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31 Aug 15:52

The Ashes of Four 'Star Trek' Actors Will Be Carried Into Deep Space

by EditorDavid
United Launch Alliance has been developing a heavy-lift space vehicle since 2014 (with investment from the U.S. military) called the Vulcan Centaur. So CNN reports that the ashes of the late Star Trek actress Nichelle Nichols "will head to deep space on a Vulcan rocket." Nichols' cremated remains will be aboard the first Celestis Voyager Memorial Spaceflight, which will launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Celestis, Inc., is a private company that conducts memorial spaceflights. Among the remains also aboard the flight will be the ashes of "Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry; his wife, Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, who played various roles in the show and films; and James Doohan, who played Montgomery "Scotty" Scott in the films and TV series.... The spaceflight will travel beyond NASA's James Webb Space Telescope and into interplanetary deep space. In addition to cremated remains, capsules onboard will also carry complete human genome DNA samples from willing participants. People can participate in the flight — by having DNA or loved ones' remains in a spaceflight container — for a price starting at $12,500, and reservations close August 31. (Celestis offers other voyages that don't travel as far, but can cost less than $5,000.) Ahead of the flight's liftoff, Celestis will host a three-day event with mission briefings, an astronaut-hosted dinner, launch site tours, an on-site memorial service and launch viewing. All events will be shown via webcast, according to Celestis. An announcement on the flight's site invites fans of Nichelle Nichols to "share your own story about how she inspired you and it will be sent into deep space aboard the first Celestis Voyager Memorial Spaceflight — the Enterprise Flight, launching later in 2022."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

05 Jul 05:51

Mickey Mouse Could Soon Leave Disney As 95-Year Copyright Expiry Nears

by msmash
schwit1 writes: Mickey will be for the public domain in 2024, following U.S. copyright laws that state intellectual property on artistic work expires at the 95-year mark. When Mickey Mouse first appeared, Disney's copyright was protected for 56 years. The company supported the Copyright Act of 1976 which extended protections for 75 years. In 1998, Disney lobbied for a further extension. It is unclear whether the entertainment giant plans to make another move before 2023 to prevent Mickey from being moved into the public domain. Once copyright expires, anyone wishing to use characters from everyone's favorite rodent will not have to request permission or pay copyright charge.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

15 Jun 15:16

Saudi authorities seize rainbow toys for promoting homosexuality

An official tells state TV the items "promote homosexual colours targeting the younger generation".
15 Jun 15:13

Hot coal walk leaves 25 injured in Switzerland

The group suffered burns after walking over a bed of coals as part of a team building exercise.
14 Jun 12:23

Haze Fan: China releases Bloomberg journalist on bail


He leído 'hazte fan', y parecía mal pero creíble que la BBC hubiera llegado a eso.

Haze Fan of Bloomberg news was held 18 months ago and accused of threatening China's security.
22 May 18:16

Why Gov.UK Stopped Using jQuery

by EditorDavid
The head of the UK government's digital transformation unit recently announced a change to the nation's government services site they've "removed jQuery as a dependency for all frontend apps, meaning 32 KB of minified and compressed JavaScript was removed" for everything from selecting elements to attaching event listeners.... Nearly 84% of mobile pages used jQuery in 2021, points out a new essay at Gov.UK — before explaining why they decided not to: jQuery was an instrumental tool in a time when we really needed a way to script interactivity in a way that smoothed over the differing implementations of stuff like event handling, selecting elements, animating elements, and so on. The web is better because of jQuery — not just because it has such incredible utility, but because its ubiquity led to making what it provided part of the web platform itself. Nowadays, we can do just about anything jQuery can do in vanilla JavaScript... It really begs the question: Do we really need jQuery today? That's a question that GOV.UK has answered with a resounding "no".... This is a big deal when it comes to the user experience, because GOV.UK provides services and information online for The United Kingdom at scale. Not everyone is tapping away on their 2022 MacBook Pro on a rip-roarin' broadband connection. GOV.UK has to be accessible to everyone, and that means keepin' it lean.... dependencies matter when it comes to performance. Don't shortchange your users if the web platform can easily do the job a framework can. This level of commitment to the user experience from a institution that works at the scale GOV.UK does is commendable. I can only hope others follow in their footsteps.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

13 May 12:59

Selection Bias

We carefully sampled the general population and found that most people are familiar with acquiescence bias.
08 Apr 18:50

Diabetes Successfully Treated Using Ultrasound In Preclinical Study

by BeauHD

So it's not going to be gene therapy or mRNA or anything like that.

Across three different animal models researchers have demonstrated how short bursts of ultrasound targeted at specific clusters of nerves in the liver can effectively lower insulin and glucose levels. New Atlas reports: Reporting in the journal Nature Biomedical Engineering, a team led by GE Research, including investigators from the Yale School of Medicine, UCLA, and the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research, demonstrated a unique non-invasive ultrasound method designed to stimulate specific sensory nerves in the liver. The technology is called peripheral focused ultrasound stimulation (pFUS) and it allows highly targeted ultrasound pulses to be directed at specific tissue containing nerve endings. "We used this technique to explore stimulation of an area of the liver called the porta hepatis," the researchers explained in a Nature briefing. "This region contains the hepatoportal nerve plexus, which communicates information on glucose and nutrient status to the brain but has been difficult to study as its nerve structures are too small to separately stimulate with implanted electrodes." The newly published study indicates short targeted bursts of pFUS at this area of the liver successfully reversed the onset of hyperglycaemia. The treatment was found to be effective in three separate animal models of diabetes: mice, rats and pigs. [...] The study found just three minutes of focused ultrasound each day was enough to maintain normal blood glucose levels in the diabetic animals. Studies in humans are currently underway to work out whether this method translates from animal studies. But there are other hurdles facing broad clinical deployment of the technique beyond simply proving it works. Current ultrasound tools used to perform this kind of pFUS technique require trained technicians. The researchers suggest the technology exists to simplify and automate these systems in a way that could be used by patients at home, but it will need to be developed before this treatment can be widely deployed.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

11 Mar 20:07

False Dichotomy

There are two types of dichotomy: False dichotomies, true dichotomies, and surprise trichotomies.
16 Feb 18:31

Cryptocurrency is Akin To a 'Ponzi Scheme', Warns India's Central Bank

by msmash
A top official of India's central bank has compared cryptocurrency to a "Ponzi scheme" and suggested an outright ban in its sharpest criticism just weeks after the government proposed taxation of the virtual digital asset and paved way to recognize it as legal tender in the world's second-largest internet market. From a report: T. Rabi Sankar, deputy governor of Reserve Bank of India (RBI), told an audience at a banking conference that cryptocurrencies have been "specifically developed to bypass the regulated financial system," and are not backed by any underlying cash flow. "We have also seen that cryptocurrencies are not amenable to definition as a currency, asset or commodity; they have no underlying cash flows, they have no intrinsic value; that they are akin to Ponzi schemes, and may even be worse," he said. "As a store of value, cryptocurrencies like bitcoin have given impressive returns so far, but so did tulips in 17th century Netherlands."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

02 Feb 00:49

Última semana de enero 2022. Do the Right Thing

by Ernesto Rodera

Lunes 24 de enero 2022
Todavía seguimos con lo obvio.


Martes 25 de enero 2022
Fue muy comentada una foto de los señores de Fuerza Nueva paseándose por las calles de León vestidos de... no sé sabe muy bien qué. Pablo Casado, el líder nacional del Partido Popular por su parte sigue dando ruedas de prensa rodeado de rumiantes, únicos seres que pueden darle dos y hasta tres vueltas a su alimento.

Miércoles 26 de enero 2022
Todo está bien. Hablemos de lo sabroso de nuestros productos y la hermosura de nuestras mujeres.

Jueves 27 de enero 2022
Y no había una consejería de Marina y otra Aeroespacial de puta casualidad. En arte menor (ocho sílabas o menos) las formas abab se llaman cuartetas. En arte mayor... chan, chan, chan... ¡serventesios (ABAB)! Luego ya van las redondillas (abba) y los cuartetos (ABBA).

Viernes 28 de enero 2022
Yo estaba seguro de que la campaña ya había empezado. Pero, no. Empieza hoy. Mientras, tremendo nublado se cierne sobre Ucrania. Pero nos da igual. Nosotros, a lo nuestro.

Sábado 29 de enero 2022
El alfabeto electoral sigue con sus cosas electorales. Hoy presentamos al candidato del partido Unión del Pueblo Leonés, cuyos líderes y simpatizantes siempre han tenido un programa, unas ideas y un plan (económico, cultural, demográfico...) muy sencillo: absolutamente todo es culpa de Valladolid. Si León fuera una autonomía uniprovincial, o con Zamora y Salamanca, o con la franja de Gaza y parte de República Dominicana... seríamos la monda porque debemos ser listísimos. Pero sin Valladolid: origen y solución de nuestros problemas.

Domingo 30 de enero 2022
Esto es literal. El Partido Popular (por ejemplo) puede llegar a un sitio de la Comunidad y asegurar que va a llevar a cabo un proyecto que haya anunciado antes CUATRO VECES. Bueno, no es que pueda. Tengo la seguridad de que lo va a hacer (no el proyecto, claro).

Colofón no relacionado. A veces pongo aquí estas cosas para... guardarlas. El día cuatro de abril de 2017 dibujé (y publicaron) la viñeta de la derecha. A la izquierda se puede ver la dada a imprenta por Andrés Rábago (El Roto) en el diario El País el día veintiséis de enero de 2022. Casi cinco años después. ¿Qué significa esto? Pues nada en absoluto. Que es un chiste tontorrón, en el mejor de los casos. Lo tengo muy estudiado: cuánto más abstracto y críptico y general sea el tema (las tramas, la guerra, las mujeres, LA POBREZA...), más molan. Ahora, si te metes con algo o alguien en concreto... la cosa cambia. Me gusta más la mía.

Los enlaces a ambos dibujos:

08 Jan 22:45

Judge Orders FDA To Hasten Release of Pfizer Vaccine Docs

by BeauHD
A federal judge in Texas on Thursday ordered the Food and Drug Administration to make public the data it relied on to license Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine, imposing a dramatically accelerated schedule that should result in the release of all information within about eight months. Reuters reports: That's roughly 75 years and four months faster than the FDA said it could take to complete a Freedom of Information Act request by a group of doctors and scientists seeking an estimated 450,000 pages of material about the vaccine. The court "concludes that this FOIA request is of paramount public importance," wrote U.S. District Judge Mark Pittman in Fort Worth, who was appointed to the bench by former President Donald Trump in 2019. The FDA didn't dispute it had an obligation to make the information public but argued that its short-staffed FOIA office only had the bandwidth to review and release 500 pages a month. While Pittman recognized "the 'unduly burdensome' challenges that this FOIA request may present to the FDA," in his four-page order, he resoundingly rejected the agency's suggested schedule. Rather than producing 500 pages a month -- the FDA's proposed timeline -- he ordered the agency to turn over 55,000 a month. That means all the Pfizer vaccine data should be public by the end of the summer rather than, say, the year 2097. "Even if the FDA may not see it this way, I think Pittman did the agency -- and the country -- a big favor by expediting the document production," writes Reuters' Jenna Greene. "Making the information public as soon as possible may help assuage the concerns of vaccine skeptics and convince them the product is safe." "Still, the FDA is likely to be hard-pressed to process 55,000 pages a month," Greene adds. "The office that reviews FOIA requests has just 10 employees, according to a declaration filed with the court by Suzann Burk, who heads the FDA's Division of Disclosure and Oversight Management. Burk said it takes eight minutes a page for a worker 'to perform a careful line-by-line, word-by-word review of all responsive records before producing them in response to a FOIA request.' [...] But as lawyers for the plaintiffs Public Health and Medical Professionals for Transparency pointed out in court papers (PDF), the FDA as of 2020 had 18,062 employees. Surely some can be dispatched to pitch in at the FOIA office."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

23 Dec 19:23

Watching A Lecture Twice At Double Speed Can Benefit Learning Better Than Watching It Once At Normal Speed

by msmash
The British Psychological Society: Watching lecture videos is now a major part of many students' university experience. Some say they prefer them to live lectures, as they can choose when to study. And, according to a survey of students at the University of California Los Angeles, at least, many students also take advantage of the fact that video playback can be sped up, so cutting the amount of time they spend on lectures. But what impact does sped-up viewing have on learning? The answer, according to a new paper in Applied Cognitive Psychology, is, within some limits, none. In fact, if used strategically, it can actually improve learning. However, what students think is going to be the best strategy isn't actually what's most beneficial, Dillon Murphy at UCLA and colleagues also report. First, the team assigned 231 student participants to watch two YouTube videos (one on real estate appraisals and the other on the Roman Empire) at normal speed, 1.5x speed, 2x speed or 2.5x speed. They were told to watch the videos in full screen mode and not to pause them or take any notes. After each video, the students took comprehension tests, which were repeated a week later. The results were clear: the 1.5x and 2x groups did just as well on the tests as those who'd watched the videos at normal speed, both immediately afterwards and one week on. Only at 2.5x was learning impaired. When the team surveyed a separate group of UCLA students, they found that a massive 85% usually watched pre-recorded lectures at faster than normal speed. However, 91% said they thought that normal speed or slightly faster (1.5x) would be better for learning than 2x or 2.5x. These new results certainly suggest that this isn't right: double-time viewing was just as good as normal viewing. It seems, then, that as long as the material can still be accurately perceived and comprehended, it's okay to speed up playback. So, a student could just watch videos at 2x speed and halve their time spent on lectures...Or, according to the results of other studies reported in the paper, they could watch a video at 2x normal speed twice, and do better on a test than if they'd watched it once at normal speed. The timing mattered, though: only those who'd watched the 2x video for a second time immediately before a test, rather than right after the first viewing, got this advantage.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

27 Jul 07:43

Backdoor.Win32.Nbdd.bgz / Remote Stack Buffer Overflow

Posted by malvuln on Jul 26

Discovery / credits: Malvuln - (c) 2021
Original source:
Contact: malvuln13 () gmail com

Threat: Backdoor.Win32.Nbdd.bgz
Vulnerability: Remote Stack Buffer Overflow
Description: NetBot_Attacker VIP 5.9 on initial startup listens on port
8080 and on subsequent restarts port 80. Third-party attackers who can
reach an infected system can send...
10 Mar 08:49

Amazon Expands Its Palm Recognition Payment Tech To More of Its Stores

by BeauHD
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Verge: Amazon One, the technology that lets customers pay in shops by scanning their palm, is expanding to more stores in the greater Seattle area. The company says it's available starting today in its 4-star store in Lynnwood, and in the coming weeks, Amazon One is also coming to its Amazon Books store in Bellevue and its 4-star and Pop Up stores in South Lake Union. In total, 12 of Amazon's physical stores will soon feature the technology. The e-commerce giant announced its palm recognition Amazon One system last year. It works by scanning your hand and identifying its unique characteristics like surface area details and vein patterns. Palm scanning technology has been around for a few years, and it's pretty secure as biometric security methods go, though there are concerns about how Amazon might use the data gathered as part of the system. So far, Amazon has made Amazon One available as a payment option across a number of its own-branded physical stores around Seattle. But in the longer term, the company hopes the convenience factor of being able to confirm your identity using just your hand will convince third-party businesses to use the service, too.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

27 Feb 14:20

Nvidia Made $5 Billion During a GPU Shortage and Expects To Do It Again in Q1

by msmash
Nvidia has shared its Q4 2021 earnings, and despite the company's GPUs being in extremely low supply, it didn't seem to hurt how much money the company made. From a report: In fact, it reported a record $5 billion in revenue, which is up 61 percent year-over-year. What's more impressive is that Nvidia expects to make another $5 billion in revenue during Q1 2022. This positive outlook is surprising given that Q1 is generally slower than other quarters, even for the biggest tech companies, as it follows the rush of people buying lots of products during the holiday period. It's generally a slower period in general for product releases across tech and gaming. Also, let's not forget the GPU shortage is still happening. Nvidia reiterated that sparse supply will continue through the next quarter, but that's likely factored into its rosy revenue prediction. Nvidia says it expects most of that $5 billion revenue estimate in Q1 2022 to come from the gaming market, despite being the segment it's currently having the toughest time serving. Since the launch of the RTX 30-series desktop graphics cards, leading with the RTX 3080, 3090, 3070, and followed by other products, Nvidia hasn't been able to meet the demand -- though it's not the only company affected. AMD has also struggled, perhaps more than Nvidia, to keep a steady stock of graphics cards heading to retailers.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

23 Aug 09:55

Tercera semana de agosto 2020. Héroes

by Ernesto Rodera


Domingo 23 de agosto 2020
Cuando se oye hablar de héroes, de sacrificios, de extenuantes esfuerzos y de futuras apuestas... malo. La política, la sociedad, la economía, la educación y la sanidad nada tienen que ver con excepciones, ni deben apoyarse en ellas. Un mecanismo debe funcionar sin milagros.

Sábado 22 de agosto 2020
Nuestro presidente, el ínclito Mañueco, ha desaparecido (o se ha invisibilizado) definitivamente. Ha pasado de no tomar ninguna decisión a no... estar.

Viernes 21 de agosto 2020
Las circunstancias cambian cada día (a peor). Nuestros políticos parecen esperar a que las circunstancias... se detengan. Eso no va a ocurrir.

Jueves 20 de agosto 2020
Pues lo mismo de antes. ¿Qué pensaba la gente que los votó que iban a resolver estas personas? En situación de alarma o en cualquier otra.

Miércoles 19 de agosto 2020
El consejero de Economía y Hacienda Javier Fernández Carriedo sigue flotando en nuestros autonómicos lodos, como un Rey Leño especialmente... tarugo. 

Martes 18 de agosto 2020
Parece que en la campaña de rebajas de... ahora (nunca sé cuándo hay rebajas) no se vendió tanto como otras veces en la misma época. En el momento en que se prohíben cosas perfectamente razonables (no echar humo de la boca a la jeta de otras personas) a la ciudadanía, aparecen adalides de LA LIBERTAD que, es curioso, dejan, han dejado y dejarán pasar enormes atropellos reales sin levantar jamás la voz.

Lunes 17 de agosto 2020
Problemático se presenta el comienzo del curso escolar. ¿Qué harán curas y monjas, por ejemplo? ¿Tienen personal, sitio, protocolos...? Mmmm... quizá no hagan nada. O sí: poner pegas. Ya ha pasado antes.

15 Jul 12:22

IBM Job Ad Calls For a Minimum 12 Years' Experience With Kubernetes -- Which is Six Years Old

by msmash
IBM's Global Technology Services has posted a job ad calling for candidates with a "minimum 12+ years' experience in Kubernetes administration and management." From a report: Which is a little odd because the first GitHub commit for the project was made on June 7, 2014. And the feature freeze for version 1.0 was announced on May 22, 2015. Sharp-minded Reg readers will have recognised that -- absent time travel -- it is therefore not possible for anyone to have 12 years' experience with Kubernetes. The ad is sadly silent on just how IBM expects candidates will have found the time to accumulate a dozen years' experience in a six-year-old project.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

12 Jul 10:21

Newly-Discovered Comet Neowise: Now Visible at Dawn and Dusk

by EditorDavid
"A newly-discovered comet is giving skywatchers quite the show during the month of July," reports CBS News: Astronomers discovered the comet, known as Comet C2020 F3 NEOWISE, back in March. It was named for the NASA mission that spotted it, for the Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer... But astronomers knew they found something unique when they spotted Neowise. On July 3, Neowise was closer to the sun than the orbit of Mercury, coming dangerously close to breaking apart. The sun heated up much of the comet's icy makeup, erupting in a large debris trail of gas and dust. Measuring about 3 miles across, Neowise is considered a fairly large comet — providing skywatchers with a spectacular view from Earth. The comet, which has a bright opulent tail, has been putting on a stunning show in the early hours before sunrise in the Northern Hemisphere... But late sleepers need not worry — the comet will start appearing in the evening, just after sunset, starting Saturday. To view it, people in the Northern Hemisphere can look to the northwestern sky, just below Ursa Major, commonly known as the Big Dipper constellation. Scientists say the comet will be visible across the Northern Hemisphere for about another month. The comet is made up of material dating back 4.6 billion years, to the origins of our solar system, according to the article. "The event is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience — the comet takes about 6,800 years to complete its path around the sun, according to NASA..." "NASA says it will be one of the brightest comets this century."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

20 Jun 17:55

Samsung Blu-Ray Players Suddenly Stop Working Worldwide

by BeauHD
New submitter wb9syn7 writes: The last two days have seen a variety of Samsung Blu-ray players worldwide suddenly cease working. The symptom is that they turn on when power is applied, whereupon they reboot themselves every few seconds endlessly. The power and eject buttons are ignored and all attempts at resetting them fail. After many owners contacted Samsung support and were told they needed to send their players in for hardware repair, Samsung appears to have admitted there is a common problem, not individual player failure. As they are all out of warranty and the reboot cycle precludes the normal software update process, we are awaiting a solution from them. A community post has hundreds of users confirming the issue across various models. We've reached out to Samsung but they have yet to comment on the matter.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

19 Nov 16:02

India Says Law Permits Agencies To Snoop on Citizens' Devices

by msmash
The Indian government said on Tuesday that it is "empowered" to intercept, monitor, or decrypt any digital communication "generated, transmitted, received, or stored" on a citizen's device in the country in the interest of national security or to maintain friendly relations with foreign states. From a report: Citing section 69 of the Information Technology Act, 2000, and section 5 of the Telegraph Act, 1885, Minister of State for Home Affairs G. Kishan Reddy said local law empowers federal and state government to "intercept, monitor or decrypt or cause to be intercepted or monitored or decrypted any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer resource in the interest of the sovereignty or integrity of India, the security of the state, friendly relations with foreign states or public order or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating to above or for investigation of any offence." Reddy's remarks were in response to the parliament, where a lawmaker had asked if the government had snooped on citizens' WhatsApp, Messenger, Viber, and Google calls and messages.

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27 Oct 08:20

Man Kept Getting Drunk Without Drinking. Docs Found Brewer's Yeast In His Guts

by BeauHD
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: After years of inexplicably getting drunk without drinking alcohol, having mood swings and bouts of aggression, landing a DWI charge on the way to work one morning, and suffering a head injury in a drunken fall, an otherwise healthy 46-year-old North Carolina man finally got confirmation of having alcohol-fermenting yeasts overrunning his innards, getting him sloshed any time he ate carbohydrate-laden meals. Through the years, medical professionals and police officers refused to believe he hadn't been drinking. They assumed the man was lying to hide an alcohol problem. Meanwhile, he went to an untold number of psychiatrists, internists, neurologists, and gastroenterologists searching for answers. Those answers only came after he sought help from a support group online and then contacted a group of researchers at Richmond University Medical Center in Staten Island, New York. By then, it was September of 2017 -- more than seven years after his saga began. The New York researchers finally confirmed that he had a rarely diagnosed condition called "auto-brewery syndrome." From there, the researchers started him on powerful anti-fungal medications to try to clear the boozy germs from his system. But he relapsed just weeks later after sneaking some forbidden pizza and soda. The researchers tried again, giving him an even stronger round of anti-fungal drugs, this time through a tube directly into his veins (central catheter). By February of 2018, tests indicated he was free of the fermenting fungi. He went back to eating his normal diet and passed his daily breathalyzer tests. He has stayed that way since, the researchers report.

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28 Jun 13:03

Good News

I finally managed to build LibreOffice for armv7 and I have LibreOfficeDev on my TV screen right now. There’s a link to build instructions above and I’ll update it with the autogen flags I used. They’re somewhat arbitrary but yeah.

Now the stage is set for this week’s/ next week’s work of controlling LibreOffice from Python, and also the additions needed in LO’s source code to actually make things work properly.


P.S. I am aware that this site is incredibly ugly, I’ll fix it soon.

08 Dec 02:22

Adobe Flash Responsible For Six of the Top 10 Bugs Used By Exploit Kits In 2016

by BeauHD
Trailrunner7 quotes a report from On the Wire: Vulnerabilities in Flash and Internet Explorer dominated the exploit kit landscape in the last year, with a high-profile bug in Flash being found in seven separate kits, new research shows. Exploit kits have long been a key tool in the arsenal of many attackers, from low-level gangs to highly organized cybercrime crews. Their attraction stems from their ease of use and the ability for attackers to add exploits for new vulnerabilities as needed. While there are dozens of exploit kits available, a handful of them attract the most use and attention, including Angler, Neutrino, Nuclear, and Rig. Researchers at Recorded Future looked at more than 140 exploit kits and analyzed which exploits appeared in the most kits in the last year, and it's no surprise that Flash and IE exploits dominated the landscape. Six of the top 10 most-refquently targeted vulnerabilities in the last year were in Flash, while the other four were in Microsoft products, including IE, Windows, and Silverlight. Flash has been a favorite target for attackers for a long time, for two main reasons: it's deployed on hundreds of millions of machines, and it has plenty of vulnerabilities. Recorded Future's analysis shows that trend is continuing, and one Flash bug disclosed October 2015 was incorporated into seven individual exploit kits. The flaw was used by a number of high-level attackers, including some APT groups. "Adobe Flash Player's CVE-2015-7645, number 10 in terms of references to exploit kits, stands out as the vulnerability with the most adoption by exploit kits. Exploit kits adopting the Adobe bug in the past year include Neutrino, Angler, Magnitude, RIG, Nuclear Pack, Spartan, and Hunter," the analysis by Recorded Future says.

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25 Nov 18:45

VLC Media Player Previews 360-degree Video Support

by msmash
VideoLAN has released a technical preview of VLC Media Player 3.0 with 360-degree video support. The new build handles videos following the Spatial Video format, and photos and panoramas following the Spherical spec (the official test page has sample files). From an article on SoftwareCrew:The files play back just like any other video, but you can now left-click and drag within the screen or use the numeric keypad arrows to look around. VideoLAN says there are multiple display modes -- Zoom, Little Planet and Reverse Little Planet -- although we couldn't immediately see how they were activated. This initial release is only available for Windows and Mac, but eventually 360-degree support will arrive for Android, iOS and Xbox One, with VR headset support likely to arrive in 2017.

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03 Mar 00:49

Google-Backed SSD Endurance Research Shows MLC Flash As Reliable As SLC

by timothy
MojoKid writes: Even for mainstream users, it's easy to feel the differences between using a PC that has an OS installed on a solid state drive versus a mechanical hard drive. Also, with SSD pricing where it is right now, it's also easy to justify including one in a new configuration for the speed boost. And there's obvious benefit in the enterprise and data center for both performance and durability. As you might expect, Google has chewed through a healthy pile of SSDs in its data centers over the years and the company appears to have been one of the first to deploy SSDs in production at scale. New research results Google is sharing via a joint research project now encompasses SSD use over a six year span at one of Google's data centers. Looking over the results led to some expected and unexpected findings. One of the biggest discoveries is that SLC-based SSDs are not necessarily more reliable than MLC-based drives. This is surprising, as SLC SSDs carry a price premium with the promise of higher durability (specifically in write operations) as one of their selling points. It will come as no surprise that there are trade-offs of both SSDs and mechanical drives, but ultimately, the benefits SSDs offer often far outweigh the benefits of mechanical HDDs.

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25 Mar 16:11

25 de marzo, Día del Documento Libre

by nettizen
ignacio.agullo nos cuenta: «Como todos los años desde 2008 a finales de marzo, la Fundación para la Programación Libre de Europa convoca el Día del Documento Libre. Se organizan eventos por todo el mundo para promover los estándares abiertos para la codificación de datos, permitiendo que cualquier programador pueda crear sus propias herramientas para trabajar con los datos o para convertirlos de formato. Es una celebración relacionada con la compatibilidad, pues lo que se trata de evitar es perder los datos que están codificados de forma indocumentada cuando el formato se queda sin soporte. Para los seguidores de las Celebraciones TIC Internacionales, la Asociación de Técnicos de Informática mantiene un Calendario de celebraciones internacionales dedicadas a las Tecnologías de la Información y las Comunicaciones.»
06 Jun 15:33

Vodafone Reveals Warrantless Wiretapping

by Soulskill
Charliemopps writes "According to Vodafone, multiple governments have installed equipment that collects data on its customers without a warrant. This includes metadata, location data, and voice. They say, "In a small number of countries, agencies and authorities have direct access to communications data stored within an operator’s network. In those countries, Vodafone will not receive any form of demand for communications data access as the relevant agencies and authorities already have permanent access to customer communications via their own direct link." It's a rather long, and very interesting report. Vodafone also criticized the transparency process: "In our view, it is governments – not communications operators – who hold the primary duty to provide greater transparency on the number of agency and authority demands issued to operators. We believe this for two reasons."'

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10 Apr 14:34

New French Law Prohibits After-Hours Work Emails

by timothy
Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes "Lucy Mangan reports at The Guardian that a new labor agreement in France means that employees must ignore their bosses' work emails once they are out of the office and relaxing at home – even on their smartphones. Under the deal, which affects a million employees in the technology and consultancy sectors (including the French arms of Google, Facebook, and Deloitte), employees will also have to resist the temptation to look at work-related material on their computers or smartphones – or any other kind of malevolent intrusion into the time they have been nationally mandated to spend on whatever the French call la dolce vita. "We must also measure digital working time," says Michel De La Force, chairman of the General Confederation of Managers. "We can admit extra work in exceptional circumstances but we must always come back to what is normal, which is to unplug, to stop being permanently at work." However critics say it will impose further red tape on French businesses, which already face some of the world's tightest labor laws." (Continues)

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10 Mar 09:09

Unique Date

If our current civilization lasts another 8,000 years, it's probably fair to assume the Long Now Foundation got things right, and at some point we started listening to them and switched to five-digit years.