunderbird email client.

The latest release, Thunderbird 52.5.2 version, fixes the vulnerabilities, including two issues rated as high, one rated moderate and another low.

A buffer overflow occurs when drawing and validating elements using Direct 3D 9 with the ANGLE graphics library, used for WebGL content. This is due to an incorrect value being passed within the library during checks and results in a potentially exploitable crash. reads the security advisory published by the Mozilla Foundation.

The two security vulnerabilities rated as high were CVE-2017-7846 and CVE-2017-7847. The first one (CVE-2017-7846) affects the Thunderbirds RSS reader.

It is possible to execute JavaScript in the parsed RSS feed when RSS feed is viewed as a website, e.g. via View -> Feed article -> Website or in the standard format of View -> Feed article -> default format reads the advisory.

The second high-severity issue tracked as CVE-2017-7847 also affect the RSS reader.

Crafted CSS in an RSS feed can leak and reveal local path strings, which may contain user name. states the advisory.


The moderate issue tracked as CVE-2017-7848 also affects the RSS feed, while low issue tracked as CVE-2017-7829 impacts email.

It is possible to spoof the senders email address and display an arbitrary sender address to the email recipient. The real senders address is not displayed if preceded by a null character in the display string. reads Mozillas advisory.



Angola's First Communications Satellite Lifts Off from Kazakhstan SoylentNews

A Ukrainian-built Zenit booster and a Russian-made Fregat upper stage launched with an Angolan communications satellite Tuesday from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, heading for an orbital perch more than 22,000 miles above Earth.

A nearly 20-story-tall Zenit rocket lifted off with the Angosat 1 spacecraft at 1900 GMT (2 p.m. EST) Tuesday from Site 45 at the historic spaceport in Kazakhstan, where launch occurred at 1 a.m. Wednesday local time.

A live webcast of the launch provided by Roscosmos showed the Zenit booster climbing through low clouds over the frigid launch base, heading northeast over the Kazakh steppe.

Deployment of the 3,631-pound (1,647-kilogram) Angosat 1 satellite from the Zenit's Fregat upper stage is expected at 0354 GMT Wednesday (10:54 p.m. EST Tuesday) after three Fregat engine burns to place the spacecraft into a circular geostationary orbit nearly 22,300 miles (nearly 35,800 kilometers) over the equator.

[...] Angosat 1 is Angola's first communications satellite, the product of an inter-governmental agreement signed between the Angolan and Russian governments in 2009. Built by RSC Energia, a major Russian aerospace contractor, Angosat 1 is designed for a 15-year mission providing television broadcast, Internet, radio and other telecommunications services to Angola, the rest of Africa and parts of Europe.

The satellite carries 16 C-band and six Ku-band transponders, and controllers will position it along the equator at 13 degrees east longitude to start its mission.

Airbus Defense and Space reportedly supplied the communications payload for the Angosat 1 satellite.

Russian engineers also helped construct and activate a satellite control center near the Angolan capital of Luanda on the southwest coast of Africa, where officials will oversee Angosat 1 operations.

The launch of Angosat 1 aboard a Zenit rocket is a rare example of cooperation between Russia and Ukraine, whose relations have soured since 2014 with Russia's annexation of Crimea and involvement in an ongoing civil war.


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Raw: Battistellis Behaviour is Not Only Dangerous for the EPO Staff But is Also Putting the Reputation of the Organisation at Risks. Techrights

Reputation of the swastika (long used in India) was OK before the Nazis hijacked it

A swastika florist

Summary: The Central Staff Committee of the European Patent Office has long been concerned about the managements misguided direction and the number of Administrative Council Delegations considering that Mr Battistelli is becoming a liability for the Organisation is increasing, it said

Dear colleagues,

The organizers of the IFLRE initiative have recently requested the Central Staff Committee to forward to the President a letter calling for strikes even though the President refused to organize a ballot in accordance with Circular 347. The organizers did not sign the letter individually. Understandably, they wish to remain anonymous, to be protected from any possible management retaliation.

The President has sent to the Chairman of the CSC his position on the matter (now also made available to staff in Communiqu 42 in the Intranet). The CSC invites you to read it carefully.

We take note of the threats which the President makes towards staff and towards the CSC. We also note that the President remains unwilling to follow the EPO regulations, even those he recently imposed upon staff, and which have contributed to deteriorate the social atmosphere at the EPO.

We are greatly concerned about the Presidents and the higher echelons of DG4s propensity for an autocratic and repressive approach to human resource management.

Therefore, in the current circumstances we advise staff not to take unnecessary risks and make themselves too easy a target for repressive management.

The lawfulness of the recently introduced strike regulations and of their consequences for staff should soon be clarified: legal actions in front of national courts are pending in Germany and The Netherlands, and the President might have to change his position soon (the decision of the Dutch judge should be available early January 2014).

The number of Administrative Council Delegations considering that Mr Battistelli is becoming a liability for the Organisation is increasing. The Presidents behaviour is not only dangerous for the EPO staff but is also putting the reputation of the Organisation at risks.

The CSC makes a point of keeping the Delegations well informed of what is happening in the Office.

The Central Staff Committee


PS4 4.05 Kernel Exploit Released, Full Jailbreak Round the Corner TorrentFreak

Most custom hardware is seriously locked down these days, with many corporations viewing any tinkering with their machines as unacceptable at best, illegal at worst.

When people free computing hardware so-called jailbreaking it can be used for almost any purpose. The famous Cydia, for example, created a whole alternative iOS app store, one free of the constraints of Apple.

Of course, jailbreaking has also become synonymous with breaking fundamental copy protection, allowing pirated software to run on a range of devices from cellphones to todays cutting-edge games consoles. The flip side of that coin is that people are also able to run so-called homebrew code, programs developed by hobbyists for purposes that do not breach copyright law.

This dual use situation means that two separate sets of communities get excited when exploits are found for key hardware. Thats been the case for some time now with two sets of developers Team Fail0verflow and Specter revealing work on a kernel exploit for firmware 4.05 on Playstation 4.

In November, Wololo published an interview with Specter and two days ago received direct confirmation that the exploit would be published soon. That moment has now arrived.

As noted in Specters tweet, the release is available on Github, where the developer provides more details.

In this project you will find a full implementation of the namedobj kernel exploit for the PlayStation 4 on 4.05, Specter writes.

It will allow you to run arbitrary code as kernel, to allow jailbreaking and kernel-level modifications to the system.

The news that the exploit can enable a jailbreak is huge news for fans of the scene, who will be eagerly standing by for the next piece of the puzzle which is likely to be just around the corner.



The Unitary Patent is Dying or Dead, But Team UPC Might Rebrand Again and Reattempt Techrights

Politicians like to rename controversial bills (legislation) in an effort to confuse/defuse the opposition

An opinion in a newspaper

Summary: 2017 was a terrible year for the Unified Patent Court (UPC); expect 2018 to be no better

VARIOUS high-profile (and reliable) people have already described the UPC as a Trojan horse for all sorts of things, including software patents in Europe. Those who dont know about it could use their search skills, for some are evidently still in denial about it.

Dont believe people who say that the UPC can start in 2018. Those people might as well admit that they still believe in Santa Claus.The UPC would further accentuate some of the very worst elements at the EPO, with Battistelli as their embodiment. The deadline for constitutional complaint comments in Germany is only 4 days away and it can take several years for the case to conclude. In the meantime, the Conservatives-led government of the UK does a shambolic job with Brexit and UPC is hardly even on the agenda. Without both of these countries on board, the UPC is dead. The whole thing might, some day, need to be rewritten and redone. And even then, Germany may continue to reject it on constitutional grounds. Will we one day hear of a Continental Patent Court (CPC)? Acronym collision notwithstanding?

Dont believe people who say that the UPC can start in 2018. Those people might as well admit that they still believe in Santa Claus. Theyre either deeply delusional or theyre attempting to sell services (i.e. they lie for income).

The only reform the Office needs is a return to the way things used to be the way which made it the worlds best patent office, not an assembly line of low-quality patents for the UPC till (docket).So absurd is the idea that the European Commission wants a UPC-type system from the same Office which is so rife with corruption and injustice, where the President is alleged to have vested/personal interests (and his country too) in UPC, where nepotism is utterly blatant and truth is treated like treason (truth tellers find leaflets and sports equipment cast as Nazism and weapons* while betrayers of the EPC get promoted**).

We shall continue to release new information and documents about the EPO. The goal is justice, not sabotage. The only reform the Office needs is a...


Crispr Isnt Enough Any More. Get Ready for Gene Editing 2.0 Lifeboat News: The Blog

Usually, when weve referred to Crispr, weve really meant Crispr/Cas9a riboprotein complex composed of a short strand of RNA and an efficient DNA-cutting enzyme. It did for biology and medicine what the Model T did for manufacturing and transportation; democratizing access to a revolutionary technology and disrupting the status quo in the process. Crispr has already been used to treat cancer in humans, and it could be in clinical trials to cure genetic diseases like sickle cell anemia and beta thalassemia as soon as next year.

But like the Model T, Crispr Classic is somewhat clunky, unreliable, and a bit dangerous. It cant bind to just any place in the genome. It sometimes cuts in the wrong places. And it has no off-switch. If the Model T was prone to overheating, Crispr Classic is prone to overeating.

Even with these limitations, Crispr Classic will continue to be a workhorse for science in 2018 and beyond. But this year, newer, flashier gene editing tools began rolling off the production line, promising to outshine their first-generation cousin. So if you were just getting your head around Crispr, buckle up. Because gene-editing 2.0 is here.


Aireon Hitchhikes on Iridium to Track Airplanes Hackaday

SpaceX just concluded 2017 by launching 10 Iridium NEXT satellites. A footnote on the launch was the hosted payload on board each of the satellites: a small box of equipment from Aireon. They will track every aircraft around the world in real-time, something that has been technically possible but nobody claimed they could do it economically until now.

Challenge one: avoid adding cost to aircraft. Instead of using expensive satcom or adding dedicated gear, Aireon listen to ADS-B equipment already installed as part of international air traffic control modernization. But since ADS-B was designed for aircraft-to-aircraft and aircraft-to-ground, Aireon had some challenges to overcome. Like the fact ADS-B antenna is commonly mounted on the belly of an aircraft blocking direct path to satellite.

Challenge two: hear ADS-B everywhere and do it for less. Today we can track aircraft when they are flying over land, but out in the middle of the ocean, there are no receivers in range except possibly other aircraft. Aireon needed a lot of low-orbit satellites to ensure you are in range no matter where you are. Piggybacking on Iridium gives them coverage at a fraction of the cost of building their own satellites.

These Iridium launches also create exactEarth, a maritime counterpart to Aireon that track ships via their AIS broadcast. The remaining Iridium NEXT satellites and with them, these listening nodes will launch next year to complete the network. Hopefully mysteries like Malaysia Airlines 370 will never happen again.

You dont need a satellite network to join in the fun. You can listen to these data signals right where you are. We have a guide for receiving ADS-B sent by airplanes, and a guide for receiving AIS sent by ships.

Filed under: Network Hacks, Radio Hacks ...

Library of Congress Will No Longer Archive All Tweets SoylentNews

Starting on Jan. 1, 2018, the U.S. Library of Congress will only archive Twitter selectively, instead of nearly completely:

Since 2010, Library of Congress has been archiving every single public tweet: Yours, ours, the president's. But today, the institution announced it will no longer archive every one of our status updates, opinion threads, and "big if true"s. As of Jan. 1, the library will only acquire tweets "on a very selective basis."

The library says it began archiving tweets "for the same reason it collects other materials to acquire and preserve a record of knowledge and creativity for Congress and the American people." The archive stretches back to Twitter's beginning, in 2006.

But as anyone who's been following along can attest, Twitter and the way it's used has changed since then. First and foremost from a collection perspective: the sheer number of tweets.

"The volume of tweets and related transactions has evolved and increased dramatically since the initial agreement was signed," the library explains in a white paper accompanying the accouncement[sic].

The library doesn't say how many tweets [it] has in its collection now, but in 2013, it said it had already amassed 170 billion tweets, at a rate of half a billion tweets a day.

[...] Another issue: Twitter only gives the library the text of tweets not images, videos, or linked content. "Tweets now are often more visual than textual, limiting the value of text-only collecting," the library says.

The library also has to figure out how to effectively manage deleted tweets, which aren't part of the archive.

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Edward Snowdens new app turns your Android phone into a surveillance system TechWorm

Haven is an Android privacy protection app to spy on spies

Edward Snowden, a former NSA contractor-turned whistleblower, along with a team of collaborators launched a new Android app on December 22 that is designed to turn smartphones into a surveillance device.

Dubbed as Haven, this app will especially help those in journalism and activism in protecting their information and shield them from online surveillance and hacking. The software has been developed with The Guardian Project and the Freedom of the Press Foundation.

According to its designers, its designed to be a safe room in your pocket, or way to defeat evil maid attacks.

Snowden wrote in a separate tweet: Announcing #Haven, a safe room that fits in your pocket. A free app released in beta today by @GuardianProject & @FreedomofPress.

The app essentially powers all the sensors in your smartphone device (such as camera, accelerometer, microphone, etc.) to inform you of any unexpected guests and unwanted intruders invading your personal space be it your bedroom, or a hotel room or even a safe or desk drawer.

The app works basically by capturing images and sound when a motion or noise triggers it to turn on and storing everything on the device. It will also send secure notifications of invasions as soon as they occur, and it allows you to access logs remotely anytime.

On the Haven page, the app is further explained: Haven is for people who need a way to protect their personal spaces and possessions without compromising their own privacy. It is an Android application that leverages on-device sensors to provide monitoring and protection of physical spaces. Haven turns any Android phone into a motion, sound, vibration and light detector, watching for unexpected guests and unwanted intruders.

We designed Haven for investigative journalists, human rights defenders, and people at risk of forced disappearance to create a new kind of herd immunity. By combining the array of sensors found in any smartphone, with the worlds most secure communications technologies, like Signal and Tor, Haven prevents the worst kind of people from silencing citizens without getting caught in the act.

The post Edward Snowdens new app turns your Android phone into...


The Mayas . . . Facts that you will never see on a television program! Terra Forming Terra

The Mayas . . . Facts that you will never see on a television program!

What leaps at us is that hte whole sophisticated pyramidculture was completely developed in the Aericas by 3500 BC which is about a thousand years before The Meditterranean.  It is thus plausible that the two way stream of cultural exchange began even then.  Recall the 2400 BC date for the Great Pyramid, Grand Manaan and Lake Superior needed a long time to build out the Great Circle route.  Thus i expected a thousand year prehistory and now we have it.

Recall also that our Bronze Age culture seem to have had alien led culture centers as well.  We have the remnants of one in Peru.  Thus the advent of a major sea borne metal trade is deliberate and fast as well.  Actual metal absorption was otherwise much slower.  Whose idea was it to make gold so valuable?

We also get hints of thereal population mass on the coast on contact.  Population then collapsed due to disease failed to reover because of slaving which immediately consumed the seedstock of full recovery.

The Mayas . . . Facts that you will never see on a television program!


The African Enlightenment Terra Forming Terra

In the end, the enlightenment was successively promoted in the one place able to properly respond and that is Europe generally and England specifically and by extension America.  That scholars from elsewhere hugely informed it is no surprise at all as we see just that happening today.

That response is still taking place while the seeds are now centuries past.  The rise of India will see this tradition powerfully reinforced and re - energized.  The rise of Trump will also refresh the West.

This item adds other voices to the classical enlightenment and there are many more as well. The is ample historical work to be done and of great value.  It is worth seeing that the ideas were important but still rarely original.  The difference was in the ground upon which they fell.

The African Enlightenment 

The highest ideals of Locke, Hume and Kant were first proposed more than a century earlier by an Ethiopian in a cave 

Near Lalibela, in northern Ethiopia, the location of Zera Yacobs cave. Photo by Raymond Depardon/Magnum

is a historian of ideas and founder of SGOKI (the Center for Global and Comparative History of Ideas) in Oslo. His latest book is Global Knowledge: Renaissance for a New Enlightenment, forthcoming (2016 original in Norwegian).



A Wider World of War Terra Forming Terra

We live in the age of Pax Americana.  It is an empire wihout the need to maintain large armies in pace, not unlike the original Pax Britannia.  Those 70.000 Special forces are the real army of such a regime.  As with Britain, large wars prove futile and best avoided.

But local agitators still exist and must never be allowed to prosper or win..  A small sufficient force early ensures there is no later.  So suddenly a nascent unrising aimed at Nigerian oil wells is suddenly facing way more than they can hope to handle.

The purpose is to snuff such activity out.  There is no problem on earth that a greed merchant will not drum up to produce relative advantage.  Perhaps we can be past apologizing for them.

Tomgram: Nick Turse, A Wider World of War 

Posted by Nick Turse at 8:07am, December 14, 2017.
Follow TomDispatch on Twitter @TomDispatch

[Note for TomDispatch Readers: Weve come to that moment again. You know, the one at year's end when I ask all of you for money to keep this website afloat. Its hell to do (and no fun to read Im sure), but your contributions do truly keep us going. Ive written an end-of-year funding letter to all TomDispatch subscribers that begins this way: If you just heard a deep sigh, that was me. Right now, if we're not in the world from hel...


Royal commission report makes preventing institutional sexual abuse a national responsibility Terra Forming Terra

What has never worked is a culture of denial.  This report is a serious contribution to the discussion that is now taking place globally.  The surprise is how much there is hidden away in the cracks of society. That all forms of child care would be a magnet is a given, yet i wonder also if natural caring can be thus stigmatized..

I personally suspect that we will not resolve these types of problems until we properly establish the natural community as the foundation to society even if only for the lower third in economic terms although the natural efficiency should make it much larger component.

I truly became aware of the problem around thirty years ago when a lone wolf was caught and jailed, but that only seemed to prove rarity.  Before then i was almost oblivious.  It has now become almost fully disclosed and it is the extent of the problem that is troubling.  Certainly all vulnerable institutions are on high alert and i do not think that the cleansing is even near complete.

What is completely clear is that the perps form a necessary network of mutual support in order to both survive and even prosper....


Royal commission report makes preventing institutional sexual abuse a national responsibility 

December 14, 2017 11.49pm EST 


How Classical Cryptography Will Survive Quantum Computers - Facts So Romantic Nautilus

Quantum Lab: Scientists are fabricating quantum photonic circuitsconsisting of waveguides and other elementsto manipulate single photons for future quantum communications and processing.Oak Ridge National Laboratory / Flickr

Justin Trudeau, the Canadian prime minister, certainly raised the profile of quantum computing a few notches last year, when he gamelyif vaguely1described it for a press conference. But weve heard a lot about quantum computers in the past few years, as Google, I.B.M., and N.A.S.A., as well as many, many universities, have all been working on, or putting money into, quantum computers for various ends. The N.S.A., for instance, as the Snowden documents revealed, wants to build one for codebreaking, and it seems to be a common belief that if a full-scale, practical quantum computer is built, it could be really useful in that regard. A New Yorker article early this year, for example, stated that a quantum computer would, on its first day of operation, be capable of cracking the Internets most widely used codes. But maybe they wont be as useful as we have been led to believe.

Some are looking at ways to fight quantum with quantumbut there is another (and cheaper) option.

Quantum computation is based on the superposition principle of quantum
Read More


2017 in review Gregarious Mammal

I began my round of 2016 with how eventful it was, and 2017 continued to deliver major world events that shook countries, cities and people. Despite this, I had a largely positive year, switching from an employee back to a contractor again, which was a largely positive move. I changed my major outlet from SitePoint to DZone, added a handful of others, wrote a lot of content marketing posts for tech companies, wrote a book and (nearly) finished a video course. On top of all that I travelled to many places, including cities and countries I had never been to before.


UFO Existence 'Proven Beyond Reasonable Doubt': Former Head Of Pentagon Program SoylentNews

The existence of UFOs had been "proved beyond reasonable doubt," according the head of the secret Pentagon program that analyzed the mysterious aircrafts.

In an interview with British broadsheet The Telegraph published on Saturday, Luis Elizondo told the newspaper of the sightings, "In my opinion, if this was a court of law, we have reached the point of 'beyond reasonable doubt.'"

"I hate to use the term UFO but that's what we're looking at," he added. "I think it's pretty clear this is not us, and it's not anyone else, so no one has to ask questions where they're from."

Since 2007, Elizondo led the government program, the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, investigating evidence of UFOs and alien life. It was shuttered in 2012.

Its existence was first reported by The New York Times last week.

Elizondo was not able to discuss specifics of the program, but told The Telegraph that there had been "lots" of UFO sightings and witnesses interviewed during the program's five years.

Investigators pinpointed geographical "hot spots" that were sometimes near nuclear facilities and power plants and observed trends among the aircrafts including lack of flight surfaces on the objects and extreme manoeuvrability, Elizondo told The Telegraph.

Previously: Pentagon's UFO Investigation Program Revealed

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Links 27/12/2017: MPV Player 0.28, 4MLinux 23.1.1, FreeBSD Quarterly Status Report Techrights

GNOME bluefish



  • Desktop

    • Windows new Fall Creators Update wreaks havoc on computer displays

      The latest Windows 10 upgrade, a.k.a. the Fall Creators Update, did wreak havoc on some computer displays, as noted by several tech sites the least of which is resolution confusion. A quick search on Richards display, the HP 27-inch monitor, says it has a native resolution of 19201080, so what happened to it?

      The likely culprit is that existing hardware the video card doesnt quite work with the update. Some people fixed the issue by downloading updated software (also called drivers) for their Intel, Nvidia, ATI or other graphics card. In some cases, companies, notably Razer, are still working with Microsoft on this.

  • Server

    • Kubeflow Project Tacks Machine Learning on Top of Kubernetes

      The Kubernetes community is extending the reach of the container orchestration platform into the field of machine learning.

      Kubeflow is an open source project that supports machine learning stacks on Kubernetes. The project is housed within the Kubernetes project, which is part of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). CNCF is, of course, housed within the Linux Foundation.

    • Amazon Launches Amazon Linux 2

      This upgraded offering includes access to the latest 4.9 LTS kernel and was created for those who run enterprise or high-performance applications on Linux and, as such, was designed with performance, stability, and security in mind.

    • Kubernetes, standardization, and security dominated 2017 Linux container news

      The OCI, part of the Linux Foundation, launched in 2015 for the express purpose of cr...


Vacuum Molding with Kitchen Materials Hackaday

Vacuum pumps are powerful tools because the atmospheric pressure on our planets surface is strong. That pressure is enough to crush evacuated vessels with impressive implosive force. At less extreme pressure differences, [hopsenrobsen] shows us how to cleverly use kitchen materials for vacuum molding fiberglass parts in a video can be seen after the break. The same technique will also work for carbon fiber molding.

Weve seen these techniques used with commercially available vacuum bags and a wet/dry vac but in the video, we see how to make an ordinary trash bag into a container capable of forming a professional looking longboard battery cover. If the garbage bag isnt enough of a hack, a ball of steel wool is used to keep the bag from interfering with the air hose. Some of us keep these common kitchen materials in the same cabinet so gathering them should t be a problem.

Epoxy should be mixed according to the directions and even though it wasnt shown in the video, some epoxies necessitate a respirator. If youre not sure, wear one. Lungs are important.

Fiberglass parts are not just functional, they can be beautiful. If plastic is your jam, vacuums form those parts as well. If you came simply for vacuums, how about MATLAB on a Roomba?

Thank you [Jim] who gave us this tip in the comments section about an electric longboard.

Filed under: how-to


Virgin Hyperloop One just broke its speed record Lifeboat News: The Blog

Virgin Hyperloop One set a test speed record of nearly 240 miles per hour during its third phase of testing at its site in Nevada.

The company also tested a new airlock which helped transition test pods between atmospheric and vacuum conditions during a test campaign which was completed on December 15, 2017.

The tests were conducted in a tube depressurized down to the equivalent air pressure experienced at 200,000 feet above sea level.

A Virgin Hyperloop One pod quickly lifts above the track using magnetic levitation and glides at airline speeds for long distances due to ultra-low aerodynamic drag.


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Driverless trucks moving closer to commercial reality on Canadian highways Lifeboat News: The Blog

Automation of the Transportation Industry, expect the big roll out around 2022ish.

Once thought of as a distant fantasy, autonomous trucks are moving toward commercial reality on Canadian highways as companies look to boost productivity amid a driver shortage and governments seek to reduce deadly crashes.

They are not yet driving themselves out of warehouses and down the highways, but companies of all sizes including General Motors, Google and Uber are testing out the technology.

Already a banner year in self-driving advancements including the first on-street test of an autonomous vehicle in Canada interest in the sector picked up in the closing months of 2017 after Tesla Inc. showcased a fully electric semi-trailer truck equipped with semi-autonomous technology including enhanced autopilot, automated braking and lane departure warnings.


Power Prices Go Negative in Germany, a Positive for Energy Users Lifeboat News: The Blog

Germany has spent $200 billion over the past two decades to promote cleaner sources of electricity. That enormous investment is now having an unexpected impact consumers are now actually paid to use power on occasion, as was the case over the weekend.

Power prices plunged below zero for much of Sunday and the early hours of Christmas Day on the EPEX Spot, a large European power trading exchange, the result of low demand, unseasonably warm weather and strong breezes that provided an abundance of wind power on the grid.

Such negative prices are not the norm in Germany, but they are far from rare, thanks to the countrys effort to encourage investment in greener forms of power generation. Prices for electricity in Germany have dipped below zero meaning customers are being paid to consume power more than 100 times this year alone, according to EPEX Spot.


A Tool to Export EAGLE Projects for Use With FOSS ECADs SoylentNews

A year ago, Autodesk acquired Cadsoft Computer GmbH and changed the licensing of the product to a subscription model. Since then, many users of EAGLE have been seeking a path away from that EULAware app. Many have moved to (FOSS) KiCAD, a project started by French academics which has gained developer support from personnel at CERN.

A sticking point for those wanting to transition to a new tool is the projects previously developed using the old tool and saved in the native format of that package.

Hackaday reports

There is a desire to port those innumerable Eagle board layouts and libraries to other PCB design packages. This tool does just that.

The tool is an extension of pcb-rnd, a FOSS tool for circuit board editing [itself, a fork of gEDA's "PCB" module], and this update massively extends support for Eagle boards and libraries.

As an example, VK5HSE loaded up an Eagle .brd file of a transceiver, selected a pin header, and exported that component to a KiCAD library. It worked the first time. For another experiment, the ever popular TV-B-Gone .brd file was exported directly to pcb-rnd.

This is a mostly-complete solution for Eagle-to-KiCAD, Eagle-to-Autotrax, and Eagle-to-gEDA-PCB, with a few minimal caveats relating to copper pours and silkscreen--nothing that can't be dealt with if you're not mindlessly using the tool.

Previous: Cadsoft EAGLE is Now Subscription-Only
CERN is Getting Serious About Development of the KiCAD App for Designing Printed Circuits

Original Submission

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'Blade Runner 2049' VFX Reel Shows CG Tricks Behind Bleak Landscapes SoylentNews

There's no question that Blade Runner 2049 revolves around computer-generated effects, whether it's the retro-futuristic technology or its holographic AI personas. However, the CG is more pervasive than you might think. Rodeo FX has released a visual effects reel for Denis Villeneuve's bleak sci-fi movie, and it's evident that even the seemingly mundane shots were draped in digital artwork. Caution: there are mild spoilers ahead.

It's not shocking that some scenes are entirely CG (such as flights over the future Los Angeles), or have to use it to fill in landscapes that don't exist. However, it's the extent to which it's used. When K exits his vehicle in Las Vegas, for example, very little of the scene is real -- he's walking toward a green screen held up by a crane. Even moments that don't look like they need CG, such as visiting a collection of genetic records or a sweatshop, use it to add depth and atmosphere.


Also: The VFX reel for Blade Runner 2049 shows how Denis Villeneuve brought his dystopian world to life

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The Bedside Light App That Phones Home Hackaday

Desiring a bedside lamp with a remote control, [Peadar]s wife bought a Xiaomi Yeelight, an LED model with an accompanying Android app. And since hes a security researcher by trade, he subjected the app to a close examination and found it to be demanding permissions phoning home to a far greater extent than youd expect from a bedside light.

His write-up is worth a read for its fascinating run-through of the process for investigating any Android app, as it reveals the level to which the software crosses the line from simple light-controller into creepy data-slurper. The abilities to create accounts on your device, download without notification, take your WiFi details and location, and record audio are not what youd expect to be necessary in this application. He also looks into the Xiaomi web services the app uses to phone home, revealing some interesting quirks along the way.

This story has received some interest across the Internet, quite rightly so since it represents a worrying over-reach of corporate electronic intrusion. It is interesting though to see commentary whose main concern is that the servers doing the data-slurping are in China, as though somehow in this context the location is the issue rather than the practice itself. Weve written before about how some mildly sinister IoT technologies seem to bridge the suspicion gap while others dont, it would be healthy to see all such services subjected to the same appraisal.

As a postscript, [Peadar] couldnt get the app to find his wifes Yeelight, let alone control it. That the spy part of the app works while the on-the-surface part doesnt speaks volumes about the development priorities of its originator.

Image: Xiaomi Yeelight website.

Filed under: Security Hacks



A Climate Model for the Odd Seasons in "Game of Thrones" SoylentNews

A central conceit of George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire books (and the popular HBO series Game of Thrones based on them) is that the seasons of the planet where they take place are not as predictable as the Earth's annual cycle. Somehow the phrase "winter is coming" wouldn't seem as foreboding if you could reply, "Yes, that usually happens in December through February."

But how could a planet have unruly seasons? Earth's seasons are due to the tilt of its axis. During one part of Earth's orbit, the Northern Hemisphere is tilted away from the Sun, with the resulting indirect sunlight spread thin over the surface of the hemisphere, causing winter. On the opposite side of its orbit, summer comes as this hemisphere is tilted toward direct sunlight. There isn't much room in such clockwork for randomness.

Well, if you've ever wanted to debate fan theories, here's an excellent new resource for you to draw from: a real climate model simulation of Westeros and Essos.

Source: Ars Technica

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NEW 'Off The Wall' ONLINE 2600 - 2600: The Hacker Quarterly

NEW 'Off The Wall' ONLINE

Posted 27 Dec, 2017 2:02:23 UTC

The new edition of Off The Wall from 26/12/2017 has been archived and is now available online.


Bitcoin is Eating Itself

Disclosure: I hold Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin has become utterly terrible to use. The slow confirmations and high fees are insane. The article below is old. The average Bitcoin transaction fee is now $41.66, which is down from a record high $55.16 from a few days ago. I did a couple of small []


Amazon and Microsoft Employees Caught Up in Sex Trafficking Sting SoylentNews

Amazon and Microsoft employees caught up in sex trafficking sting

The tech industry has a clear history of sexism and misogyny, but a recent Newsweek report highlights another problem. The publication got its hands on a slew of emails sent to brothels and pimps between 2014 and 2016 that document the industry's patronage of brothels and purchasing of services from trafficked sex workers. Among the emails, which were obtained through a public records request to the King County Prosecutor's Office, were 67 sent from Microsoft employee email accounts, 63 from Amazon accounts and dozens more from companies like Boeing, T-Mobile, Oracle and local Seattle tech firms.

Some of the emails were collected during a 2015 sting operation that targeted sex worker review boards and resulted in the arrest of 18 individuals, including high-level Amazon and Microsoft directors. Two opted for a trial, which is currently set to begin in March.

Seattle's sex industry has grown right alongside its tech industry and the city's authorities have said that some men spend up to $50,000 per year on sex workers. Brothels are even known to advertise how close they are to tech offices. Alex Trouteaud, director of policy and research at the anti-trafficking organization Demand Abolition, told Newsweek that the tech industry is a "culture that has readily embraced trafficking."

Newsweek: Tech Bros Bought Sex Trafficking Victims by Using Amazon and Microsoft Work Emails

Related: "Pimping" Charges Against Backpage Executives Dismissed

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Exploring Options for DIY Waterproofing Hackaday

TL;DR Dont use silicone to pot electronics.

Thats the conclusion [GreatScott!] comes to after trying out several methods for waterproofing electronics. His efforts stem from a recent video in which he discovered that water and electricity sometimes actually do mix, as long as the water is distilled and the electronics in the drink are relatively simple. He found that the main problem was, unsurprisingly, electrolytic corrosion, so he set out to experiment with various waterproofing coatings. In a series of careful experiments he goes through the pros and cons of both conformal coatings and potting compounds. The conformal tests used simple clear nail polish on an ESC board; that worked pretty well, but it was a little hard to reach all the nooks and crannies. He also tried potting with a thick black silicone compound, but that ended up never really curing in the middle. A final attempt with legitimate two-part epoxy potting compound sealed up the ESC tight, although we doubt the resulting brick would perform well on a quadcopter.

If you want to explore potting a bit further, check out this introduction to the basics.

Filed under: Misc Hacks


Habitat from Chef, Build, Deploy, and Manage Your Cloud Services Gregarious Mammal

Chef recently introduced the Habitat tool, bringing Chef's advantages to automation and continuous integration. Learn about the suite of tools that make it possible.

HPR2453: The power of GNU Readline - part 2 Hacker Public Radio

The power of GNU Readline - part 2 In part 1 we looked at some Control key and Meta key sequences as well as the Backspace and DEL keys in the context of GNU Readline. The full-length notes (available here) contain a brief summary of what we covered and introduce cutting and pasting the GNU Readline way, with some examples. Links Consistent BackSpace and Delete Configuration Wikipedia article on GNU Readline GNU Readline manual: (Note that the widely advertised address seems not to work any more. This one, which I found through the main GNU site, seems OK though) Previous episode: The power of GNU Readline - part 1 Resources: Detailed notes



Navigation Apps are Turning Quiet Neighborhoods into Traffic Nightmares SoylentNews

[...] In mid-January, the boroughs police force will close 60 streets to all drivers aside from residents and people employed in the borough during the morning and afternoon rush periods, effectively taking most of the town out of circulation for the popular traffic apps and for everyone else, for that matter.

[...] While a number of communities have devised strategies like turn restrictions and speed humps that affect all motorists, Leonias move may be the most extreme response.

[...] Borough officials say their measure is legal, although it may yet get tested in court. Some traffic engineers and elected officials elsewhere say the move may set a precedent that could encourage towns to summarily restrict public access to outsiders.

Source: Navigation Apps Are Turning Quiet Neighborhoods Into Traffic Nightmares

Also: New Jersey town will close streets to fight navigation app traffic

Original Submission

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Porting Of Changes/Fixes From AMDVLK To RADV Vulkan Driver Begins Phoronix

RADV Vulkan driver co-founder David Airlie has begun digging through AMD's newly-opened AMDVLK official Vulkan driver in order to gain some hindsight and port some fixes/changes to this unofficial Mesa-based open-source Vulkan driver...


5 Best mobile security apps in Android & iOS, Free Download HackRead

By Uzair Amir

There are a lot of security issues arising as we

This is a post from Read the original post: 5 Best mobile security apps in Android & iOS, Free Download


IRC Proceedings: October 22nd, 2017 November 18th, 2017 Techrights

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IRC Proceedings: October 29th, 2017 November 4th, 2017



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A Decade Of Phoronix Article Statistics From 2007 To 2017 Phoronix

This year on Phoronix there has been more than 3,700 original Linux/FLOSS news posts, benchmarks, hardware reviews and more. Here's how that compares to prior years...


Intel NUC DCP847SKE Now Supported By Coreboot Phoronix

If you happen to have an older Sandy Bridge era Intel NUC, it may now supported by mainline Coreboot...


IRC Proceedings: September 24th, 2017 October 21st, 2017 Techrights

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A New Study Concludes That Gay And Lesbian Couples Are Happier Compared To Straight Couples SoylentNews

Submitted via IRC for AndyTheAbsurd

Despite the many challenges faced by people in a same-sex relationship, a study made by two students of the University of Queensland concluded that this kind of relationship is happier compared to the normal relationship we know as male to female bond.

Researchers Francisco Perales and Janeen Baxter said that the conclusion of their study is a strong counter-narrative to the usual thinking that same-sex relationships are conflictual, unhappy, and dysfunctional.

The conclusion of the study, which was published in the academic journal Family Relations, was derived after the researchers surveyed 25,000 people in the United Kingdom and 9,000 others in Australia.


Also at Francisco Perales, Janeen Baxter. Sexual Identity and Relationship Quality in Australia and the United Kingdom. Family Relations, 2017; DOI: 10.1111/fare.12293

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Minnesota AG to sue FCC over net neutrality repeal The Hill: Technology Policy

Minnesota is joining a lawsuit to challenge the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) decision to repeal the net neutrality rules, according to reports.Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson (D) told Minnesota Public Radio and other...


LiquidWatch is Dripping with Style Hackaday

Some of the entries for the 2017 Coin Cell Challenge have already redefined what most would have considered possible just a month ago. From starting cars to welding metal, coin cells are being pushed way outside of their comfort zone with some very clever engineering. But not every entry has to drag a coin cell kicking and screaming into a task it was never intended for; some are hoping to make their mark on the Challenge with elegance rather than brute strength.

A perfect example is the LiquidWatch by [CF]. Theres no fancy high voltage circuitry here, no wireless telemetry. For this entry, a coin cell is simply doing what its arguably best known for: powering a wrist watch. But its doing it with style.

The LiquidWatch is powered by an Arduino-compatible Atmega328 and uses two concentric rings of LEDs to display the time. Minutes and seconds are represented by the outer ring of 60 LEDs, and the 36 LEDs of the inner ring show hours. The hours ring might sound counter-intuitive with 36 positions, but the idea is to think of the ring as the hour hand of an analog watch rather than a direct representation of the hour. Having 36 LEDs for the hour allows for finer graduation than simply having one LED for each hour of the day. Plus it looks cool, so theres that.

Square and round versions of the LiquidWatchs are in development, with some nice production images of [CF...


IRC Proceedings: August 27th, 2017 September 23rd, 2017 Techrights

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Christmas Surprise: Hive-CM8 Leaks More Pirated DVD Screeners TorrentFreak

At the end of the year movie industry insiders traditionally receive their screener copies, which they use to vote on the Oscars and other awards.

As is tradition, quite a few of these advance screeners will leak on various pirate sites. In recent years one group has drawn quite a bit of attention, due to both the timing and volume of their releases.

Hive-CM8 appear to have good sources and often manage to get their hands on many prominent screeners, which are gradually released to the public.

This year it started with I Love You, Daddy, which was dropped by the distributor after Louis C.K. was accused of sexual misconduct. Following two weeks of silence, the second release followed on Christmas Eve when Last Flag Flying, an American comedy-drama film, appeared online.

The timing is once again carefully chosen. Hive-CM8 specifically notes that it prefers to avoid releasing on Christmas Day, but it nonetheless used the opportunity to wish people a Merry Christmas.

We decided to make one [release] before Christmas, not on Christmas we are the nice ones. In this spirit, Merry Christmas and stay tuned, the release notes read.


The stay tuned part suggested that more were coming, and this was indeed the case. Just a few hours ago three additional screeners were posted online, and quickly made their way to public pirate sites.

Screener copies of I, Tonya, Lady Bird, and Call Me By Your Name are now widely available online. Interestingly, it was still Christmas in parts of the world when they came out, but apparently not where Hive-CM8 are.

The group again wishes its followers a Merry Christmas but also adds that people should see these movies on the big screen to support the filmmakers. The screener releases are mostly for those who are not in the position to do so, they add.

What a nice release after Christmas. Merry Christmas to everyone, from me and TiTAN. Dont forget watching a Screener is not like the real thing, you should still all go to the ci...


Animals vs Electronics IEEE Spectrum Recent Content full text

Watch animals of all sizes attack, lick, befriend, and otherwise interact with electronic devices Photo: Dhyesley B. Gomes

Its a quiet week here at IEEE Spectrum, so we wanted to give loyal readers something fun to chew on. For an end-of-year treat, enjoy this photo-video compilation of animals interacting with gadgets. 

With more electronic devices in the world than ever before, domestic and wild animals cant help but run up against these strange-looking objects in their daily lives. And how they react to a device says a lot about how they perceive itas a type of food, a potential threat, or a new friend. 


In 2016,  IEEE Spectrum  contributing editor Evan Ackerman  reported  that the Dutch National Police was training eagles to capture problematic drones in mid-air. A few weeks ago,  he found out  the program was cancelled, partly because there just wasnt a lot of demand for the anti-drone eagle squad. 

A GIF shows an eagle attacking a drone in mid-air. Gif: Dutch National Police/Guard From Above/IEEE Spectrum


Earlier this year, Ackerman reviewed a 360-degree camera called the 360fly 4K. He brought the small, black, rounded camera on a snorkeling trip in the Galapagos Islands. It must have looked pretty tasty to this baby sea lion.   

A GIF shows a sea lion swimming up to a camera underwater and opening its mouth to try to eat it. Gif: Evan Ackerman


Also in the Galapagos Islands, Ackerman captured this curious Komodo dragon, which uses its forked tongue to smell, licking the camera.  



The Free Software Movement is Barking Up the Wrong Tree SoylentNews

Joseph Graham has written a very short blog post about software freedom and the direction we might take to achieve it.

The free software movement, founded in the 80s by Richard Stallman and supported by the Free Software Foundations 1, 2, 3, 4, preaches that we need software that gives us access to the code and the copyright permissions to study, modify and redistribute. While I feel this is entirely true, I think it's not the best way to explain Free Software to people.

I think the problem we have is better explained more like this:

"Computer technology is complicated and new. Education about computers is extremely poor among all age groups. Technology companies have taken advantage of this lack of education to brainwash people into accepting absurd abuses of their rights."

Source : The Free Software movement is Barking up the wrong tree

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FBI fingerprint software could contain Russian code: report The Hill: Technology Policy

Software for analyzing fingerprints used by the FBI and more than 18,000 other U.S. law enforcement agencies could contain Russian code.Two former employees of a subsidiary of the French firm Safran Group told BuzzFeed...


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November 2017: Photos from Sacramento, Innsbruck FSF blogs

Free Software Foundation president Richard Stallman (RMS) was in Sacramento, California, on November 15th, as a guest of the Child Welfare Digital Services, which is a California-government project whose mission is to fundamentally change the way state government develops software by leveraging free (libre) software, agile methodologies, and user centered design. Their further goals are to research, design, develop and operate a solution that is compatible with the GNU General Public License (GNU GPL), and is thus available to be copied and used as a public good by other government agencies and the public at large.

RMS spoke to an audience of software developers (from Ruby on Rails, Java, PostgreSQL, and others), state-government IT staff, and business managers.

(Copyright 2017 Bill Maile. Photos licensed under CC BY 4.0.)

Later in the month, he was in Innsbruck, Austria, for a lecture series on "Challenges to learning and education in the media age" (Herausforderungen fr Lernen und Bildung im Medienzeitalter), at the University of Innsbruck. He gave his speech Education, software freedom, and privacy,1 to explain the new ways in which our computing and political freedom are being threatened to an audience of 200300.



A Look At Canonical's Financial Performance From 2009 To 2017 Phoronix

Last week we reported on Ubuntu maker Canonical's financial performance for FY2017 with a $122M turnover and nearly 600 employees after spotting the latest data. For those wondering how that compares to previous years, here is more of the past year's performance...


How a Machine That Can Make Anything Would Change Everything Lifeboat News: The Blog

But the dream of the nanofabricator is not yet dead. What is perhaps even more astonishing than the idea of having such a devicesomething that could create anything you wantis the potential consequences it could have for society. Suddenly, all you need is light and raw materials. Starvation ceases to be a problem. After all, what is food? Carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, phosphorous, sulphur. Nothing that you wont find with some dirt, some air, and maybe a little biomass thrown in for efficiencys sake.

Equally, theres no need to worry about not having medicine as long as you have the recipe and a nanofabricator. After all, the same elements I listed above could just as easily make insulin, paracetamol, and presumably the superior drugs of the future, too.

What the internet did for informationallowing it to be shared, transmitted, and replicated with ease, instantaneouslythe nanofabricator would do for physical objects. Energy will be in plentiful supply from the sun; your Santa Clause machine will be able to create new solar panels and batteries to harness and store this energy whenever it needs to.


Library of Congress will no longer collect every public tweet The Hill: Technology Policy

The Library of Congress announced on Tuesday that it will no longer archive every tweet posted publicly on Twitter.The library had reached an agreement with Twitter in 2010 to acquire the text of every public tweet posted, but now it says it will...


A Visit From Saint Rich Hackaday

With apologies to Clement Clarke Moore, Richard Stallman, and the English-speaking world in general ed.

Twas the night before Christmas
While up in my bed,
I stared at the ceiling
With feelings of dread.

Id really no reason for portents of doom
Lying there, sleepless, in gathering gloom.
Wed wrapped all the presents, and decked out the tree,
But still, there was something niggling at me.

Then a stab of fear struck me, right through like a knife.
Holy crap! I exclaimed. I FORGOT MY WIFE!
Yes, somehow through all of the retail hell,
Id forgotten to get my dear wife something swell.

To my shop, I retreated with blistering speed
Id only mere hours to fix my misdeed.
I warmed up the RepRep, went quickly online,
For I needed to find a nice bauble design.

Now I know what youre thinking Is he really so crass?
To print his wifes present? That just shows no class!
Why yes, I agree, its incredibly lame.
But Id really no choice when so late in the game.

While the printer head scanned to and fro cross the bed,
The smell of hot plastic wrapped round my head.
I started to nod off, lulled by the whine,
Of steppers and servos coming online.

When from the screen of the laptop I spied a strange sight,
A bash session started it gave me a fright!
I watched commands keyed in with terrible speed.
Id been hacked, it was clear from what I could see.

A new window opened, and showed a strange face.
All grizzled and gray, he seemed out of place.
It took me a second to figure it out,
But I knew who it was and I let out a shout.
Richard Stallman? I said, What is this all about?

Never mind, he intoned, What youve got going on,
Is going to be trouble when night turns to dawn.
Youre printing some useless damn thing for your wife.
Whats wrong with you boy? Dont you value your life?

My head hung in shame, his words rang so true.
But really, at 2 AM, what can one do?
Oh tell me, Saint Rich, the great open source guru.
If you were in my shoes, just what would you do?

Why just look around you! Check out your scrap bin.
Just think open source, theres no way you cant win!
An Arduino perhaps you could build a quick clock.
Just nothing with Nixies or that sort of schlock.

My eyes darted round, and what did I spy?
Unused and unloved a Raspberry Pi!
A USB webcam, too what a treat!
Surely with this stuff, Id build something neat.



The spike in Bitcoin price is making it a less useful payment method in the cybercrime underground Security Affairs

The recent spike in the Bitcoin price and the fees associated with each transaction are making Bitcoin a less useful payment method in the cybercrime underground.

We have a long debated the use of unregulated virtual currencies like Bitcoin in the criminal underground. Virtual currencies have a crucial role in facilitating illicit commerce, it is normal that their fluctuation could have a significant impact on the criminal ecosystem. The recent spike in the price of Bitcoin and the fees associated with each transaction are making Bitcoin a less useful payment method in the cybercrime underground.

Originally, one of the points of strength for Bitcoin was that payments would be fast, cheap, and convenient. This was true until the beginning of this year when Bitcoin fees were often less than $0.10.

Bitcoin price spike

The spike in the Bitcoin value and related fees per transaction has made Bitcoin far less attractive for conducting small-dollar transactions that represent the vast majority of payments in the criminal underground.

As a result, several major underground markets that traffic in stolen digital goods are now urging customers to deposit funds in alternative virtual currencies, such as Litecoin. Those who continue to pay for these commodities in Bitcoin not only face far higher fees, but also are held to higher minimum deposit amounts. wrote the popular investigator and security blogger Brian Krebs.

Krebs cited as an example the case of the black marketplace Carders Paradise that he recently analyzed, well its administrators admitted difficulties due to the spike in the value of Bitcoin.

Krebs explained that the current minimum deposit amount on Carders Paradise is 0.0066 BTCs (roughly USD $100). The deposit fee for each transaction is $15.14, this means that every time a user...


Facebook Job Ads Raise Concerns About Age Discrimination SoylentNews

A few weeks ago, Verizon placed an ad on Facebook to recruit applicants for a unit focused on financial planning and analysis. The ad showed a smiling, millennial-aged woman seated at a computer and promised that new hires could look forward to a rewarding career in which they would be "more than just a number."

Some relevant numbers were not immediately evident. The promotion was set to run on the Facebook feeds of users 25 to 36 years old who lived in the nation's capital, or had recently visited there, and had demonstrated an interest in finance. For a vast majority of the hundreds of millions of people who check Facebook every day, the ad did not exist.

ProPublica's joint investigation with The New York Times turned up instances where Verizon, Amazon, Goldman Sachs, Target, and Facebook placed recruitment ads "limited to particular age groups", and wrote that "using the system to expose job opportunities only to certain age groups has raised concerns about fairness to older workers".

The Communications Workers of America union agreed: it filed a federal court class action lawsuit (PDF) in San Francisco claiming age discrimination on Wednesday.

[...] Some companies, including Target, State Farm and UPS, defended their targeting as a part of a broader recruitment strategy that reached candidates of all ages. The group of companies making this case included Facebook itself, which ran career ads on its own platform...

In its response, Facebook defended its own age-targeted recruitment advertisements as part of "broader-based recruitment efforts designed to reach all ages and all backgrounds". It added: "We completely reject the allegation that these advertisements are discriminatory."

Facebook wasn't the only platform found with age-targeting: Google and LinkedIn were also pinged in the investigation. LinkedIn changed its system to exclude age, Google did not.

Also reported on The Register

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NVIDIA to cut off support for 32-bit operating systems TechWorm

NVIDIA To Support Only 64-bit Operating Systems 

The long-awaited move from NVIDIA will cause it to bring driver support for only 64-bit operating systems.This change affects 32-bit builds of Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, Windows 10, Linux, and FreeBSD.

Lots of applications including games have started to demand a large number of resources, which includes VRAM and RAM itself, and with 32-bit operating systems supporting only up to 4GB RAM, users would obviously want to update their systems to the 64-bit versions of their original counterparts.

AMD cut off driver support a long time ago and it has been done for a good reason. NVIDIA has promised to offer security updates in the form of Windows 32-bit drivers, but that will remain up till January 2019. As for the 32-bit drivers that will be launched in January 2018, which is going to be for the GeForce Driver 390 Series, these updates are not going to contain any performance improvements or additional features for such systems. 64-bit operating system users will be given the special treatment regarding this.

With 32-bit operating systems, you are not only limited when it comes to usable system memory but also have lesser security on your PC. Even high-profile game developers that create AAA titles (these are also the ones that require the most RAM from your system), they are repeatedly stated that they will only bring support for 64-bit systems.Therefore we can say this could be the end of 32-bit operating systems so if you want to enjoy future driver support from NVIDIA, it would be a wise move to update.

The post NVIDIA to cut off support for 32-bit operating systems appeared first on TechWorm.


Spoofed Emails from Supposedly Corporate Printer Vendors Install Backdoor HackRead

By Waqas

Corporate printers and scanners related emails are quite common in

This is a post from Read the original post: Spoofed Emails from Supposedly Corporate Printer Vendors Install Backdoor


The Pentagons New Artificial Intelligence Is Already Hunting Terrorists Lifeboat News: The Blog

After less than eight months of development, the algorithms are helping intel analysts exploit drone video over the battlefield.

Earlier this month at an undisclosed location in the Middle East, computers using special algorithms helped intelligence analysts identify objects in a video feed from a small ScanEagle drone over the battlefield.

A few days into the trials, the computer identified objects people, cars, types of building correctly about 60 percent of the time. Just over a week on the job and a handful of on-the-fly software updates later the machines accuracy improved to around 80 percent. Next month, when its creators send the technology back to war with more software and hardware updates, they believe it will become even more accurate.


LLVM Continued In Its Quest For Innovative Compiler Dominance In 2017 Phoronix

LLVM had another successful year with in 2017 delivering the big LLVM 5.0 update and finishing up development of LLVM 6.0 right now while this open-source compiler stack continues to be adopted by new and interesting use-cases from tieing in LLVM IR to a wide variety of projects to the infrastructure being used heavily now by graphics drivers and other interesting purposes...

03:42 ( replacement) going into beta

The Debian Project has been working on replacing with a GitLab based service at Active Debian Developers already have accounts. "External users are invited to create an account on salsa. To avoid clashes with future Debian Developers, we are enforcing a '-guest' suffix for any guest username. Therefore we developed a self-service portal which allows non-Debian Developers to sign up, available at Please keep in mind that your username will have '-guest' appended."


Game of Thrones Most Torrented TV-Show of 2017 TorrentFreak

The seventh season of Game of Thrones brought tears and joy to HBO this year.

It was the most-viewed season thus far, with record-breaking TV ratings. But on the other hand, the company and its flagship product were plagued by hacks, leaks, and piracy, of course.

Game of Thrones year ends with a high, or low, depending on ones perspective. For the sixth year in a row it has the honor of becoming the most-downloaded TV show through BitTorrent.

Although there was no new swarm record, traffic-wise the interest was plenty. The highest number of people actively sharing an episode across several torrents was 400,000 at its peak, right after the season finale came online.

This doesnt necessarily mean that theres no growth in piracy. BitTorrent traffic only makes up a small portion of the piracy landscape. A lot of people use streaming sites and services nowadays, which are harder to measure.

While the top of this years list is made up of familiar names, there are also some new entries. Prison Break made a comeback, which didnt go unnoticed by torrent fans, while Rick and Morty and Sherlock also make an appearance.

Below we have compiled a list of the most torrented TV-shows worldwide (single episode) for 2017. The ranking is compiled by TorrentFreak based on several sources, including statistics reported by public BitTorrent trackers.

We have decided to stop reporting download estimates. Due to various changes in the torrent index/tracker landscape its become more challenging to monitor downloads accurately, so a ranked overview makes most sense.

Most downloaded TV-shows on BitTorrent, 2017
rank last year show
1 (1) Game of Thrones
2 (2) The Walking Dead
3 (4) The Flash


Unit Testing: Time-Consuming but Product-Saving

Today i finally recognized that unit tests are a critical part of my programming flow Ashley Williams, Twitter.

Long-time Node.js advocate Ashley Williams kicked off her recent Twitter thread in the same sort of stream of consciousness that many devs go through when they are coming to terms with the truth: Unit testing is annoying but necessary.


Support crucial free software infrastructure today! FSF blogs

The FSF tech team maintains infrastructure for the free software community, and your support helps improve and maintain it. Our use of a free software stack means that our mission to promote computer user freedom is embodied in every bit of our work. Will you power up this key free software infrastructure by supporting the FSF today? Our annual fundraiser ends in a few days, and we need to raise $450,000 by December 31st. Through the end of 2017, all new and renewing Annual Associate Members ($120+) can choose to receive our new Four Freedoms T-shirt! So wear your freedom on your sleeve: become a member or make a donation today.

mockup of four freedoms t-shirt

At the Free Software Foundation (FSF), we run public-facing software to enable development, activism, and information-sharing by thousands of free software users and developers. This includes tools, Web sites, and distribution for the GNU Project, Web sites like h-node, the Free Software Directory,, and mailing lists for thousands of free software projects at This infrastructure supports a robust community, with an average of 1 million unique visitors per month to, and a half million emails per day via and All that, running on our own servers, using exclusively free software!

Over the last year, we made many hardware and software upgrades, including bringing a new cluster of servers online, which we wrote about in the latest Bulletin. The FSF tech team's biggest goal for the next year is to upgrade all remaining older infrastructure, while refining our practices to improve freedom, privacy, security, and reliability. Here are a few highlights:

  • Redesigning The most pressing reason is so that it displays better on small screens. The migration of the existing html into...


Catelites Android Malware Poses as 2,200 Bank Apps HackRead

By Waqas

Another day another Android malware. This time, according to a

This is a post from Read the original post: Catelites Android Malware Poses as 2,200 Bank Apps


A Backlash Against Piped Music SoylentNews

Arthur T Knackerbracket has found the following story:

It was a bright, frigid morning in Ann Arbor, Michigan, two weeks before the University of Michigan let out for winter break, and the college town's numerous coffee shops were abuzz with the gentle tapping of keyboards, the whooshing of espresso machines, the occasional chatterand the tinny strains of 1980s and '90s pop hits.

It's that last element of the sonic landscape that drives Gina Choe and Libby Hunter crazy. Standing just inside a cavernous cafe where The Smiths' "How Soon Is Now?" competed with a sizzling griddle, jostling coffee cups, and echoing voices, Choe said, "I came in here once, and [the music] was everywhere around me. Everyone was talking more loudlyI couldn't even hear my friend."

As Choe checked a decibel meter on her phone ("65, the level of loud conversation"), Hunter mentioned that the last time she was here, she had asked a counter worker if the music could be turned off. "The manager came over to my table, and she was really nice, but she said no, because of the 'atmosphere.' It's amazing how afraid they are to not have music."

Hunter, a retired middle-school music teacher, and Choe, a 2017 Michigan graduate who is working in a research lab while she prepares to apply to medical school, do not travel in the same circles, and might never have met at all had they not come together over a mutual love of quiet spacesand a loathing for piped-in background music.

Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.


The Netherlands Confronts a Carbon Dilemma: Sequester or Recycle? IEEE Spectrum Recent Content full text

Public opposition to sequestration will make it harder to reach the countrys carbon reduction goal Photo: John Gundlach/Hollandse Hoogte/Redux

Photo: John Gundlach/Hollandse Hoogte/Redux Waste Not: Converting emissions from this steel mill into kerosene could fuel half the airplanes at a nearby airport.

As soon as the new Dutchgovernment took office in October, it announced an aggressive targetto reduce carbon emissions by 49 percent by 2030. This will ultimately require the Netherlands to sequester 20 million metric tons of carbon dioxide per yearequivalent to the annual emissions produced by 4.5 coal-fired power plants.

Sequestering that much CO2 underground will be difficult, whether its captured directly from the flues of power stations and steel mills or extracted from the air. Currently, the Netherlands sequesters less than 10,000 metric tons of CO2 annually.

Gert Jan Kramer, a physicist at Utrecht University, says the governments aims are drastic but possible. The technology and the industrial capacity for storing underground tens of megatons [1 megaton = 1 million metric tons] of carbon dioxide is ready, he says.

Underground natural gas reservoirs are already leakproof, and pumping CO2 into them while extracting gas would maintain their internal pressure, which would stabilize underground rock structure and prevent seismic activity. We have investigated every event and consequence imaginable, and weve concluded that underground carbon storage is safe, says Robert Hack, an engineering geologist at the University of Twente, in the Netherlands.

However, carbon sequestration projects have not fared well in Europe because of public opposition. More than 20 large-scale carbon capture and sequestration projects are now operational worldwide, but only two are based in Europe.

One of Europes largest proposed projects, the Rotterdam Capture and Storage Demonstration Project, which was designed to capture, transport, and sequester about one million metric tons of CO2 per year, 20 kilometers offshore, fell through in June when two private investment c...


Ways to Choose Electronic Cigarettes TechWorm

A vapor cigarette is an electronic device commonly known as the e-cigarette. It delivers nicotine to the body in form of a vapor. In recent cases, it has become very popular among the generation, and especially the young set. Though there is no any written proof that it is healthy, it has been widely accepted in various places around the universe. Rumours have it that vapor cigarettes are a good source to stop tobacco smoking. This is as with the many cases where many tobacco smokers have claimed that tobacco smoking feels disgusting after they have tried the vapor cigarette. Many users have, however, been faced with challenges on how to choose the right vapor cigarette.

In this article, we discuss a few ways to assist you to find a decent, resilient, and pleasurable vapour cigarette.

Decide On What Style You Prefer

Vapour/electronic cigarettes come in numerous vapor styles and addition, there are a variety of different flavors and nicotine levels that one can choose from. This being one of the reasons why it is easy to transition to its use. Some of this features include from mini, more of traditional looking, cigarettes to a top-level class outsized models. The mini sizes are preferably better for the beginners and are more popular compared to the midsize and advanced vaporizers. They are smaller in weight and lighter hence are easier to carry around. The advanced vaporizers and the midsize models, on the contrary, last longer and produce more vapor than the midsize. In this case, it is your decision to choose the one you fancy. This mostly will depend on your budget and preferences.

Enquire About The E-Cigarettes Performances

During the purchase, ensure that you choose fully equipped starter kit including a manual so as to guide you on how to use. Ensure that you ask questions when necessary especially about the vaporizer you are purchasing. A good retailer should provide you with important documents such as about its performance, and the warrant if available. Lastly, before you can reach out your wallet to acquire one, it is commendable that you look into the quality of the various existing vapor brands. Most vapor cigarettes have a serial number thus proving to its originality. If you cant locate one, consider buying another one.

Try Before Buying

We all know that cheap, is expensive, well for that reason, it is important that you dont go too cheap on the purchase. With this, I do not mean that you should struggle with the expensive pieces whereas you cant affor...


The State of Netbooting Raspberry Pis

I'm going to walk you through a few of the pieces involved in net-booting a Raspberry Pi and then talk about the challenges of running cloud native apps on a net-booted RPi.

It's undeniable - Raspberry Pis capture the imagination of techies of all ages. Combine several Raspberry Pis into a cluster and you now have an x10 or x100 multiplier, but there are some problems with SD Cards. Netbooting is meant to fix this - but there are some limitations to its usefulness.

Read more at Alex Ellis blog


Google invites applications for summer internships 2018 for software engineering & MBA students TechWorm

Google Invites Application For Software Engineering Summer Internship 2018

Search giant Google is inviting applications from interested and eligible candidates for Software Engineering Summer Internship Program 2018 that will commence in April 2018. The duration of the internship will be from April 2018 to July 2018 and the last date to apply for the program is December 26, 2017, by 11:59 pm.

Students who are pursuing a B.Tech, M.Tech in computer science or a related technical field with an anticipated graduation in 2019 can apply for the internship program. A competent stipend will be provided by the company to those students who are selected for the internship.

In the 8-12 weeks internship program, the students will be mentored by an experienced Googler. The program would involve 1-2 weeks of deep-diving and understanding the ecosystem, 1-2 weeks of granular problem definition, and remaining 4-6 weeks of solution recommendation.

Students who are selected for the internship will be allotted various roles and responsibilities which would vary by project area.

Besides educational qualification, there are certain skills that the candidates should possess, which are given as below:

  • Candidates applying for Internship program must have the UG/PG degree full-time program.
  • Should have experience in systems software or algorithms.
  • Have excellent implementation skills (C++, Java, Python).
  • Have knowledge of Unix/Linux or Windows environments and APIs.
  • Should be familiar with TCP/IP and network programming.

The application for internship can be filled on Internshala. Indian Educational organizations like AICTE and APSSDC have signed MoU with Internshala for the Google Software Engineer Internship program 2018 with an aim to provide internships and training to college students.

The process to apply for Google Software Internship Program 2018 is as follows:

  • Visit the Internshala official website,
  • Login with User-id and Password.
  • If you are a new user, then sign-up with the website.
  • This Summer Intern With Google Link appears on screen.
  • Click on Apply Now Link Proceed applying by filling up the application form with required details.
  • Also, enclose required copies of scanned documents.
  • Finally, click on Submit button.



Fast 3D Printing with Raspberry Pi But Not How You Think Hackaday

Although we tend to think of 3D printers as high-tech toys, most of them are not especially powerful in the brain department. There are some exceptions, but most 3D printers run on either an 8-bit Arduino or some Arduino variant with a lot of I/O. There are a few 32-bit boards, but if you grab a random 3D printer, its brain is going to be an 8-bit AVR running something like Marlin or Repetier. It isnt uncommon to see a Raspberry Pi connected to a printer, too, but again, in general it is a network interface that handles sending G-code to the 8-bit controller that runs the stepper motors. Would it make more sense to do things like parse G-code, map out curves, and set accelerations in the relatively powerful Raspberry Pi and relegate the 8-bit AVR to just commanding motors and heaters? [KevinOConnor] thinks so, and he wrote Klipper to prove it.

Klipper is mostly written in Python and it does most of the functions of traditional 3D printing firmware. It communicates with the onboard microprocessor by providing a schedule of when to do what tasks. The microprocessor then handles the timing and things like motion control for the axes and extruder. Klipper can control multiple microprocessors with no trouble and keeps them in synchronization, so you could have a processor for your extruder and one for each stepper, for example. You can use Klipper with a Cartesian machine, a delta, or a Core XY-style printer.

The host computer doesnt even have to be a Raspberry Pi. The BeagleBone will work and in theory, at least so will any Linux computer. Theres a small bit of firmware you program on the microcontroller that speaks a lightweight protocol to the host computer. As for user interface, thats easy. The host can talk to Octoprint and you can run that on the same Raspberry Pi that runs Klipper.

The microcontroller firmware only has a handful of commands. Most of those are related to something to do at a given time: operating a stepper motor or setting a PWM output. Because it is simple, you could have a small CPU and you could possibly get much faster rates. Of course, that assumes your hardware can handle a faster rate.


Klipper touts several compelling features:

Each stepper event is scheduled with a precision of 25 microseconds or better. The software does not use kinematic estimations (such as the Bresenham algorithm).  It calculates precise step times based on the physics of acceleration and the physics of the machine kinematics. More precise stepper movement translates to quieter and more stable printer operation.

Since the microcontroller firmware is very simple, it is easy to reconfigure things in Klipper ju...


Skyrocketing Bitcoin Fees Hit Carders in Wallet Krebs on Security

Critics of unregulated virtual currencies like Bitcoin have long argued that the core utility of these payment systems lies in facilitating illicit commerce, such as buying drugs or stolen credit cards and identities. But recent spikes in the price of Bitcoin and the fees associated with moving funds into and out of it have conspired to make Bitcoin a less useful and desirable payment method for many crooks engaged in these activities.

Bitcoins creator(s) envisioned a currency that could far more quickly and cheaply facilitate payments, with tiny transaction fees compared to more established and regulated forms of payment (such as credit cards). And indeed, until the beginning of 2017 those fees were well below $1, frequently less than 10 cents per transaction.

But as the price of Bitcoin has soared over the past few months to more than $15,000 per coin, so have the Bitcoin fees per transaction. This has made Bitcoin far less attractive for conducting small-dollar transactions (for more on this shift, see this Dec. 19 story from Ars Technica).

As a result, several major underground markets that traffic in stolen digital goods are now urging customers to deposit funds in alternative virtual currencies, such as Litecoin. Those who continue to pay for these commodities in Bitcoin not only face far higher fees, but also are held to higher minimum deposit amounts.

Due to the drastic increase in the Bitcoin price, we faced some difficulties, reads the welcome message for customers after they log in to Carders Paradise, a Dark Web marketplace that KrebsOnSecurity featured in a story last week.

The problem is that we send all your deposited funds to our suppliers which attracts an additional Bitcoin transaction fee (the same fee you pay when you make a deposit), Carders Paradise explains. Sometimes we have to pay as much as 5$ from every 1$ you deposited.

The shop continues:

We have to take additionally a Deposit fee from all users who deposit in Bitcoins. This is the amount we spent on transferring your funds to our suppliers. To compensate your costs, we are going to reduce our prices, including credit cards for all users and offer you the better bitcoin exchange rate.

The amount of the Deposit Fee depends on the load on the Bitcoin...


Physicists Track Secret Particles, Thought Impossible Lifeboat News: The Blog

Forget everything you thought you knew about Schrdingers cat.


Kubeflow Project Tacks Machine Learning on Top of Kubernetes

The Kubernetes community is extending the reach of the container orchestration platform into the field of machine learning.


R600g/RadeonSI Gallium3D Performance At The End Of 2017 Phoronix

One of the common test requests to come in for our end-of-year benchmarking has been a fresh look at the Radeon GPU performance incorporating some both old and new GPUs to see the current state of the open-source driver stack. Tests were done from a Radeon HD 5830 on the Radeon+R600g driver stack to the RX Vega 64 on AMDGPU+RadeonSI, while using the Linux 4.15-rc5 kernel paired with Mesa 17.4-dev.


ATMs operated by a Russian Bank could be hacked by pressing five times the Shift key Security Affairs

ATMs operated by the Sberbank bank running Windows XP are affected by easily exploitable security vulnerabilities, they could be hacked by pressing five times the Shift key.

We have warned several times of risks for ATM running outdated Windows XP operating system. These systems could be easily hacked as recently discovered by an employee of the Russian blogging platform Habrahabr who reported that the ATMs operated by the Sberbank bank running Windows XP are affected by easily exploitable security vulnerabilities.

The user discovered that a full-screen lock that prevents access to various components of an ATM operating system could be bypassed by pressing five times special keys like SHIFT, CTRL, ALT, and WINDOWS.

By pressing the SHIFT key five times it is possible to access the Windows settings and displaying the taskbar and Start menu of the operating system, with this trick users can have access to Windows XP by using the touchscreen.

Well, I, standing at the terminal of the Savings Bank with a full-sized keyboard and waiting for the operator to answer the phone, decided to press this Shift from boredom, naively believing that without functional keys this would lead to nothing. No matter how it is! Five times quick pressing of this key gave me that very little window, besides revealing the task panel with all the bank software. wrote the user.

Stopping the work of the batch file (see the taskbar on the video below), and then all the banking software, you can break the terminal.

This vulnerability allows hackers to modify ATM boot scripts and install malicious code on the machine.

The users tried to report the issue to the Sberbank contact center, but unfortunately, the operator was not able to help the man and suggested him to contact the support service using the phone number written on the terminal itself.

According to the German website WinFuture, Sberbank had been informed of the security flaw in its ATM almost two weeks ago. The bank confirmed to hav...


Cobalt Mining: Dark Side of the Electric Car Revolution SoylentNews

Cobalt is one of the key ingredients added in electric batteries, and more than half of it is currently mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Amnesty says children as young as seven work in dangerous conditions in Congo cobalt mines.

"At the present time, you'd have to say that there isn't a lot of regulation around the mining of cobalt," says Gavin Wendt, the founding director and senior resource analyst at Australia-based Minelife.

Wendt thinks recent international scandals in the car industry have put pressure on car manufacturers to ethically source the materials needed for their cars.

"We're seeing more and more ... pressure from society to ensure that these commodities are ethically sourced ... A very big issue is going to be where this cobalt will come from, and hence companies are looking to source cobalt outside of the DRC as much as possible," Wendt says.

With 54 percent of cobalt currently coming from the Congo, that goal is still a long way off.

Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.


Raw: Benot Battistelli Names Things the Opposite of What They Really Are Techrights

Much like legislation in the 21st century (the EPO is a stark example)

Original/full: Violation of the right to strike [PDF]

EPO newspeak

Summary: As was pointed out for a number of years, Benot Battistelli not only lies routinely but also distorts words when he describes the action he takes (to mean the exact opposite)

Go Back:30 Days | 7 Days | 2 Days | 1 Day

IndyWatch Science and Technology News Feed Today.

Go Forward:1 Day | 2 Days | 7 Days | 30 Days

Tuesday, 26 December


Raw: Benot Battistelli Would Not Openly Discuss Staff Suicides Techrights

Original/full: Administrative Council meeting report [PDF] | In German [PDF]

Discussing staff suicides

Discussing staff suicides - DE

Summary: With half a dozen suicides under Battistelli one might expect a discussion of the issue, but Battistelli drags it behind closed doors to save face


The Next MPV Player Release Will Offer Much Better Vulkan Support Phoronix

With the Christmas weekend release of the MPlayer-forked MPV Player 0.28, it's the first video player we are aware of supporting the Vulkan graphics API for video presentation. This release has just basic Vulkan support but it will be much better in the next release...


Raw: Lack of Independence of the Boards of Appeal at the EPO Poses a Serious Issue for Unitary Patent-Type Regime (UPC) Techrights

BoA petition

Summary: Nearly half a decade ago problems were internally highlighted regarding the Unified Patent Court (UPC), partly because judges were no longer operating independently from Battistelli and his secret police (IU)


World Health Organization Will Recognize "Gaming Disorder" SoylentNews

Do you find yourself playing video games for hours on end without realizing it? Does your gaming habit have a negative effect on your daily life and hygiene? Do you keep on grinding instead of focusing on your career or IRL relationships? You may have gaming disorder:

Gaming addiction will become a mental disorder officially recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) next year.

The WHO, originally founded in 1946 as an agency of the United Nations dedicated to international health, is set to publish an updated International Classification of Diseases in 2018; one could say it's about time since the last revision (ICD-10) was endorsed in May 1990.

There is already a beta draft available online for ICD-11 and we can find gaming addiction filed under Mental, behavioral or neurodevelopmental disorders\Impulse control disorders. Here's the current, work-in-progress description by the WHO:

Gaming disorder is characterized by a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behaviour ('digital gaming' or 'video-gaming'), which may be online (i.e., over the internet) or offline, manifested by: 1) impaired control over gaming (e.g., onset, frequency, intensity, duration, termination, context); 2) increasing priority given to gaming to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other life interests and daily activities; and 3) continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences. The behaviour pattern is of sufficient severity to result in significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning. The pattern of gaming behaviour may be continuous or episodic and recurrent. The gaming behaviour and other features are normally evident over a period of at least 12 months in order for a diagnosis to be assigned, although the required duration may be shortened if all diagnostic requirements are met and symptoms are severe.

Paper critical of the proposal: Video game addiction: The push to pathologize video games. (DOI: 10.1037/pro0000150) (DX)

See also: LAD.

Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.


Three fake Bitcoin wallet apps were removed from the official Google Play Security Affairs

Researchers from the mobile security firm Lookout have discovered three fake Bitcoin wallet apps in the official Play store, Google promptly removed them.

Experts from mobile security firm Lookout have discovered three fake Bitcoin wallet apps in the official Play store. The fake Bitcoin wallet apps were removed by Google Play after security researchers reported their discovery to the tech giant.

The spike in Bitcoin prices is attracting crooks as never before, the number of attacks involving the cryptocurrency continues to increase.

The three fake applications tracked as PickBitPocket were developed to provide the attackers Bitcoin address instead of the sellers one. The fake apps accounted for a total of up to 20,000 downloads before Google removed them from the Play store.

Lookout has identified three Android apps disguised as bitcoin wallet apps, previously in the Google Play Store, that trick victims into sending bitcoin payments to attacker-specified bitcoin addresses. reads the analysis published by Lookout.

Google removed the apps immediately after Lookout notified the company. The apps collectively had up to 20,000 downloads at time of removal.

The researchers explained that when users that installed the fake apps attempt to buy goods or services their payments are hijacked to the attackers wallet.

The three fake Bitcoin wallet apps discovered by Lookout are:

  • Bitcoin mining, which had between 1,000 and 5,000 installs at the time it was removed;
  • Blockchain Bitcoin Wallet Fingerprint, which had between 5,000 and 10,000 installs;
  • Fast Bitcoin Wallet, which has between 1,000 and 5,000 installs.



Raw: How President Benot Battistelli Exercises Almost Complete Control Over the Legal Process Techrights

Original/full: EPO Internal Justice System [PDF]

Battistelli's legal reign

Summary: Battistelli has acquired king-like powers, delayed justice to the point where it can take over a decade for a case to be heard and concluded, and theres a farcical level of independence, which means that Battistelli can do virtually anything he wants (irrespective of the rules and the judgments)


Sound Isolated Server Rack Hackaday

Servers are most often found in climate controlled data centers. This means they arent exactly built for creature comforts like quiet operation. Quite the contrary many server chassis include fans which absolutely scream when the machine is under load. [Whiskykilo] needed to set up a 12 U rack in his basement for working from home. He knew the sound would get on anyones nerves, but especially on those of his wife.

To solve this problem, he built a sound isolated rack. The build started with a standard 12 U metal rack frame. This is wrapped in 1/2 MDF coated with automotive sound deadening material. An outer frame built of 14 lumber and another layer of 1/2 MDF. Isolating the inner and outer boxes made the biggest contribution to quieting down the noisy servers.

Computers need to breathe, so the front and back doors of the rack enclosure include banks of intake and exhaust fans to keep air flowing through the servers. Two AC Infinity controllers keep the fans operating and monitor temperature. These machines do generate some heat so 64 F (18C) intake and 81 F (27C) exhaust is not unheard of. The servers dont seem to mind running at these temperatures. A Raspberry Pi 3 keeps an eye on UPS operation and displays the data on a 7 HDMI LCD.

Interested in running a server at home? You dont have to go to the lumberyard check out this server made with Ikea components, or this server built from 96 MacBook Pros.

Filed under: computer hacks


OpenChrome DRM Continues To Be Developed, But It Didn't Make It Mainline This Year Phoronix

The OpenChrome DRM driver continues to largely be developed by one community contributor left standing for supporting VIA x86 graphics on the Linux desktop. These VIA graphics chipsets haven't been too common in about a decade, but OpenChrome continues persevering with working to deliver a full-functioning, open-source driver that VIA itself was never able to produce...


Raw: EPO Staff Union Illustrates Structural Deficiency of the EPO Techrights

Original/full: Trias Politica [PDF]

EPO structure

Summary: SUEPO crafted the above diagram which shows the existing (top) and desirable (bottom) structure for the Administrative Council (AC) of the Organisation (EPOrg), the President, the Office (EPO), the Boards of Appeal (BoA), the internal appeals (IAC), the secret police (IU), staff, society, unions (SUEPO) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO/AT)


Raw: Consultation Process at the EPO, Rooted in Basic Rules, Has Been Compromised and Stacked by Battistelli Techrights

Original/full: English [PDF] | German [PDF]

Stacked by Battistelli

Summary: In order to ensure that everything Benot Battistelli wants becomes reality he not only compromised (stacked) the Administrative Council but also the GAC (General Advisory Committee) and GCC


The Most-Viewed AMD/Radeon Linux Stories Of 2017 Phoronix

Here's a look at our most-viewed original AMD/Radeon Linux and open-source news stories of 2017...


Raw: Administrative Council of the EPO Was Warned 4 Years Ago About Governance and Overall Reputation of the Organisation. Techrights

A warning

Summary: The EPOs staff representatives warned about Battistelli, noting that changes that have been implemented under his presidency will ultimately be considered illegal.

Orig.: en
Munich, 12.02.2014

SUBJECT: Governance of the EPO
SUBMITTED BY: President of the European Patent Office
ADDRESSEES: Administrative Council (for information)



This document is submitted by the staff representatives via the President of the European Patent Office, in accordance with Article 9(2.2)(b) of the Administrative Councils rules of procedure (see CA/D 8/06).


During his three years in office, Mr Battistelli has embarked upon an ambitious program of reform which appears to be primarily aimed at strengthening the position of the President of the Office vis--vis the two other main stakeholders: the Administrative Council and the Office staff. In his dealings with both these parties, he has adopted a highly authoritarian leadership style, typified by his apparent inability or unwillingness to enter into discussions or to even acknowledge opinions other than his own. In particular, staff discontent is quashed with increasingly repressive regulations. Social dialogue inside the Office has completely broken down.

The Central Staff Committee turns to the Administrative Council as the supervisory body ultimately responsible with overseeing the European Patent Office for support with re- establishing a proper balance in the Organisations governance and to restoring a better working environment within the Office for us all.




1. Strategic


2. Not relevant


3. Not relevant


4. The ongoing social conflicts in the EPO



The European Patent Organisation was created with the classical governance structure prevailing at the time as the model for international organisations. Discussions about governance have been ongoing for many years1, but no real progress has ever been made on this issue. Within the Office, power remains centralized with the President who is accountable only to the Administrative Council.

Like many other international organisations, the EPO functions very much like a s...


Nouveau DRM Changes Being Worked On For Linux 4.16 Phoronix

Ben Skeggs of Red Hat has been working on a few Nouveau DRM changes for the next kernel cycle...


FreeBSD Had A Busy Q3'2017 With AMD Zen Improvements, Intel iWARP Phoronix

The FreeBSD Quarterly Status Report covering work done in the third quarter has now been published...


Graphene Sheets Could be Used in Bulletproof Vests SoylentNews

Banned for civilian use before it even exists:

One day armed forces might protect themselves with layers of a material called diamene; dual layers of graphene that respond to a force by deforming into an impenetrable diamond plate.

[...] Researchers from the Advanced Science Research Centre at the City University of New York [have] layered pairs of graphene sheets to create a material that turns into a three-dimensional diamond-like structure when smashed with enough force.

Sudden changes to the conductivity of the sheets when dented could present some interesting new electronic properties.

But it's the possible application as lightweight protection where it really gets interesting.

"This is the thinnest film with the stiffness and hardness of diamond ever created," says lead researcher, physicist Elisa Riedo.

"Previously, when we tested graphite or a single atomic layer of graphene, we would apply pressure and feel a very soft film. But when the graphite film was exactly two-layers thick, all of a sudden we realised that the material under pressure was becoming extremely hard and as stiff, or stiffer, than bulk diamond."

Original Submission

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UEFA Obtains High Court Injunction To Block Live Soccer Streaming TorrentFreak

Earlier this year the English Premier League (EPL) obtained a unique High Court injunction which required ISPs including Sky, BT, and Virgin to block pirate football streams in real-time.

When that temporary injunction ran out, the EPL went back to court for a new one, valid for the season that began in August. After what appeared to be a slow start, the effort began to produce significant results, blocking thousands of Internet subscribers from accessing illicit streams via websites, Kodi add-ons, and premium IPTV services.

Encouraged by its successes, the EPL has now been joined by an even bigger soccer organization. The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) is the governing body of soccer in Europe and it too will jump onto the site and server-blocking bandwagon, almost certainly utilizing the same system being deployed by the Premier League.

UEFA first had to obtain permission from the High Court. That came in the form of an application for injunction filed by the organization against ISPs BT, EE, Plusnet, Sky, TalkTalk, and Virgin Media. It demanded that they take measures to block, or at least impede, access by their customers to streaming servers which deliver infringing live streams of UEFA Competition matches to UK consumers.

In other countries, ISPs have defended such cases but in the UK, the position is very different. All providers except TalkTalk actually supported the application, with BT, Sky, and Virgin filing evidence in its favor.

The application seemed somewhat academic. All parties previously agreed to its terms and it was supported by the Premier League and the Formula One World Championship, whose content is also streamed illegally by some of the same servers.

The High Court found that the application was broadly similar to that previously filed by the Premier League so the legal basis for granting the injunction remained the same.

Citing two big rulings from the EU Court this year (one involving The Pirate Bay, the other cloud-recording service VCAST), Mr Justice Arnold said that evidence filed by the Premier League showed that a similar order had proven very effective.

The Judge also noted that no evidence of over-blocking as a result of the previous injunctions had been presented and that this injunction would contain ...


The biggest scientific breakthroughs of the year, now in video form! Lifeboat News: The Blog

Each year, Sciences editors and writers highlight a top research achievement as their Breakthrough of the Year. For 2017, the honor goes to the first full observation of a neutron-star merger, made possible by detecting gravitational waves created by the stars as they spiraled into each other. But there a lot of other advances to talk about, from the oldest ice to the newest ape. Check them all out in this video rundown.

A video compilation of some of the biggest advances of 2017.


Graphene unlocks the promise of lithium sulfur batteries Lifeboat News: The Blog

Many battery scientists are interested in the potential of lithium sulfur batteries because, at least in theory, they offer a high energy density at relatively low cost. However, lithium sulfur batteries face a number of challenges, including the low electrical conductivity of sulfur and the tendency of the cathode to expand significantly in size during the discharge cyclea tendency that prevents the cathode material from being packed as densely in the battery as scientists would like.

To combat these problems and bring lithium sulfur batteries closer to reality, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energys (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and Oregon State University have developed a new made of that is encapsulated by graphene.

To make the material, Argonne chemists Jun Lu and Khalil Amine heated and then exposed it to carbon disulfide gas, a common industrial solvent. The creation of lithium sulfide, as well as the graphene encapsulation, happened spontaneously.


How to use/run bash aliases over ssh based session nixCraft

I have set up a bash alias named file_repl. It works entirely when I log in using ssh command. However, my bash aliases are not running over ssh, for example:
$ ssh file_repl
bash: file_repl: command not found

How do I run bash shell aliases when I use ssh command?

The post How to use/run bash aliases over ssh based session appeared first on nixCraft.


Raw: The EPO is Redefining the Words Social and Democracy. Techrights

Original/full: Translation of Communiqu 48 Meeting of President with the EPO Central Staff Committee [PDF]

Turkey crackdown

Summary: As the interpreter of Battistellis statement put it, any similarities between totalitarian states dead, alive or teetering on the brink is entirely coincidental


Raw: EPO Classifies Staff Based on Perceived Loyalty and Intimidates/Punishes Those Exercising Their Rights Techrights

Original/full: A new management style in the EPO? [PDF]

EPO bilateral issue

Summary: The EPO resorts to measures including fear, isolation, and punishment and all colleagues who dared to follow the duly called industrial actions after 1 July 2013 were threatened with disciplinary measures.


Monoprice Mini Laser Engraver Hack Hackaday

Theres an old saying, that in theory theres no difference between theory and practice, but in practice there is. That sentiment could easily be applied to refitting a 3D printer to hold a laser. There shouldnt be much to it, rig up a laser module to turn on under computer control, mount it to your hot end carriage and off you go. In practice, though there are other considerations to account for. If you have a Monoprice Mini Select, you can start with instructions from [drodrii] for adding a laser to your printer.

Although [drodrii] mentions that you need a second 3D printer to make a bracket for the laser, we think you should be able to print it on the Mini as long as you do it before the first step of removing the hot end. However, since your laser module might not exactly match the one used in this project, youd have to get it right the first time if you dont have another 3D printer. Of course, you could remove the laser gear, remount the hot end, print a new bracket and start over, but thatd be a drag.

The laser module used is a 2.5W unit, although you could probably use larger or smaller ones if you were sure the fan output could drive the units power requirements. About half of the instructions are about the software to drive the device and the laser beam focus set up.

Youll want to wear the appropriate protective goggles should you make this modification. Since laser engraving creates fumes, you also probably ought to operate the device in a very well-ventilated area. You can see a short video showing the machine in action.

Weve been big fans of the Mini Select as a solid entry-level printer. Wed love to do this hack and try some PCBs with the Mini.

Filed under: 3d Printer hacks


Raw: The EPO Trusted and Used BigPulse Until the Question/Outcome No Longer Suited Benot Battistelli Techrights

BigPulseRecent: EPO Budget (Users Money) Has Been Corrupting Media and Academia

Also: The EPO is Now Corrupting Academia, Wasting Stakeholders Money Lying to Stakeholders About the Unitary Patent (UPC)

Summary: Another fine example of the EPO trying to control the outcome of so-called surveys and studies in order to dominate the narrative (even if false)

CSC answer to Communiqu Nr.50

The Central Staff Committee (CSC) organised an opinion poll on the Presidents proposals for Social Democracy with the company BigPulse, a firm the EPO and the CSC have used a number of times in the past for both surveys and elections. The poll was supposed to end today (Tuesday 18 February 2014) and thereby would not have interfered with the agreed strike ballot planned for Thursday this week.

With Communiqu Nr.50, the President calls into question the services offered by BigPulse and uses these doubts to both block staff from responding to the opinion poll and to postpone the planned ballot on strike. At the same time, he has issued individual, written threats to the CSCs Chairman, Secretary and Vice-Chairmen for alleged breaches of data protection guidelines, despite the CSC simply exercising its right to communicate with the staff they represent.

In postponing the strike ballot, the President is either misled or disingenuous and risks failing to comply with his obligations under his own, albeit contested, strike regulations with regard to the deadline for carrying out the strike ballot. If the President no longer trusts the services of BigPulse, then rather than postpone the ballot, he should instead still run the ballot in time using the tried and trusted method of a paper ballot.

A truly democratic process should never avoid or unnecessarily delay seeking the opinion of those affected by its policies and decisions. If the President fails to organise the strike ballot called under the PEACES initiative, he again calls into question whether democratic principles really underlie his policy of Social Democracy.

The Central Staff Committee

On EPO-funded study from PwC:

  • ...


Ubuntu 17.10 PULLED: Linux OS Breaks Laptop BIOSes, Intel Kernel Driver Fingered SoylentNews

Updated Canonical has halted downloads of Ubuntu Linux 17.10, aka Artful Aardvark, from its website after punters complained installing the open-source OS on laptops knackered the machines.

"The download of Ubuntu 17.10 is currently discouraged due to an issue on certain Lenovo laptops," the Linux distro maker noted this week on its desktop download page. "Once fixed this download will be enabled again."

Installing 17.10 on Lenovo Yoga and IdeaPad laptops prevents the motherboard's BIOS from saving its settings, and while the computer will hopefully continue to start up, it potentially stops the machine from booting via USB.

The cockup mainly affects Lenovo computers, although other systems may also fall foul: selected Acer, HP, Toshiba and Dell hardware are said to be hit, too.

A fault report on Canonical's bug tracker tells it all apparently, Artful Aardvark's Linux kernel includes an Intel SPI driver that was not ready for release

Original Submission

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Why We Should Worry About China Terra Forming Terra

There are ample reasons to worry about China, but the most serious is that their debt service that can no longer be over ridden by further rapid growth.  Even with massive debt forgiveness, much of this capital cannot earn enough.

Sorting this out will be messy.  Add to this that China is attempting a planned China Inc to manage assets world wide and derive revenues to support internal operations and there is plenty of room for future worries.  The USA was bad enough but China Inc is likely worse.

The obvious risk is that they simply lose it.   Less obvious is that they wonderfully succeed and retain their massive inefficiencies.  Again messy.  Or we may simply muddle through as has been the case.

Why We Should Worry About China


Flying Cocoon / Humanoid Phenomenon Terra Forming Terra


If you are in no particular hurry, it makes some sense to wear a gravity belt in order to move about easily enough.  From that it also makes sense to wear a shroud able to produce a form of invisibility but not so good as to stand up in every situation.

It has not been encountered often though so it is likely quite rarely used.

This technology that we now partially understand and also anticipate as we do know how to get there from here.

It is noteworthy that they use strong mind projection to rid themselves on unwelcome visitors..  This is also not unexpected and not to be taken as intent or seriously at all.  Strikes me as a great tool with which to get rid of a curious bull.


Flying Cocoon / Humanoid Phenomenon 

Thursday, December 14, 2017 


The 30-Years Bubble---Why America Ain't That Rich Terra Forming Terra

 What is missing in all this analysis is that we have entered a world of cheap money and this is driving household worth higher than any other time in history.  With burgeoning advent of bitcoin and its natural clones, i do not see this changing soon.

Yes Bitcoin really matters because it is dumping cash back into the economy at an accelerating rate outside of central bank control.  In short savings are safely been recycled back into the economy for reinvestment.

All Good and add in the impact of the overall tax cut and the liquidity is exceptional.

The 30-Years Bubble---Why America Ain't That Rich

By David Stockman. Posted On Monday, December 11th, 2017

The entire financial and economic narrative in today's Bubble Finance world is virtually context- and history-free; it's all about the short-term deltas and therefore exceedingly misleading and dangerous.

So when a big trend or condition is negative and unsustainable, you generally can't even get a glimpse of it from the so-called "high-frequency" weekly, monthly and even quarterly data on which the financial press and its casino patrons thrive. And that's not merely because most of the data from the government statistical mills is heavily massaged and modeled and often "adjusted" beyond recognition over 3-5 year intervals of statistical revision.

Beyond that, however, even medium term trends get largely ignored. That's because the purpose of economic...


What if Consiousness is not what drives the human mind? Terra Forming Terra

 Well yes and no.. Our consciousness module works to interact in the now and deal with the external world.  Another module is on standby to take over is a threat is perceived.  Yet another helps to sort out our data flow and actually retain access as much as necessary to be called upon even decades later.  Yet another is an engaged knowledge processor solving actual defined problems not necessary tied to time.

I have effortlessly identified four separate and plausibly separate physical aspects of my conscious existence.

Now throw in the physical reality of our second tier spirit body operating each individual living cell in our bodies and the natural internet so implied whose information density is several orders of magnitude greater that all the chemistry in our bodies and we have real universe of possibility and plausible conscious realities.

By that measure our 'third tier' consciousness is truly along for the ride and occasional choice making.



By Peter Halligan 

Nov 27, 2017

Everyone knows what it feels like to have consciousness: its that self-evident sense of personal awareness, which gives us a feeling of ownership and control over the thoughts, emotions and experiences that we have every day.

Most experts think that consciousness can be divided into two parts: the experience of consciousness (or personal awareness), and the contents of consciousness, which include things such as thoughts, beliefs, sensations, perceptions, intentions, memories and emotions.

Its easy to assume that these contents of consciousness are somehow chosen, caused or controlled by our personal awareness after all, thoughts dont exist until until we think them. But in a new research...


Raw: EPO Had Sent to Staff Representatives Threatening Letters Similar to the Ones Sent to Techrights Techrights

(on a Friday With Short Time to Reply so as to Strategically Prevent Access to Legal Advice)

SLAPP case

Summary: Late Friday SLAPP (legal bullying) by the EPO is a tradition which predates threats against Techrights; and later they wonder about depression and suicides among staff

Mr B. Battistelli
President of the EPO

R. 1081 Isar

Dear Mr. Battistelli,

The CSC has taken cognizance of the letters of 14.2.2014 you have sent to J. Michels, I. Brumme, J. Areso y Salinas, M. Sampels, J. Schaaf and S. Rolle requesting information concerning a survey conducted by BigPulse. At the same time you informed that this situation is likely to lead to disciplinary proceedings for very serious misconduct and, as the case may arise, national proceedings. You request an answer at the latest by 19.02.2014.

We fail to understand what serious misconduct you are referring to. Nevertheless the tone and the contents of your letter are highly threatening. Under the circumstances a delay of less than 3 working days seems inappropriate.

We therefore respectfully request an extension for the reply and will further respond to your letter as soon as we have sought appropriate legal advice.

The Central Staff Committee


10 Popular Nautilus Magazine Stories of 2017 - Facts So Romantic Nautilus

Dive in: From democracy-damaging media to willpower to the holographic universe, here are some of the most-read Nautilus stories of 2017.Illustration by Irene Rinaldi

What did the unconscious part of the mind say to the conscious part? This isnt so much the start of a science gag as a perennial scientific mysteryone that the novelist Cormac McCarthy, in his first-ever work of non-fiction, The Kekul Problem, confronted in Nautilus this year. It was one of our most-read stories of 2017.

As the New Yorker put it, the essay is studded with suggestive details about the anatomy of the human larynx, what happens to dolphins under anesthesia, and the origins of the click sounds in Khoisan languages. The kind of story, in other words, thats right up our alley.

Heres that, plus a selection, in chronological order, of some of our other most-read stories of the year. From democracy-damaging media to willpower to the holographic universe, here they are:

Against Willpower

Willpower is a dangerous, old idea that needs to be scrapped.

Carl Erik Fisher, February 2017

Raising the American Weakling

There are two very different interpretations of our dwindling grip strength.

Tom Vanderbilt, February 2017

New Evidence for the Strange
Read More


Raw: EPO Paving the Way to Overstressed Patent Examiners and Decreased Patent Quality Techrights

Original/full: English [PDF] | French [PDF]



Summary: A look at changes designed to further increase pressure on patent examiners (at the EPOs Directorate-General 1) changes that were criticised by people present, except those who were selected by Battistelli (members nominated by the President gave a positive opinion on the proposal.)


A Laser Cut Arcade Cabinet for Ants Hackaday

Most of us would probably like to have an arcade cabinet at home, but its hard to justify the space they take up. Sure its an awesome conversation starter when friends are over, and you might even play it regularly, but at some point youll look over at the corner and realize theres probably something more practical you could be doing with that particular section of the room.

Perhaps the solution is to just make a smaller one. You could do one at half scale, or even desktop sized. But why stop there? Why not make one so small that you could put the thing in a drawer when you dont need it? While it might be more of an academic experiment than a practical entertainment device, [RedPixel] has managed to create just such an easily concealable arcade cabinet out of a Pi Zero and laser cut wood. At only 83 mm high, this may well be the smallest functional arcade cabinet ever made (at least for now).

All of the cabinet parts were drawn in Inkscape and cut out of 3 mm plywood. The buttons and joystick are wired directly to the Pi Zeros GPIO pins and configured with Adafruit-retrogame. The display is a SPI ILI9163, which [RedPixel]...


The Venus Project and the Quest for a Socially Engineered Future SoylentNews

Submitted via IRC for AndyTheAbsurd

Jacque Fresco spent decades building a life-sized model of his ideal city. The central idea? If we want the Western world to overcome war, avarice, and poverty, all we need to do is redesign the culture.

[...] This civilization would be created through "sociocyberneering," a radical form of social engineering where automation and technology would bring about "a way of life worthy of man." 171391-02-223

Throughout the interview, Fresco brandished full-color sketches of the future: white domes perched on the surface of the ocean and arranged in concentric circles so as to resemble the structure of an atom. Serving as the city's nucleus was a central computer, which would monitor the ecology of the regionmeasuring crop yields in farmland, controlling irrigation, and overseeing hydroelectric power grids. Expanding outward were civic centers, museums, and universities, all of which would operate like public libraries in that any cultural artifact would be available for temporary loan. The next largest ring of the city consisted of a residential area, where denizens would dwell amid opulent gardens and manicured parks, in built-to-suit developments. These elliptical abodes would contain every amenity imaginable (at one point, Fresco predicts the invention of entertainment software that sounds breathtakingly similar to Netflix). The city's enclosurethe crust of the circlewould house a massive recycling center to which all trash would be ferried via underground conveyor belts. Once there, automated machines would sort the refuse for proper salvaging.

Fresco was gruff and humorless throughout the interview, wholly immune to King's attempts at playful banter. At one point, he pronounced, "Sociocyberneering is an organization that is probably the boldest organization ever conceived of, and we're undertaking the most ambitious project in the history of mankind."


Original Submission

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HudsonValleyHost 3GB Windows VPS $7.50/mo and 30% OFF select site items! Low End Box


Nick from HudsonValleyHost sent over a Christmas special, exclusive to Low End Box. All VPS machines utilize hardware RAID-10, ensuring data integrity and high performance and are deployed with enterprise grade equipment. This offer is available at their flagship Buffalo, NY location, which also happens to be where the company is based. Many folks are familiar with the Hudson Valley Host brand manager, @VSNX_Nick on Low End Talk, where he is an active participant in the community. Hudson Valley Host has been posted once before this year, and was first featured on Low End Box in 2010, for those seeking some nostalgia.

Hudson Valley Host is owned and operated by the same company that owns Low End Box and, Velocity Servers Inc.

And without further ado, the offer is as follows:


3GB Windows VPS
  • 3GB RAM
  • 2x vCPU
  • 60GB SSD Space
  • 3TB Transfer
  • 1Gbps Uplink
  • 1x IPv4
  • Windows Server 2008, 2012 or 2016
  • KVM/SolusVM
  • $7.50/mo [Order Now]
  • 1GB RAM
  • 1x vCPU
  • 30GB HDD Space
  • 2TB Transfer
  • 1Gbps Uplink
  • 1x IPv4
  • Linux/App Templates (One click install)
  • KVM/SolusVM
  • $3.00/mo [Order Now]

2017HOLIDAYS for 30% off on the HudsonValleyHost site except for hybrids, managed services, dedicated servers, windows VPSs, domains, addons and licenses.

Accepted payment methods are through PayPal, Credit Cards and Bitcoin. Servers will be setup instantly once your payment has been made, given that you dont trigger any fraud protection measures. Nick and his team strive to provide amazing 24/7 help desk support as well as live chat and hes indicated that he will be available to personally assist customers as needed. As usual, we suggest you the Terms of Service before purchasing.

Network information:
Buffalo, NY, USA ColoCrossing
Test IP:
Test file: http://lg.buf...


The WiFi Repeater You Probably Have on Your Bench Hackaday

Few things are as frustrating as a WiFi signal that drops in and out. On a public network it is bad enough but at home? Even if you can live with it, your cohabitants will certainly impune your technical abilities if they dont have solid WiFi.  One solution is a WiFi repeater. You can buy one, of course. But you can also make one out of an ESP8266 and some code from GitHub. There is also a video about the project, below.

[Martin Gers] code implements NAT, so it isnt a true WiFi repeater, but more of a bridge or router. Of course, that means performance isnt stellar, but tests show it can sustain about 5 Mbps, which isnt bad for a little board that costs a couple of bucks. There is a limit of 8 clients, but thats more than enough for a lot of cases. Even if you dont want to use it as a router, it has a mesh mode that could be a basis for some interesting projects all by itself.

There is a web-based configuration for common setup, and a console on port 7777 or the serial port to do advanced things like port mapping or static DHCP addressing. There is a simple firewall and of particular interest an MQTT client built-in.

Another neat feature is the optional automesh mode that lets several of the repeaters self-organize. To do this, [Martin] needed a way to know which repeaters were close to the real WiFi. When in this mode, the repeaters actually mutate their MAC addresses to provide this information. This is an unusual solution, to say the least. The MAC addresses all start with 24:24 to avoid other devices, but it is odd for a device to dynamically change its MAC address. Or maybe its creative, we couldnt decide.

If you just want to extend your self-made RS232 network, you can still use an ESP8266. This isnt, of course, the first ESP8266 weve seen substituting for a commercial consumer product.

Filed under: Wireless Hacks ...


Text-Only News Sites Are Slowly Making a Comeback SoylentNews

Submitted via IRC for Bytram

A few days before Hurricane Irma hit South Florida, I received a query on Twitter from a graphic designer named Eric Bailey.

"Has anyone researched news sites capability to provide low-bandwidth communication of critical info during crisis situations?" he asked.

The question was timely two days later, CNN announced that they created a text-only version of their site with no ads or videos.

The same week, NPR began promoting its text-only site, on social media as a way for people with limited Internet connectivity during Hurricane Irma to receive updated information.

These text-only sites which used to be more popular in the early days of the Internet, when networks were slower and bandwidth was at a premium are incredibly useful, and not just during natural disasters. They load much faster, don't contain any pop-ups or ads or autoplay videos, and help people with low bandwidth or limited Internet access. They're also beneficial for people with visual impairments who use screen readers to navigate the Internet. (Related: Designing Journalism Products for Accessibility.)


Original Submission

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Hinkley Point: The Dreadful Deal Behind the Worlds Most Expensive Power Plant

Disclosure: I sell solar power systems in New Zealand. Via: Guardian: Hinkley Point, on the Somerset coast, is the biggest building site in Europe. Here, on 430 acres of muddy fields scattered with towering cranes and bright yellow diggers, the first new nuclear power station in the UK since 1995 is slowly taking shape. []



An Overview of the Kontena Platform Gregarious Mammal

The big question with any paid service is whether the cost justifies the features. Let's break down the Kontena SaaS platform so you can decide.

Interfacing with a Digital Speedometer Hackaday

After swapping the engine out in his scooter, [James Stanley] made an unfortunate discovery. The speedometer was digitally controlled, and while the original engine had a sensor which would generate pulses for it to interpret, his new engine didnt. Learning that the original sensor would pull the signal wire to ground each time it detected a tooth of one of the spinning gears, [James] reasoned he needed to find a way to detect the scooters speed and create these pulses manually.

To find the scooters speed, he installed a magnet on the front wheel and a hall effect sensor on the fork to detect each time it passed by. Since the wheel is of a known circumference, timing the pulses from the sensor allows calculation of the current speed. A GPS receiver could be used if you wanted fewer wires, but the hall effect sensor on the wheel is simple and reliable. With the speed of the scooter now known, he needed to turn that into a signal the speedometer understands.

Speedometer controller potted with resin.

[James] wrote a program for an ATmega that would take the input from the wheel sensor and use it to create a PWM signal...

HPR2452: Hydraulic Heavy Scale Project Hacker Public Radio

Hydraulic Heavy Scale Project by David Whitman Why? - to weigh a heavy object yourself Not very difficult. Can be done in about 1/2 hour by someone who has experience doing this type of stuff. Lots longer for beginners. Things you will need: A drill motor, The right size bit for a small pilot hole and the right size bit for a fitting to connect the jack cylinder to the pressure gauge, A Thread TAP to make threads to connect the hydraulic 90 degree fitting to the jack, Some pipe dope is not a bad idea, A 90 degree appropriately sized fitting to connect a pressure gauge to the jack, a vise is nice, a wrench to dismantle the jack, A way to accurately measure the cylinder bore (best is a caliper) and some oil to refill the jack. This link is a youtube to help you visualize the steps. Hate this episode? No problem. Do a better one


Wikileaks Doubles Down on Cryptocurrencies to Thwart US Financial Censorship SoylentNews

Julian Assange has exposed an apparent attempt by the US intelligence apparatus to undermine funding to WikiLeaks, using institutions he established for the express purpose of protecting potential donors from the authorities.

In a Twitter thread, posted Sunday, Assange alleges "politically induced financial censorship" that violates not only US donors' First Amendment rights but also their right to freedom of association. "US donors are the majority of our donor base," Assange wrote, as he nears the conclusion of what will be his eighth year of exile in the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

Original Submission

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MPV Player 0.28 Adds Initial Vulkan Support Phoronix

The MPlayer-forked MPV Player is out with a new feature release that presents several interesting features...


Deepest condolences Noise to Signal

Condolence cards for poor Skype connections, failed operating system upgrades, lost Word documents, exceeded data caps, waterlogged phones, data breaches and subscription models. Oh, and Facebook Messenger.

Condolence cards just havent kept up with the everyday tragedies of the digital era. Herein, my meager attempt to remedy that.

See more cartoons about social media, business and the way we live and work online at Noise to Signal Cartoon



US Navy Tweets about Julian Assange after his account disappeared HackRead

By Carolina

While people around the world are celebrating Christmas, WikiLeaks founder

This is a post from Read the original post: US Navy Tweets about Julian Assange after his account disappeared


Back to Immortality Lifeboat News: The Blog

Currently have telomerase which can immortalize human cells in a petri dish. Currently we have stem cells and we can take regular cells even from someone who is 100 years old and we can deprogram the cells back to a pluripotent stem cell state. This is effectively de-aging the cells. There is an effort by some researchers (not Dr West) to achieve partial reprogramming of cells. This would be to use the reprogramming mechanisms to de-age cells while retaining differentiation.

Dr West mentions in the fifth video that he strongly disapproves of current stem cell treatment centers.

Dr. West notes that people did not believe that immortalizing human cells (even in a petri dish was possible). This was a belief held until the 1980s. Even Dr. Hayflick thought it was extremely unlikely to be achieved. Hayflick had found over 300 changes in the cells as they divided and reached their limit of division.


Windows 10: tar and curl Support is Coming SoylentNews

Submitted via IRC for TheMightyBuzzard

Microsoft plans to integrate the command line tools tar and curl in the next feature update of Windows 10, out in March 2018.

While we don't know the full name of the next feature update yet, it is clear that it will feature major improvements and additions unlike the rather bleak Fall Creators Update.

Microsoft did mention previously that it plans to publish a major update and later on in the year another update that refines it (see Too many Windows 10 feature updates for an opinion piece on that release strategy).

It is pretty clear though that Microsoft is turning Windows 10 into a jack of all trades system. After adding SSH client and server support in the Fall Creators Update, it now revealed that tar and curl support are coming to Windows 10 as well.

Linux users may shrug their shoulders at this point as the two command line tools have been part of Linux for a long time.


Original Submission

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25dec2017 Trivium


Nuclear drones are not technically challenging and could fly for years Lifeboat News: The Blog

From 20082011, Sandia National Labs and Northrop Grumman designed nuclear drones that would be able to fly for many months.

China has put $3.3 billion into making new highly compact nuclear reactors which would also use for nuclear powered drones.

The potential impact of nuclear-powered drones can be seen by comparing them with existing aircraft such as the MQ-9 Reaper, which is used extensively in Afghanistan and Pakistan in operations against insurgents. The Reaper presently carries nearly two tonnes of fuel in addition a similar weight of munitions and other equipment and can stay airborne for around 42 hours, or just 14 hours when fully loaded with munitions.


How Much Of A Battery Pack Does Your Electric Car Need? Hackaday

[Elon Musk] recently staged one of his characteristic high-profile product launches, at which he unveiled a new Tesla electric semi-truck. It was long on promise and short on battery pack weight figures, so of course [Real Engineering] smelled a rat. His video investigating the issue is below the break, but its not the link that caught our eye for this article. As part of the investigation he also created an online calculator to estimate the battery size required for a given performance on any electric vehicle.

Its very interesting from a technical standpoint to see a credible attempt at an electric truck, and we hope that the existing truck manufacturers will show us more realistic prototypes of their own. But we cant help thinking that the overall efficiency of electric long-distance trucking could be improved hugely were they to make a truck capable of hauling more than one trailer at once. Any safety issues could be offset by giving these super-trucks their own highways, and with such dedicated infrastructure the power could be supplied from roadside cables rather than heavy batteries. In such circumstances these long trains of electrically hauled containers could be rather successful, perhaps we might call them railroads.

Filed under: Transportation Hacks


Gift-Wrapped Manure Causes Bomb Scare at Steven Mnuchin's House SoylentNews

A suspicious package that turned out to contain horse manure sparked a bomb scare near the Los Angeles home of US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, reports say.

The gift-wrapped manure was found at 19:40 (03:40 GMT) at the home next to Mr Mnuchin's in Bel-Air, police said.

Police cleared the package an hour later and the Secret Service is investigating, CBS said.

There were a lot of frustrated neighbors. Including Zsa Zsa Gabor's widower.

"We have $50 million homes and we can't move, we can't get out," Prince Frederick von Anhalt, who was trapped for two hours, said. "That's bad, they have to find another way."

Original Submission

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Fedora Rawhide Flips On New SATA Power Management Policy Phoronix

If you are running Fedora Rawhide (their daily/development packages) and using an Intel mobile chipset, be forewarned that they are enabling the SATA link power change that runs the slight risk of potentially causing disk corruption...


Experts discovered a flaw in GoAhead that affects hundreds of thousands IoT devices Security Affairs

Experts from Elttam discovered a flaw in GoAhead tiny web server that affects hundreds of thousands IoT devices, it could be exploited to remotely execute malicious code on affected devices.

A vulnerability in the GoAhead tiny web server package, tracked as CVE-2017-17562, affects hundreds of thousands of IoT devices. The GoAhead solution is widely adopted by tech giants, including Comcast, IBM, Boeing, Oracle, D-Link, ZTE, HP, Siemens, and Canon. It is easy to find the tiny web server in almost any IoT device, including printers and routers.

The vulnerability was discovered by experts from the security firm Elttam who devised a method to remotely execute malicious code on devices running the GoAhead web server package. The flaw affects all GoAhead versions before GoAhead 3.6.5.

This blog post details CVE-2017-17562, a vulnerability which can be exploited to gain reliable remote code execution in all versions of the GoAhead web server < 3.6.5. reads the analysis published by Elttam

The vulnerability is a result of Initialising the environment of forked CGI scripts using untrusted HTTP request parameters, and will affect all users who have CGI support enabled with dynamically linked executables (CGI scripts). This behavior, when combined with the glibc dynamic linker, can be abused for remote code execution using special variables such as LD_PRELOAD (commonly used to perform function hooking, see preeny).

Attackers can exploit the vulnerability if the CGI support is enabled with dynamically linked CGI program. Unfortunately, this configuration is quite common.

Elttam reported the vulnerability to Embedthis, the company who developed the web server, that promptly released an update that addresses the flaw.

Now it is important that hardware manufacturers will include the patch in the instances of the GoAhead running into their products, but this process could take a lot of time.

To have an idea of the impact of such flaw it is possible to query the Shodan search engine, a number of devices between 500,000 and 700,000 could be affected.



Opera 50 Beta Version to Come with Cryptocurrency Mining Blocker HackRead

By Waqas

Opera browser developers have good news for web users annoyed

This is a post from Read the original post: Opera 50 Beta Version to Come with Cryptocurrency Mining Blocker


AMDGPU DC Patches To Test This Christmas Phoronix

For those with extra time this holiday week, AMD recently published their latest patch queue of DC "display code" updates...


Security updates for a holiday Monday

Security updates have been issued by Debian (enigmail, gimp, irssi, kernel, rsync, ruby1.8, and ruby1.9.1), Fedora (json-c and kernel), Mageia (libraw and transfig), openSUSE (enigmail, evince, ImageMagick, postgresql96, python-PyJWT, and thunderbird), Slackware (mozilla), and SUSE (evince).


ATMs running on Windows XP in Russia hacked by pressing Shift key 5 times TechWorm

Security vulnerability found in ATM machines running Windows XP in Russia

All ATMs that are still running on Microsofts 16-year-old Windows XP operating system are at the risk of getting hacked easily, as the OS is no longer supported by the Redmond giant except for emergency security patches (for instance, patch blocking the WannaCry ransomware released this year).

An employee of Russian blogging platform Habrahabr recently discovered that the ATMs operated by the state-owned bank Sberbank running Windows XP has inherent security vulnerabilities that can be easily exploited by hackers.

According to the user, a full screen lock that prevents access to various components of an ATM operating system could be bypassed by turning on the Sticky Keys when special keys like SHIFT, CTRL, ALT, and WINDOWS were pressed 5 times.

By pressing SHIFT key 5 times in a row, it allowed access to Windows settings and displaying the taskbar and Start menu of the operating system giving users to access deep within Windows XP from the touch screen. This vulnerability allow hackers to deploy malicious software or modify ATM boot scripts.

According to the German website WinFuture, Sberbank had been informed of this vulnerability almost two weeks ago that there was a security breach at its ATM machine. While the bank promised to fix the problem immediately, the user who discovered the flaw claimed that when he visited the terminal again, he discovered that the bug hadnt been fixed.


The post ATMs running on Windows XP in Russia hacked by pressing Shift key 5 times appeared first on TechWorm.


Lizard Squad And PoodleCorp Co-Founder Pleads Guilty To DDoS Attacks TechWorm

Lizard Squads founding member pleads guilty for running hacking-for-hire service

A Maryland man has pleaded guilty in a federal court in Chicago for operating a hacker-for-hire service that shut down company websites and targeted victims for as little as $20 for online harassment.

Zachary Buchta, a 20-year-old admitted in his plea agreement with prosecutors confessed to launching cyberattacks and harassment campaigns as a founding member of the hacker-for-hire groups Lizard Squad and PoodleCorp, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Butcha pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit damage to protected computers a charge that can carry a sentence of up to 10 years in prison. However, Butcha has agreed to a plea agreement that will see him co-operate in the investigation, thereby reducing his jail term to two and a half years.

Lizard Squad rose to international prominence over Christmas 2014 when it launched massive DDoS attacks on Sonys PlayStation Network (PSN) and Microsofts Xbox Live crippling their platforms, as well as initiating so-called phone-bombing schemes that inundated victims with harassing phone calls as well as general threats made to the FBI. In January 2015, they claimed to have taken over the social media accounts of pop singer, Taylor Swift.

On the other hand, PoodleCorp also hit gaming giants servers including Blizzard, EA, Rockstar Games and Niantic among others.

Buchta, who went by several screen names and handles pein, @fbiarelosers, lizard and xotehpoodle has also agreed to pay $350,000 in restitution to two online gaming companies that he helped to target.

Buchta and another defendant and fellow Lizard Squad and PoodleCorp core member Bradley Jan Willem Van Rooy, of the Netherlands, were both 19 when they were arrested in October of 2016 in connection with paid attacks on all kinds of victims, ranging from individuals to online-gaming companies. Van Roy is awaiting trial on similar charges in the Europe, following an investigation that began in 2015 and resulted in inter-agency cooperation between U.S. and Netherlands cyber-authorities. These charges are among the first brought in the U.S. against the alleged members of Lizard Squad.

The 61-page complaint alleged Buchta and the Dutch co-defendant operated websites that enabled paying customers to select victims to receive repeated harassing phone calls from spoofed numbers via the site

The DOJ released an example of his calls in 2016 which were heavily censored: Better look over your [expletive] back because I dont flying [expletive] if we have to burn your [expletive] house down, if we have to [expletive] track your [expletive] family down, we will [expletive] your...


Benefits of Bitcoin Forex Trading On MetaTrader Software TechWorm

The most popular forex trading platforms are the MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5. This is because these platforms are technologically advanced and offer enhanced security. This enables traders to place trades without worrying about the platforms stability. It is the key features of these platforms that enable traders to accurately monitor and precisely enter and exit the forex market.

When it comes to trading Bitcoins, there are a couple of options available to traders. They can buy the cryptocurrency from a Bitcoin exchange and hold it till the price has risen to the expected level and then sell. Investors can also trade Bitcoins on these exchanges which have mushroomed in the recent times. Either way, what they are doing is trading the variation in the value of the cryptocurrency.

Yet another option is to trade Bitcoins on forex trading platforms. Typically, they enable traders to trade the cryptocurrency against USD or EUR. They also offer Bitcoin-based CFDs. All these involve trading value variance. What is fundamentally different from trading on exchanges is that the traders do not have to actually possess the Bitcoin because it is used as an underlying asset.

As such, Bitcoin trading on forex platforms provides traders with the best of both worlds. Read on to know more about the advantages of working with Cryptocurrency MetaTrader Brokers.

#1: Safety and Security

The Bitcoin exchanges do present several options to traders. However, they are very unstable and are often susceptible to scams. A large number of exchanges that have cropped up after the introduction of the Bitcoin are no longer there now. As a result of this, many investors have lost their investments. Some of the exchanges are reliable, but some others are nothing but scams.

Though the same conditions prevail in online forex trading as well, the situation is far better compared to that of the Bitcoin exchanges. The reason is that it is always possible for you to choose to work only with regulated forex trading platform providers. This is because these forex brokers are required by law to comply with certain stringent stipulations and also meet the specified capital adequacy norms. Additionally, they are required to keep their funds and that of their clients in segregated accounts. This ensures a great deal of safety and security to traders.

#2: Cost of Trades

Forex brokerages often build all of the trading costs into the s...


Analog Equivalent Rights (5/21): Where did Freedom of Assembly go? Falkvinge on Liberty


Privacy:Our analog parents had the right to meet whomever they liked, wherever they liked, and discuss whatever they liked, without the government knowing. Our digital children have lost this, just because they use more modern items.

For a lot of our digital childrens activities, theres no such thing as privacy anymore, as they naturally take place on the net. For people born 1980 and later, it doesnt make sense to talk of offline or online activities. What older people see as people spending time with their phone or computer, younger see as socializing using their phone or computer.

This is an important distinction that the older generation tends to not understand.

Perhaps this is best illustrated with an anecdote from the previous generation again: The parents of our parents complained that our parents were talking with the phone, and not to another person using the phone. What our parents saw as socializing (using an old analog landline phone), their parents in turn saw as obsession with a device. Theres nothing new under the sun.

(Note: when I say digital children here, I am not referring to children as in young people below majority age; I am referring to the next generation of fully capable adult professionals.)

This digital socializing, however, can be limited, it can be permissioned. As in, requiring somebodys permission to socialize in the way you and your friends want, or even to socialize at all. The network effects are strong and create centralizing pressure toward a few platforms where everybody hang out, and as these are private services, they get to set any terms and conditions they like for people assembling and socializing for the billions of people assembling and socializing there.

Just as one example to illustrate this: Facebook is using American values for socializing, not universal values. Being super-against anything even slightly naked while being comparatively accepting of hate speech is not something inherently global; it is strictly American. If Facebook had been developed in France or Germany instead of the US, any and all nudity would be welcomed as art and free-body culture (Freikrperkultur) and a completely legitimate way of socializing, but the slightest genocide questioning would lead to an insta-kickban and reporting...


World's Largest Amphibious Plane in Production Takes Flight in China SoylentNews

The world's largest amphibious aircraft, China's AG600, has made a successful one-hour maiden flight.

The plane, roughly the size of a Boeing 737 but with four turboprop engines, lifted off from Zhuhai airport in the southern province of Guangdong.

The plane can carry 50 people and can stay airborne for 12 hours.

It has firefighting and marine rescue duties but also military applications, which could be put to use in the disputed South China Sea region. The AG600, codenamed Kunlong, can reach the southernmost edge of China's territorial claims in the area.

State media Xinhua described the plane as "protector spirit of the sea, islands and reefs".

Original Submission

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Links 25/12/2017: Linux 4.15 RC5 and New Stable Kernels Techrights

GNOME bluefish



  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 4.15-rc5

      Ok, so its not Sunday yet, but tomorrow is Christmas Eve, and while Ive been in the US for over two decades, we still celebrate Christmas the only _right_ way with Christmas Eve being the big day, and Christmas Day being just for recovery.

      So Im doing the rc5 release a day early, in order to not have to do it during the actual Christmas festivities at our house.

      And its not like I expect to see a lot of patches or pull requests tomorrow anyway, so I guess it doesnt really much matter when I do the rc release, the end result would look very similar even if I had done it on my normal Sunday schedule.

      This (shortened) week ended up being fairly normal for rc5, with the exception of the ongoing merging of the x86 low-level prep for kernel page table isolation that continues and is noticeable. In fact, about a third of the rc5 patch is x86 updates due to that. It all looks like very good cleanups, though, and its been through about two hundred iterations by now (no, seriously, Thomas has been keeping track of his iterative updates of the PTI series, and it apparently hit 196 in the last two months).

    • Linus Torvalds Releases Fifth Linux Kernel 4.15 Release Candidate for Christmas

      A day early than expected, Linus Torvalds released the fifth Release Candidate of the upcoming Linux 4.15 kernel for testing, just before the Christmas holidays.

      Because its almost Christmas, and the end of the year holidays are here, most Linux kernel developers took a short vacation to be with their family and friends, so Linux kernel 4.15 RC5 ended up being fairly normal, according to Linus Torvalds, except for an ongoing and noticeable merging of the x86 low-level preparation for kernel page table isolation. So a third of the RC5 patch is x86 updates.

    • ...


Julian Assanges Twitter Account Reappears After Mysterious Absence

Via: CBS: The official Twitter account of controversial WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange @JulianAssange is back online after disappearing from the social media platform overnight. Its unclear whether the account was suspended by Twitter or deactivated by Assange. Representatives at Twitter did not immediately respond to CBS News request for comment.


Merry Christmas to all my readers, LinkedIn connections, Twitter followers, Peerlysters and Quorans The S@vvy_Geek Tips Tech Blog

Merry Christmas to all of you and a happy 2018.

Best of success for anything you want.

As for myself, I hope the new year will bring me a new job.

This year was foundational to me, as I achieved two Associate's degree and a Security+ certification.

I hope 2018 will be the year for my return to the info sec industry.

We'll see.

So far, I'm grateful for a bunch of things but mostly for the people I interacted with over this year.

They all pushed me a little further.

Thank you all, guys.

Ms Jelena's Blog: Merry Christmas / Srecan Bozic!!!!


Some holiday stable kernel updates

The 4.14.9, 4.9.72, 4.4.108, and 3.18.90 stable kernel updates have been released with a large set of important fixes. The 4.14.9 update includes the kernel page-table isolation precursor patches that also just landed in 4.15-rc5.


FilePursuit Finds Amazing Files All Year Round, Not Just at Christmas TorrentFreak

Ask someone to name a search engine and its likely that 95 out of 100 will say Google. There are plenty of others, of course, but its sheer dominance means that even giants like Bing have to wait around for a mention.

However, if people are looking for something special, such as video and music files, for example, theres an interesting search engine thats largely flying under the radar. FilePursuit, accessible via the web or directly from its dedicated Android apps, is somewhat of a revelation.

What FilePursuit does is trawl the Internet looking for web servers that are not only packed with content but are readily accessible to the outside world. This means that a search on the site invariably turns up treasure troves of material, all of it for immediate and direct HTTP download.

TorrentFreak caught up with the operator of the site who himself is a very interesting character.

Im a 21-year-old undergrad student from New Delhi, India, currently studying engineering. I started this file search engine project all by myself to learn web development and this is my first project, he informs TF.

I picked this project because I was surprised to find that there are lots of open directory websites and no one is maintaining any type of record or database on them. There are thousands of open directory websites containing a lot of amazing stuff not discovered yet, so I made them discoverable.

Plenty of files from almost any search

FilePursuit began its life around September 2016 and since then has been receiving website submission requests (sites to be indexed by FilePursuit) from people all over the world. As such the platform is somewhat of a community effort but in respect of running the operation, its all done by one man.

FilePursuit saves time in two ways: by eliminating the need to find file manually, and by performing searches at high speeds efficiently. Without this, you would have to look at sites one by one and pore over the contents of each carefully a tedious prospect, he explains.

FilePursuit automatically compares your criteria to billions of webpages and gives you results in a fraction of a second. You can perform hundreds of searches in the course of a few minutes, altering the criteria as you narrow down results.

So if Google dominates the search space, why doesnt it do a better job of finding files than the relatively l...


VLC 3.0-RC3 Released With Hardware Decoding That Works On All Platforms Phoronix

VLC lead developer Jean-Baptiste Kempf has released the big VLC 3.0-RC3 update for Christmas...


Breakthroughs for Diabetes Treatments Lifeboat News: The Blog

Recently pharma firms have released new diabetes treatments, including one in the past week. Whats more, a promising new therapy that attacks the cause of type 2 diabetes at its roots is in the development pipeline.

Summary: Recently pharmaceutical firms have released new diabetes treatments, including one in the past week. Moreover, a promising new therapy that attacks the root cause of type 2 diabetes is in the development pipeline. [This article first appeared on the website. Author: Brady Hartman. ]

The CDC recently shocked the public when they reported that 40% of Americans walking around today would develop type 2 diabetes.

Many people develop type 2 diabetes as they age because their bodys response to insulin the hormone that controls sugar levels gets weaker.


HiFormance 1GB KVM for $2.08/mo and much more! Low End Box

Merry Christmas Everyone! Kyle from HiFormance is back with some awesome sales for the holiday season, and were pleased to be able to pass them along to you guys!

Heres a note from the company

My name is Kyle from and we are fast growing SSD VPS company. We would like to offer the LEB community with exciting deals. We currently offer 6 mainstream locations with both KVM and OpenVZ virtualization (NEW).

Our focus is to offer the highest performance at the most affordable pricing. We have highly experienced and dedicated staff members that will go above and beyond support. We are about customer experience and satisfaction guarantee!
Their WHOIS is public, theyre currently working on registering as an LLC, the accept PayPal and Credit Card, and you can find their legal docs at the following links:
**Pre-pay 3-years to get double CPU, memory, SSD or IP address!**

Heres the offers: 

KVM VPS Offer #1:
1 x CPU
512MB Memory
10GB SSD RAID Storage
1TB Premium BW
1Gbps Uplink
1 x IPv4
[ORDER] $1.25/Month (Pre-pay 3-years to get either Double Memory, IPs, CPU or SSD space)

KVM VPS Offer #2:

1 x CPU
1GB Memory
15GB SSD RAID Storage
2TB Premium BW
1Gbps Uplink
1 x IPv4
[ORDER] $2.08/Month (Pre-pay 3-years to get either Double Memory, IPs, CPU or SSD space)

Additional Offers/Network Info:  

OpenVZ VPS Offer #1
1 x CPU
1 GB Ram
15GB SSD Disk
2TB Bandwidth
1Gbps Uplink
1 x IPv4
[ORDER] $1.25/Month (Pre-pay 3-years to get either Double Memory, IPs, CPU or SSD space)

 OpenVZ VPS Offer #2

2 x CPU
2 GB Ram
25GB SSD Disk...


NVIDIA May Be Trying To Prevent GeForce GPUs From Being Used In Data Centers Phoronix

Making the rounds on the Internet this holiday weekend is an updated NVIDIA GeForce software license agreement prohibiting the use of their drivers in data-center deployments for consumer GPUs...


Man Arrested for Threatening Firm with Cyber Attacks for Not Hiring Him HackRead

By Waqas

There is a reason there has been an increase in

This is a post from Read the original post: Man Arrested for Threatening Firm with Cyber Attacks for Not Hiring Him


FDA Approves First Ever Gene Therapy for Inherited Disease Lifeboat News: The Blog

The success of a gene therapy for blindness caused by a genetic mutation paves the way for gene therapies which treat other forms of blindness as well as similar treatments which treat other diseases.

FDA approves novel gene therapy to treat patients with a rare form of blindness. The first gene therapy approved for inherited disease.


Breakthrough Cures for Respiratory Diseases and COPD in the Pipeline Lifeboat News: The Blog

In a paradigm shift, scientists are starting to regard respiratory disease as a disease of aging and scientists at the Mayo Clinic reversed symptoms of a lung disease in mice using age-reversing senolytic compounds. In addition to senolytics, researchers are developing other treatments for respiratory conditions such as gene therapy.

Summary: In a paradigm shift, scientists are starting to regard respiratory disease as a disease of aging and scientists at the Mayo Clinic reversed symptoms of a lung disease in mice using age-reversing senolytic compounds. In addition to senolytics, researchers are developing other treatments for respiratory conditions such as gene therapy. [This article first appeared on the website Author: Brady Hartman.]

All of us both smokers and non-smokers alike will lose significant lung capacity as we age. Scientists at the Mayo Clinic have developed a promising treatment that rejuvenates the damaged lungs of mice using anti-aging compounds called senolytics.

The Mayo Clinic researchers showed evidence linking the biology of aging with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), a disease of aging that impairs lung function and causes fatigue, shortness of breath, declining quality of life, and, ultimately, death. The Mayo Clinic team showed that the lungs of human IPF patients are full of senescent cells, and treatment with senolytics reversed symptoms of the lung disease in mice. Moreover, because senolytics have general age-reversing effects, the Mayo researchers hope to test the therapy on seniors with IPF as well as other lung diseases of aging.


Santa's Reindeer: Missing Facts SoylentNews

AlterNet reports:

We've been getting Rudolph completely wrong.

For a start, Rudolph and team are probably female. All the images I've seen of Rudolph clearly show a reindeer proudly sporting antlers. Reindeer are the only deer where both sexes grow antlers, but the males lose them around Christmas time and regrow them in the spring, ready for the mating season. The only way a male reindeer can hang on to his magnificent headgear through the festive season is to be castrated. Losing the source of the sex hormones upsets the antler cycle--and probably the reindeer too.

We need to talk about that nose as well. The red glow from Rudolph's most famous attribute is probably caused by something more serious than a bad cold. Reindeer noses are a brilliant product of evolutionary adaptation to a harsh environment. The nasal passages contain many elaborate folds covered in blood vessels. When a reindeer breathes in, the abundant blood vessels warm up the air keeping the inside of the reindeer nice and warm even when the air around it is sub-zero. On the way out, the same blood vessels cool the air, minimising heat loss and retaining as much water vapour as possible.

The unfortunate downside of such an intricate nasal arrangement is that it is a very comfortable spot for parasites to lurk. There are 20 parasites unique to mainland reindeer, and many others that are just as happy in reindeer or other ruminants. That red nose is therefore probably due to parasitic infection and increased blood flow to the area where the body is doing its best to fight off invaders.

The article also addresses flying and mentions magic mushrooms, which we discussed during a previous Yule: How Santa Flies, Fits Down Chimneys, and Does Stuff You Can't Do

Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.


Raw: Philip Cordery Urged France to Withdraw/End Battistellis Presidency at the EPO Techrights

Pieyre-Alexandre AngladeIt remains to be seen what his successor (since June of this year), Pieyre-Alexandre Anglade (shown to the left), will do as the next EPO President (June next year) is also French

Summary: Translation of a letter composed by Philip Cordery about four years ago when there was an opportunity to salvage the EPO by removing Benot Battistelli

For the attention of the Minister

Dear Sir,

I am writing to draw your attention to the extremely deleterious social climate which has prevailed for a number of months at the European Patent Office (EPO), the facilities of which are based at the Hague, Brussels, Vienna, Munich, and Berlin.

I have been approached by the staff union of the European Patent Office and by a number of French officials, who have expressly requested me to safeguard their anonymity in fear of reprisals, with regard to failure to respect the fundamental rights of the employees. A number of articles in the press have likewise been reporting on this in local newspapers.

The facts speak for themselves. The exercise of the right to strike has been violated and threats of disciplinary sanctions have been abusively applied in order to limit the right of
the staff to express themselves. The union has been muzzled, and disciplinary sanctions imposed on a dozen union representatives. Certain employees have likewise been subjected to suspension and demotion in status for reasons which are both abusive and fallacious. Two cases of suicide have even occurred in the past few years, one at the Hague during working hours.

The situation has become a matter of extreme concern for the vast majority of the 7,000 employees who work within the EPO without enjoying the protection accorded by national law in matters of the right to work, which has rendered them particularly vulnerable. A number of decisions taken recently by the organization are contrary to French and European law, which is totally unacceptable for an international organization based in the territory of the European Union.

This incurs the risk in due course of affecting the role and efficiency of the institution itself, in its mission of European and international public service. This antisocial policy, pursued by a former French functiona...


The Most Tasteful Of Christmas Sweaters Come With A Trainset Hackaday

Ah, Christmas, the time of festive good cheer, cherubic carol-singers standing in the crunchy snow, church bells ringing out across the frozen landscape, Santa Claus in his red suit flying down the chimney with a sack of presents, the scent of Christmas meals cooking heavy upon the air, and a Canadian guy wearing a trainset.

Wait a minute, we hear you say, a Canadian guy wearing a trainset? Thats right, not satisfied with the sheer awfulness of his ugly Christmas sweater on its own, [BD594] made it extra-special by incorporating a working Christmas tree trainset into the ensemble. As if the discovery that Christmas tree trainsets are a thing was not enough, we are treated to the spectacle of one on a plywood ring suspended from a particularly obnoxious Christmas-themed garment. Not all hacks are in good taste, and in fairness we have to note that this one is tagged as comedy rather than railroad engineering.

You can view the result in the video below the break. Its short on technical detail, which is a slight shame as even though there are few mysteries in powering a small trainset it might be interesting to know how the method used to suspend the baseboard. Wed suspect a harness underneath that jumper, as Christmas garments are built for looks rather than strength.

Filed under: Holiday Hacks, News


Marek Boosts Glxgears Performance By 20% For Christmas Phoronix

Well known open-source AMD driver developer Marek Olk has taken to some Christmas day hacking on Mesa with a significant performance improvement for AMD APU owners and those who care about glxgears...


Raw: Battistellis Circle (Topi and Bergot) Undermines Justice at the European Patent Office Techrights

MoU signed by Bergot
Photo op from last year (Battistelli, Topi and Bergot shoulder to shoulder)

Summary: The managers of the European Patent Office (EPO) continue to demonstrate that the concept of justice seems outlandish to them

Mr eljko Topi
Vice-President DG4
ISAR R.707

Request for information re appeals

Dear Mr Topi,

We continue to be approached by colleagues who inform us that their unanimous positive recommendation of the Internal Appeals Committee (IAC) has been rejected either by you or by PD4.3 (Ms Bergot). We have the same experience ourselves: in fact, we are not aware of a single positive opinion having been respected by you or your staff in 2013 and 2014.

Should the above perception prove to be correct, then this would amount to a systematic abuse of the internal appeal process and a denial of justice for EPO staff. The President (or person to which he has delegated this authority) is required to take the opinion of the Internal Appeal Committee fully into account when taking a final decision.

We are also informed that the backlog of internal appeals have exceeded 700 cases. We have understood that rather than taking measures to increase the capacity of the appeal system, the resources available have been reduced in 2013. At current expected processing rates of less than 100 cases per year, a complainant cannot expect to receive a final decision in less than 7 years.

The above problems undermine the integrity of the appeal process and may already represent a systematic failure of access to justice. One outcome will be an unnecessary increase in cases before the ILOAT. But is it also likely that an increasing number of cases will be filed in national courts since access to justice internally can no longer be guaranteed.

In order to clarify the situation, we request detailed information on the following:

- the number of cases treated in 2013
- the number of unanimous and majority positive opinions in 2013
- the number of these positive opinions not followed by the President.

At the same time, we remind you of a letter (copy attached) we sent to the Internal Appeals Committee on 15 November 2013, wherein we requested information on the case-load backlog. In their response, the Secretariat informed us that they were in the process of preparing a full report on their activities which was due to be finished in early 2014. Since this may provide at least a partial answer to some of our questions, we would appreciate receiving a copy of the report.

Thank you for your understanding and we look forward to receiving all pertinent information.

Yours sincerely,

Joachim Michels
Central Staff Committee

cc.: Mr Raimund Lutz, VP5,
Mr Dr...


Raw: Social Democracy at the EPO Means Staff Gets to Comment on Changes That Have Already Been Implemented Anyway Techrights

Original/full: Report on a meeting with members of the Working Group Career [PDF]

EPO social democracy

Summary: What the EPOs management likes to refer to as social democracy is zero consultation with those affected, except after decisions have already been made to harm them


Julian Assange's official Twitter account briefly disappears The Hill: Technology Policy

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's official Twitter account briefly disappeared from the platform before returning Monday morning.Users who tried to access Assange's feed during that time were redirected to a page that said "Sorry,...


Raw: French-Led EPO Gives Air France Non-Exclusive Contract for All Staff Flights (Even Though EPO Lacks Branches in France) Techrights

Reminder: The next President of the EPO will also be French (a lot of top-level management is already French, thanks to Battistellis shamelessness, and the President before his successor was French also)

French EPO

Original/full: English [PDF] | French [PDF]

Air France and EPO

Summary: Its getting hard for the EPO under Battistelli to even hide its French bias, especially with deals/arrangements like the above-mentioned one (EPO has one branch in Austria and two in Germany)


Debian Salsa Is Served Out On A Beta Dish Phoronix

Rolling out as beta this Christmas is Debian Salsa...


Raw: Before Battistelli Sacked Nearly a Handful of Staff Representatives He Warned a Dozen and Had Already Punished Some Techrights

Policy fusion (Turkey too is an EPO member) not based on European standards

Recep Tayyip Erdoan at EPO

Posted last night:

Summary: A letter from the Central Staff Committee (CSC) of the EPO reveals just how far back attacks on staff representatives go

Your open letter dated 6th March 2014

Dear Mr Battistelli,

While paying lip service to social dialogue, you have consistently interfered with the legitimate activities of the Central Staff Committee (CSC). We refer to you recent decisions and consequent actions:

- A referendum on social democracy organised by the CSC was prematurely terminated by the administration.
- Six members of the CSC were threatened with heavy sanctions with respect to the organisation of this referendum.
- Twelve (!) elected staff representatives received written warnings and reprimands.
- A Munich staff representative was downgraded from A4 to A3, despite the unanimous recommendation from the Disciplinary Committee to stop the procedure and pay the subject her legal costs.
- A CSC expert was suspended for allegedly having helped the CSC with the above referendum.

In an open letter to all staff dated 06.03.2014, you now claim that the decision to organise the above referendum had never, in fact, been discussed at CSC level.

Please take note that the referendum was discussed and the decision was taken by the CSC.

Yours sincerely,


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Freedreno Lands Context Priority Support Phoronix

Rob Clark of the Freedreno project has landed his context priority patches in Mesa that originate from this past October...


Theranos Given Indirect Lifeline From Softbank SoylentNews

Theranos gets $100 million in debt financing to carry it through 2018, with some caveats

Theranos has secured $100 million in debt financing. Yes, someone gave the blood testing company known for handing out questionable test results money.

First reported by Business Insider, the company reportedly told investors it had secured the money from Fortress Investment Group, a New York-based private equity firm that was acquired by Softbank earlier this year.

Of course, this is debt financing, not equity and Theranos will surely need it as it has been bleeding money, laying off more than half its workforce this year and trying to come up with ways to keep it afloat.

Previously: Theranos Introduces New Product to Distract from Scandal
Theranos Lays Off 340, Closes Labs and "Wellness Centers"

Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.


Raw: PEACES Initiative of the Staff Union of the EPO Techrights

PEACES Initiative

Summary: Staff representatives tackle Battistellis incoherent lies about reasons for unrest and dictatorial style of management which came under fire by staff


AMD Queues More AMDKFD HSA Kernel Driver Changes For Linux 4.16 Phoronix

More AMDKFD changes are being queued for the upcoming Linux 4.16 kernel merge window with this being the kernel HSA driver for ROCm support, etc...


The Federal Circuit (CAFC) is Doing a Good Job, Which Means Its Hated and Mocked by the Patent Microcosm Techrights

Recent: A High US Court (CAFC) Continues Rejecting Software Patents (Even of Microsofts Patent Trolls)

Sharon ProstSummary: Chief Judge Sharon Prost has turned the highest patent court below the Supreme Court into a decent court which respects the wishes of science and technology professionals (not law firms), which makes it the target of ridicule and criticism from law firms

THE Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) has had a good year. As we said yesterday, CAFC helped eliminate software patents by consistently ruling against them this year. This will hopefully continue next year.

As one can expect, this makes patent maximalists rather hostile toward CAFC. A new sponsored article (paid-for marketing) at IAM frames a good CAFC decision as injustice. This decision is important for life sciences intellectual property, it says, and could significantly impact pharmaceutical compound patenting. Under this holding, existing claims to a large genus of antibodies are far more likely to be invalidated for lack of written description if challenged.

Not only IAM keeps bashing CAFC.Stop patenting life. Its not an invention. Its nature.

Not only IAM keeps bashing CAFC.

Crouch keeps writing about CAFC. When patents are associated with the actions of the controversial TSA, for example, Crouch says that one may attribute TSAs activities to the accused infringer Travel Sentry.

He adds: The...


Gain Access to SSH Group via ssh-agent and OpenSSL Open Source Security

Posted by halfdog on Dec 25

Hello List,

This seems to be just a funny bug and no security problem, as
discussed on open[ssh/ssl]-security. As the sum of knowledge held
by a community is more than the parts, public should allow search
for better solution, thus avoiding an implementation with side
affectects causing more severe troubles in future.


<-- Created by SecurityReportToText.xsl...


Low-Power Motor Can Run for Years on a Coin Cell Hackaday

Can you run an electric motor for two years on a single lithium coin cell? [IamWe] figured out how to do it, and even though his donut motor doesnt look like any motor weve ever seen before, its a pretty solid lesson in low-current design.

The donut motor is really just a brushless DC motor with a sign-pole stator and a multi-pole rotor. The frame of the motor is built from a styrofoam donut, hence the motors name. The rotor is a styrofoam sphere with neodymium magnets embedded around its equator. A sharpened bicycle spoke serves as an axle, and clever magnetic bearings provide near-zero friction rotation. The stator coil comes from an old solenoid and is driven by a very simple two-transistor oscillator. [IamWe]s calculations show that the single CR2032 coin cell should power this motor for over two years. This one looks easy enough to whip up that it might make a nice project for a long winters night. Watch it spin in the video below.

This one seems like a perfect entry for the Coin Cell Challenge contest. Sure, it may not be a coin cell jump starter for your car, but our guess is this motor will still be spinning in 2020, and thats no mean feat.

Filed under: Misc Hacks


Patent Justice Deficit Disorder Techrights


THE questions of ethics in the patent system, often explored by this blogger in Patently-O (not Crouch), are definitely worth entertaining. The patent microcosm does not like to bring these up as that damages its reputation. The latest example:

You get sued and youre thinking youll ultimately win big. Exceptional case. Fees shifted. And you do, and you get an award of $3 million in your favor. But, the patentee is basically a shell and so after a year of trying, you decide to go after its owners, allegedly its alter ego.

Patent shells are a subject we explore quite a lot. Quite a few large companies now operate through patent shells, sometimes patent trolls. When will this problem be tackled? Too many loopholes. We have been writing about this for over a decade.

People are led to believe that the patent system is as simple as an antiquated mythology: a classic inventor coming up with an idea, pursuing a patent, receiving protection from giants etc. The reality is quite different, however, as the lions share of patents (overwhelming majority in fact) gets granted to giants which then use these patents against rivals (or to cross-license with other giants). As for that classic inventor? Thats long gone. Nowadays those are mostly patent trolls; they either apply for some trivial patent (on a trivial idea) or buy a patent from a failing inventor/dying company, often in bulk. The sole purpose is thereafter extortion, not production.

Justice in todays system is elusive. It seems like those with deeper pockets will almost always win at the end. They can just endlessly appeal a decision until their opponent runs out of money. The system has evolved along those lines (facilitating endless disputes which typically benefit the rich, irrespective of guilt/innocence).

The EPO goes along similar trajectories, with overstressed examiners doing all the job and technical judges (with examination experience) being pushed to the brink. Is there even much left for examiners to enjoy in life? They...


A Christmas Carol When Piracy Became Irrelevant TorrentFreak

This is the story of Walter Scroogle, CEO of one of the major movie studios in Hollywood.

It begins on Christmas Eve, with Scroogle arriving home late at night. This wasnt anything unusual, not even on a day like this. The rest of the family didnt expect anything else and were already asleep in anticipation of the forthcoming festivities.

As Scroogle sits down he suddenly notices a pile of Amazon store boxes in the corner of the room. Thank God, he mumbles, Christmas is saved. But it was a close call.

It had been such a hectic week at work. So busy that Scroogle had totally forgot to get this years Christmas presents, one of the few things he arranges around the house. Luckily, modern day technology was there to save the day.

Amazon had everything in stock. The new bike for his son. The tablet for his daughter. The earrings for his wife, as well as many more gifts. It took Scroogle roughly fifteen minutes to get all his Christmas shopping done. And with same-day delivery, it arrived a few hours later. Thank God, he said again.

While a major disaster had been avoided, there were still a few presents to wrap. Apparently, there are no machines that can carefully wrap bikes. So there he was, at 2am Christmas morning, grumpily making the final preparations for the big day.
Halfway through Scroogle decided to lie on the couch for a bit. Just a short while, he promised himself, not knowing what was to come.

After a minute or two an exhausted Scroogle dozed off into his first dream.

Inspired by what had occurred earlier that day, he dreamt about forgetting the Chrismas presents. While he appeared to be his current self, the world was different. There were no Internet stores or even large malls. He had to drive to at least ten different stores to get what he wanted, and given that it was Sunday, most were closed.

Needless to say, it was a disaster.

The second dream was related to something at work. A few hours earlier hed hosted a board meeting, discussing the new streaming platform the company had launched that morning. Scoogle was one of the pioneers. He was also the one who hastily decided to pull all their content from third-party platforms, Netflix included. Everything will be pulled tonight. We want to be exclusive again, hes said.

The dream presented Scroogle with the darker side of his decision. It showed several families who, on Chrismas Eve, noticed that their favorite movies were no longer available. Christmas classics were removed without warning, forcing these families to take out another subscription. If the new service was even available in their region.

Not the best way to spend time on Christmas, Scroogle...


Schneider Electric Patches Flaws in Pelco VideoXpert Enterprise product Security Affairs

Schneider Electric recently released a firmware update for its Pelco VideoXpert Enterprise product that addresses several vulnerabilities, including a high severity code execution flaw, tracked as CVE-2017-9966.

The Pelco VideoXpert solution is widely used in commercial facilities worldwide.

The security researcher Gjoko Krstic has found two directory traversal bugs and an improper access control flaw that can be exploited by an attacker to trigger an arbitrary code execution.

Both Schneider Electric and ICS-CERT published security advisories about the CVE-2017-9966, which could be exploited by an attacker to replace certain files and execute malicious code with system privileges.

By replacing certain files, an authorized user can obtain system privileges and the inserted code would execute at an elevated privilege level.

CVE-2017-9966 has been assigned to this vulnerability. A CVSS v3 base score of 7.1 has been calculated; reads the ICS-CERT.

Successful exploitation of these vulnerabilities may allow an authorized user to gain system privileges or an unauthorized user to view files.

pelco videoxpert

Both directory traversal vulnerabilities (tracked as CVE-2017-9964 and CVE-2017-9965) have been classified as medium severity. The first flaw could be exploited by an attacker to bypass authentication or hijack sessions by sniffing communications.

The second directory traversal vulnerability can be exploited by an unauthorized user to access web server files that could contain sensitive information.


Networked Games Before the WWW SoylentNews

Right from the beginning, games were a component of the commercial online services that predated the World Wide Web; both The Source and CompuServe included them among their offerings from the moment those services first went online. In the early years, such online games were mostly refugees from 1970s institutional computing. Classics like Star Trek, Adventure, and Hammurabi had the advantage of being in the public domain and already running without modification on the time-shared computer systems which hosted the services, and could thus be made available to subscribers with a minimum of investment. Eventually even some text-only microcomputer games made the transition. By 1984, CompuServe, now well-established at the vanguard of the burgeoning online-services industry, had a catalog that included the original Adventure along with an expanded version, nine Scott Adams games, and the original PDP-10 Zork (renamed for some reason to The House of Banshi). And those were just the text adventures. There were also the dungeon crawls Dungeons of Kesmai and Castle Telengard and the war games Civil WarFantasy, and Command Decision, while for the less hardcore there were the CompuServe Casino, board games like Reversi, and curiosities like a biorhythm charter and an astrology calculator.

Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.


Biotech boss backing gene therapy to solve ageing crisis seeks injection of urgency, but scientists preach patience Lifeboat News: The Blog

Elizabeth Parrish is a proponent of controversial ideas. Rankled by barriers to trials on potential life-enhancing treatments, she used herself as a guinea pig and says the results have borne fruit but she has irked the science community in the process.

Experimenting on herself didnt go down well with scientists, but Elizabeth Parrish is convinced gene therapy can increase the length and quality of our lives, and wants early approval for treatments to stem planets biggest killer.


Top 10 Most Pirated Movies of The Week on BitTorrent 12/25/17 TorrentFreak

This week we have four newcomers in our chart.

Justice League is the most downloaded movie.

The data for our weekly download chart is estimated by TorrentFreak, and is for informational and educational reference only. All the movies in the list are Web-DL/Webrip/HDRip/BDrip/DVDrip unless stated otherwise.

RSS feed for the weekly movie download chart.

This weeks most downloaded movies are:
Movie Rank Rank last week Movie name IMDb Rating / Trailer
Most downloaded movies via torrents
1 () Justice League 7.1 / trailer
2 () It 7.6 / trailer
3 (1) Kingsman: The Golden Circle 7.2 / trailer
4 () Bright 6.7 / trailer
5 (2) Dunkirk 8.3 / trailer
6 (3) The Mountain Between Us 6.3 / trailer
7 () Blade Runner 2049 (Russian audio WebRip) 8.9 / trailer
8 (8) ...


Powder Coating with a Fluidized Bed Hackaday

Theres no beating the beauty and durability of a high-quality powder-coated part. Theres just something about the look and feel of the finish that goes far beyond mere painting and makes it worth the effort and expense. The typical electrostatic spray powder-coating setup can be expensive, though, and not necessarily suitable for every workpiece.

Enter the fluidized-bed powder coating chamber, perfect for limited runs of small parts, and the brainchild of [Andrew Mayhall]. With a business providing furniture kits based on iron pipe, [Andrew] needed a way to finish flanges and fittings, and powder coating provided the best look. The fluidizer he built is a great alternative to spray coating; it blows air through a bed of fine thermoplastic granules, which causes them to act like a fluid. Its similar to the fluidized-bed hot tub we recently featured, but on a much smaller scale and with different requirements based on the ultrafine particle size and aggregation properties of the powder. [Andrew] had to add mechanical agitation to achieve a homogeneous fluid bed, and after much experimentation hes now able to dip preheated parts into the bed and achieve one-step powder coating. The video after the break shows some of the operational details.

Does electrostatic powder-coating sound like more of your thing? No problem DIY solutions abound, and a homebrew oven to bake your parts may be as close as the nearest file cabinet.

Filed under: Misc Hacks


OkCupid Adopts "Real Name" Policy, Anger Ensues SoylentNews

On December 21, the U.S.-based online dating site OkCupid announced that it would begin to phase out usernames in place of real names, or more accurately, "what [users] want their dates to call them". The "flippant" announcement post made fun of several (slightly edited) usernames that had been in use. Users have not reacted positively to the change:

Days after deleting an OKCupid profile that included personal information, Reddit user Drinkscocoaandreads logged onto Facebook to find an unpleasant surprise. "I had like three guys find me on Facebook within two days, screaming at me for leaving mid-conversation/not ever acknowledging their initial message," the Redditor wrote in a thread about OKCupid. "One of them also added a few of my friends before I figured out what was happening and got him blocked."

Drinkscocoaandreads is one of many Reddit users reacting to OKCupid's recent announcement that it will ditch usernames in favor of a real-name policy. "It's because, like the recent goodbye we said to AIM screen names, it's time to keep up with the times," OKCupid explained. "We've also heard from many members of our community that they want to maintain the privacy they enjoy with usernameswith this change, we won't be collecting full names; instead, we encourage our users to go by the name they'd like their dates to call them on OkCupid."

Via email, a company spokesperson told The Verge that OKCupid won't require legal names, but the shift is already unpopular with users. Online, the reaction to the news has been overwhelmingly negative, with users either flocking to Reddit to discuss the change, or leaving angry comments on the post itself.

The change isn't just, as OKCupid's flippant post suggests, about users no longer going by aliases like "BigDaddyFlash916." The allure of a place like OKCupid as opposed to, say, Tinder, is that it was a secure place to share more intimate personal details, including sexual preferences. Dating apps made for phones are generally looking for users to find matches based on proximity, age, and gut-instinct attraction to other people's photos. OKCupid invites users to answer questionnaires, build elaborate profiles, and describe themselves thoughtfully. For users, this is a double-edged sword: you get to...


Worlds scientists turn to Asia and Australia to rewrite human history Terra Forming Terra

It took a long time to see the obvious but then most of our homeland is under water.  This area is the best likely environment for the emergence of our human characteristics.  And not Africa at all.  Key is a benign sea shore that is unending.  It is a perfect place to generate large communities and the necessary brain wiring to handle it.  A large natural community would have around 150 individuals. This is way larger than your hunting band or pack.

That was the key process prompting large brains.

The Sahul which includes New Guinea and the Carpentian Sea and Northern Australia was the last remaing environmemt retaining dinosaur era fauna, remnants of which still remain.  Most of the Indonesian platform and theSouth China Sea was also above water.  It too was continental in scale.  All this was tropical rainforest and rich coastal reefs.  It wasthose coastal reefs that supported the rise of stable communities.

Worlds scientists turn to Asia and Australia...


What Is Right Action? With Krishnamurthi Terra Forming Terra


I was reminded recently of Krishnamurti, a noted philosopher and thinker of the Twentieth Century.  He seems to have been much forgotten, but then so are so many who are known only by the odd scholar.  It is a shame really.

He has left us an extensive collection of his thinking mostly in the way of lectures with extensive question and answer sessions.  You must find the time to dedicate to contemplative meditation in order to work with his oeuvre. it is well worth it for a serious student.  In fact i think that a serious student of philosophy would be well advised to spend months on this work.

I know this alien to our present world and to most people and I am so sorry that this is so.  We approach a time when we will have serious leisure  and long lives.  Yet this is of no value unless you master contemplation.  Without it life is to easy to slip away from.


1934, 1935, What Is Right Action?

Auckland, New Zealand

Talk to Businessmen 6th April, 1934

Friends, I think that most of us think that it would be a marvellous world if there were no...


The US Needs a Freedom Revival Terra Forming Terra


Scientists capture mysterious hum from deep inside the Earth - but no one knows what it is Terra Forming Terra

So far we now have actual confirmation and that it can be cleanly detected from the ocean floor.  The next step is to establish a global array of listening posts and to winkle out as many secondary activities as possible and to even usefully map those.
Such a grid will also provide an excellent background to normal seismic measurement as well simply because we will have a sphere of data points all on the same radii from Earth center.
This should produce finer resolution for Earthquakes and volcanic activity..

Scientists capture mysterious hum from deep inside the Earth - but no one knows what it is

The new study could help to shed on the source of the vibrations

By  Sophie Curtis 
Technology And Science Editor

13:50, 8 DEC 2017

UPDATED18:34, 8 DEC 2017

Scientists have captured a mysterious hum coming from deep inside the Earth, but they are still no closer to working out what it is.

It has long been known that the Earth constantly generates a low-frequency vibrational signal.

The first attempt to detect this hum was made in 1959, but it wasn't until 1998 that scientists finally proved its existence.

Since then, there have been hundreds of attempts to record the Earth's hum, but they have all been made using seismometers on land.

Now researchers have captured the hum for the first time using seismic instruments at the bottom of the sea.

The researchers first gathered data from 57 seismometer stations located in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar, between 2012 and 2013.

They then applied a combination of techniques to remove interference from ocean infragravity waves, currents and electronic glitches, and corrected for the signal generated by...


Which Comes First, Big Cities or Big Gods? - Facts So Romantic Nautilus

Warriors among the Kwaraae, a collection of tribal communities indigenous to the Solomon Islands, sacrificed pigs before battle. The tradition granted the combatants, so the belief went, aid from heroic ancestral spiritslike the mighty Aorama, a fierce fighter in Kwaraae folklore. For every man who prepared to shed blood, a hog met its end.1

Any non-superstitious observer might regard this ritual as a costly habit. Why give offerings when one can eat them instead? This puzzle is not unique to the Kwaraae. Why pray? Or erect and attend churches, mosques, temples? Or observe holidays and fast? All that time and energy could be spent more practically. But maybe these acts are actually extremely practical. Shared beliefs and rites may serve an important social function: promoting cohesion.

Gift of Giving: The Charity of Saint Nicholas, (18th century)Wellcome Collections / Wikicommons

Unlike bees, ants and other insects, which form large, complex groups with their close cousins and siblings, humans do so with complete genetic strangersat huge scale. Doing so requires a special kind of cohesion.

For thousands of years all human beings lived in foraging societiesin small hunter-gatherer bandsegalitarian, face-to-face societies, says Ara Norenzayan, a professor of social psychology and religious studies at the
Read More


Raw: EPOs Battistelli is Heading Directly Back to the Middle Ages. Techrights

Original/full: 2014 letter [PDF]

Battistelli is heading directly back to the middle ages.

Summary: Another 2-page explainer (among many more) regarding the deterioration at the patent office and abuses perpetrated against staff


Raw: European Patent Organisation Knew About Benot Battistellis Gross Nepotism for at Least Four Years, Did Nothing to Stop It Techrights

Original/full: Letter to the Administrative Council [PDF]

Things have gotten a lot worse since

Summary: A letter from SUEPO, a long message regarding the European Patent Office, shows just how far back the warnings to the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation go


Raw: SUEPO Connected the Unitary Patent (UPC) to Abuses at the European Patent Office Techrights

Henrik Sass Larsen

Summary: SUEPOs letter to the boss of Jesper Kongstad, a protector of Benot Battistelli who allegedly got sacked a few years later

Mr Henrik Sass Larsen
Minister of Business and Growth in Denmark
Danish Ministry of Business and Growth Erhvervs- og Vkstministeriet,
Slotsholmsgade 10-12, 1216 Kbenhavn K

Unitary Patent and European Patent Organisation Your duty to safeguard the fundamental rights of EPO staff

Dear Mr Sass Larsen,

We are writing to you as the Central Chairs of the Staff Union of the European Patent Office (SUEPO). Around 50% of the 7000 staff members of the European Patent Office are members of our Union.

At a time when Denmark is facing an important referendum on whether or not to join the Community Patent Court, it is important to ensure that no relevant factors that could potentially prove damaging are disregarded.

The Kingdom of Denmark is a member of the European Patent Organisation, whose supervisory body is the Administrative Council (AC) of the EPO. The current AC Chairman is the Danish representative, Mr Jesper Kongstad who is also concurrently Director General of the Danish Patent Office (DKPTO). As head of the Ministry of Growth and Business, all of Mr Kongstads actions fall ultimately under your responsibility.

There are well-reasoned concerns that suggest that the EPO is flouting established and internationally recognized principles of labour law. SUEPO has brought these concerns to the attention of the Administrative Council and Chair in a letter dated 3 March 2013 entitled Social Democracy Mr Battistellis reform of the Staff Representation. You will find a copy attached to this letter.

As executive President of the EPO, Mr Benot Battistelli (FR) has adopted a dubious management style that may be characterized by authoritarianism and a complete disrespect for rights that are assuredly fundamental rights within a democratic country like Denmark. To give you just a few of many examples:

- Mr Battistelli has severely limited the right to strike: it is contingent on his accepting the grounds for striking and eventually approving the request to strike, all before he will then allow any industrial action to take place

- Freedom of speech is severely curtailed; staff who voice dissent are punished.

- Any staff member can be subject to an investigation by a newly created internal police force; they can neither keep silent nor be assisted by legal counsel.

- Access to independent justice is both limited and very ineffective.

All these unilaterally enforced changes have led to the worst social conflict at the EPO in its 40 years of existence. There is no i...


Art Eavesdrops on Life and Pagers Hackaday

Before cell phones, pagers were the way to communicate on the go. At first, they were almost a status symbol. Eventually, they became the mark of someone who couldnt or wouldnt carry a cell phone. However, apparently, there are still some users that clutch their pagers with a death grip, including medical professionals. In an art project called HolyPager, [Brannon Dorsey] intercepted all the pager messages in a city and printed them on a few old-style roll printers. The results were a little surprising. You can check out the video below.

Almost all the pages were medical and many of them had sensitive information. From a technical standpoint, [Brannons] page doesnt shed much light, but an article about the project says that it and other art projects that show the hidden world or radio waves are using our old friend the RTL-SDR dongle.

Pagers use a protocol POCSAG that predates our modern (and well-founded) obsession with privacy and security. That isnt surprising although the idea that private medical data is flying through the air like this is. Decoding POCSAG isnt hard. GNU Radio, for example, can easily handle the task.

Weve looked at pager hacking in the past. You can even run your own pager network, but dont blame us if you get fined.

Filed under: Radio Hacks


A Kiss of Death for Prostate Cancer SoylentNews

The drug Gefitinib is used to treat breast, lung, and other cancers by inhibiting epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signaling, but it has only a limited effect on prostate cancer. EGFR, present on the cell membrane, is involved in cell proliferation and the development of dermis, lung, and digestive tissues. When a mutation causes its over-activation, it can lead to increased cell proliferation and tumor formation.

Tadashi Matsuda of Hokkaido University and his colleagues in Japan investigated human prostate cancer cells to determine if there is an unknown up-regulation mechanism in the EGFR pathway.

When EGFR is attached to a small protein called ubiquitin, it is given "the kiss of death" and tagged for degradation inside the cell. This tagging process is facilitated by a protein called c-CBL. The degradation of EGFR leads to less signaling from the receptor and reduced cell proliferation.

Matsuda and his team found that signal-transducing adaptor protein-2 (STAP-2) stabilizes EGFR by inhibiting its c-CBL-mediated ubiquitination. Furthermore, when the team suppressed STAP-2, the prostate cancer cells showed reduced proliferation and did not form a tumor when transplanted into mice.

"STAP-2 inhibitors could play a role in treating Gefitinib-resistant prostate cancers. Further studies on STAP-2 will provide new insights into cancer physiology and support the development of anticancer therapies," says Tadashi Matsuda. The study was published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.


US Senate Still Has Time to Reject the Patent Microcosms Andrei Iancu Techrights

The patent microcosm pushed Michelle Lee out; now they want the opposite kind of Director

Michelle K. Lee on 'Speaking Truth to Patents'
Source: Michelle K. Lee on Speaking Truth to Patents (video)

Summary: Time remains for opposing Andrei Iancus appointment; his nomination notwithstanding, Senate wont appoint him this year

TECHRIGHTS has observed plenty of patent progressivism in the United States (especially under Lee, shown above) and Andrei Iancu is like the lawyers 'mole inside the USPTO. He would quite likely be a gift to the patent maximalists. He's trouble.

According to this update, not only tax breaks for the rich are a thing; Iancu for the rich too is a thing:

Tax plan: No patent box this year. Instead, all corporations get a tax break regardless of whether they are engaged in innovative or beneficial activities.


USPTO Director: The Senate took no action on Andrei Iancus nomination before their long Christmas break.

Iancu, if appointed, would help software patents, patent maximalists, and large corporations that rely on patents rather than products. There are quite a few such companies. The Guardian wrote about one such company two days ago. Charles Arthur seems to have missed the point however; BlackBerry becomes akin to a patent troll; its all about patents:

For the three q...


Congress Is Debating Warrantless Surveillance in the Dark SoylentNews

Several of the programs Snowden revealed are authorized under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Amendments Act. The 2008 law was scheduled to sunset on December 31, but in a last-ditch effort Thursday, Congress extend its authority through January 19.

The Trump administration, meanwhile, believes that the authorization doesn't really expire until April, leaving lawmakers several months to either reform or strengthen the provision. Hanging in the balance is the legal framework the government largely relies on to conduct mass surveillance of foreigners, and Americans who communicate with them. Which makes it all the more concerning that the fight over Section 702's future has taken place largely in the dark.

Source : Congress Is Debating Warrantless Surveillance in the Dark

Original Submission

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A deep neural network wrote us a Christmas caroland its hilariously bad Lifeboat News: The Blog

Christmas carol songwriters should be relieved to hear that they can keep their jobs for a little while longer. It turns out that artificial intelligence hasnt quite mastered the art of their job.

In a Dec. 21 entry on her personal AI blog, Janelle Shane, a research scientist in industry and machine-learning hobbyist in her spare time, chronicles her journey of trying to teach a neural network to generate Christmas lyrics.

I trained a neural network to write Christmas carols and it got confused. In retrospect I should have seen this coming.


Hexbright Repair Keeps Torch Out of Landfill Hackaday

The Hexbright was a Kickstarter project from a few years ago, to create an open source, rechargeable LED light. [Nick] quite likes them, and has learned a thing or two about keeping them operational.

The torches have a few key issues which [Nick] lists for us, before outlining the necessary repairs. These problems highlight certain design flaws, something one might expect for a hardware product from a new startup. Components inside are easily damaged if the device is dropped, and there is no reverse polarity protection on the battery.

Its always disappointing to see a product in the marketplace fail to take into account such rudimentary things, but in the meantime, repair is always possible. The guide highlights the basic parts and tools required, which is important, but also goes the extra mile and gives important hints and tips on how to effectively execute the repair in a quick and easy fashion.

Overall, it may not be a hack, but what [Nick] has done both educated on us the mistakes made by a crowdfunded hardware startup and also taught us how to write a useful and thorough repair guide. Its not just about the parts that need to be replaced, its about the best method to replace them. The details and the order of operations always helps anyone thats ever attempted a serious automotive repair knows this, for example.

We see a lot of great repair hacks here like this excellent use of a 3D printer to reproduce belts for old hardware.

Filed under: Repair Hacks


Saving a transparent PNG image from Cairo, in Python Shallow Thoughts

Dave and I will be giving a planetarium talk in February on the analemma and related matters.

Our planetarium, which runs a fiddly and rather limited program called Nightshade, has no way of showing the analemma. Or at least, after trying for nearly a week once, I couldn't find a way. But it can show images, and since I once wrote a Python program to plot the analemma, I figured I could use my program to generate the analemmas I wanted to show and then project them as images onto the planetarium dome.

[analemma simulation] But naturally, I wanted to project just the analemma and associated labels; I didn't want the blue background to cover up the stars the planetarium shows. So I couldn't just use a simple screenshot; I needed a way to get my GTK app to create a transparent image such as a PNG.

That turns out to be hard. GTK can't do it (either GTK2 or GTK3), and people wanting to do anything with transparency are nudged toward the Cairo library. As a first step, I updated my analemma program to use Cairo and GTK3 via gi.repository. Then I dove into Cairo.

I found one C solution for converting an existing Cairo surface to a PNG, but I didn't have much luck with it. But I did find a Python program that draws to a PNG without bothering to create a GUI. I could use that.

The important part of that program is where it creates a new Cairo "surface", and then creates a "context" for that surface:

surface = cairo.ImageSurface(cairo.FORMAT_ARGB32, *imagesize)

cr = cairo.Context(surface)

A Cairo surface is like a canvas to draw on, and it knows how to save itself to a PNG image. A context is the equivalent of a GC in X11 programming: it knows about the current color, font and so forth. So the trick is to create a new surface, create a context, then draw everything all over again with the new context and surface.

A Cairo widget will already have a function to draw everything (in my case, the analemma and all its labels), with this signature:

    def draw(self, widget, ctx):

It already allows passing the context in, so passing in a different context is no problem. I added an argument specifying the background color and transparency, so I could use a blue background in the user interface but a transparent background for the PNG image:

    def draw(self, widget, ctx, background=None):

I also had a minor hitch: in draw(), I was saving the context as self.ctx rather than passing it around to every draw routine. That means calling it with the saved im...


On The Trail Of The Oceans Material Cycle SoylentNews

It is by far the most abundant river in the world. One fifth of the Earth's entire freshwater supply flows from its mouth into the Atlantic pushing the ocean's salt water several hundred kilometers out to sea. In April, Andrea Koschinsky, Professor of Geochemistry at Jacobs University, will travel to the estuary of the Amazon as head of a recently approved, interdisciplinary research project on board the research ship, Meteor.

The Amazon River is almost 7,000 km long and is not only tremendously abundant but it also transports large quantities of trace metals such as iron and copper and dissolved organic materials. It is these materials that interest the team comprising Andrea Koschinsky, Prof. Thorsten Dittmar from the University of Oldenburg and Prof. Martin Frank from GEOMAR - Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel as well as the four Brazilian partner organizations.

"We want to gain a better understanding of the material cycle in the ocean," says Andrea Koschinsky about the M 147 research trip's aims. "We will only be able to reliably predict the human impact on this cycle if we succeed in this". Trace elements such as carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus play an important role in the ocean as they are essential elements for the formation of biomass. However, all life needs iron even the smallest marine organism requires it.

The Amazon River carries many elements into the sea, including iron. Part of the elements flocculate when the freshwater meets the salt water and mixes, they drop down and settle on the bottom of the river mouth as sediment. However, another part remains in the water and forms part of the material cycle in the ocean. On their research trip, the scientists want to find out exactly how these processes work, their interdependencies, interactions and quantities. Their focus is on the flow of iron as well as other important trace elements and organic molecules.

The scientists will take the first water samples from the river where the freshwater is the purest. The ship will then follow the course of the river via the brackish salt water and freshwater water system until its keel reaches the pure seawater. Sediment samples will taken from the seabed, from the river at a depth of up to 100 m and from the sea at a depth of up to 2,000 m.

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Hackaday Links: Not A Creature Was Stirring, Except For A Trackball Hackaday

Hey, did you know Hackaday is starting an Open Access, peer-reviewed journal? The Hackaday Journal of What You Dont Know (HJWYDK) is looking for submissions detailing the tools, techniques, and skills that we dont know, but should. Want to teach everyone how to make sand think? Write a paper and tell us about it! Send in your submissions here.

Have you noticed OSH Park updated their website?

The MSP430 line of microcontrollers are super cool, low power, and cheap. Occasionally, TI pumps out a few MSP430 dev boards and sells them for the rock-bottom price of $4.30. Here ya go, fam. This one is loaded up with the MSP430FR2433.

lol, Bitcoin this week.

Noisebridge, the San Francisco hackerspace and one of the first hackerspaces in the US, is now looking for a new place. Why, you may ask? Because San Francisco real estate. The current price per square foot is triple what their current lease provides. While we hope Noisebridge will find a new home, were really looking forward to the hipster restaurant thats only open for brunch that will take its place.

The coolest soundcards, filled with DOS blips and bloops, were based on the OPL2 and OPL3 sound chips. If you want one of these things, youre probably going to be digging up an old ISA SoundBlaster soundcard. The OPL2LPT is the classic sound card for computers that dont have an easily-accessible ISA bus, like those cool vintage laptops. The 8-Bit Guy recently took a look at this at this neat piece of hardware, and apart from requiring a driver to work with any OPL2-compatible game, this thing actually works.

NVIDIA just did something amazing. They created a piece of hardware that everyone wants but isnt used to turn electricity into heat and Bitcoin. This fantastic device, that is completely original and not at all derivative, is sold in the NVIDIA company store for under five dollars. Actually, the green logo silk/art on this PCB ruler is kinda cool, and Id like to know how they did that. Also, and completely unrelated: does anyone want ten pounds of Digikey PCB rulers?

Filed under:...


HPR2451: Server Basics 105 OpenVPN Client Hacker Public Radio

In the previous episode of this series, you set up an OpenVPN server. In this episode, Klaatu walks you through: Installing OpenVPN on a client machine. Generating a key and certificate request. Signing a client cert from the server. Configuring the client.conf file. Configuring the client routing table to use the VPN subnet. Pinging the server over VPN&#33;&#33;&#33; Where to go from here? Your next steps should be to investigate how your org wants to use VPN, how your clients actually want to join the VPN &#40;Network Manager has some nice features that makes joining a VPN fairly transparent&#41;. Have fun&#33;


Google Hires Chip Designers From Apple and Qualcomm SoylentNews

Google has hired one of the key designers behind Apple's A-series SoCs. Google may be designing custom ARM chips for its own products:

A recent report from The Information details Google's efforts to grow its chip development efforts, which in turn is costing Apple some considerable talent. The report explains that Google has hired several key chip engineers from Apple, including well-regarded chip designer John Bruno.

At Apple, Bruno was responsible for the silicon competitive analysis group. This group is Apple's way of ensuring it stays ahead of other chipmakers in terms of performance. Bruno also served at AMD and was one of the lead developers of the Fusion processors for PCs.

Bruno has confirmed the move on his LinkedIn page, where he says he's working as a System Architect at Google. He served at Apple for five years and joined Google just this month. [...] Today's report also notes that Google has hired Wonjae (Gregory) Choi and Tayo Fadelu from Apple, as well as engineers from Qualcomm.

Also at Engadget and Silicon Valley Business Journal.

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BYTE Magazine Archive 1975 - 1995 SoylentNews

A digital archive of BYTE Magazine covering 1975 through 1995 is online now at the Internet Archive. BYTE was a very influential magazine its first decades and included articles and columns on both hardware and software, basically everything in the topic of small computers and software. A broad range of operating systems were addressed as well. Any of the programming languages available at the time were regularly covered, Smalltalk, Lisp, Logo, basically anything. And of course source samples and occasionally whole programs were included. It basically lead in the era of hands-on computing.

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You Can Experiment With KDE 2.2.2 & Qt2 This Christmas Phoronix

If you find yourself with some extra time this holiday season and want to dive into a classic codebase on your modern Linux desktop, KDE developer Helio Castro has been working on his porting skills by porting KDE 2.2.2 and Qt2 to work on modern Linux systems...


Wishing the Family a Sinusoidal Christmas Hackaday

When its time to put together the annual Christmas card, most families take a few pictures of the kids, slap on a generic greeting, and call it a day. It used to be fairly common for the whole family to get dressed up and pose for a special Christmas picture, but who has the time anymore? Its not like we have hours and hours to slave over a unique and memorable gift we can mail out to a dozen (or more) people.

Unless youre [Chris Wolsey], anyway. Rather than take the easy way out and simply mailing some pictures of his daughter out to friends and family, he recorded her giving a Christmas greeting and turned the waveform of her voice into a framed physical memento. Way to wreck the curve for the rest of us, [Chris].

Evolution of the printed waveform.

As it turns out, getting sound into CAD software isnt exactly straightforward. To start, he made a recording of his daughter saying the words Happy Christmas From the Wolsey Family with Audacity, and then took a screenshot of the resulting waveform. This screensho...


Piracy Notices Can Mess With Your Thermostat, ISP Warns TorrentFreak

Since the early 2000s copyright holders have been sending ISPs takedown notices, to alert account holders that someones been using their connection to share copyrighted material.

The goal of these warnings is to deter people from sharing pirated material in the future.

Internet providers are not legally obliged to forward the notices, but many do. What ISPs are required to do is implement a policy to deal with frequent offenders.

Keeping pirates on board without taking any action can make the ISP liable, as Cox found out the hard way. While this case is currently on appeal, some ISPs have already put stringent measures in place.

Take Armstrong Zoom Internet, for example, which has roughly a million subscribers in the Northeastern part of the U.S. Like many other ISPs it reserves the right to terminate repeat infringers, a policy which it doesnt hide.

Our attention was caught by a recent letter the company sent to one of its users. The ISP points out that it received multiple copyright infringement notices, urging the customer to stop, or else.

please be advised that, if Armstrong receives additional notifications of infringement connected With your Zoom Internet Service, Armstrong will remove you from your current service level and place you at the lowest service level.

This will allow you to access email, but limit your speeds and affect your ability to upload or download material to the internet or use other file-sharing capabilities.

Armstrong warning (via)

While reduced Internet speeds are bad enough, theres another scary prospect. The reduced service level may also prevent subscribers from controlling their thermostat remotely. Not ideal during the winter.

Please be advised that this may affect other services which you may have connected to your internet service, such as the ability to control your thermostat remotely or video monitoring services.

Accused pirates who want their full service restored, and regain control over their thermostats, have to answer some copyright questions and read an educational piece about copyright infringement.

When they sign an agreement acknowledging that they have done so, full Internet access is restored. However, if more complaints come in later, the consequences will be more severe.



Post-Alice, the Patent Microcosm is Up in Arms and Scraping the Bottom of the Barrel for Anti-Alice Material Techrights

Summary: In search of new ways to justify software patents, those who are in the legal industry seek to twist cases and cherry-pick cases from the lowest possible courts, relying perhaps on lack of research and blind trust in the legal industry with its so-called articles (marketing disguised as news)

IT IS always nice to see the patent microcosm losing its mind over the end of software patents (Alice/Section 101). This new blog post (Carl Oppedahl on Carol Bidwell) shows how procedural issues creep in and drive them nuts, too. In fact, one patent maximalist asked: Why would @uspto be trusted to make it easier for prosecutors? Or, practitioners in general?

This just served to show the sort of privilege/entitlement the patent maximalists sense that they have. Their job or task is not to make it easier for prosecutors, I told him. It developed into a conversation. This just served to show the sort of privilege/entitlement the patent maximalists sense that they have. If they apply for a monopoly and get rejected, that does not make them an unhappy customer but a failing applicant. People who go to job interviews, for instance, are not customers and theres no customer service when they get rejected/declined. Anyway, from the Oppedahl/Bidwell post:

An Examiner made such an objection a couple of days ago in one of our cases. We will be able to force the Examiner to withdraw the objection.

Before explaining why it is that we will have no difficulty forcing the Examiner to withdraw this objection, lets ask ourselves how such an objection could even arise.

The requirement that the Abstract commence on a separate sheet was imposed over a decade ago, and it was for a very simple purpose to make life easier for Reed Tech (a LexisNexis company), which is the government contractor that carries out the printing of US patents. Almost every detail of the way that you and I file and amend US patent applications is spelled out in USPTO rules that are designed to make life easier for Reed Tech.


Of course this Abstract in our case, in the form in which the USPTO computer system obtained it from the WIPO computer system, was on the front page of a published PCT application. So it was not on a page by itself. It shared a page with lots of other things such as the title and the names of the inventors.

What matters is the substance of patent applications. It has already emerged, based on...


Ubuntu 17.10 Pulled Due To A BIOS Corrupting Problem - Linux - News

"If you find a Lenovo laptop under the tree this xmas, and plan to install Ubuntu 17.10 on it, take my advice and dont.

You heard me: do not install Ubuntu.

According to bug reports filed on Launchpad, the official Ubuntu bug tracker, installing Ubuntu 17.10 may inadvertently corrupt the BIOS on a raft of Lenovo laptops, including the Lenovo Yoga line.

Which is seriously bad news."


Holiday and Christmas scams users should be aware of HackRead

By Carolina

Its that time of the year again when Holiday and

This is a post from Read the original post: Holiday and Christmas scams users should be aware of


The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Reaffirms USPTO Rejections of Abstract Patents/Applications ~83% of the Time Techrights

So these patents wont even reach the dockets/courts

To reject

Summary: As software patents are rejected by US courts (more so the higher courts) the USPTO and PTAB are adapting, in effect working in a coordinated fashion to reject such patents examiners and technical judges, respectively

THE USPTO is being helped by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), which invalidates patents without exception if these patents are not patent-eligible. PTAB has more resources to do this, just like the appeal boards at the EPO (although theyre grossly understaffed at the EPO, by intention). Clear misuse of tribal immunity, misappropriated to protect very bad patents from PTAB, wont work. Based on this report from a few days, even universities arent safe havens anymore:

An expanded PTAB panel has determined that the filing of a federal court action waives the University of Minnesotas Eleventh Amendment immunity, in the fourth decision to address state sovereign immunity

The Patent Trial and Appeal Board has denied the patent owners motion to dismiss inter partes review (IPR) in Ericsson v Regents of the University of Minnesota.

Judge Ruschke, the head of PTAB (chief judge), spoke to Michael Loney (same author as the above) and made it clear that no major changes are afoot, except some pertaining to amendments (and that too is not for sure). Speaking at Managing IPs European Patent Forum USA, Loney wrote, David Ruschke discussed a number of ways that amendments could be made easier to obtain at the PTAB [...] David Ruschke, chief judge of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), said the Board is contemplating some changes to its amendment practice.

The good news is that software patents continue to be invalidated at a very high rate at PTAB.The rest is behind paywall. The USPTO will make inter partes reviews (IPRs) more expensive, just like the EPO did in order to render access&#822...


"Black Hole" of Accountability for Drug Trials Flouting FDA Oversight? SoylentNews

Unregulated herpes experiments expose 'black hole' of accountability

Recent revelations that a U.S. researcher injected Americans with his experimental herpes vaccine without routine safety oversight raised an uproar among scientists and ethicists. Not only did Southern Illinois University researcher William Halford vaccinate Americans offshore, he injected other participants in U.S. hotel rooms without Food and Drug Administration oversight or even a medical license. Since then, several participants have complained of side effects.

But don't expect the disclosures after Halford's death in June to trigger significant institutional changes or government response, research experts say. "A company, university or agency generally does not take responsibility or take action on their own to help participants, even if they're hurt in the trial," said Carl Elliott, a professor in the Center for Bioethics at the University of Minnesota. "These types of cases are really a black hole in terms of accountability." The federal government once scrutinized or even froze research at universities after learning of such controversies. Now, experts said, the oversight agencies tend to avoid action even in the face of the most outrageous abuses.

Experts said the U.S. regulatory agencies are especially unprepared to deal with off-the-grid experiments like Halford's. He recruited subjects through Facebook and in some cases didn't require signed consent forms, or informed participants outright that the experiments flouted FDA oversight. These patients, many who struggle with chronic, painful herpes, proceeded anyway in their quest for a cure. After Halford's offshore trial, Peter Thiel, a libertarian and adviser to President Donald Trump, pitched in millions of dollars for future research.

Previously: Hopes of Extended Lifespans Using Transfusions of Young People's Blood
University Could Lose Millions From "Unethical" Research Backed by Peter Thiel

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2017: The Year Software Patents Died Even in the Court Which Started Them Techrights

Software patents (1968 2017)

Room that's dying

Summary: Software patents are a dying breed as high US courts tackle them, IP Australia pretty much bans them, and UPC goes the way of the dodo

THE emergent reality that software patents are somewhat of a thing of the past was reaffirmed this year by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC), which had introduced/affirmed these patents in the first place. When even CAFC says no! that ought to really mean something. What will 2018 bring? We dont know for sure, but PTAB will likely get more backing, this time from the Supreme Court. Alice will not be challenged by the Supreme Court.

Software patents and UIs are not patentable or at least not assert-able in a court of law. Apple should know that, but it keeps pursuing such patents based on these new reports. These patents are bunk, theyre worthless now. Why bother? Are these just trophies or something to be used/sold in bulk? Digimarc has just just claimed to have been rank[ed] third for its patent portfolio in the computer software category, even though the criteria/yardstick is ludicrous, as are these patents. Those are software patents, i.e. worthless patents. Some of todays software patents have been dressed up using buzzwords like AI. Theres even this article about it in Korean media, which asserts that South Korea Files Third-largest Number of AI Patents and continues:

South Korea has filed the third-largest number of patents and the seventh-largest number of dissertations related to artificial intelligence (AI) technology over the past 12 years, according to a state-run information and communications promotion agency. The country has the base to take off in the AI sector in terms of sheer bulk.



A CODAR advent Daniel Estvez

Over the last few days, I have been recording CODAR on 4463kHz to produce images of the ionosphere. I started on Friday 15th and the plan was to leave the recording running until Christmas Day, thus producing some kind of "CODAR advent" images. Unfortunately, there seems to be a problem when the receiver runs for several days that results in the sudden loss of the CODAR signal. This problem can be seen at the bottom of the image below. Thus, I have finished the recording on the morning of the 24th. The equipment and software used is the same that I detailed in a previous post.

The whole image produced can be seen below (click on the image to view it in full size). Each row spans 24 hours, starting at 6:00 UTC. Note that sunrise these days occurs around 7:30 UTC. A jump in the signal can be seen on the 3rd day. The reason for this is that when I started the CODAR receiver, I inadvertently tuned it to an AM sideband, rather than the main signal. I noticed later. The jump was produced as I changed the tuning to the main signal.

Several days of CODAR dechirping on 4463kHz

What I find most amazing about these CODAR plots is that during daytime (left half of the image) the propagation is roughly the same every day. However, during night-time (right half of the image), the propagation changes drastically from day to day.

The main goal of this long recording was to try to stablish how many different CODAR transmitters are present. In view of the image above, I find this a daunting task. The longer multipaths from one transmitter overlap the shorter multipaths from another one, making counting the individual signals difficult. The best estimate that I can come up with is that there are 3 different transmitters with well spread delays at the top of the graph and at least 3 transmitters all clustered near the bottom. This can be seen in the figure below, taken from the second day at night-time. It seems that every horizontal line that appears comes from a single transmitter. All of the transmitters except one seem to bounce only off a very stable ionospheric layer. The other transmitter bounces of...


Align Technology Uses Some Software Patents Litigiously, Conjoined With Financial Sanctions/Pressure Through ITC Techrights

Array of lit bulbs

Summary: 3Shape has come under substantial threat after Align Technology called in the notorious ITC, which boasts the power to disrupt businesses if theyre alleged to have infringed patents (even before a trial concludes)

THE new reality, more so after Alice, is that software patents are bunk. Sure, the USPTO granted many of these before, but when brought before a court these patents typically get invalidated. That not an expression of wish/hope but a reality. Its satisfying for many of us who fought against software patents (as software developers).

The patents in question are mostly about a scanner, but at least two are software patents.Align Technology could be seen paying to spread a press release about a new complaint (not yet a lawsuit) in several wires, e.g. [1, 2]. Even the ITC, which can flippantly impose embargoes, got involved. The patents in question are mostly about a scanner, but at least two are software patents. From the press release:

The first ITC complaint includes six Align patents and alleges that 3Shapes Trios intraoral scanner infringes four Align patents related to confocal lens scanning technologies and that 3Shapes software infringes two Align patents related to software

They are using software patents (in part) for cease and desist order prohibiting 3Shape from importing [allegedly] infringing products. Heres an article about it:



MIT Just Created Living Plants That Glow Like A Lamp, And Could Grow Glowing Trees To Replace Streetlights Lifeboat News: The Blog

Roads of the future could be lit by glowing trees instead of streetlamps, thanks to a breakthrough in creating bioluminescent plants. Experts injected specialized nanoparticles into the leaves of a watercress plant, which caused it to give off a dim light for nearly four hours. This could solve lots of problems.

The chemical involved, which produced enough light to read a book by, is the same as is used by fireflies to create their characteristic shine. To create their glowing plants, engineers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) turned to an enzyme called luciferase. Luciferase acts on a molecule called luciferin, causing it to emit light.


Arecibo Radio Telescope Snaps Photos Of 3200 Phaethon, Reveals New Information On Near-Earth Asteroid Lifeboat News: The Blog

Despite being battered by Hurricane Maria, and facing a decrease in funding from the U.S. government, the Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico is still going strong, and is now up and running again, following a series of repairs. And with the near-Earth asteroid 3200 Phaethon having just flown by our planet, Arecibo has just sent back images that are supposed to represent the highest-resolution photos of the asteroid, which help reveal some important details about the object.

According to a press release from NASA, the radar images were taken by the Arecibo Observatory Planet Radar last Saturday, December 16, and generated the day after, as asteroid Phaethon 3200 had its close encounter with Earth. At the time of its closest approach, the object was only 1.1 million miles away from Earth, or less than five times the distance separating our planet from the moon. The images have resolutions estimated at about 250 feet per pixel, making them the best-quality photos of the asteroid that are currently available, added.

Based on Arecibos radar images, scientists believe that 3200 Phaethon is substantially larger than once estimated, with a diameter of approximately 3.6 miles, or 0.6 miles larger than what previous studies had suggested. That also makes Phaethon the second largest near-Earth object classified as a potentially hazardous asteroid, or a comparatively large asteroid that orbits much closer to Earth than most others do. The images also suggest Phaethon has a spheroidal shape, with a number of peculiar physical features that scientists are still trying to understand in full. These features include a concave area believed to be several hundred meters wide, and a dark, crater-like area located near one of its poles.


Experts from Bleeping Computer spotted a new Cryptomix Ransomware variant Security Affairs

Security experts spotted a new variant of the CryptoMix ransomware that uses a different extension (.FILE) and a new set of contact emails.

Security experts from BleepingComputer discovered a new variant of the CryptoMix ransomware that uses a different extension (.FILE)  to append to the file names of the encrypted files and uses new contact emails.

For example, a file encrypted by this variant of ransomware has an encrypted file name of 0D0A516824060636C21EC8BC280FEA12.FILE.

Experts discovered that this variant uses the same encryption methods of previous ones, the ransomware uses the same ransom note is still named _HELP_INSTRUCTION.TXT, but the contact emails to receive the payment instructions are,,,, and

CryptoMix ransomware

Further details and the IoCs are included in the post published on Bleeping Computer.

As we are always looking for weaknesses, if you are a victim of this variant and decide to pay the ransom, please send us the decryptor so we can take a look at it. You can also discuss or receive support for Cryptomix ransomware infections in our dedicated Cryptomix Help & Support Topic. wrote Lawrence Abrams.

Below the list of recommendations provided by the experts to protect your system from ransomware attacks.

  • Backup, Backup, Backup!
  • Do not open attachments if you do not know who sent them.
  • Do not open attachments until you confirm that the person actually sent you them.
  • Enable the...


Man dies in VR-related accident, reports Russian news agency TechWorm

Russian Man Dies From Fall While Wearing Virtual Reality Glasses

Playing virtual reality (VR) games means distancing yourself from the real world. While using VR headsets, your vision is obstructed by the headset and your hearing is blocked by noise-canceling headphones. While this is a great way to submerge oneself in a virtual world, users lose awareness of their physical surroundings which could result in injuries or prove fatal to ones life, if not careful.

Thats what happened when an unidentified 44-year old Russian man was found dead after suffering fatal wounds on Thursday in his apartment on Marshal Zhukov Avenue while moving around in VR glasses, according to Russias state-funded news agency TASS. This is believed to be the first VR-related death in Moscow.

Yulia Ivanova, Senior Assistant to the Head of the Russian Investigative Committees Main Moscow Department, offered the following details about the mans death:

According to preliminary information, while moving around the apartment in virtual reality glasses, the man tripped and crashed into a glass table, suffered wounds and died on the spot from a loss of blood.

Another report claimed that it is possible that the game the Russian man was playing was not properly mapped to his apartment, which resulted in his fall and eventual death. His body was discovered by his mother when she came to visit his apartment in Moscow.

While an investigation has been launched into the incident, the identity of the man or any other details about his VR setup were not disclosed.

The post Man dies in VR-related accident, reports Russian news agency appeared first on TechWorm.


New Technique to Treat Hydrocephalus in Babies Developed in Uganda SoylentNews

Surgery For Saving Babies From 'Water On The Brain' Developed in Uganda

Traditionally doctors treat hydrocelphalus in the U.S. with what's called a shunt: They place a long tube in the baby's brain, which allows the liquid to drain into the child's stomach. But a third of the time, these shunts fail within two years, says Dr. Jay Riva-Cambrin, a neurosurgeon at the University of Calgary. "Imagine buying a car and having the dealer tell you, 'By the way, there's a 40 percent chance the car won't be on the road in two years.' You'd be like 'No way.' "

That failure rate is tolerable here in the U.S. because children can be rushed quickly to a hospital for emergency surgery to fix the shunt, says Dr. Benjamin Warf, a neurosurgeon at Harvard Medical School, who led the development of the new method at a clinic in Mbale, Uganda. "Some kids wind up having dozens of these shunt operations over over[sic] the years," he says. But for many kids in rural Uganda and other poor countries emergency neurosurgery isn't an option. "They're going to die from a shunt malfunction," Warf says. "I can't put a shunt in a baby and then send them back to a rural village in western Uganda or southern Sudan because it would take days to return to the clinic."

So Warf and his colleagues decided to innovate. They took a technique that works in adults and then tweaked it a bit so that it would have a better chance of working with babies. In the new method, doctors basically poke a hole in the brain's chambers so they can drain. They also prevented the chambers from filling back up by partially damaging the region of the brain that produces spinal fluid.

The team knew the procedure fixed the hydrocephalus. They could see that the babies' brains stopped swelling. But the big question was whether or not the method could prevent brain damage as effectively as shunting does. After 15 years of testing and optimizing, he and his team can finally say that their approach at least in the short term appears to be just as effective as the procedure commonly used here in the U.S. In the study, Warf and his colleagues tested the two methods on about 100 children in Uganda. After 12 months, the doctors couldn't detect a difference in the children's brain volume or cognitive skills.


Endoscopic Treatment versus Shunting for Infant Hydrocephalus in Uganda (open, DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1707568) (DX)

Original Submission...


Military offers $10 million prize to any researcher who can solve jets oxygen problems Lifeboat News: The Blog

The Department of Defense has authorized a $10 million prize for researchers who can solve a mysterious issue involving oxygen systems in jets.


AMDVLK vs. RADV vs. AMDGPU-PRO 17.50 Vulkan Performance Phoronix

With AMD's release on Friday of the long-awaited open-source "AMDVLK" Radeon Vulkan driver here are our initial benchmarks of this official Radeon open-source Vulkan driver compared to the unofficial RADV Mesa-based Vulkan driver and the similar AMDGPU-PRO 17.50 closed-source Vulkan driver.

Sunday, 24 December


Mandrake Linux founder creating an opensource smart phone - Linux - News

"The original creator of Mandrake Linux (which evolved into Mandriva and subsequently Mageia and OpenMandriva), Gal Duval, has decided to create a new fork of Android which is restricted to the use of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS); the new creation is called eelo."


Your IoT predictions for 2018 (Part 2) Gregarious Mammal

As we continue this series of IoT predictions for 2017, see what's in store for IIoT, network connectivity, security, and the consumer space.

Computer latency: 1977-2017 Dan Luu

Ive had this nagging feeling that the computers I use today feel slower than the computers I used as a kid. As a rule, I dont trust this kind of feeling because human perception has been shown to be unreliable in empirical studies, so I carried around a high-speed camera and measured the response latency of devices Ive run into in the past few months. Here are the results:

computer latency
year clock # T
apple 2e 30 1983 1 MHz 3.5k
ti 99/4a 40 1981 3 MHz 8k
custom haswell-e 165Hz 50 2014 3.5 GHz 2G
commodore pet 4016 60 1977 1 MHz 3.5k
sgi indy 60 1993 .1 GHz 1.2M
custom haswell-e 120Hz 60 2014 3.5 GHz 2G
thinkpad 13 chromeos 70 2017 2.3 GHz 1G
imac g4 os 9 70 2002 .8 GHz 11M
custom haswell-e 60Hz 80 2014 3.5 GHz 2G
mac color classic 90 1993 16 MHz 273k
powerspec g405 linux 60Hz 90 2017 4.2 GHz 2G
macbook pro 2014 100 2014 2.6 GHz 700M
thinkpad 13 linux chroot 100


18 Cyber-Security Trends Organizations Need to Brace for in 2018

Enterprises, end users, and governments faced no shortage of security challenges in 2017. Some of those same challenges will continue in 2018, and there will be new problems to solve in 2018 as well.  

eWeek presents 18 security predictions for 2018 for the year ahead from 18 security experts.

Read more at eWeek

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