Daily Archives: July 4, 2015

Facebook Will Use These Lasers To Beam Internet From The Sky

Mark Zuckerberg/ Facebook

A first look at the laser technology Facebook will use to beam internet from the skies.

On Tuesday, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he envisions a world where we can digitally send our emotions to others. But that technology is still a few years out, so it looks like now Zuck will have to settle for drones that shoot internet through lasers from the sky.

Zuckerberg gave us a sneak peak at some of the lasers the Facebook Connectivity Team are building in their project to project to expand internet connectivity around the world.

Facebook’s Connectivity Lab is working on a “laser communication system” that will be able to send data to entire communities. In March, Zuckerberg confirmed that they had completed their first test flight of their drone, which will reportedly have a larger wingspan than a Boeing 737 (102 or 138 feet, depending on the model), and weigh less than a car. No photos or video were released of that drone, but this newest update is the first real look at some of the technology involved in the project. The lasers, Zuckerberg noted, will not be visible when in use.

continue http://www.popsci.com/facebook-will-use-these-lasers-beam-internet-sky

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VPNs are so insecure you might as well wear a KICK ME sign

A team of five researchers from universities in London and Rome have identified that 14 of the top commercial virtual private networks in the world leak IP data.

Vasile C. Perta, Marco V. Barbera, and Alessandro Mei of Sapienza University of Rome, together with Gareth Tyson, and Hamed Haddadi of the Queen Mary University of London say vendor promises of user privacy and security are often lies that put users at risk.

“Despite being a known issue, our experimental study reveals that the majority of VPN services suffer from IPv6 traffic leakage,” the authors wrote in the paper A Glance through the VPN Looking Glass: IPv6 Leakage and DNS Hijacking in Commercial VPN clients [PDF].

“Our findings confirm the criticality of the current situation: many of these [14] providers leak all, or a critical part of the user traffic in mildly adversarial environments.

“The reasons for these failings are diverse, not least the poorly defined, poorly explored nature of VPN usage, requirements and threat models.”

The team probed the top client software versions of providers including Hide My Ass, PrivateInternetAccess, and IPVanish. They established a campus dual stack OpenWrt IPv6 through IPv4 tunnel wifi network with updated Ubuntu, Windows, OSX, iOS 7, and Android clients. This simulated the environment where users would trust VPNs to protect them from a hostile network, they said.

continue http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/06/30/worlds_best_vpns_fall_flat_in_security_tests/

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Volvo unveils new child seat concept

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MUST WATCH Documentary Incoming: MegaVitamin Man

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Farrakhan: American Flag is Racist, Take It Down!

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Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam and professional race baiter, told hundreds gathered at a D.C. church on Wednesday that it was time to take down the American flag.

The always controversial Farrakhan spoke at the Metropolitan AME Church, where he evoked suspected Charleston shooter Dylan Roof. He went on to say the American flag was a symbol of racism and should be taken down.

“White folks march with you because they don’t want you upset in the city,” Farrakhan said, downplaying the outpouring of support Charleston has received. “They don’t give a damn about them nine. When they arrested that skunk …. they took him to the Burger King.”

“Man just killed nine human beings, and you know what they were saying? ‘You did a good job. Kill all them n******!’” he

added.

continue http://www.thefederalistpapers.org/us/farrakhan-american-flag-is-racist-take-it-down

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Texas wants its gold back inside the state’s borders

(AP) — Forget Fort Knox or the Federal Reserve. Texas has decided to start keeping its gold holdings within in its own borders. But what makes sense politically in such a sovereignty-loving place is creating a logistical conundrum.

Texas is the only state that owns an actual stockpile of gold, according to public sector and financial industry experts – not just gold futures or investment positions, but approximately 5,600 gold bars worth around $650 million. The holdings, stored at a New York bank, for some harken back to century-old fears about the security of currency not backed by shiny bullion.

The Legislature’s decision this summer to bring its gold cache home was hailed by many conservatives, and even some on the far left, who are suspicious of national government.

“There will always be the exact same amount of gold in there as the amount that was put in,” no matter what happens to the financial system, said Republican state Rep. Rep. Giovanni Capriglione, a former tea party organizer from the Dallas suburbs who authored the gold bill.

But for the Texas comptroller’s office, which has to implement the policy, the catch is that the new Texas Bullion Depository exists in name but not reality.

The law doesn’t say where the depository would be or how it should be built or secured. No funding was provided for those purposes or for leasing space elsewhere. Further complicating matters is a provision allowing ordinary people to check their own gold or silver bullion into the facility.

continue http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_TEXAS_GOLD

Categories: government | Tags: ,

Nanogenerators Will Let Car Tires Pull Electricity From The Ground

University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Engineering

Dr. Xudong Wang shows his toy Jeep, outfitted with his own brand of triboelectric nanogenerator.

It’s becoming clear: electric cars are the future. Between electric mainstays like Tesla and legacy car manufacturers like Ford and Chevrolet, the auto industry is racing towards making truly viable electric cars. Now, researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison are helping that process along, with a nanogenerator meant to help car tires pull their own weight, by pulling latent electricity from the ground itself.The UW-Madison team created a type of single-electrode triboelectric nanogenerator (a well-studied method of turning mechanical energy into electric energy) and optimized it for specific use in cars.

Reclaiming electricity from our tires could extend the battery life and range of electric or hybrid cars, adding to energy already recouped by processes like regenerative braking.

Zhong Lin Wang, creator of the first triboelectic nanogenerators in 2012, has claimed to regain up to 85 percent of the total energy used. The TENG harvests the electricity that’s naturally transferred between two different surfaces when they come into contact and are pulled apart. A high rate of repetition makes a rotating car tire perfect for this application.

CONTINUE http://www.popsci.com/nanogenerators-will-make-tires-pull-their-own-weight

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Who’s John Jay? Scholars urge new look at forgotten founder

(AP) — The inner circle of founders has been set for as long as anyone can remember – Washington, Jefferson, Adams, Franklin, Hamilton and Madison.

Almost never mentioned is John Jay.

“Most people know something about him. … But very few know the full breadth of his accomplishments. Most are very surprised by what they learn,” explains Heather Iannucci, director of the John Jay Homestead in this Hudson River town, where the July Fourth celebration will include a reading of the Declaration of Independence, music and tours of the stately, shingled house where the country’s first chief justice lived his final years.

As more of his papers have become available in the past decade, Jay’s admirers, ranging from specialists to such popular historians as Joseph Ellis and Walter Isaacson, have been arguing that a founder they believe underrated deserves a closer look – for achievements that extend to virtually every branch of government, on the state, federal and international level.

Jay was one of three contributors to the Federalist Papers, which helped define American government. He was president of the wartime Continental Congress, then served as secretary of foreign affairs, precursor to secretary of state, after the Revolutionary War ended. He was an essential diplomat whose peace negotiations with England, leading to the Treaty of Paris, vastly expanded U.S. territory.

For his accomplishments heading a network of informants during the revolution, actions that helped inspire James Fenimore Cooper’s novel “The Spy,” the CIA’s website calls Jay “the first national-level American counterintelligence chief.” He also helped write the New York Constitution, was a founder of the New York Manumission Society and as governor signed legislation that phased out slavery in the state. (Jay himself owned slaves.)

The founders bickered colorfully among themselves, but they agreed on the virtues of Jay. Noting his centrality in the talks with England, John Adams praised him as “of more importance than any of the rest of us.” Alexander Hamilton turned to Jay first when conceiving the Federalist Papers, and George Washington thought so much of him that when he was forming his original Cabinet, he offered the first position – any position – to Jay, who chose the Supreme Court.

continue http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_JULY_4TH_THE_FORGOTTEN_FOUNDER?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

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Solar-powered plane lands in Hawaii, pilot sets nonstop record

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FBI Wants Pirate Bay Logs to Expose Copyright Trolls

pirate bayOver the past few years copyright troll law firm Prenda crossed the line on several occasions.

Most controversial was the clear evidence that Prenda uploaded their own torrents to The Pirate Bay, creating a honeypot for the people they later sued over pirated downloads.

The crucial evidence to back up this allegation came from The Pirate Bay, who shared upload logs with TorrentFreak that tied a user account and uploads to Prenda and its boss John Steele.

This serious allegation together with other violations piqued the interest of the FBI. For a long time there have been suspicions that the authorities are investigating the Prenda operation and today we can confirm that this is indeed the case.

continue http://torrentfreak.com/fbi-wants-pirate-bay-logs-to-expose-copyright-trolls-150703/

Categories: government, technology | Tags: , ,

Japanese Court Orders Google To Delete Past Reports Of Man’s Molestation Arrest

The Saitama District Court has ordered Google Inc. to delete past reports on a man’s arrest over molestation from its online search results after ruling that they violate the man’s personal rights, it has been learned.

It is uncommon for a court to order that search outcomes on reports about an arrest be deleted, according to a lawyer familiar with lawsuits involving the Internet.

The court made the decision on June 25 in favor of the man, who was arrested about three years ago on suspicion of violating the Act on Punishment of Activities Relating to Child Prostitution and Child Pornography, and the Protection of Children, after molesting a girl under 18. A court’s summary order fining him 500,000 yen was finalized.

However, past articles about his arrest continued to be displayed online when users entered his name and address.

“He harbors remorse over the incident and is leading a new life. The search results prevent him from rehabilitating himself,” the man’s defense counsel claimed, adding, “Publicizing past criminal information with a person’s real name doesn’t serve the public’s needs, and is therefore illegal.”

continue http://mainichi.jp/english/english/newsselect/news/20150702p2a00m0na005000c.html

Categories: government, internet, technology | Tags: , , , ,

Mastercard facial recog-ware will unlock your money using SELFIES

Mastercard will begin using selfies as a means to verify payments, it is being said.

The “innovation” will allow some 500 pilot users to take a photo instead of punching in PINs, a move MasterCard chief product security officer Ajay Bhalla says will be popular with youth.

Bhalla told CNN Mastercard partnered with all phone manufacturers to produce the biometric beastie.

“The new generation, which is into selfies … I think they’ll find it cool. They’ll embrace it,” Bhalla says. “This [app] seamlessly integrates biometrics into the overall payment experience.

“You can choose to use your fingerprint or your face – you tap it, the transaction is okayed (sic) and you’re done.”

Bhalla says the trial will begin in the US shortly with a full scale deployment to follow.

Users will need to hold their mobile phones at eye-level and blink once when instructed for the check-me-out checkout process to complete.

continue http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/07/03/end_of_days_mastercard_to_verify_purchases_using_selfies/

Categories: technology | Tags: , ,

7 of the Biggest PC Hardware Myths That Just Won’t Die

From PCs to Windows to smartphones, the technology we use every day is surrounded by myths that never seem to go away. These myths are so believable because they all have a grain of truth to them — maybe they even were true in the past.

Don’t buy into all the myths out there. They could lead you astray when you’re buying a new PC, building one, or just upgrading the hardware you have right now.

More RAM Will Always Speed Up Your PC

More RAM definitely doesn’t hurt, but it doesn’t always help. Adding more RAM — or getting a computer with more RAM — will only really help if your computer is starved for RAM. Yes, modern operating systems will use spare RAM for caching — but that cache is only so helpful. If your computer is getting along fine with 8 GB of RAM, you don’t really need another 8 GB of RAM for extra cache space.

Before deciding to upgrade your PC with more RAM, be sure to check that your computer actually needs it by monitoring how much RAM is being used. Going from 8 GB to 16 GB will only really help if you’re running heavy virtual machines, demanding PC games, and something else that needs more memory than that 8 GB offers. More RAM isn’t always better, and you’re often better off looking at other specifications when you purchase a computer — don’t just focus on the amount of RAM.

continue http://www.howtogeek.com/220297/7-of-the-biggest-pc-hardware-myths-that-just-won%E2%80%99t-die/

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The Plan to Save Earth from the Next Giant Asteroid

It is a cold January afternoon on the peak of Mt. Bigelow, an hour’s drive north from Tucson, and the wind burns my face as I watch the colors of the desert sunset bleed into the foothills of the Catalina mountains.

This is the home of the University of Arizona’s Catalina Sky Survey, a secluded astronomical observatory whose mission it is to discover and monitor Near Earth Objects (NEOs), comets and asteroids which pass within roughly 120 million miles of Earth’s orbit and therefore have the greatest potential to obliterate humanity.

I traveled here with Eric Christensen, a University of Arizona scientist and the principal investigator for the survey, who is letting me tag along to observe for an evening. Christensen is 37, easy-going, and soft-spoken, with dark eyebrows accentuated by his shaved head. We unload groceries from his truck and haul them into the cramped combined kitchen-bedroom where he will be based for the next three nights while scanning the skies for NEOs—weather permitting, of course.

After he stores his groceries, Christensen and I watch the sunset and the mass of thunderclouds amassing on the horizon. “It’s not looking good,” he says.

Arizona gets around 300 days of clear skies a year and as luck would have it I happened to pick one of the few stormy nights to participate in an activity that demands perfect visibility.

continue http://motherboard.vice.com/read/the-underfunded-disorganized-plan-to-save-earth-from-the-next-giant-asteroid

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